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January 14th, 2014

Where is Tyler Olson? And Will He Refund AFSCME’s $100,000 Donation to His Campaign?

Former Democrat Gubernatorial Candidate, State Representative Tyler Olson, was a no-show in Des Moines yesterday.  Apparently it is not necessary for certain special elected officials to attend the first day of the legislative session.


Perhaps Olson is embarrassed to show his face at the State Capitol considering how his campaign for governor ended.  Or perhaps he doesn’t want to run in to Danny Homan of AFSCME, the state’s largest labor union.  On October 31st, AFSCME contributed $100,000 to Olson’s gubernatorial campaign.  On December 2nd, Olson announced in a press release that he was getting a divorce.  Two weeks later, Olson ended his gubernatorial campaign.

AFSME’s financial disclosure shows that Olson didn’t return the substantial contribution before the end of the year.  Olson’s campaign disclosure is not currently available to see whether he even has the money to refund AFSCME’s contribution.  The union reported only having $19,000 cash-on-hand at the end of the year.

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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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