For months, retirement rumors have surrounded Congressman Leonard Boswell. The seven-term Representative in Iowa’s 3rd District tried to quash the retirement rumors early last month, but his statement that he is running has done nothing to dampen the rumors that keep resurfacing in D.C. and back home in Iowa’s third district.
The Boswell retirement rumors are bound to heat up in Iowa after a recent survey tested three possible Democrat replacements for Boswell. Multiple sources have told TheIowaRepublican.com that they were polled Wednesday night about the 3rd District race.
The poll asked how likely they were to vote, whether or not the respondent was Republican or Democrat, and how they would rate the performance of President of Obama and Congressman Boswell. The poll also asked a series of questions about the favorability/unfavorability of a number of well known Iowa Democrats.
Those surveyed included questions about President Obama, Congressman Leonard Boswell, former Iowa First Lady Christie Vilsack, State Representative Geri Huser, and Des Moines Area Community College President Rob Denson. Respondents were also read brief bios of Boswell, Vilsack, and Huser and then asked if they were more/less likely to support them.
Speculation is rampant that the Democratic National Committee (DNC) is behind the calls. In recent months, the Obama Administration has convinced a number of vulnerable Democrat incumbents to retire instead of stand for re-election. Chris Dodd of Connecticut and Byron Dorgan of North Dakota both abruptly announced their retirements from the U.S. Senate. Congressman Vic Snyder of Arkansas and Congressman John Tanner of Tennessee also recently retired, and Colorado Governor Bill Ritter surprised people when he announced his retirement.
Last month, Congressman Chris Van Hollen, the chairman of the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee, warned that a couple more retirements could be coming. One of the names that is always on the list of potential retirements in Leonard Boswell, and another one is Congressman John Spratt from South Carolina. Like Boswell, Spratt is an entrenched incumbent who will likely have a heated general election campaign. Boswell is 76, and Spratt is 67, but both occupy districts that should produce competitive Republican challengers.
If the DNC is polling the favorable and unfavorable of potential Boswell replacements, it is likely that Leonard Boswell may have already made his decision to retire. Christie Vilsack would most-likley lead the ballot test in the poll, but State Rep. Geri Huser is probably the candidate who would immerge as Boswell’s replacement. Denson is rumored to have had his eye on Boswell’s seat for some time, but it might be difficult for him to leave his post at DMACC quickly.
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