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May 13th, 2011

Gingrich Adds Koberg and Kaufmann to Iowa Team

By Craig Robinson

Katie Koberg, a former Vice President of Iowans for Tax Relief who was suddenly without a job last month, has taken a position with Newt Gingrich’s 2012 presidential campaign.  Koberg will serve as Gingrich’s deputy campaign manager in Iowa.

Regardless of what the reason behind the mass exodus from Iowans for Tax Relief is, Koberg is an exceptional hire for Gingrich.  With so many of Iowa’s political operatives now working in state government since the state has a Republican governor for the first time in over a decade, there are not that many operatives with a resume like Koberg’s out there for presidential candidates to choose from.

Over a span of almost six years, Koberg has developed contacts and relationships with legislative candidates across the state through here work at Iowans for Tax Relief.    Those relationships, and her knowledge of the political landscape across the state, will be an asset for the Gingrich campaign.

Gingrich also announced that Rep. Jeff Kaufmann will serve as his senior policy advisor on Iowa related issues such as rural economies, agriculture and energy.  Kaufmann is another impressive addition to Gingrich’s Iowa team.  Kaufmann has a large following in eastern Iowa and was a huge asset to the campaigns of Dr. Mariannette Miller-Meeks and Terry Branstad.

Below is the entire Gingrich press release about their Iowa team.

Gingrich 2012 Names Iowa Caucus Team

DES MOINES, IOWA – After announcing nationally his intentions to be a candidate for President of the United States, former U.S. House Speaker Newt Gingrich unveiled key members of his 2012 Iowa Caucus campaign team.

Iowa House Majority Leader Linda Upmeyer (R-Garner) will serve as the campaign’s chairwoman in the “first-in-the-nation” caucuses.  Upmeyer, a long-time supporter of Gingrich, is the first woman ever elected to the post of Majority Leader in the Iowa House.

“Newt is a friend, a true conservative, and I believe his message for America’s future will resonate with all Iowa families,” said Upmeyer.  “I’m excited for the chance to help elect him to the presidency.  He has a clear vision to sustain our economic future…to put our families and neighborhoods first.”

Iowa House Speaker Pro Tempore Jeff Kaufmann (R-Wilton) has also announced his support for Gingrich 2012, and will serve the campaign as a senior policy advisor on Iowa related issues such as rural economies, agriculture and energy.

“Mr. Gingrich has consistently demonstrated he is a man of fresh ideas; he’s willing to ‘think outside of the box’ for ways to tackle the issues that are important to Iowans,” said Kaufmann, who has a Ph.D. in History from the University of Iowa, and serves as a department chair and professor at Muscatine (Iowa) Community College.  “Our economy is reeling, our national debt is skyrocketing, healthcare is a mess, and no one is sure what our foreign policy is under the Obama administration.  Newt Gingrich has the experience as both a public servant and businessman, and the courage to get America back on track”.

Gingrich has also tapped longtime GOP activist and attorney Craig Schoenfeld to serve as the executive director of his Iowa campaign.  Schoenfeld was a key member of the Bush 2000 Iowa caucus campaign, and directed the former President’s general election efforts in Iowa in 2000.  He served as executive director for New York Governor George Pataki’s political action committee FreedomPAC in 2006 as the governor explored a possible 2008 bid for the White House.

“I’ve been an admirer of the Speaker for almost 20 years,” said Schoenfeld.  “He is an American leader.  He has a strong record on economic prosperity, welfare reform and healthcare.  He will not be afraid to lead during times of global crisis.  He has an unparalleled vision to restore America as the greatest country in the world.”

Gingrich also announced other key individuals of his Iowa campaign, who will be charged with helping him enlist the necessary volunteers and supporters needed for a strong showing in the February, 2012 caucuses.

Katie Koberg, former Vice President of the influential conservative group Iowans for Tax Relief, will serve as the Iowa campaign’s deputy director.  Will Rogers, the immediate past co-chairman of the Polk County Republican Party and former campaign manager for Congressman Tom Latham (R-IA4), will assist in directing the campaign’s grassroots organization.

Gingrich plans an extensive tour across Iowa next week, beginning with stops in Dubuque, Cedar Rapids, Des Moines and Mason City on May 16th and 17th.  He will return a few days later, planning visits from Eastern to Western Iowa May 19th through the 21st.

Photo 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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