A Link Strategies staffer was convicted of stealing Iowa Secretary of State Matt Schultz’ identity last year. Now, one the senior partners in the firm is running against Schultz. Although the 2014 election is still 21 months away, Democrat Brad Anderson is expected to announce this afternoon that he plans to challenge Schultz to become the state’s chief election officer.
Link Strategies quickly fired Zach Edwards after he was arrested for the identity theft in January 2012. They also distanced themselves from the crime. However, it was not the first time the consulting group had been charged with election improprieties.
Back in 2002, while Link Strategies was running Tom Harkin’s senatorial campaign, they were involved in an infamous “taping” scandal during the Harkin-Ganske senatorial race. At that time, Brad Anderson served as the research director for Harkin’s campaign.
As with the identity theft case, a low-level staffer was blamed for the incident. However, as the story quickly turned into a national scandal, Tom Harkin was forced to fire Link Strategies from running him campaign. He would hire the group again in 2008.
Brad Anderson also has ties to misspent taxpayer dollars in the Secretary of State’s office. Anderson was the communications director for then-Secretary Chet Culver from August 2006 through May 2008. An audit discovered Culver’s office misspent $576,000 in federal money during that time and determined the state of Iowa needed to repay those funds.
More recently, Anderson ran Barack Obama’s successful Iowa campaign in 2012. Now, he is making a very early announcement of his intention to unseat Matt Schultz in 2014. Perhaps by announcing this early, Anderson hopes to ward off any potential Democrat primary challengers, such as current state Senator Jeff Danielson, who is also believed to be eyeing the secretary of state job.
Brad Anderson is opposed to Matt Schultz’ efforts to remove illegal voters from the rolls. He is also sure to have the backing from Obama, powerful Democrats and liberal special interest groups from across the nation. Knowing how closely aligned he has been to past improprieties, one can only guess what levels Anderson’s campaign will stoop to in his bid.