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August 9th, 2013

What a Week… made national news this week as we unveiled new information about the dealings between State Senator Kent Sorenson and the Ron Paul 2012 presidential campaign.

As I looked over and analyzed all of the information that we would be releasing throughout the week, I not only realized that this was a story of national importance, but I also knew that it could damage Iowa’s reputation and First-in-the-Nation status.

It is surprising to me that someone like Rachel Maddow can instantly grasp the severity of these new revelations, yet the Des Moines Register seems oblivious.  There are many angles the media could report on after reading all of this new information.  I myself would like to weigh in on many of them, but I have my hands full at the moment.  Still, the Des Moines Register’s coverage of this new information should warrant more than 649 words.  I think each of Maddow’s introductions to her THREE segments on the topic were longer than that.

To those who are worried about what these reports will do to Iowa’s First-in-the-Nation status, it’s not the reports that you should be upset with, but rather the bad actors who put their self-interests above anything else.  Choosing to sweep everything under the rug only invites this sort of corruption to happen again.

If Iowans are serious about keeping our First-in-the-Nation status, then we must not tolerate any actions that jeopardize that institution.  We have to police our own, not contribute to a cover-up.  It is that mindset which has guided as we dealt with Matt Strawn’s unwillingness to declare Rick Santorum the winner of the Iowa Caucuses, the scandal surrounding the Sorenson and the Bachmann campaign, and now the mess involving Sorenson and the Paul campaign.

I honestly wish that none of this had ever occurred, but unfortunately, it did.  We as Iowans must not only clean up after the mess they made, but also work together to rebuild the trust of the rest of the nation.  Rebuilding that trust will not be easy or happen over night, but there are plenty of steps that we can take.  I’m sure we will have plenty more on that in the months ahead.

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ABC News

“Holding my nose”: That’s how Mitch McConnell campaign manager Jesse Benton described running the Senate minority leader’s re-election campaign in a phone recording obtained by both the Economic Policy Journal and The Iowa Republican websites.


Washington Post

“I came forward because I thought it was wrong and damaging,” Fusaro told The Washington Post. “I don’t want Ron’s message being thwarted by these guys.”

Huffington Post

This isn’t Sorenson’s first run-in with trouble. He has been accused of violating ethics rules that prohibit Iowa state senators from accepting employment, directly or indirectly, from a political action committee, and he was embroiled in a controversy over Bachmann’s misuse of a contact list from the Network of Iowa Christian Home Educators, or NICHE, to fundraise during the 2012 Republican presidential primary.

The Hill

The Iowa Republican, a well-respected conservative blog, reported that it has obtained emails and between Paul campaign staff and a recording of a phone conversation between former Iowa state Sen. Kent Sorenson (R) and a conservative activist in the state discussing Sorenson abandoning Rep. Michele Bachmann’s (R-Minn.) campaign to back Paul.

The Christian Post

Iowa State Senator Kent Sorenson reportedly offered the Ron Paul 2012 presidential campaign his endorsement and access to the email lists of the state’s largest homeschool network and Michele Bachmann supporters for $208,000 for himself and his staff, according to a report by The Iowa Republican. The report does not confirm whether the Paul campaign paid off Sorenson, but Paul did receive Sorenson’s endorsement.

Mason City Globe Gazette

If the charges that he took money to endorse Texas Rep. Ron Paul’s presidential bid are true, then Sen. Kent Sorenson should resign, a top Iowa Republican elected official said Aug. 7.

“Only Kent Sorenson knows what he did. If he did what they are saying he did, he absolutely should,” Iowa Secretary of State Matt Schultz said during a stop in Coralville Wednesday.

Cedar Rapids Gazette

This week, The Iowa’s publisher, Craig Robinson, dropped a pair of hefty bombshells, reporting that allies of state Sen. Kent Sorenson, R-Milo, sought payment for him in exchange for backing Ron Paul’s presidential bid weeks before the 2012 caucuses. Sorenson’s abrupt jump to Paul from Michele Bachmann’s camp made headlines, and sparked claims that he had been paid to switch. Those charges now have gained considerable weight, although Sorenson denies being paid.

Talking Point Memo

An Iowa state senator claims that former Republican presidential candidate Ron Paul’s campaign bribed him so that he would endorse the congressman before the state’s caucuses, according to the Iowa Republican.

The conservative blog obtained a recording of a phone conversation between state Sen. Kent Sorenson (R) and a political activist in the state, in which Sorenson discusses abandoning Rep. Michele Bachmann’s (R-MN) campaign in exchange for payment from someone in Paul’s camp.

Minnesota Star Tribune

Sorenson’s attorney, Theodore Sporer, told the Star Tribune that he was not aware of the alleged negotiations.

“There was no money that changed hands,” Sporer said Tuesday. “There was no director or indirect payment from the Ron Paul campaign.”

Photo by Dave Davidson,

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About the Author

Craig Robinson
Craig Robinson serves as the founder and Editor-in-Chief of Prior to founding Iowa's largest conservative news site, Robinson served as the Political Director of the Republican Party of Iowa during the 2008 Iowa Caucuses. In that capacity, Robinson planned and organized the largest political event in 2007, the Iowa Straw Poll, in Ames, Iowa. Robinson also organized the 2008 Republican caucuses in Iowa, and was later dispatched to Nevada to help with the caucuses there. Robinson cut his teeth in Iowa politics during the 2000 caucus campaign of businessman Steve Forbes and has been involved with most major campaigns in the state since then. His extensive political background and rolodex give him a unique perspective from which to monitor the political pulse of Iowa.

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