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December 5th, 2012

Iowa Senate: Failor Joins Dix Staff

By Craig Robinson

The former President of Iowans for Tax Relief, Ed Failor, Jr., has joined the staff of Senate Minority Leader Bill Dix in the Iowa Senate.  Sources tell that Senator Dix introduced Failor to the Senate Republican caucus staff on Tuesday morning.

Failor and Iowans for Tax Relief played integral roles in Iowa politics for nearly two decades.  Together, Failor and Iowans for Tax Relief have wielded influence over the legislature, Republican Party politics, and the presidential caucuses.  Failor’s departure from the organization in April of 2011 created a huge void at what was one the preeminent political organization in the state.

Failor has played a key role in many legislative victories including the 10% across-the-board Iowa income tax cut, the elimination of Iowa’s inheritance tax, instituting equal income tax treatment for Iowa sub chapter S corporations, a phase out of the Iowa tax on Social Security income, and eight consecutive years of vital tax cuts. Failor also played an essential role in blocking debt financing, defeating the proposed 20% increase in state sales tax, and in 2009, he gained national attention for the intense grassroots campaign defending federal deductibility.

Before spending the last year consulting for various groups and entities through the Whitaker Strategy Group, the hard-charging Failor had only held two jobs since the age of 24.  One at Boys Town, an organization dedicated to the housing and education of at-risk children, and the other at Iowans for Tax Relief.

The Failor name is synonymous with Iowans for Tax Relief.  His father, Ed Failor, Sr. was the face of the organization for years.  Failor is now the second president of Iowans for Tax Relief to leave the organization and land in a prominent leadership role in state government.  Governor Terry Branstad’s Chief of Staff, Jeff Boeyink, is also a former leader of the organization.

The skills that Failor honed at Iowans for Tax Relief will be an asset for Dix as well as the Republican caucus in the Iowa Senate.  The quality of legislative staff is often  overlooked by the media and activists.  Typically these people are not in the spotlight like their elected bosses are, but they play a critical role when it comes to policy proposals, tactics, and negotiations.  Failor is a high profile staffer, but with Senate Republicans stuck in a minority status, maybe Failor is just the type of staffer they need.

Bill Dix’s first major decision as the Republican leader in the Iowa Senate is not only bold, but also seems to indicate that he is going to take a much more aggressive approach with Democrat Senate Majority Leader Mike Gronstal in the upcoming legislative session.  If that’s the case, Republican activists will finally have something to look forward to in the Iowa Senate in January.

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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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