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July 16th, 2010

Fallout continues from Democratic Governors Association’s failed experiment

(URBANDALE) – The Governor Branstad 2010 campaign today pieced together a sampling of clips demonstrated the failed experiment conducted by the Democratic Governor’s Association in Iowa’s Republican primary for governor.

“Donors and strategists in the DGA have to be shaking their heads at why they not only spent nearly $800,000 against Terry Branstad – but as to why they spent that money smearing Barack Obama, Bill Clinton and Nancy Pelosi as well,” said Branstad 2010 campaign manager Jeff Boeyink. “Iowans saw right through their distortions, and if Culver won’t reject the efforts of the DGA, it’s clear Iowans are ready to reject his reckless, irresponsible management this November.”

What they’re saying about Iowans for Responsible Government…

“Iowans for Responsible Government received all of its funding — $782,500 — for a series of ads likening the former governor to Bill Clinton and Nancy Pelosi from the Democratic Governors Association. The group spent $767,236 in May and June, including almost $370,000 on television advertising. That puts the total amount of money the Democratic Governors Association has put into the race for Iowa governor, where first-term Democrat Chet Culver is facing a stiff challenge, at more than $2 million.” (“Democratic Governors Association paid for anti-Branstad ads” – The Des Moines Register, Tom Beaumont, July 15, 2010)

The ads and mailers accused Branstad of being a “liberal.” One piece said Branstad would make “liberals” like Bill Clinton proud. It had an image of Mount Rushmore with Branstad’s head alongside Clinton’s and Barack Obama’s. The Democratic Governors Association spent nearly $800,000 on the Branstad’s-too-liberal campaign. (“Democratic Governor Association bankrolls Branstad’s “too liberal” campaign” – Radio Iowa, O. Kay Henderson, July 15, 2010)

“Actually, its Democrats that should be outraged that the DGA would throw away $782,000 on a ham-handed, transparent and ineffective effort that also, curiously, slimes key leaders in its own party. If the Iowa governor’s seat is that important to the DGA, which clearly it is, Iowans for Responsible government should have spent the money on ads and mailings designed to convince Iowans that Culver is competent enough to deserve another term.” (“Chet-Chase 2010: DGA throws away perfectly good money” – Cedar Rapids Gazette, Todd Dorman, July 15, 2010)

“The group that ran a series of anti-Terry Branstad ads before the June 8 primary was funded by the Democratic Governors Association, a new IRS filing shows. Iowans for Responsible Government fronted for the ads, which included television spots and mail pieces. It was pretty clear up front that Democrats were behind the ads, even though they criticized the former governor from the right. It just wasn’t clear who paid for the ads.” (“Democratic Governors Association behind anti-Branstad ads” – Quad City Times, Ed Tibbetts, July 15, 2010)

“The mysterious group was headed by former Iowa Democratic Party Robert Tully, but the group refused to reveal its donors. Now it turns out that the campaign casting Republican Branstad and national Democrats in an unfavorable light was funded by – surprise! – those very same national Democrats.” (“Surprise Player in Iowa GOP Primary Revealed” – Peter Hamby, July 15, 2010)

“What’s more, the mailers that attacked Branstad — as well as Obama, Clinton and Pelosi — appear to have been designed by The Strategy Group, a Chicago-area consulting firm that served as a top mail vendor to Obama’s ’08 campaign. Iowans for Responsible Government spent $314K with The Strategy Group on “direct mail services,” according to the IRS filings. The Strategy Group is the only firm listed as a mail vendor. The 527 group also spent heavily on TV ads with Shorr Johnson Magnus, a prominent PA media firm, and with Harstad Strategic Research, a Boulder-based polling outfit. Both firms worked on Obama’s ’08 campaign.” (“Dems Money spent to bash Obama, Pelosi” – Hotline, Reid Wilson, 7/15/10)

“The organization received all of its funding — roughly $780,000 — from the DGA, which is designed to help elect Democrats in gubernatorial races around the country. The DGA was also the largest contributor to Gov. Chet Culver’s re-election campaign, donating $500,000. (“Democratic Governor Association funded group attacking Branstad” – Iowa Independent, Jason Hancock, 7/15/10)

“The Democratic Governors Association was so concerned about Iowa Gov. Chet Culver’s (D) prospects in a contest against Terry Branstad (R) that it tried to scuttle his gubernatorial campaign in the primary.” (“DGA-funded group called Branstad ‘liberal’ during GOP primary” – The Hill, Sean Miller, July 15, 2010)

…And that money was spent trying – and failing – to get rid of Terry Branstad in the primary by claiming that he was a liberal Obama supporter. If it had worked, it might have revived Chet Culver’s collapsing campaign; as it stands, it’s over three quarters of a million dollars of Democratic money piled on the ground and set on fire. (“DGA spent 800K…attacking Obama” – RedState.com, Moe Lane, July 15, 2010)

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