Apparently Chris Reed is refusing to participate in a debate tonight for the 2nd Congressional candidates. The debate is being held by Young Americans for Liberty, a University of Iowa student group.
The Coralville Courier posted a statement from the Reed campaign that said, “I want to notify you that Christopher Reed will not participate in your forum on Thursday night. Unfortunately remarks were made by members of your group at the District Convention last Saturday that many people, including Team Reed found objectionable.”
This reminds me an awful lot of Steve Rathke’s refusal to debate his primary opponents on Iowa Public Television during the 2008 U.S. Senate primary. I think that move probably cost Rathje the nomination. Reed’s refusal to participate in this debate might not be as big of a blunder as Rathje’s was in 2008, but it still looks bad.
The Second CD Convention Recap
One of my trusted korrespondents finally submitted their report. Slacker.
Central Committee Races:
The battle for state central committee had an interesting twist of drama to it. Of the nine candidates, only two incumbents sought re-election. Jason Hutcheson opted not to run again. Joni Scotter, who was recently elected via special election following the resignation of David Chung, received very little support and was in 7th place after the first ballot. Fellow incumbent Lisa Smith surprisingly also favored poorly with a 6th place finish following the first ballot.
It took a total of eight ballots (thank God I wasn’t there) to settle on the eventual winners; Emily Lofgren, Trudy Caviness and David Chung. Chung was the only one elected on the first ballot with 155 votes. I find it interesting that Chung would run for a seat that he resigned from just a few months ago. Apparently the voters in the 2nd District do not have any concerns that Christian Fong is going to run for president.
Miller-Meeks gave the first speech and it was a doozy filled with cheerleading and self-deprecating vertically challenged jokes: “I may be a short Mariannette, but I’m nobody’s puppet”. A great line to garner laughter and applause, but does little to make the case for why she can beat Dave Loebsack this time when she lost to him in 2008. Miller-Meeks has a tough case to make. She is no longer a fresh face. She was the Republican nominee in 2008, so she now needs to tell people why they should give her another shot at Loebsack. That said, the delegates seemed to really like her.
Gettemy is the only new face in the race. All of the other candidates have run and lost contests in 2008. Gettemy has an interesting story and is a good buy, but he’s not a dynamic speaker. Since he is not well known, Gettemy needs to make a splash in the next six weeks. Winning the primary would be a huge victory for him, but time is ticking and his campaign is currently at the “tipping point” he likes to speak about.
Steve Rathje, who unsuccessfully ran in the primary for U.S. Senate in 2008, spoke next. Rathje is a much better candidate than he was in 2008. If you need proof of that notice how he isn’t skipping debates. The political environment is also in his favor. Out of all the candidates, Rathje is the one who can talk about bringing back jobs to Iowa. It’s a compelling story that he forgot to tell people about in 2008. He needs to do a better job building his name ID across the district. If he is able to do that he could do very well on June 8th.
Reed gave a solid pro-liberty and anti-government red meat speech to the convention as was expected, but offered few specifics. I don’t see thing going well for Reed, but he is a factor in this race, not to win it, but to toss it into a convention. If that happens anything is possible.
I thought I read somewhere that when Reed announced his campaign he said that he learned a lot of lessons from his US Senate race. He said that he had matured since his 2008 campaign and the vitriol that was present in his last campaign wasn’t going to resurface. Its seems as if he wasn’t able to meet the standard that he had set for himself.
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