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October 13th, 2009

Vander Plaats Endorsed by Iowa/Nebraska NAACP President

Ratlif WHO (10)_opt smallerRepublican gubernatorial candidate Bob Vander Plaats received the endorsement of Rev. Keith Ratliff yesterday morning. Supporting Vander Plaats might seem like natural fit for Rev. Ratliff, a strong proponent of traditional marriage, but this is the first time Rev. Ratliff will vote for a Republican in his life. In 2006, Rev. Ratliff voted for Governor Chet Culver.

In addition to being the pastor of the Maple Street Baptist Church in Des Moines, Ratliff is also the President of the Iowa/Nebraska Conference of the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP). While Rev. Ratliff stated that his support of traditional marriage played a role in his decision to support Vander Plaats, he also mentioned a number of issues that Governor Culver has failed to adequately address in his first term in office.

One of the main areas where Ratliff has been disappointed in Governor Culver is the state’s hiring practices. Ratliff stated that, besides Governor Culver’s signing of Executive Order Four, which he admits has no teeth, the Culver administration has done very little to create a diverse workforce. Ratliff expressed displeasure that recommendations made by the NAACP and unanimously approved by a special governor’s task force have not been implemented.

Vander Plaats has not addressed state government hiring practices until yesterday. Vander Plaats pledged that as governor, he would apply the “three C’s” to the state’s hiring practices – character, competence, and chemistry. When asked about whether or not a Vander Plaats’ administration would support quotas or affirmative action hiring practices to create a diverse workforce, Vander Plaats told that his administration would be fair to all people, but he does not support affirmative action initiatives. He also pointed out that in his eleven years in education and his seven years in the health services industry, he has always endeavored to give all people opportunity.

About the Author

Craig Robinson
Craig Robinson is the founder and editor-in-chief of, a political news and commentary site he launched in March of 2009. Robinson’s political analysis is respected across party lines, which has allowed him to build a good rapport with journalist across the country. Robinson has also been featured on Iowa Public Television’s Iowa Press, ABC’s This Week, and other local television and radio programs. Campaign’s & Elections Magazine recognized Robinson as one of the top influencers of the 2012 Iowa Caucuses. A 2013 Politico article sited Robinson and as the “premier example” of Republican operatives across the country starting up their own political news sites. His website has been repeatedly praised as the best political blog in Iowa by the Washington Post, and in January of 2015, Politico included him on the list of local reporters that matter in the early presidential states. Robinson got his first taste of Iowa politics in 1999 while serving as Steve Forbes’ southeast Iowa field coordinator where he was responsible for organizing 27 Iowa counties. In 2007, Robinson served as the Political Director of the Republican Party of Iowa where he was responsible for organizing the 2007 Iowa Straw Poll and the 2008 First-in-the-Nation Iowa Caucuses. Following the caucuses, he created his own political news and commentary site, Robinson is also the President of Global Intermediate, a national mail and political communications firm with offices in West Des Moines, Iowa, and Washington, D.C. Robinson utilizes his fundraising and communications background to service Global’s growing client roster with digital and print marketing. Robinson is a native of Goose Lake, Iowa, and a 1999 graduate of St. Ambrose University in Davenport, where he earned degrees in history and political science. Robinson lives in Ankeny, Iowa, with his wife, Amanda, and son, Luke. He is an active member of the Lutheran Church of Hope.

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