Saturday, May 31, 2008

Republican Debate and Lincoln Dinner

Yesterday ended up being a big deal for Republican kandidates with primaries on Tuesday. The Republican party of Iowa held its 2008 Lincoln Dinner and the Polk Kounty GOP sponsored a debate with IPTV for the US Senate kandidates. As a political junkie, such a jammed packed evening of political activity is always exciting.

I would like to thank my Krusty Korrespondents for providing me their thoughts and insight to last night’s events. Also, if you missed the IPTV debate you can watch it on their website. Today’s focus in on the senate kandidates, we will hit the 2nd CD kandidates tomorrow.

RPI Lincoln Dinner

Hat’s off to Grant Young who live blogged the event. It finally seems that Republicans are getting their act together on using the new media venues to spread the good word about who we are and what we are doing. This year’s event was held at the Embassy Suites in Des Moines. The event featured the three senate kandidates, the three kandidates from Iowa’s 2nd CD, Bill Northey, Kim Schmett, and Dave Hartsuch. Senator John Thune was the key note speaker of the event and did a fabulous job.

Steve Rathje gave the same speech that he has been giving for years now. In fact if you want to hear it you can listen to it on his website, and its set to music. I almost expected them to play the music why he spoke. Seriously, I’m starting to think that it’s almost like political speech karaoke with that guy. The problem Rathje has with people is his believability. Many people will acknowledge that he can give a good speech, but people are nervous when he refuses to debate, and sounds stupid when he is asked questions by kallers on the radio shows.

George Eichhorn had the kontent of a very good speech, but he really struggled with his delivery. This was Eichhorn’s krowd and one would have thought he would have been more komfortable but his tongue got the best of him.

Christopher Reed had the best kombination of kontent and delivery of the three US Senate kandidates. I’m told that Reed surprised a few folks with his performance but it was too bad he could not stay and mingle with the krowd to really kash in. Instead he had to leave early along with Eichhorn to attend the debate.

Grades: Reed – B, Eichhorn C+, Rathje D

IPTV/Polk Kounty GOP Debate

Hats off to the Polk Kounty GOP for seeing a need for a US Senate Debate and filling it. Krusty Kudos to George Eichhorn and Christopher Reed for participating in the debate and providing the primary voters a chance to size up the kandidates before the primary.

As I mentioned before Reed and Eichhorn will benefit for the free exposure and publicity of the debate. The debate also provided them to be in a professional setting which made them both look like kredible kandidates. I’m a firm believe in practice makes perfect and if Eichhorn or Reed go on to win the nomination they will has some debate experience before they go head to head with Harkin if he actually agrees to debate.

The debate kovered four major topics, immigration, foreign policy, taxes and spending, and health care. I don’t think either candidate hurt himself at the debate, but I do think that George Eichhorn probably did himself the most good with his debate performance.

On most issues Eichhorn and Reed were in agreement. Reed did find some opportunities to get in some body shots on his opponent but Eichhorn was able to absorb them pretty well. I think there are two reasons why Eichhorn did well. The first is he’s an attorney and well versed in this type of setting. That might have been different if there were three debaters, but with just one he handled it very well. I also think his experience as a state legislator helped him speak on the issues in a way that was well received.

Eichhorn was konfident, prepared, and knowledgeable. Reed showed his inexperience but also firmly established himself as the conservative candidate in the race, which will help him reach a key segment of primary voters.

Debate Grades: Eichhorn B+, Reed B, Rathje F.

Heading into the final days I think Eichhorn is the establishment candidate. Reed is the choice of the konservatives, and Rathje is supported by the First Date Republicans.

Both Reed and Eichhorn helped themselves tonight. Reed won the speech at the dinner but Eichhorn won the debate which is a larger prize.

Anything can happen in this race, but I’m not even willing to make a prediction at this time. I will share with you that I’ve ruled out Rathje as a viable option. Like many others I’m done with that guy. There is no Krusty endorsement on the way in this race unless someone can konvince me why Reed or Eichhorn are better than the other.

Friday, May 30, 2008

Another Krusty Rant

I was planning to write about the Republican Debate that is being held tonight in Des Moines between Christopher Reed and George Eichhorn. I’m actually going to hold off and write up a post after tonight’s debate. Yes my fellow Krustaceans, there will be some weekend kontent. While you may be happy about that, I’m not really looking forward to it, but with the primary so close, I thought it would be necessary.

While taking a stroll through the Iowa blogosphere, I noticed that Peter Teahen has really let the konservative bloggers get under his skin. Putting all of the issues aside that Teahen is having to deal with, letting a few bloggers get to you and side track your kampaign is the sign of a very undisciplined kandidate.

Trust me, I like the attention. For as much as I wrote about 2006 kampaigns, I never once saw a kandidate actually refer to my blog in an interview like Teahen did with John Deeth of the Iowa Independent yesterday. The reason why that’s a sign of an undisciplined kandidate is because it’s not going to get any better after the primary. Its going to get worse.

While there is some balance between the konservatives and liberals in the Iowa blogosphere here in Iowa, the liberal blogs will be all over these klaims if he is the nominee. The FEC komplaint, the party switching, and David Tredrea are not going to just go away; in fact Tredrea emailed me multiple times yesterday.

Teahen is trying desperately to make that issue go away by klaiming that he has been “working with the FBI and Great Britain's Scotland Yard in dealing with Tredrea and that he has no-kontact orders against Tredrea.” But Tredrea is emphatic that he doesn’t know anything about these supposed no-kontact orders.

Tredrea has sent me kopies of emails between himself and Teahen from January of 2007, and a kopy of Teahen’s "after action" report from his trip for Darfur. Now, if Tredrea was a psycho and possessed krazy man in Darfur, you would expect it to be mentioned in his after action report, but there is nothing. Now, I do think that both Teahen and Tredrea need to come klean. What really happened in Darfur? What is behind the mutual hatred between these two guys?

I’m not expecting to get a Christmas card from Teahen around the holidays, but when you run for public office you are opening your self up for examination. That’s the first thing a good konsultant will cover with a kandidate: do you have any skeletons in the kloset? Everything I’ve written about Teahen has been fair game. Obviously I’ve been kritical of his party switching, his history of giving to Democrats, the FEC komplaint, and the lack luster kampaign he has been running.

On the issue of Tredrea, what is a blogger to do? I received that information from Tredrea. I kommunicated directly with him to see if this guy was who he said he was. He sent me his resume and other supporting documents. I still used kaution when approaching this story. In fact I sat on it for days. I sent it to a Des Moines Register reporter in hopes they would investigate it further. Then I see it make its way into the blogosphere, and that’s when I chimed in on it.

I believe we must vet our kandidates who run for public office. Look at the 2006 Secretary of State race. Did we vet Chuck Allison very well? No, he won the primary against Bob Dopf, and then had to drop out, which essentially gave Mauro a permanent seat in the Secretary of State's office. Why? Because we were lazy. The political journalists here in Iowa suck, and that’s why so many people read blogs like this one, or Iowa Independent, John Deeth, State29, Battleground Iowa, and so on.

I don’t want to deal with this krap again, especially when the person we are nominating is going against Kongressman Lobesack, a komplete loon.

To me, it was easy to determine who the best candidate in the 2nd Kongressional District is. Lee Harder is less kompetent than Dave Loebsack. Peter Teahen has way too much baggage and is running a terrible kampaign, and Miller-Meeks, while I wish she was a stronger social konservative, is intelligent, kompetent, and has actually put together a really nice kampaign, which gives me hopes for November if she is the nominee.

This post isn’t anything like I intended to be, and for that I apologize. I’m still in disbelief that the primary is less than 4 days away and Peter Teahen is krying about a bunch of Iowa blogs that are questioning his record and the claims of a kollogue. Peter, this is the minor leagues buddy, this is A ball. My heater only reaches 65 MPH on the gun. I just don’t think you will ever be ready to step in and face major league kompetition.

Thursday, May 29, 2008

Teahen Faces Tough Questions

I tuned in last night to WHO to hear Steve Deace interview Peter Teahen, GOP primary Kandidate for Iowa’s Second Kongressional District. I have to say, I was pleased to see that Deace used many of my recommended questions. Unfortunately, I found Teahen’s answers less than satisfactory.

Deace didn’t hold back (too much). There were some things I wish he would have explored further, but given the time allotted, he kovered a lot of ground. Deace jumped right in to the whole David Tredrea thing. But, then Deace pretty much left it alone when Teahen klaimed that the FBI and Scotland Yard are involved and that his life had been threatened by Mr. Tredea while the two were in Darfur. I don’t know what to believe about all this, but if there really are restraining orders in place as Teahen claims, kan we see them? The cynic in me thinks that Teahen calling Tredea a psychotic krackpot would be a pretty good way to try to discredit him and avoid actually dealing with the allegations. And who is going to be able to actually check on these claims and see if Scotland Yard really is trying to track down Tredea? Before next Tuesday?

I guess if I felt Teahen had been honest about everything else, I’d find it easier to believe him about this. When Deace asked why he had been a registered Democrat, Teahen said that Mike Blouin had been a personal friend of his, and so he switched parties to vote for Blouin in the Democratic Primary. The problem is that Teahen had spent many years as a registered Democrat prior to the Bouin race, and Teahen failed to mention that until a kaller brought it up.

Ah, yes, the phone kalls. There were some good ones. One asked about a quote in the Iowa City Press Citizen in which Teahen had said he was a registered Democrat so that he could have a seat on the Iowa Mortuary Board. Often, certain numbers of seats on such state boards are reserved for both Democrats and Republicans to ensure that the boards don’t function as partisan entities. So, if Teahen lied about being a Democrat to get one of the Democratic seats, that would be pretty bad.

Teahen’s excuse: then Gov.Terry Branstad told me to do it, so I thought it was OK. Dude, the “I was just following orders” argument didn’t work at Nuremberg, and it doesn’t work here either. Sounds to me like Teahen wanted a seat on this Board for the perceived power it would give him, and he was willing to break a few rules to get it.

Oh, and I’d sure like to know what Terry Branstad has to say about this.

Then there was the kaller who called Teahen out on referring to himself as a “mental health professional” (which he had just done a few minutes earlier when introducing himself to the radio audience). At first he seemed to deny that he had kalled himself a mental health professional, and then he said that because he helps people deal with the emotional trauma of disasters, that makes him a mental health professional. He klaims to have some sort of certification, but could not cite any degree or state license he holds.

He actually did answer the life question pretty well, but this was one area where I wish Deace would have had more time to smoke him out. Deace did a great job of pointing out that Teahen’s good friend Blouin sure didn’t seem as pro-life by the end of the race as he did at the beginning. I wish he’d have had time to point out that giving money to Julie Thomas (Jim Leach’s general election opponent in 2002 and 2004) wasn’t exactly helping the pro-life kause either. I know, Jim Leach wasn’t exactly the pro-life standard bearer, but at least he voted the right way on things like the Unborn Victims of Violence Act. I can’t see Thomas doing that. I don’t really kare if she helped save your kid’s life if she’s all for promoting the murder of other people’s kids. Those kind of people konfuse me the most. How can you devote your life to saving kids as a pediatrician, but on the other hand be OK with killing them before they are born.

You can tell that Teahen has public speaking experience. Even under some pretty tough questioning, he never got too rattled (though he did sound a bit annoyed once or twice). He told some pretty kompelling stories about helping families bury their babies who had been miscarried, and how seeing a 20-week baby affirmed his belief that that is life.

I really wish I kould believe that he was sincere, but I just don’t. Not after all the ethical lapses and misrepresentations that have kome out about Teahen.

Deace didn’t even have time to touch on the FEC komplaint or Teahen’s personal life. That’s worth another hour of air-time right there.

Overall, Teahen did a valiant job, but I don’t think his smooth talking was enough to kover the multitude of problems he has. And I don’t think Republicans in the Second District should have to expend the time and effort it would take to deal with all these problems in the general election.

If this is the garbage that floated to the surface in the primary, I’d hate to see what the Dems kan dig up on him for the general.

Wednesday, May 28, 2008

Krusty Top Ten: Teahen on Deace

So, a little birdy told me that GOP kandidate for Iowa’s Second Kongressional District is going to be interviewed by Steve Deace on WHO this afternoon. There’s been a lot of stuff flying around the blogosphere the last few days due to one of Teahen’s former disaster relief-worker colleagues sending an email questioning some of Teahen’s claims about his experiences and accomplishments. This former colleague does raise some interesting questions. But even putting those allegations aside, I think there are a lot of other questions Teahen needs to answer.

So, I humbly submit:

Krusty’s Top Ten Questions Krusty Hopes Steve Deace Asks Peter Teahen

1. Why were you a registered Democrat until this last December?

2. If your having been a registered Democrat had to do being able to get a seat on the State Mortuary Board, doesn’t that seem a little dishonest and disingenuous?

3. Why did you donate money to Democratic kandidate for Kongress, Julie Thomas, when she was trying to unseat Jim Leach in the Second District?

4. Why did you donate money to Democratic kandidate for Governor, Mike Blouin, just two years ago?

5. You recently were the subject of an FEC complaint for television ads run by your Cedar Rapids funeral home that really didn’t have anything to do with funeral services and end with you saying, “I’m Peter Teahen and I’m proud to be an American.” Do you really think that Iowans aren’t smart enough to know that that’s a kampaign ad?

6. Didn’t your political konsultant Steve Grubbs/Victory Enterprises pull this same trick when he was working for Mike Whalen two years ago?

7. Are you married? Have you ever been married? How many times have you been married?

8. If you are elected to Kongress, do you plan on having any interns?

9. Does your favorite movie star Haley Joel Osment and Bruce Willis?

10. With all this baggage and all these questions which are legitimate distractions from the important issues facing Iowans, do you really think you are the best GOP candidate to try to unseat a sitting Democratic Kongressman?

Krusty Kasserole

Eichhorn Refugee Kamp?

“Republican U.S. Senate candidate & former Iowa Republican State Representative George Eichhorn continues to pick up more endorsements as he marches towards next Tuesday's primary election. His endorsements now include Senate Republican Leader, Senator Ron Wieck; Former Senate President Jeff Lamberti; Former Iowa Republican Party Chairman, Mike Mahaffey; Former Iowa Republican National Committeewoman, Gwen Boeke; and four people who were previously listed as supporting opponent Steve Rathje.”

Maybe they read this, or this or maybe this.

Now wait a minute… It makes it seem like these 4 all had endorsed Rathje then switched to Eichhorn, but instead it is actually those four PLUS some unknown four former Rathje people. Those darn word smiths…

Teahen to drop out of race?

Well his website is gone, what else could it mean? I could speculate all day, but maybe it’s a ploy for me to link to them and they post some hard hitting stuff. Teahen is on Deace this afternoon by the way.

Miller-Meeks nabs newspaper endorsements.

I’m told that Miller-Meeks has received the endorsement of the Iowa Press Citizen, Ottumwa Courier, and the Coralville Courier. As I’ve stated here before it seeks like she has her campaign pointed in the right direction. It will be interesting to see what happens with the Cedar Rapids Gazette and the papers in Muscatine, Burlington, and Fort Madison.

Deace a Krustacean?

So I’m listening to Deace yesterday, and he mentions a couple of blogs he likes to check out, one of them being this site. Thanks again for the plug, but beware, Mr. Deace people might think you are authoring this blog. But in an effort to provide a little cover for him, I named Mike Huckabee as the breakout candidate of 2007 on January 2, 2007. I think Deace was still having a weekly John Cox interview then :D

Tuesday, May 27, 2008

More Drama for Teahen, Helland throws down on Lorenzen

My good friends over at Battleground Iowa have posted a letter from David Tredrea that was sent to a number people koncerning Peter Teahen. Since they have posted the email message which was sent to Teahen and the letter that was attached, I don’t see any need to post it again here.

Tredrea’s letter and the recent FEC komplaint filed against Teahen come at the worst konceivable time for his campaign. With just days before the June 3rd Primary everything from Teahen’s resume to his Funeral Home’s marketing practice are being questioned and it is beginning to have an impact on the race.

Just look at the Iowa Press Citizen which endorsed Miller-Meeks this weekend.

“But as nice as it would be to back a Corridor businessman, we're concerned about some of the reasons behind Teahen's history of switching party affiliations. Teahen said he needed to register as a Democrat for about nine years in order to serve on the state's governor-appointed Board of Mortuary Science. That bit of willingness to bend the rules to serve on a state board raises a red flag.

That's also why we're paying close attention to an ethics complaint recently filed against Teahen by the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee -- claiming that television commercials for the funeral home owned by Teahen are disguised campaign spots paid for by corporate money.”

Tredrea’s letter is even more harmful to Teahen’s kampaign. While I’m not able to independently verify each of Tredrea’s claims, I did reach out to him via email and he answered some additional questions I had. One of the additional accounts he passed on to me was one from his time in Darfur with Teahen.

“On the classes he (Teahen) did teach and had a minor role, he would keep talking about events like 9/11 and show slides of US military. He was given very, very clear guidelines about the danger of talking of these events but was insistent he wanted to show the local people in East Africa that Americans are great people. Many are of course - but using the 9/11 example in this way is not appropriate.”

Tredrea went on to say, “Over the years I have worked with hundreds of US aid workers but never one nearly so problematic and disloyal and deceptive as Peter Teahen.”

If I didn’t have anything else to do I’d investigate these claims, but I’m not a reporter, I’m just a political hack. There are only 6 months after the June Primary to defeat Congressman Dave Loebsack. Do we want to spend more time talking about Teahen’s voter registration, support of Democrats, the FEC komplaint, or the merits of David Tredrea’s letter? I think the bettter option for 2nd District Republicans is to vote for a kandidate that doesn’t have to deal with all this drama.

On June 4th we need our sites set on Dave Loebsack, and what it’s going to take to send him packing and not all this other garbage. The choice is simple, if you want a kandidate who has a shot to beat Loebsack, vote for Miller-Meeks.

Helland Unleashes Radio Smackdown on Lorenzen

I heard a great political ad on the radio this morning, this one dealing with Iowa HD 69 a/k/a the seat Walt Tomenga is vacating in northern Polk County. In this ad, Erik Helland lets loose both barrels on his GOP primary opponent Al Lorenzen. Here is the gist of the ad:

  • Erik Helland is a lifelong Republican… his opponent Al Lorenzen, not so much. Lorenzen was a lifelong Democrat until this past year when he decided to run for office in this GOP stronghold. (What is up with this cycle? First Teahen, now Lorenzen)
  • Erik Helland has been endorsed by all the major GOP and GOP-leaning groups such as Iowans for Tax Relief, Iowa Right to Life, and Iowa Farm Bureau. Lorenzen was endorsed by AFSME, the biggest union pushing to get rid of Iowa’s “Right to Work” law.
  • Erik Helland’s financial contributions come from solid GOP sources. The major contributors to Lorenzen’s campaign include some of the biggest Dem donors, including one who is the state’s biggest contributor to Planned Parenthood.

Ouch. One would think I produced this ad.

I guess if we are looking for a konservative who’s not afraid to tell it like it is, one who’s not afraid of a fight, maybe Helland is it. One thing seems pretty certain… it probably not Lorenzen.

I also learned that Helland is giving Lorenzen hell on TV as well.

I love primary season!

Monday, May 26, 2008

Friday, May 23, 2008

Teahen in Krisis Management Mode

While the media seem to still focus on the Boswell/Fallon Democrat Primary in the 3rd CD, it’s the Republican Primary in Iowa’s 2nd District that is creating news in the weeks leading up to the primary.

If you talked to any Republican insider in January, February, March or April and asked them about the 2nd District Primary the general consensus was that Peter Teahen was going to walk away with the nomination. They would point to his resume, him being from Linn Kounty, and the fact that his family has run a funeral home in the area for decades.

In under a month the tables have turned, and there is doubt that Teahen will be able to hold on to his perceived front runner status. His problem? He’s getting out worked by a tiny optomoligist from Ottumwa. To put this in perspective, it would be like a well known Des Moines businessperson having problems getting their campaign off the ground because of an unknown candidate from Grinnell is out working them.

Now when I say that Mariannette Miller-Meeks is out working Teahen, it’s not just on the grassroots side, fundraising, or voter contact, its all three phases of the campaign. Again, people assumed that Teahen being from Cedar Rapids was going to be an advantage; it has not been thus far, just look at their fundraising numbers.

Miller-Meeks has raised $94,530 thus far for her kampaign.

Teahen has raised $49,096.00 but has a kampaign dept of $31,663.76.

Simply put Miller-Meeks seems to want it more, I’m told she’s knows the issues, and has the ability to raise the funds needed to mount a serious challenge against Loebsack this fall. It looks like if you want a kandidate to put this race in play, your best bet is Miller-Meeks.

It has also been a terrible week for the Teahen kampaign. First he sees that Miller-Meeks continues to raise more money than he can, her kampaign releases their poll which shows she has erased any Lead Teahen might have had, and if it couldn’t get any worse he gets a FEC komplaint filed against him for the TV ads his funeral home had been running.

Sound familiar? In the 1st District Primary last cycle the Kennedy kampaign filed a komplaint against Mike Whalen for this TV ads for the Machine Shed that featured Whalen. Now just 2 years later we have Teahen running an ad that features him self saying stuff like, “I’m Peter Teahen, and I’m proud to be an American.” From what I’ve read it sure sounds like a bio ad for a guy running for Congress.

So it’s probably just a koincidence right? No. There is a link between Teahen and Whalen, its Victory Enterprises. It seems this is how you win the tough ones… A friend sent me the picture above of former Republican Party of Iowa Chairman Steve Grubbs, it looks like he plays for both teams, which is probably helpful to Teahen since he has had difficulty sticking with a party throughout his life.

Miller-Meeks deserves a lot of credit for out hustling her opponents, Teahen has run a terrible campaign.

Thursday, May 22, 2008

Primary Kolors: HD 69

In the past I have tended to focus mostly on Federal and Statewide races. When deciding to kome out of retirement and made a kommitment to be more involved in the local legislative races. I’m pretty excited about some things I’m working on.

Today’s focus is the primary in House District 69

HD 69 is in the northern part of Polk Kounty includes Johnston, Grimes, but doesn’t include the city of Ankeny. The seat is kurrently help by Walt Tomenga who is retiring. Thank God! I think Walt voted for the same day voter registration and was wrong on Eminent Domain. I’m too darn lazy to do research today. I have serious issues when a Republican doesn’t understand the importance of the property rights of the individual…

The two primary kandidates are Erik Helland and Al Lorenzen.

I’m a little weary of Lorenzen, he sounded good on the radio the other day, but my research created more questions than answers.

1. Tomenga gave him his blessing to run. Not an endorsement I would really want.

2. Lorenzen’s largest donor is AFSCME. I didn’t know they supported Republicans, and wonder what he has told them or what they see in him to warrant a kampaign kontribution in a primary.

3. Another Lorenzen donor is Bill Knapp. Does he get the keys to the Florida Kondo like Chet does? Again, interesting bed fellows.

On the other hand Helland is supported by Iowa Right to Life, Iowa Farm Bureau, and Iowans for Tax Relief. One might call that the Holy Trinity.

This race is getting heated up and apparently Lorenzen is making an issue out of the fact that Helland is “finishing his education.” It is a true statement. Helland is finishing Law School at Drake. What a terrible thing… Hey Al not everybody is given an opportunity at a free college education like you received in 1984 the University of Iowa, at taxpayers' expense mind you. And by the way, didn’t you get your degree 18 years after leaving the U of I? Just trying to klear that up and wondering why wound knock your opponent for going to Law School?

To me it looks like there is a klear choice in HD 69, Erik Helland, and it’s not just because he spells Erik with a “K.”

Word of advice to the Helland kampaign, I really like the blue sky mail piece, but why did you use a picture of the Senate chamber on it when you are running for the House? I expect more out of you guys! K’mon!

Wednesday, May 21, 2008

Kliff Notes: Obama’s Des Moines Speech

Senator Obama descended on Des Moines last night to a less than overwhelming krowd of 7,000 people. As a political insider I tend to get beyond the tingly feeling one can get in a large passionate krowd and instead focus on the content of what is being discussed. Obama’s speeches lack any real content that offer real solutions to the important issues facing our kountry, and are simply rhetorical speeches based solely on emotion.

The ability to give a great political speech has always been, and will always be an important part of politics. It is also true that great oratory has also been used weapon of dictators. Now I’m not saying that Obama is a dictator, but this is why it’s important to look at the kontent of a speech, not just the emotion it creates.

A closer examination of Obama’s speech last night will show you just how vague he was on the issues. We all know about the decline of our society here in American, but I truly worried that American is about to elect a man president without knowing where he really stands on the issues.

You spoke of an America where working families don't have to file for bankruptcy just because a child gets sick; where they don't lose their home because some predatory lender tricks them out of it; where they don't have to sit on the sidelines of the global economy because they couldn't afford the cost of a college education. You spoke of an America where our parents and grandparents don't spend their retirement in poverty because some CEO dumped their pension - an America where we don't just value wealth, but the work and the workers who create it.

Great rhetoric, but this can mean different things to different people. I think it means Socialized Health Care, no-fault mortgages kinda like a no fault divorce, free college education, and as a conservative I can’t figure out the last one. I take it they want to tax success, because successful people don’t work for what they have, so if you are above the median family income you might be those successful people like Obama want to tax more.

You spoke of an America where we don't send our sons and daughters on tour after tour of duty to a war that has cost us thousands of lives and billions of dollars but has not made us safer. You spoke of an America where we match the might of our military with the strength of our diplomacy and the power of our ideals - a nation that is still the beacon of all that is good and all that is possible for humankind.

This is a pretty clear statement, cut and run. The question however that needs to be addressed is what does Obama think America’s role in the world should be. Where should our troops be stationed, should we be in Germany and South Korea? Should we support Israel? This is to big of an issue to just say bring our troops home.

You spoke of a future where the politics we have in Washington finally reflect the values we hold as Americans - the values you live by here in Iowa: common sense and honesty; generosity and compassion; decency and responsibility. These values don't belong to one class or one region or even one party - they are the values that bind us together as one country.

Values? Interesting. I know I don’t like the values that were preached about in Obam’s church. I know I’m against special rights based on a person’s sexual behavior, and I believe that abortion is morally wrong. I also know that the majority of Americas agree with me, but my values are not close to Obama’s

Obama’s Platform is very simple.

Tax successful Americans who create jobs and reward those who don’t take risks and don’t work hard to advace their own standing in life.

Create a huge new government entitlement program that provides Socialized Government Health Care.

Increase energy costs by taxing the oil companies more. We all know that the cost is passed on to consumers.

Create another huge new government entitlement program that provides free college tuition.

Cut and run from the terrorists who want to attack American and what it stands for.

Obama offers no solutions, just a much larger government, who is going to demand more and more of your tax dollars. Socialism here we come!

Tuesday, May 20, 2008

The Only CPA in the Race for Governor?

I have recieved a number of e-mails and even listened to some kolleague pontifications as to why certain names like Iowa State Auditor David Vaudt were not listed in the Krusty 12-Pack.

Certainly a strong argument kould be made as to why he would be a formidable kandidate konsidering his work to bring the CIETC scandal to light and a few "Go directly to jail and do not kollect $200 as they pass Go" tickets to the La Machina members. More recently he exposed the charade of state government konsulting kontracts that promised to save taxpayer money but ended up saving far less than the konsulting kontract fee as was the kase for A.T. Kearney. His konstant fiskally konsertive lectures about the state's accounting practices have made him the darling of the grassroots who have all sat through the power point presentation at least twice by now. He may be able to draw some of the independent voters as well konisdering he has not been hesitant to kall out fiscally irresponsible behavior by his party. Just ask Fmr. Speaker of the House Rants if he has ever felt the sting of a Vaudt press release or two.

This weekend Vaudt appeared on IPTV where Iowa's premiere political reporter, O.K. Henderson of Radio Iowa asked if he was thinking about running for higher office (as is the kase anytime they have an elected official in studio) and his response is indicative of why he won't be running:
"I'm flattered by the fact that other people would konsider me to be a potential
kandidate for a higher office, I look at it and say the next election cycle
isn't until 2010 and we haven't even gotten through the 2008 election cycle yet
so it's a long ways off. I'm only about a third of the way through my
current, four-year term so I've got a long ways to go before I'd try to make one
of those decisions."

If he were willing to konsider giving up his kooshy safe for life job, he would be already amassing a war chest and laying the groundwork via a more upfront response to inquires regarding his political future by saying ,"I'm keeping my options open" or "no one knows what the future holds" etc. In order to make a run against the Big Lug who is obviously running for re-election given his savy veto of the kollective bargaining and state salaries bills, Vaudt must first give himself the option of running should he decide to do so. And without the kitchen kabinet of Gang of 50 types and kash up front, the option won't be there. Some of his would-be primary opponents have been running for seven years or more already and have a head start on him.

Monday, May 19, 2008

A Message from John McCain

David Yepsen admits he is worthless.

In yesterday’s Des Moines register David Yepsen had a column entitled Some new candidate questions. “Much of the time, presidential kandidates are asked all the wrong questions. We media people are obsessed with poll questions, strategy and flag pins. Interest groups reflect their narrow agendas. Then there are the strange "boxers or briefs" types of questions.”

David, you just admitted to the terrible job you and kolleagues do in kovering politics, and it shouldn’t take a bunch of East Coast yuppies at the Harvard Kennedy School to tell you what kinds of questions we should be asking kandidates.

David, reporters like you are given special access to kandidates and insider information, you have a responsibility to ask the important questions, not succumb to the idiotic tendencies of our society.

Since we are discussing Yepsen, here is some interesting stuff in Linn Kounty he’s not covering, I know David it’s too far to drive and they don’t have a restaurant worthy of your presence.

Great Mentions & Trial Balloons

In 2002 Iowa Democrats made a huge stink about a komment a Republican kandidate running for the State House made about her opponent Swati Dandekar. The 2002 incident occurred in an “internal” campaign email from the candidate. Now six years later, a Linn County Democrat Nate Willems is doing basically the same thing to his Republican opponent Emma Nemecek, but are the Democrat up in arms about this? Nope.

Nate Willems website leads with his racial insinuation: “My wife and I are Iowans both by birth and by choice.” Nate Willems is obviously taking a swipe at Nemecek’s Filipino heritage. Such intolerance was not tolerated in 2002 and shouldn’t be tolerated in 2008 either.

Friday, May 16, 2008

Thursday, May 15, 2008

Krusty 12 Pack: Who to keep your eye on for the 2010 Gubernatorial Race

While recruiting this year has proved to be nearly impossible this cycle for the Republican Party in Iowa, 2010 will be the komplete opposite. Republicans kould be looking at a huge gubernatorial primary, and if Steve King tosses his hat into that ring, all of a sudden Republicans will be having a big primary out west. Below are 12 people to keep an eye on as the 2010 cycle nears.

12. Don DeWaay
DeWaay is the owner of DeWaay Capital Management in West Des Moines. While he has given to Republican candidates is the past, he’s not known in many Republican circles statewide. DeWaay does have some name ID as he used to do The Profit Zone on WHO Radio. So why does he come in at number 12? First, I think Republicans are looking for some new blood in Iowa, and secondly with his business background he might be a good fit to come in and clean up Culver’s mess. He’s also hired some people with political konnections which might signal he is looking to do something.

11. Jeff Ballenger
Ballenger is a businessman from Council Bluffs. I think it’s safe to say that if King runs for Governor, Ballenger will probably run for Kongress. Ballenger ran against and lost to Steve King in the 2002 Congressional Primary. I think it would be difficult for him to run statewide, but he proved in his kongressional campaign he is willing to spend some of his own money on a kampaign.

10. Former Senator Stewart Iverson
If you talk to 10 people, you will get 10 different answers on what Stewart Iverson motivation was for taking over Ray Hoffmann’s final year as Chairman of the Republican Party of Iowa. Some say he needed a gig (i.e. paycheck) before he can be a lobbyists in Des Moines, while others think he might be konsidering a run for Governor. I have no clue. What he did do is create speculation and that’s always good if you want to run for office.

9. Former Representative Bill Dix
Dix ran for Congress in 2006 and lost a three-way primary to Mike Whalen. Dix is a likable guy and probably a better kandidate on state issues than federal issues. While he is known well in eastern Iowa he would have a lot of work to do to get known state wide.

8. Mike Whalen
Like Dix, Whalen is probably a better state candidate than a federal candidate. Whalen has deep pockets and would be one of the best fundraisers for a gubernatorial kampaign on this list. He’s known in many areas in the state, especially eastern Iowa where he ran for kongress, but his Des Moines connections would be invaluable in a gubernatorial race. Whalen owns the Machine Shed Restaurants, hotels, and other restaurants in Des Moines, and was the driving force in bringing a Bass Pro Shop to Altoona which is a big deal.

7. Former Senator Jeff Lamberti
Lamberti showed off his fundraising abilities in his 2006 race against Leonard Boswell. Lamberti ran an excellent kampaign and would be one of the favorites if he decided to run for Governor. His most recent project was bringing back the Iowa Barnstormers to Des Moines. He is well liked and impressive. I don’t think he is finished with politics.

6. Bob Vander Plaats
I truly believe that if Mike Huckabee wasn’t so successful in Iowa Vander Plaats wouldn’t be on this list. Vander Plaats involvement in the Huckabee campaign gave him a new lease on his political life. I still think it’s going to be difficult for him to konvince people that the third time is the charm, but he has a following. As with the other Western Iowa kandidates, if King runs Vander Plaats might opt to run for Congress.

5. Bruce Rastetter
If you ask me, Bruce Rastetter is laying the ground work for a gubernatorial run in 2010. Rastetter is the owner of Hawkeye Renewables an Iowa ethanol producer. His resume is impressive and would make a solid candidate, and he has the ability to finance his kampaign if he needed to, but his personal connections to some of the GOP’s largest contributors might not make that necessary. He also might be the only kandidate ever in Iowa history to have inroads with both the University of Iowa, and Iowa State. Rastetter, a Hawkeye fan has giving Iowa State millions of dollars for an agricultural entrepreneurship program the University.

4. Former Senator Chuck Larson, Jr.
As mentioned before there are already rumors that some influential people have been encouraging Larson to run. Larson is the former Golden Boy of Iowa Republican politics, a State Rep, State Senator, State Party Chairman, and Iraqi War Veteran who has been involved in efforts to support our troops. Larson is currently the United States Ambassador to the Republic of Latvia. Larson is from Cedar Rapids but also have great konnections in Des Moines.

3. U.S. Attorney Matt Whitaker
Whitaker ran unsuccessfully for State Treasurer in 2002 and is a former Iowa Hawkeye football player. Whitaker is a likable family guy who also has a konservative following. Whitaker’s position as U.S. Attorney gives him a unique position in which to launch a kampaign. While the case against Democrat Senator Matt McCoy blew up in his face last year, his work on the CITEC scandal might make him the kandidate that will clean up government.

2. State Representative Christopher Rants
Rants has the advantage of sounding off against Chet Culver and the Democrats everyday. And I must say if he takes back control of the Iowa House this fall he is going to be one of the front runners for the GOP nomination. With his stints and Majority Leader, Speaker, and now Minority Leader, Rants has built a strong donor network that is needed to run statewide. He also brings a lot of name identification with him. However if he doesn’t pick up seats in November, he’s probably off the list.

1. Kongressman Steve King
I guess you could call him the King pin in what’s going to happen in the 2010 gubernatorial primary. If he runs, he’s the favorite of the activist, and everyone on this list would have second thoughts about challenging King in a statewide primary. He will kontrol the party activist, but his only koncern will be raising the money needed. But if he polls well and it looks like he’s going to win the money will kome. King is the rare breed who is well versed in state and federal issues, and he will probably out work every candidate to boot. He’s the guy everyone else is looking at, what he does will have a huge impact on the 2010 gubernatorial primary.

Wednesday, May 14, 2008

Miller-Meeks Second TV Spot: “Soldier’s Call”

As I mentioned this morning, the Miller-Meeks kampaign has released a second TV ad that began airing last night. The ad is called “Soldier’s Call” which highlights the kandidate’s military service, and her commitment to our soldiers serving our nation today. The ad recounts the story of the family of Samuel and Jacque Nosbisch of Ottumwa. Sam is currently serving his second tour or duty with the 833rd Combat Engineers unit, based in Ottumwa.

The Miller-Meeks ads are produced by Eagle Media in Des Moines and there stuff for Miller-Meeks has been impressive. The Miller-Meeks campaign is obviously using their TV ads to build a positive impression of there kandidates while building name ID in the district. You can watch the ad on the campaign website, and I’ll post it if they put it up on Google.

Where’s Waldo… err Peter Teahen?

The June 3rd primary is just 21 days or 504 hours away. A couple a weeks ago Teahen launched a TV ad that has been running district wide on the cable networks, and before that he was touting his internal polling numbers that showed him with a big lead over his main primary opponent Mariannette Miller-Meeks.

I thought there would be frenzy before the primary, but Teahen hasn’t made much noise, especially when you compare his activity to what Miller-Meeks is out there doing. Late last week the Teahen Funeral Home was given an award from the U.S. Army Reserves for supporting an employee whose husband was deployed in Iraq. It’s a nice story, but it took his campaign four days to get it on his campaigns website. I also saw that he did an interview with the Fort Madison Democrat. Peter Teahen isn’t acting like he wants to win the Republican nomination in the 2nd District, it seems he wants to have it given to him.

Anyone else think it’s odd that Teahen hasn’t commented on the natural disaster in Myanmar? That is in his wheel house, but he and his campaign are not talking about it. Heck in his interview the Fort Madison Democrat Teahen talks about Darfur, the Oklahoma City bombing, and Hurricane Katrina, but doesn’t relate his past experience to present day events. His supporters point to his impressive resume as the reason to send him to Congress, but he only talks about the past, not what can be done to improve the response to these current events.

On the other hand, Miller-Meeks has a statement on Myanmar, the Psychiatrist Shortage in South East Iowa, the endorsement by State Representative Jeff Kaufmann, and her campaign has just released her second television ad.

I know there was some heated back and fourth on this blog about the 2nd CD race last week, but I think we can all agree that we need a candidate who will work tirelessly to defeat Congressman Loebsack. One candidate is showing us that they have the drive and determination to do just that, the other one just wants to see his name on the ballot.

Clinton wins West Virginia

So the news media declared that Senator Obama was the nominee last week, but someone forgot to tell the voters in West Virginia. Obama only received 26% of the vote. Now a few weeks ago the media couldn’t stop talking about 26% of Republicans not supporting McCain in the North Carolina Primary. This looks bad for Obama, in one breath he is saying that he is going to declare himself the Democrat Presidential Nominee, and in the next he has to explain why 67% of the voters in WV voted against him.

Tuesday, May 13, 2008

Aaron’s Best isn’t good enough for the Feds.

Sorry for the inactivity yesterday. Sometimes I think it would be nice to have a little helper to kover for me when I’m busy, but it’s difficult to find someone who won’t go overboard with Spaceballs and Star Wars humor…

Yesterday Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) officers raided Agriprocessors in what they are kalling largest workplace raid in Iowa history. Over 300 workers, or nearly one third of the company’s employees were arrested.

While many liberal groups tend to be up in arms over raids like these, I couldn’t be happier. In most cases we have two people who are breaking the law, first the person who illegally entered our kountry, and secondly the employer who is exploiting their illegal status and employing them at a much lower wage than they would have to provide a legal worker.

Both the illegal worker and employer must have some fear that the government will enforce immigration laws, and that is why yesterday’s raid is welcome news to this konservative. My only koncern is that while these large raids make the news, I believe that the majority of illegal workers are employed by small businesses. ICE agents need to figure out of to deal with those employers as well.

Another interesting aspect to this raid is that the United Foods and Commercial Workers Union is supportive of the raid as is Governor Chet Culver who said, “I have said before that I believe it is important that we crack down on illegal immigration, Illegal means illegal, not just those that are crossing the border illegally, but also those who are responsible for helping to make it happen.” So is seems that the Postville raid will not be the partisan issue that the Swift raid in Marshalltown was last year.

While we are talking politics, Agriprocessors ownership also gave lots of campaign cash to Republicans. That money sure looks tainted now. Grassley, Latham, Nussle, Bill Dix, and Stan Thompson all received kampaign kontributions from Sholom Rubashkin who’s family owns the kompany.

I was also able to verify that Rubashkin gave $10,000 to Jim Nussle’s gubernatorial kampaign. So while that looks bad, at least his photo is not on the Agriprocessors website like Senator Grassley’s is.

Thursday, May 8, 2008

Wednesday, May 7, 2008

Divided They Fail

Despite the former first kouple's best hopes using new math, a delegate kount that would equal a klinton viktory is about as likely as the French having a pro-America president. Okay bad example, they finally have one. But you get my point.

Barack Hussein Obama or for this blog posting's purposes "Dark Helmet" will be listed on the November ballot across Amerika and there is still yet good news that has this klown giddy with anticipation of keeping the White House and our freedom safely in the hands of a President John McKain.

We have certainly basked in the glory of a bitterly divided demokratik party and I kan tell you it ain't over yet. Even with a soon to be announced Klinton exit, there will be an ukomfortable period of time where top dems have to make that long walk to New York and offer up that awkward unsolicited advice to step aside for the nominee and the good of their party yada yada yada. This will only strain the already fractured relationship between the two kamps even further, but wait, there's more! Next will kome the obvious demands by many that the junior Senator from New York or Arkansas or Illinios or wherever on Planet Spaceball to be placed on the ticket. Like most of you, I kan't see that happening. The kontinental divide between the Obama and Klinton camps will then widen to roughly the size of the grand canyon and that is sweet music to my ears. Heck the only thing that would sound better than that to me is, "Hershel, your Casey's Pizza is ready for pick up. Unfortunately, we are all out of medium sized dough so we made you a large at a medium price".

Where was I? Oh yes, today's lesson is this: The dem kamps are going to part like the Red Sea and every national and state poll shows that a large percentage of moderate dems and independents will switch their vote for McKain rather than support their primary nemesis. This is great news for the GOP this fall!

Konservatives will have to “get local” to find victories in 2008

Being inkognito has it advantages. During my extended time away from the blog I was able to travel the state and get a better grasp of what is on the hearts and mind of Iowa’s konservative activists. I wish I kould kome back here and tell you how fired up they were about the ’08 elections but I kan’t. Now that doesn’t mean that we are hopeless when it komes to 2008 in Iowa.

Konsider the following: The words “great depression” adequately described the konservative activist following the 2006 general elections. Yet more Iowans voted in the Republican kaucuses than ever before. And while we are having a little kaucus talk, I must say I absolutely nailed my 2007 Breakout Kandidate of the year. I was Huckabee when Huckabee wasn’t kool! Remember kids; don’t ever doubt the head klown.

It would be wise for Republican kandidates to look to how Huckabee and Romney motivated their supporters, however it is always easier said than done. There is hope when it komes to local races, especially those folks running for the State House. Word on the street is that the Republicans have recruited well and having good kandidates is half the battle when it komes to legislative races.

The problem for most konservatives isn’t the battle for kontrol of the Iowa House, or even the White House, it’s the lack of enthusiasm for the kandidates running against Tom Harkin. Sure Harkin has sent some solid Iowa kandidates into retirement (Jespen, Tauke, Lightfoot, and Ganske), but Iowa Republicans have always been willing to take the fight to Harkin. So while many konservatives are pleased not to send Kongressman King or Kongressman Latham into the lions den, they less than excited about their three choices in the June 3rd Primary.

Steve Rathje has been running for the longest of the three candidates. Rathje has found it difficult to raise money and to organize. His extended time kampaigning has made him polished on the stump but many folks are skeptical of him after hearing him.

George Eichhorn is a former state legislator from north central Iowa. Eichhorn is the known quantity in the race. On one hand people like to have some sort of idea on how a person would vote, so Eichhorn has a small advantage there. On the other hand people don’t like the fact that Eichhorn was defeated in 2006 in his State House campaign.

Christopher Reed is another candidate from Cedar Rapids who looks to be in the mold of Bill Salier. Now before you get too excited Salier was “on duty” or running aggressively for a long time before he was accepted by the grassroots activists in 2002. Reed reminds people of Salier, but time is the main factor working against him. Also it is important to note that many Konservative Politicos in the state have settled on Reed as their choice in the primary.

Will there be a Krusty endorsement? I don’t know yet, I’m still waiting for a candidate to earn my and your vote.

Oh and by the way, Barry Obama is the Democrat nominee. He killed Clinton in North Carolina and she just was able to hang on. The Krusty forecast calls for Super Delegates to swarm to Barry Obama in the near future, and Clinton will even see some of here begin to flake. The Democrats will have some scars to heal from their primary battle, but as lone as they have a nominee by the end of the month they will be able to unite. McCain has to hit a home run when selecting his VP, and even then it will be a difficult campaign.

Monday, May 5, 2008

Black Helikopter Sightings

A new feature to KrustyKonservative is the Black Helikopter segment featuring all the good and juicy poltikal rumors and news tidbits that may not warrant an aktual post in and of themselves. A shout out to David Yepsen for blazing the trail and giving me this idea with his "Great Mentions & Trial Balloons".

And so we shall begin.

Word is that two prominent members of the Iowa GOP establishemnt made the trek to the scenik baltik state of Latvia to entice Ambassador Charles Larson Jr. to jump into the race for governor in 2010 against the big lug. No word yet on how the meeting went.

BREAKING NEWS: This just in. Bob Vander Plaats is going to run for governor yet again... ah we already knew that. Skip ahead.

Upon returning from the semi-annual klown kar professional development conference out in Washington, D.C. (I have to keep my license kurrent), I learned an interesting tidbit regarding who the Bush dynasty is pushing Sen. McKain to selekt as his runningmate. No, not Lee Atwater. Mitt Romney is said to be the klear choice amongst President Bush 41, Governor Jeb Bush and the Arkhitekt Karl Rove. It is not klear whether that goes in Mitt's favor or not at this point.

Second distrikt Kongressional kandidate Peter Teahen has apparently gone through the opposition research ringer as it seems he only changed his voter registration to republikan last December when he was kontemplating running for the U.S. Senate. Teahen, a lifelong democrat is said to have supported liberals Julie Thomas over Jim Leach for kongress, Mike Blouin for governor and Lee Klancey over Paul Pate for mayor of that city in Linn Kounty. Now he is running for kongress and has retained the services of the Mod Whalen alums over at Viktory Enterprises. Stay tuned, this should be a fun one to watch!

Saturday, May 3, 2008

McVeepstakes: The Good, the Bad and the downright Ugly

Seldom these days is there an exchange of political banter at Wellman's or under the golden dome where the veepstakes does'nt come up. There are seemingly endless possibilites for Sen. McKain to choose from, but before we get into that let's take a look at the good, the bad and the downright ugly schools of thought when deciding on a runningmate.

The Good

In 1980, then Governor Ronald Reagan won a hotly kontested primary fight over his closest and bitter rival George Herbert Walker Bush. In an effort to unify and mobilize the party to defeat an incumbant president, Gov. Reagan chose Bush whose foreign policy experience as the former head of the Central Intelligence Agency komplimented his own executive leadership on the ticket. Karter became a one termer and the duo went on to destroy the Vice President Mondale juggernaught (only kidding) in the greatest landside in United States history, not including Super Bowl XX.

The Bad

The year is 1996 and Sen. Bob Dole of Kansas finally gets his turn to be the nominee of our grand old party. Old being the key word here bekause the younger former NFL kuarterback and ekonomik guru made Dole look like Abraham Simpson. The overkompensation for Dole's perceived shortcoming of excessive age in this kase only drew more attention to the issue and ultimately was too much to overkome despite his impekkable credentials as a statesman. The lesson here being that you never want to select a runningmate that outshines you. This is likely to be a bitter pill to swallow for the Mitt Romney team.

The Downright Ugly

When one thinks of Veep pick mulligans you've got to be thinking potatoe.. or is it without an E? In 1998, then Vice President Bush selekted Sen. Dan Quayle. Whether its wishing he would have studied Latin so that he kould kommunicate in Latin America or manging to lose a winning argument against Murphy Brown in the eyes of the general publik, this pick proved to be a swing and a miss. Was he awesome on the issues we hold dear? You bet, but he lacked the ability to as SNL's Dana Karvey so aptly put it "gain acceptance". Enter the Klinton era.

Now I leave it to you all for a spirited diskussion on the merits of who you think Sen. McKain should select and why. Please try to keep it klean and not let it be a 101 reasons why everybody but your choice sucks.

Friday, May 2, 2008

The Time Has Kome

I have fielded kountless inquiries from many of the faithful Krusty blognostikators as to when there may be a komeback. Given the tone and divisive nature of a hotly kontested presidential kaucus, I thought it best for the good of our party to take a break and frankly I needed a Kat nap.

Now is the ideal time for a komeback as our konservative hopes and dreams rest on the former kaucus and primary adversaries uniting to re-defeat the Dems this year. It is my intent that this blog serve as a means to that end.

For the good of the party I ask that you all play nice and put your best foot forward.

Now let's have some fun!

I’ll Riddle You When I feel Like It!

The audacity of some bloggers

I guess I might konsider it, but you have to prove to me you want it by submitting a Krusty Haiku

A Krusty Kome Back?
Why on Earth would you want that?
McKain with a K?

So many questions...