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Attorney General Miller Leads in New TIR Battleground Poll

Perhaps no statewide Republican candidate has energized the base of the party like Brenna Findley has with her campaign for Attorney General.  The enthusiasm towards her campaign was on display at the Republican state convention a month ago when people eagerly grabbed her yard signs and waited to speak to the fresh-faced candidate.

Another sign of the strength of Findley’s campaign has been her ability to raise money.  To date, Findley has raised almost $220,000 for her campaign and has shown no signs of slowing down.  Findley’s fundraising total is already $20,000 more than what current Secretary of State Mike Mauro raised when he won the Secretary of State’s office four years ago.

Findley has accomplished a lot as a candidate since announcing her campaign in the spring, but unseating a 31-year incumbent will be no easy task.  Tom Miller first served as the state’s Attorney General from 1979 until 1991.  After an unsuccessful campaign for Governor, he then successfully sought the Attorney General’s post again in 1994 and has been in the office ever since.

The latest Battleground Poll shows that Findley has a lot of work to do if she wants to force Attorney General Tom Miller into retirement.  The poll shows that Findley trails Miller by 15 points.

Findley garnered 26% of the vote, while Miller was supported by 41% of respondents.  The poll also showed that 31% of those surveyed have not made up their minds on the race.  The large segment of undecided voters means that there is plenty of room for Findley to grow her number throughout the summer and fall.

“I know I have a lot of work to do, but I’ve got the right message: I will clean up State government. I will fight to bring jobs back to Iowa. And I stand up to protect our citizens,” Findley noted.



Findley’s fundraising prowess means that she will have the resources at her disposal to run the type of campaign that will raise her name ID and standing in the polls throughout the fall campaign.  She has also proven to be a relentless campaigner and looks for every opportunity to take issue with her better-known opponent.

For a 31-year incumbent to be well below the 50% threshold should be alarming for Miller.

The atmosphere in Iowa does not favor incumbents, and especially those at the highest level of State government. Culver and Miller are both viewed with disdain by Iowa voters.

Findley also has other advantages that other challengers don’t have.  Even during the primary, Terry Branstad took every opportunity to promote Findley at events around the state.  She has also endeared herself to the supporters of former gubernatorial candidate Bob Vander Plaats, making her a unique candidate that appeals to the entire Republican Party in Iowa.


At 26%, Findley is not even earning the support of all Republicans that were surveyed.  The reason for her lack of support in the poll isn’t because they don’t like her as a candidate; it’s because they don’t know who she is yet.  Since Findley didn’t have a primary opponent, she has yet to run any radio or television ads that would increase her name ID across the state.

For Findley to increase her name ID, and her ballot test, she will need to get on the air, stay on the air, and deliver an aggressive GOTV effort.


With ample resources, there is no doubt that Findley will be able to run a credible campaign against Miller this fall.  The combination of a favorable political environment for Republicans along with an incredible set of issues at her disposal means that she has a great opportunity against Miller this fall.

About the Poll Battleground Poll was commissioned in conjunction with Concordia Group LLC, a Des Moines based public relations firm.  The poll was conducted from July 25-28 by Voter/Consumer Research, a highly regarded polling firm based in Houston, Texas.

The poll has a sample size of 500 and a margin of error of +/- 4.39%.

For more information about the poll, click here.

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Posted by on August 3, 2010.

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Categories: Iowa, News Center, Top Story

6 Responses

  1. We really need to get behind Brenna Findley.  Besides the Governor, there is no state official who has a greater effect on how the laws are enforced, or not enforced, in this state.  Unlike Miller, Brenna Findley believes in the rule of law rather than the rule of lawyers.  This is a fight worth getting involved in.  

    by Larry in PH on Aug 3, 2010 at 7:46 am

  2. I could not agree more.

    by Craig Robinson on Aug 3, 2010 at 8:02 am

  3. For Miller to be barely pulling above 40% is not a good sign whatsoever.  Especially since he’s a 30 year incumbent and has high name recognition in the state.

    Findley’s numbers are exactly around where I thought they would likely be at this time.  She didn’t have a primary…she didn’t have to campaign vigorously.  She’s able to be focusing on the two things that are vital right now–fundraising and organization.   The fundraising is building..and it will be up to activists to provide her the organization she needs to win.

    by CVN 76 on Aug 3, 2010 at 8:29 am

  4. All Iowans should get behind this effort. Findley represents the best shot we have to unseat Miller in a long, long time. This is the year to do it. She is a terrific candidate, and people who care about politics in Iowa should be spreading the work to their independent and conservative democratic friends that this is a necessary change in Iowa government.

    by Mr. Hawk on Aug 3, 2010 at 12:05 pm

  5. Everyone needs to do more to help Findley.

    by RedStateVictory on Aug 3, 2010 at 12:24 pm

  6. Brenna Findley is indeed a candidate we can all get behind. However, her name ID has to improve. There are only 90 days left before the general election and I still speak to people that have never heard of her. They’re the people that just vote. They’re not involved politically and their ballot is cast based on name recognition. Might be time to start spending a little money, don’t you think?

    by hawkindc on Aug 3, 2010 at 3:00 pm

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Craig Robinson is the founder and editor-in-chief of The Iowa Republican. 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 counties. With over eight years of Iowa fundraising experience, Robinson has helped numerous Republican candidates implement fundraising strategies […]more →