Friday, April 14, 2006


McCain Followup - Who is Rep. Steve Lukan?

So...all the news stories of McCain's visit yesterday have included the list of each of his events, the lunch for Nussle (logical, as our Gov candidate), dinner with Lamberti (again, logical as one of the most competitive congressional challengers in the nation), and breakfast with State Representative Steve Lukan.

I'm surprised there hasn't been a story about this third event on McCain's schedule. How did a second-term state representative -- one of 76 republican state legislators in the house and senate land a breakfast fundraiser with the arguably-frontrunner Republican Presidential candidate?

I decided I needed to see what I could find out him -- after all if McCain decided he was worthy of his attention, perhaps his is a name that should be a little more commonplace to all of us -- even those not in his district. (Incidentally, he also caught the attention of The Hotline, as a rising star in IA). After doing a brief survey, I'm impressed. Here's the essentials, and a few links:

Lukan is currently the youngest member of the Iowa House (at least until Pat Grassley is elected in November) . After graduating from HS, he enlisted in the Navy where he served for four years -- me thinks this may be what attracted McCain's attention. When he came back home, he worked on finishing his college education and decided to run for the legislature at the age of 23. Not only did he win a contested primary, but he beat an incumbent Democrat in a district that includes Delaware and DUBUQUE county.

Chuck Offenberger writes about a visit during Lukan's first term, and describes his response to why he ran for office:
“What made me decide to run is the fact that so few young people are
involved,” said Lukan, who served in the U.S. Navy before college and who now
also helps run his family’s service station in New Vienna. “I decided to see if
I could get some things done to make young people more interested in staying in

Check his full bio and website for more information about his background and accomplishments in the legislature. From what I've read, it sounds to me like he is exactly the sort of young leader that we need in the state.