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May 1st, 2013

Rathje Launches First Campaign Ad of 2014 Campaign

The primary in the 1st Congressional District may still be over a year away, but that’s not stopping one Republican candidate from taking his message to the airwaves.

Cedar Rapids businessman Steve Rathje will begin running a television ad for his congressional bid on local cable networks in Iowa’s 1st Congressional District beginning on Tuesday.  The ad buy runs for five days and Rathje is only spending $1,200 to air the ads, which will only be run on Fox News Channel.

With the primary over a year away, Rathje’s decision to run a television ad is interesting to say the least.  Perhaps the campaign is running ads in advance of putting a poll in the field in hopes that it shows him leading his Republican opponent, Rod Blum, who ran strong in the 2012 primary but came up short against Ben Lange.

While the campaign is just getting under way in the 1st Congressional District, Rathje has been spending money on the race.  From January through March, Rathje raised $51,200, but spent $20,423, leaving him with only $31,082 cash on hand.  The biggest expense that the campaign incurred was for consulting from the Robert Morris Group, which was paid $10,000.  Republican activist and radio host Craig Bergman heads the Robert Morris Group.

Rathje also paid $3,600 to Slash Web Studios of Ankeny for “branding” and website design.  You can view Rathje’s website by clicking here.  One would hope that the current site is not the finished product, but seeing that Slash Web Studios was paid back in February, it looks as if Rathje didn’t get much bang for his buck. will post the ad below when it becomes available.

Rathje: Leadership from Steve Rathje For Congress on Vimeo.


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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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