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July 9th, 2011

Americans for Rick Perry Staffs Up and Surveys Iowa Republicans

As was reported last night, Texas Governor Rick Perry has begun making phone calls to Iowa activists and other longtime Iowa politicos.  One of the people Perry called was a longtime Linn County activist Joni Scotter.  Calling Scotter has become somewhat of a rite of passage in Iowa presidential politics.  Calling her is just like visiting the Wells Blue Bunny Ice Cream Parlor in Le Mars or having an event at the Hamburg Inn in Iowa City.

The Des Moines Register reported that Perry tried to contact State Representative and former Iowa GOP Chairman, Stewart Iverson, as well, but got his voicemail. has learned that calls were also placed to other longtime and influential Iowa Republicans.

In addition to Perry making phone calls to key Iowa Republicans, Americans for Rick Perry, a 527 group that has no official ties to Governor Perry himself, is polling likely Iowa caucus goers identifying supporters of Perry in Iowa. participated in the automated survey on Saturday morning.

The questioner said that a number of people are running or may be running for the Republican nomination for president, among them are Rick Perry, Michele Bachmann, Tim Pawlenty, and Ron Paul.  The person being surveyed then asked whom they would support and the caller then reads the list of candidates.  Perry’s name was once again listed first, so pushed the “one” button.

The call then ends with the recorded voice saying that Americans for Rick Perry conducted the call and that someone will be contacting you shortly.  These calls are identical to the automated calls that the Pawlenty campaign conducted earlier this spring.

In addition to the automated survey, American’s for Rick Perry has been hiring staff in Iowa.  As was reported earlier, Craig Schoenfeld, Newt Gingrich’s former Iowa campaign manager, is leading up the effort.  Schoenfeld told on Saturday that he has hired four Iowans to work on the Americans for Perry effort in Iowa.

All of hires have connections to Newt Gingrich’s campaign.  Paige Thorson, Ryan Keller, Daniel Weiser, Joe Heuertz will all begin working on the Perry effort on Monday.  Keller and Heuertz both also worked on Brad Zaun’s 3rd District Congressional campaign in 2012.

The Americans for Perry effort will be interesting to watch in Iowa.  They are staffed and act like any other presidential campaign, yet they don’t have a candidate they can turn people out to see or even introduce to people yet.  Making things even more difficult is that the 527 group can’t have any contact with Perry and his advisors either.


Photo by Joyce Boghosian/

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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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