June 9th, 2011

Iowa GOP Goes Easy On Romney’s Decision to Skip Straw Poll

The Republican Party of Iowa sent out the following response to the news that Mitt Romney will not participate in the Iowa Straw Poll.  The event is the Republican Party of Iowa’s largest fundraiser.

Iowa GOP Chairman Matt Strawn issued the statement below following Governor Romney’s announcement that he will not participate in the the Ames Straw Poll.

“I’ll leave it to the pundits and voters to assess the wisdom of skipping an event of tremendous importance to tens of thousands of Iowa Republicans and caucusgoers.”

“More than ever, Iowa Republicans are energized and motivated to utilize the Ames Straw Poll as a catalyst toward building a 99-county organization to deny President Obama a second term.”

“I’m encouraged that this grassroots energy, combined with the need for other Presidential campaigns to demonstrate their organizational strength and support, will lead to a very successful Ames Straw Poll in August.”

Compare that to the statement the Republican Party of Iowa released in 2007 when Rudy Giuliani announced he was skipping the event.

Giuliani Not Taking Iowans Seriously


Contact:  Mary Tiffany

(515) 282-8105

Presidential candidate Rudy Giuliani has decided he will not attend the Iowa Straw Poll in Ames on August 11.

The Iowa Straw Poll has historically been an accurate indicator of who will succeed in the Iowa Caucus.  In 1999, the top two finishers went on to receive over 70 percent of the caucus vote.  “It’s exceedingly difficult to win on caucus night when you have missed the opportunity to speak to over a third of the caucus-goers at the largest gathering of Republicans in the nation,” said Chuck Laudner, Executive Director of the Republican Party of Iowa.

Iowan Jim Nussle, a consultant for the campaign, claims Giuliani can bypass the Straw Poll as a result of his national name I.D.  However, his national name recognition and polling has not helped him build an effective grass-roots organization capable of winning the Iowa Caucuses, let alone the Iowa Straw Poll.

The Republican Party of Iowa is disappointed over his decision, but more so over his lackluster campaign efforts in Iowa.  Giuliani’s efforts in the Hawkeye State have also been disappointing for many Iowans who have not had the opportunity to see, hear, meet or question the former New York Mayor.  The Straw Poll would have been an opportunity for Giuliani to show Iowans he is engaged, cares about Iowans’ issues and is 100 percent dedicated to Iowa.

Regarding Giuliani’s decision, Laudner said, “He was in, he was out, he was in, now he’s out.  Who knows.  Maybe he’ll change his mind again.  Regardless, his name will be on the Straw Poll ballot in August.”

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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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