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December 31st, 2013

Will RPI Run Out of Money Before State Convention? The New Years Eve Round Up

The Republican Party of Iowa continues to struggle to raise money.  For the month of November, the party raised just $5,517.46 and spent $45,151.89.  Chairman A.J. Spiker likes to thwart any criticism of RPI’s finances by saying that the party is in good fiscal health and is among the top ten of GOP state parties in terms of cash on hand, but one can’t deny that the party continues to spend more money than it raises.

In the month of November, RPI raised just $5,517.46 for it’s federal account, while they spent $45,1515.89.  The party reported having $168,777.21 cash on hand.  They started the year with $295,000 in the bank, meaning they have now spent $126,000 more than they have taken in.  The $295,000 they had in the bank included a $110,000 postage refund from the United States Postal Service, money that was given to the party by the RNC and other Republican organizations for the 2012 elections.

If you take out the $110,000 that the Iowa GOP never raised and failed to refund to the group or groups that funded various mailings, the party would only have $58,000 in the bank, meaning they would have spent $236,00 more in 2013 than they raised.  Unless fundraising turns around or the RNC funnels large amounts of money through the party for its 2014 election activities, the Iowa GOP may zero out its federal fund before the state convention in June.


It’s no secret that WHO TV’s junior sports reporter Andy Fales is a liberal sympathizer, but if he’s going to rip the Duck Dynasty boys, he should at least try to not contradict what he says in his very next breath.

In Fales’ “I Think” segment on Sunday night, he stated, “I think it’s great that the United States Olympic delegation will be headed up by some openly gay athletes.  It’s a sort of middle finger to the Russians and a salute back to the Jesse Owens and Berlin games of 1936.  I’m not sure that the Duck Dynasty guys would like it, but I understand that these guys are on TV for entertainment, not to give out social cues.”

Athletes are on TV for entertainment purposes as well, so why do we have to take social cues from them?  But wait, I’m pretty sure if I took the time to go through the Sound Off archives, I could probably find Andy ripping Tim Tebow for his faith.  You know what bugs me Andy? A pompous sports guys who thinks he has the world all figured out, when in fact said pompous sports guy obviously isn’t as smart (or logically consistent) as he thinks he is.  Mr. Fales only gets to push his liberal agenda because, like the Duck Dynasty guys, he’s an entertainer on TV, too.

Republican State Senate Leadership Jockeying Begins

A few Republican State Senators have begun jockeying for the Whip position in the Iowa Senate.  The position was vacated last week when Sen. Rick Bertrand stepped down in order to focus on his own re-election campaign.  Two Des Moines metro area senators are interested in the position – Jake Chapman and Jack Whitver.  Whitver, who is up for re-election this year, is also considering running for the now open congressional seat.  Whitver will have to make up his mind soon as Senate Republicans are planning to caucus on January 7th.

What’s the Big Deal?

Shane Blanchard, a recently elected member of the Waukee City Council, has admitted that he created an alias on Facebook under the fictitious name of Jim Buchamen.  Blanchard used his fake Facebook account to take shots at another Waukee City Council member.

While I do not condone Blachard’s behavior, I also don’t think it warranted a lengthy Des Moines Register article either.  Facebook is full of fictitious accounts.  Various campaigns have been known to create fake Facebook profiles, email accounts, or post anonymous comments with misleading names on websites like  For the record, my cat, Charlie Robinson, is on Facebook.  He doesn’t post much, a meow here and a meow there, but I guess it could be said that I too have a fictitious Facebook account.

It also should be noted that Michael Gartner, a former editor of the Des Moines Register and former member of the Iowa Board of Regents, writes an anonymous weekly column in City View that is full of snarky comments and is often used to criticize his political rivals.  So if the Register is going to devote column inches to cover Blanchard, maybe they should do the same with liberal Michael Gartner.

Story Suggestions for 2014

I have a number of articles in the works for January of 2014, but I would also like to ask you to leave some suggestions for stories that you would like to see reported on in the comment section.  I have a number of things in the works that involve the congressional and U.S. Senate races, as well as 2016 presidential politics.  If there are issues or subjects that you would like to see covered on TIR, please let us know.



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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