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May 18th, 2010

Culver Puts His Son at Risk to Make Traffic Stop

Iowa Governor Chet Culver was involved in a traffic altercation on Sunday afternoon. Culver was traveling near Pars & Cigars, a favorite hangout of the Governor’s, when either his SUV cut off another car, or that car cut off the governor’s unmarked SUV.

Being cut-off is not an uncommon occurrence in cities like Des Moines these days. Frustrated at the black SUV, a passenger in the car “flipped off” Culver’s black SUV. Again, nothing really out of the ordinary happened.

What followed, however, was something that you would only expect to see on an episode of C.O.P.S. Instead of blowing off the near collision, Culver’s SUV chased down the car on Interstate 35. Media reports indicate that Culver’s SUV actually got in front of the car at one point, but the car passed him once again. Culver’s SUV is equipped with red and blue lights, but the driver of the car said that he was scared of the Black SUV.

When the driver of the car saw other Des Moines police cars with their lights on he pulled over. He said that he was surprised to see Governor Culver emerge from the SUV with his seven-year old son, John.

The driver of the car, who has been identified as Ed Allen of West Des Moines, has demanded that the Governor apologize for the incident. Courtney Greene, of the Iowa Department of Safety, said that Governor Culver was not driving the SUV and would not apologize.

It is also interesting that Greene, a close personal friend of the Culver family, seemed to be speeking on behalf of the governor and not the Department of Safety, which is actually the agency that she works for. The Department of Safety is heading up the investigation into the incident.

This isn’t the first time that Greene has blurred her role with the Department of Safety and her personal friendships. Last February, Greene bailed State Representative Kerry Burt out of jail after he was involved in a drunk driving incident. Greene had warned Burt earlier in the evening not to be seen drinking with the Governor because pictures of the Governor drinking had circulated on the Internet.

The incident shows incredibly bad judgment by the state trooper and Governor Culver himself. The trooper should have called in the license plate number and had Des Moines police intercept the car. Not only did was the driver of the other car, who was traveling with his wife and child scared, but Culver’s young son was also put in danger.

Was the public’s safety at such a risk that the governor of the state had to hunt down the other driver? Had Mr. Allen been guilty of a major traffic violation he should have been ticketed. Instead, he was never charged.

Photo by Dave Davidson

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About the Author

Craig Robinson
Craig Robinson is the founder and editor-in-chief of TheIowaRepublican.com, 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 TheIowaRepublican.com 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, TheIowaRepublcian.com. 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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