News Center

April 14th, 2013

Kevin’s Korner: Candidate Casting, Grading Hermie and Politics of the Power Grab

Greetings and welcome to Kevin’s Korner. It is one thing to be clever and another to be wise. – George R.R. Martin

I just got my taxes done on Saturday and I am not in a good mood. It was a truly depressing and maddening experience. I think I’d rather have my toenails ripped off with a pair of pliers than go through that hell again … I hope Uncle Sam has a ball with all the money I just mailed him.

The Iowa media is making a lot of hay with Doug Gross’ comments that he doesn’t think Steve King, Kim Reynolds or Bill Northey will run for the U.S. Senate. I agree completely on Reynolds. She won’t attempt it and I never thought she would. Team Branstad floated her name as a trial balloon and to raise her name ID, IMO …

Congressman King, I am still unsure about. But the longer he waits, I think the less it becomes that he’ll jump in. To me, this is shaping up in much the same way King’s coveted endorsement in the 2012 Iowa Caucus did. He never could pull the trigger then and I’m starting to think he won’t here … But, I’ve been wrong before. I overslept once. Once

As for Bill Northey, I have no idea what he will do …

So, let’s assume Doug Gross is right. It happens every once and a while … If no one in that triumvirate runs, where does that live the GOP and their golden opportunity of claiming the open seat?  I’m sure there are plenty of takers out there, but few real contenders …

I still believe Rod Roberts would be an excellent candidate and would give us a great chance to win it. My clandestine, ubiquitous informants tell me Roberts is more interested in running for Congressman King’s seat, if King runs for senate … Matt Whitaker is another intriguing candidate, who is not being coy about his interest in it …

Screen shot 2013-04-13 at 11.32.39 PM

Beyond that, the cast of characters who have openly expressed interest in running do not inspire any confidence that they’ll garner more than 42% of the vote.

Forget about Medicaid expansion. What we need more of is Jack Hatch’s mullet expansion …

Screen shot 2013-04-13 at 7.48.42 PM

Hatch badly wants to become governor, so he’s out there trying to throw anything he can at Terry Branstad, hoping anything will stick … A gubernatorial match between The Mustache and The Mullet would be fun to watch. And it would mean a landslide Branstad victory.

Talk of 2016 heats up again Monday as 2012 Iowa Caucus runner-up winner Rick Santorum returns to the state for two events … I expect a heavy emphasis on social issues when Santorum speaks at the IFFC’s spring dinner. And a thoughtful, well-reasoned explanation for why those issues are important … BTW, the RNC doubled-down on its opposition to gay marriage during their meetings on Friday …

I still laugh every time a Paulistinian whines about the RNC’s power grab” at last year’s national convention. Somehow, when the Paulistinians manipulate the system to thrust themselves into power, it’s “playing within the rules”. But when the RNC does the same, it’s suddenly a “power grab” … The RNC did to the Paulistinians in Tampa exactly what the Paulistinians did to Iowa Republicans … Neither was right, BTW. But when you mess with the bull, you get the horns.


Rand Paul’s decision to speak at the mostly black Howard University was brilliant politics. The Republican Party is never going to make headway if we’re just preaching to the choir … He probably didn’t sway many students, but reminding people that the GOP was the party of civil rights and is the party of individual freedom is a good idea …

Rand was grilled on past statements where he criticized portions of the Civil Rights Act, but tiptoed the line and said he fully supported the act. That claim doesn’t exactly mesh with history … This is a prime example of where Rand Paul is going to run into trouble by trying to be a carbon copy of Ron Paul, without the crazy … That’s impossible, BTW …

He was not asked about his famous father’s stances on civil rights. That’s probably a good thing … Ron Paul openly said he would have voted against the Civil Rights Act of 1964, and was the only member of Congress to vote against a resolution honoring the 40th anniversary of the Civil Rights Act in 2004.

kim jung un rodman

Who would have guessed that the late Kim Jung Il was the sane one in his family?

Republicans in the Iowa Legislature are teeing off on Hermie Quirmbach after his recent two-faced slimy actions at the State Capitol … Rep. John Landon (R-Ankeny) accused Quirmbach (D-Bag) of purposefully providing misinformation to school superintendents regarding the Republicans’ budget … Republican Senate Leader Bill Dix (R-Shell Rock) says Hermie, the chair of the education committee, has “no real concern for finding quality resolutions for the students of Iowa” …


GOP legislators aren’t the only ones with scorn, defiance, slight regard and contempt for Quirmbach. When Hermie’s not blocking education reform in the Iowa Senate, he’s working as a professor at Iowa State University … Students on the “RateMyProfessor” website grade Professor Quirmbach with a 1.5, on a scale of 1-5

Descriptions of Quirmbach from his students, dating back to 2002, include “very disrespectful”, “horrible professor” (repeatedly), “awful”, “pompous”, “arrogant”, “clueless”, “incomprehensible” and several descriptions of Quirmbach as “the worst professor I’ve ever had” … As no surprise, students also point out Hermie’s liberal bias shines through in the classroom … On the bright side, Quirmbach’s Donald Trumpesque comb over almost makes Jack Hatch’s mullet look fashionable.

According to a new WSJ/NBC poll, the majority of Americans (52%) believe abortion should be illegal in most or all circumstances … The same poll shows 53% of Americans favor gay marriage …

I don’t even know what to say about the horrific details of the murders committed by late term abortion butcher Kermit Gosnell. He’s charged with killing at least seven infants who were born alive. The details are just gruesome and it makes me sick, literally, to even write about it. It’s beyond appalling.

Iowa Right to Life

On a lighter note, Iowa Right to Life’s annual spring book sale gets underway this Tuesday at 4pm and runs through Saturday. If you love books, magazines, CDs and DVDs, this is fantastic way to find some terrific deals and raise some money for a great cause … I always walk out with a pile full of new stuff to read, watch and listen to.

Word on the street is that, on the heels of the wildly successful NCAA wrestling championships that Des Moines hosted a few weeks ago, plans are in the works to build a 450-room hotel adjacent to the Iowa Events Center … If they’re going to tie it in with wrestling, might I suggest naming it the Smackdown Hotel

The hotel would not be owned by the county, unlike the events center … 92,000 people came through the Wells Fargo Arena doors and the local economy received a $15 million boost thanks to the wrestling tournament … AHL Hockey might be returning as well … Downtown Des Moines is definitely going through a resurgence … Now, if we could just get a UFC pay-per-view here …

That’s it for this week. Thanks for dropping by. Laughter is poison to fear. – George R.R. Martin

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

blog comments powered by Disqus