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February 26th, 2012

Kevin’s Korner: Funnel Failures, Mitt-Paul Bromance, and Anchorman the Sequel

Welcome to Kevin’s Korner. Down we plunge to the prison of my mind. You’ve passed the point of no return.

Funnel week came and went without much hubbub at the Iowa State House … For those of you in Lee County, funnel week has nothing to do with beer bongs … It’s the week where bills either pass out of committee or head to the paper shredder

What bills survived the cut? Here’s a few of the important ones … A ban on traffic cameras (though a constitutional amendment to ban them failed), allowing online poker, reforming Iowa’s education system, property tax relief, increasing the gas tax, a version of “Katie’s Law” which would expand DNA profiling to include some misdemeanors, nullification of the lead shot ban on dove hunting, three gun rights expansion bills, and requiring photo ID to vote.

What didn’t survive: A bill to expand Iowa’s safe haven law to 14 days, Brad Zaun’s proposal to abolish the Department of Education, a bill to end public employee collective bargaining, a “Caylee’s Law” requirement to report missing children, Personhood amendments banning all abortions and a bill requiring women to view an ultrasound before they have an abortion, reinstating the death penalty, ratifying a National Popular Vote, and a bill that would allow same-sex couples to place both partners’ names on a birth certificates … Major thanks to Rod Boshart and James Lynch for doing the dirty work and providing the full breakdown.

A few thoughts: I’m very disappointed in the House Republicans who did not stand up for life. There’s no excuse for the ultrasound and Personhood bills not passing out of House committees …

It is political suicide to support the gas tax in a year when gas prices are expected to skyrocket. If it passes, Governor Branstad should immediately veto it …

I find it odd that a self-proclaimed “pro-familylegislator voted in favor of expanded gambling in Iowa …

The safe haven law not only needs to be expanded, it needs to be better promoted. It should have passed.

The Katie’s Law bill is an important crimefighting tool. For the civil libertarians out there who are against it, are you against fingerprinting too? It’s the same thing, but more effective …

Just because some of these bills are still alive, it does not mean they will pass. There’s still a long way to go before they reach Governor Branstad’s desk.

Although the House passed a Voter ID requirement out of committee, Dem Senator Bob Dvorsky declares the bill “dead” in the senate … Strange. 60% of Iowa Democrats favor the bill, but the chair of the Iowa Democrat Party is against it and her husband calls the bill “a vote suppression act, insulting to voters” … Actually Bob, what’s insulting is that you, your wife and Senator Gronstal are out of the mainstream with 60% of your own party and 76% of all Iowans.

Speaking of Dvorskys, my clandestine, ubiquitous informants tell me Bob’s wife, IDP Chair Sue Dvorsky was ecstatic when Matt Strawn resigned as chairman of the RPI … As I said two weeks ago, I like new chair A.J. Spiker personally and I’m willing to give him a chance, but will be closely watching to make sure there are no Paulbot shenanigans.

You have to love loathe laugh at Christie Vilsack’s energy plan. It’s exactly what you would expect from a dyed in the wool liberal: More government bureaucracy, more taxpayer subsidies … She wants to create a “National Energy Council” … Yep, the congressional wannabe who openly brags about loving anything done with taxpayer dollars wants a 15-member board to set energy policy for the country …

Vilsack naively claims “these would not be political appointments” … Pure, blithering nonsense … Her plan is to have the president make the appointments and the senate approves them. That is the very essence of political appointments. Obama would stack the group with green energy cronies, making the Solyndra fraud infinitesimal by comparison.

Following Wednesday’s tag team demolition of Rick Santorum by the Romney-Paul tandem, the media finally realized that Mitt and Ron are in cahootsWelcome to the party, pal … When Ron Paul starts criticizing Mitt Romney, I’ll believe the bromance ain’t real … Santorum blew his chance to take the lead in the race with a dreadful debate performance … He did get some good news last week, by winning the appeal to get on the Indiana ballot.

By happenstance, I got a laugh out of Tim Pawlenty claiming Ron Paul would be the “last person” who would take part in a back room deal. What does that say about ol’ TPaw, who endorsed Mittens shortly after dropping out the race? You’ll recall, TPaw coined the “Obamneycare” phrase, then wimped out to Mitt’s face. But he appears to be the “first person” that would cut a back room deal. And bore you to tears.

Ron Paul’s Iowa campaign continues to organize their delegates for the upcoming conventions. The Paulbots are calling all county delegates in Iowa to see if they’re going to convention, and find out which candidate they supported in the caucus … Once again, they’re out in front of all the other presidential campaigns. If the presidential race is not decided by the time Iowa holds its GOP state convention in June, the floor fight could get ugly … Remember, Paul’s campaign is publicly claiming they will capture the most delegates in the caucus states like Iowa, even though he has not won a single state.

You have to wonder what genius on the Romney campaign decided to hold a campaign event at the cavernous Ford Field in Detroit. Unless a bunch of people showed up dressed as empty seats, Mitt drew a few hundred supporters to a stadium that holds 65,000. Campaign Event Planning 101: Always make the event space look smaller than what you actually need.

Who else enjoyed Mitt Romney’s impersonation of Brick Tamland last week? Mitt, do you really love the trees, cars and lakes, or are you just saying it to pander to Michiganites? … If Romney is Brick Tamland, who best fits Ron Burgundy? That’s easy. Newt … I could see Rick Perry as Champ Kind, Herman Cain as Brian Fantana, Michele Bachmann as Veronica Corningstone, Rick Santorum as Wes Mantooth, and TPaw as the anchor from the last place Channel 2 … With that cast, the Anchorman sequel would be one of those rare ones that trump the original.

Forget Danica Patrick. The racer to watch in today’s Daytona 500 is Iowa’s own Landon Cassill… He’s a great kid young man out of the Cedar Rapids area who started racing when he was three. Seriously … Watch for Landon in the #83 Toyota Camry today.

Thanks for reading. Enjoy your Sunday. Think of me fondly when we’ve said goodbye.

Photos courtesy Dave Davidson, IPTV

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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