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June 7th, 2013

Thoughts and Tidbits on the Week that Was

Rastetter Elected to Lead Board of Regents

We all know that Democrats in the Iowa Senate are out-of-touch, but seeing the Board of Regents elect Bruce Rastetter as its president after spending months attacking Craig Lang and Rastetter for being too political is hilarious.  Lang made some mistakes in his confirmation hearings, but he’s a good man, and the Regents did some very good things during his time as the board’s president.

The selection of Rastetter as Lang’s replacement suggests that the Senate Democrat’s claims that he’s too politically focused are simply bogus.  Facts don’t seem to bother Senate Democrats either.  During debate on Lang’s confirmation, it was noted that in the last 202 votes of the Regents, only one of them wasn’t unanimous.  That vote only had one dissenting board member, and that was Ruth Harkin, not Craig Lang.  Congratulations to Rastetter, he will make an exceptional President of the Regents.

The top spot at on the Board of Regents isn’t the only prize that Rastetter bagged this week.  He also bagged a bear while hunting in Montana.

I feel bad for Tom Vilsack


For months, the Des Moines Register and some Iowa Democrats have speculated that Tom Vilsack would leave his post at the U.S. Secretary of Agriculture to return to Iowa to run against Governor Terry Branstad.  Vilsack never showed any real interest but that didn’t stop the state’s largest newspaper from basically begging him to run against Branstad.  On Wednesday, Vilsack finally put an end to all the nonsense and said he’s not running.  Leave the poor guy alone, he has a job to do.

What I never understood with the Register’s love affair with Vilsack was what justification he could use to run against Branstad.  Branstad’s comeback was all about the incompetence of Chet Culer.  Vilsack was going to run against Branstad because???????????  Yeah, things are pretty good in Iowa.  Trust me, had Culver not been a complete disaster, Terry Branstad would not have come out of retirement.  It will also be hard for Democrats and liberal newspapers to say that Branstad has been ineffective since everyone has proclaimed the last legislative session a “historic success.”

I don’t feel bad for Chris Christie


The straight talking, hard-nosed governor who everyone fell in love with a few years ago has now become a political opportunist.  The national media may think that Governor Christie has risen above partisan politics, but those of us in the cheap seats view him as a guy who will do anything to get re-elected.

I think former Majority Leader Dick Armey nailed it when he told CNN the following:

“And this is what really rankles conservatives. There’s not a Democrat governor alive that wouldn’t have seized the opportunity to appoint a Democrat senator, no matter what the status.”

“But all Christie had to do is appoint a Republican. That’s the correct move for him to make. Now, I put it down as debilitating stupidity, because the first rule of politics is don’t lose the friends you already have for the friends you’re never going to get.”

Governor Christie should remember back to the post 9-11 bipartisanship that lasted all of a few months.

Or maybe he should ask John McCain about all the love he got from the media in his 2000 campaign and how it helped him when running against Obama in 2008.

Trust me, before Election Day comes in New Jersey, Democrats will once again declare that he’s the devil incarnate.  Don’t look over your shoulder to see if the conservative cavalry is riding to your aid, Governor.  Instead, pick up the phone and call your buddy Barack, I’m sure he will have your back.

I’m scared of my government.  No really, this stuff is frightening.


The Obama Justice Department secretly subpoenaed the private phone records of several Associated Press reporters and editors and a Fox NEWS reporter.  The Obama administration is unapologetic, despite the fact that this is a clear violation of the First Amendment.

The IRS has targeted conservative groups and individuals.

Now we learn that the NSA has been collecting phone data of Verizon Wireless customers, and probably other customers of other carriers as well.

A lesser-known scandal is also brewing.  The Associated Press has reported that some Obama Appointees, including a Cabinet member, are using secret government email accounts to avoid sunshine, or government transparency laws.

Yes, that means our government is currently collecting data from cell phone customers without their knowledge or consent, but at the same time are taking steps to make sure that citizens can’t request information about what their government is doing.

Shocking.  Disappointing.  Downright Scary.

Des Moines Register Gets Scooped Again!


The big political news this week was that U.S. Secretary of Agriculture Tom Vilsack will not run for governor in 2014.  Once again, the news was broken by a new entity other than the Des Moines Register.  WHO TV’s Dave Price broke the story last Sunday on his Insider’s morning show.  It seems odd that Iowa’s largest newspaper is finding it difficult to break news on the two biggest political races of the cycle.  Gosh, the more I think about it, the Register has really struggled with breaking political news since Tom Beaumont left for the Associated Press in 2011.

However, since Beaumont’s departure, the Register has done an outstanding job of alerting Iowans whenever Governor Branstad or Congressman King appear on the Comedy Central network.

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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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