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June 12th, 2011

Kevin’s Korner: Straw Poll or Straw House, No Moore, and Owning a Shoulder Parrot

By Kevin Hall

Welcome to this week’s edition, where logic and proportion have fallen sloppy dead.  Or something.  I just heard “White Rabbit” on the radio, so I pilfered the line.  Yeah.  The creativity ain’t exactly flowing this week.  Full refunds will be offered if you were expecting more.

Will there actually be an Ames Straw Poll this year?  Some Iowa GOP insiders are beginning to wonder if the whole thing might get the kibosh.  The key for the RPI is they need to make enough money off the event to be worthwhile.  It also needs to maintain relevancy…  Despite Mittens turning chicken, three candidates have pledged to compete in Ames.

Newt Gingrich’s presidential campaign wasn’t the only one to implode this week…  My clandestine, ubiquitous informants tell me Judge Roy Moore is no more.  At least in terms of being a candidate.  Apparently, he didn’t have the skills to pay the bills…  Early backer Pastor Cary Gordon told me in April that Moore was going to “shock” everyone at the Straw Poll.  I hope he didn’t mean with tazers…  

Newt’s implosion is sad.  I used to really enjoy watching him on Fox News.  I thought he was brilliant.  Now I’m wondering if Newt might be nuts… He apparently thinks a key to winning Iowa is a massive outreach to the state’s Chinese-American community … No, that’s not a joke

I pretended to be a journalist, and did some research.  I know, novel approach, huh? …  Only 1.7% of Iowans are Asian … Only 17% of those are Chinese, meaning there’s less than 9,000 … Technically, if Newt could get all of them to vote for him at the Straw Poll, he would win.  Realistically, the strategy makes as much sense as Christie Vilsack thinking she can beat Steve King in northwest Iowa… Personally, I hope Newt makes it to the Straw Poll.  I’m definitely hitting his tent for some free shrimp fried rice and egg rolls.

Speaking of Christie Vilsack, I bumped into someone from her home town of Mt. Pleasant this weekend.  What do they call Christie there?  “The Abortion Queen”… That got me to thinking.  Someone should do a parody of Abba’sDancing Queen”, with the lyrics changed in honor of Mrs. Vilsack

A few people had a conniption because Herman Cain did not pander to them this week in Pella.  Cain focused most of his speech at The Family Leader forum on economic issues…  I can’t tell you how many times I’ve heard their CEO Bob Vander Plaats say economic issues are family issues.  “If it’s good for the family, we’re for it,” Bob said over and over on his recent 99 county tour…

The main bone of contention is that Cain said he would be OK with hiring an openly gay staffer.   GASP!  The horror!!  …  Once again, I’ll defer to The Family Leader.  Three different members of that group said to me, “You can’t say ‘No’ to that question.”…  Yes, that’s right.  The far right, anti-gay Family Leader people said a candidate cannot say no to hiring a gay staffer…

Better yet, I’ll defer to Jesus, paraphrasing of course:  Let he that quit or refused a job because there was a gay staffer in the company, cast the first stone…  Unless you’ve done that, get off your moral high horse…  I hope those who attacked Cain over this use the same diligence with the rest of the candidates.  That’s right, you “vetters”, ask all the candidates the exact same gotcha question that the liberal ThinkProgress blogger asked Cain…  Then show the same indignance when they avoid it or try to spin it, instead of being straightforward and honest like Cain was… And for the record, I am supporting Herman Cain for president.

Funny how you didn’t hear any of this outrage when Ron Paul said “I defend that constitutionally” in regards to the Iowa Supreme Court’s decision on gay marriage.  Where did he say it?  At The Family Leader event in Pella on March 7th.

Even more baffling, why would Glen Massie and Kim Pearson, who filed impeachment articles against the Iowa Supreme Court justices because their ruling was unconstitutional, endorse a presidential candidate who defends it on constitutional grounds????   I sent Rep. Pearson an email asking her that question on Wednesday.  She has yet to respond… I am glad Pearson and Massie finally voted in favor of a late-term abortion ban.  This infighting among Iowa’s pro-life community accomplishes nothing.

I’m giving serious consideration to buying my own shoulder parrot, just like in the pirate movies.  I think it would be really cool to have something that basically has no ability to think for itself, so it just repeats everything that I say.  Nice asset for the owner, but must be a miserable life for the parrot.  I know of one of these in Central Iowa.  I’ve sure many of you have seen or heard it as well…

So, the Dems are attacking Secretary of State Matt Schultz because he criticized Jon Huntsman for skipping the Iowa Caucus.  They issue a press release and filed baseless ethics charges, their media arm at the Register editorial board predictably writes an attack piece, and the lib blogs accuse Schultz, a Mormon, of attacking Huntsman’s religion, which is … Mormon… Yeah, common sense isn’t the strong suit of the Kos kids and their minions…  Schultz was defending Iowa against a candidate that doesn’t believe the state of worthy of his attention.  Good for Matt.

Finally, to end on a rather disturbing note, a friend told me this week he had a “man crush” on and said I’m “right up there with Tom Selleck and Mark Harmon”.    After I threw up in my mouth a little bit, I told him most people think I’m more like a cross between Opie and Ralph Malph.  Thank you.  Try the veal.

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About the Author

Kevin Hall

Kevin Hall brings almost two decades of journalistic experience to TheIowaRepublican. Starting in college as a radio broadcaster, Hall eventually became a television anchor/reporter for stations in North Carolina, Missouri, and Iowa. During the 2007 caucus cycle, Hall changed careers and joined the political realm. He was the northwest Iowa field director for Fred Thompson’s presidential campaign. Hall helped Terry Branstad return to the governor’s office by organizing southwest Iowa for Branstad’s 2010 campaign. Hall serves as a reporter/columnist for

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