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July 21st, 2010

Republican Congressional Challengers Earn “On The Radar Status”

Ben Lange (1st CD), Dr. Mariannette Miller-Meeks (2nd District), and Brad Zaun (3rd District), have all earned “On the Radar” status from the National Republican Congressional Committee (NRCC).  The status is part of the NRCC’s Young Guns program that assists Republican candidates for Congress.

The Young Guns program was founded in the 2007-2008 election cycle by Congressmen Eric Cantor (R-VA), Kevin McCarthy (R-CA) and Paul Ryan (R-WI), it began as a Member driven organization of House Republicans dedicated to identifying, recruiting, and mobilizing a new generation of conservative leaders.

The “On the Radar” status is the first of three levels that Republican congressional candidates can achieve.  The next step for each would be becoming a “Contender.”  The final designation is being a “Young Gun.”  As the candidates move up in the ranks the more likely they will be to receive financial resources from the NRCC and other members of Congress.

By achieving ‘On the Radar’ status, Lange, Miller-Meeks, and Zaun have proven their ability to build a successful campaign structure and achieve important fundraising goals.  While the status is validation of what each of their campaigns were able to accomplish following their primary victories, this announcement prevents an opportunity for each of them to use it to continue to raise money and build effective campaigns.

If Lange, Miller-Meeks, and Zaun want to get the support of the NRCC they have to earn it, and that means they need to raise a lot of money for their campaigns.  The first thing that the NRCC will look at in determining whether or not a race is competitive is if the Republican challenger can raise the necessary funds to win.

If you want Lange, Miller-Meeks, and Zaun to win, donate to their campaigns.

Photo of Zaun by Dave Davidson

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About the Author

Craig Robinson
Craig Robinson is the founder and editor-in-chief of, 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 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, 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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