Monday, April 10, 2006


WH'08: Roundup of the Others

Two big fish in the WH'08 race will be making their Iowa debuts in the coming weeks. First up is Senator John McCain for a day of fundraisers on Thursday, April 13th (somehow I think it would have been fitting if McCain's first visit to this state he loves to hate would have been on Friday the 13th, but alas). Stay tuned later this week for reports, but until then, check out this fascinating read from the NY Times about McCain's efforts.

New York Mayor Rudy Guiliani will be visiting Davenport on May 1st, also for an event with Congressman Nussle. I haven't heard much about him, since the 2004 campaign season wrapped up -- and my money is that he decides not to run. Once again the Times has an interesting piece (they must be doing a WH series or something) that looks at his political future.

Senator George Allen of Virginia also just made his first campaign swing in the state -- visiting Cedar Falls and Davenport for fundraisers with the state party. I had a chance to attend one of the visits, and would agree with the sentiments in the linked newspaper articles that he did an impressive job -- and I had no idea that he was almost born in Iowa. Word is that he'll be back to speak to the State GOP Convention in Des Moines in June and attend a fundraiser up in Sioux City -- but since he has a Senate campaign on his hands (up for re-election in VA this year), I don't expect to see too much more of him until after November. The DC press continues to watch his staffing carefully -- the latest news being that Mary Matalin has signed up to serve as the treasurer on of his campaign committees, joining Ed Gillespie as two high profile Bush team members in the Allen camp.

Former Speaker of the House Newt Gingrich will be headlining the State Party's Lincoln Day dinner at the end of the month. He has made a number of visits to the state -- but I think he's going to have a get a lot more serious soon if he's interested in more than selling his books.

Arkansas Governor Mike Huckabee continues to make the rounds. Krusty has been pushing the idea that he may be the social conservative candidate and is reporting that his ground game organizing has already begun.

Senator Sam Brownback has also made a few visits -- and had been my bet for the candidate that social conservative rally around. His moves supporting the McCain-Kennedy immigration bill have perplexed me though -- and at least from what I hear it sounds like Huckabee may be making more inroads than him.

Who have I forgotten? Oh, yes, our Senate Majority Leader Bill Frist headlined the Ronald Reagan Dinner back in October. Didn't hear lots of impressed people after that -- and it's been a shaky year in the Senate for him, with the exception of confirming two Supreme Court Justices. Still, he eked out a homestate showing in the SRLC Straw Poll. We'll have to see how the final months of his leadership in Senate play out and then how he decides to spend his free time after he's no longer in office. Both in his, Romney's, and Huckabee's cases, I think the lack of official responsibilities come 2006 may be an overlooked advantage that they will have over others like McCain and Allen who will still have day jobs in the Senate.

And of course, we musn't leave out Congressman Tom Tancredo of Colorado. He couldn't be asking for a more fortuitous turn of events with immigration rising to the forefront these past weeks, and he's spent a great deal of time in the state. Still, even he says he's really just interested in insuring that the other candidates talk about the issue.

There... I think that rounds out most everyone ... somebody I forgot? Comments or thoughts? Post away ...

Don't forget John Cox. I hear he's going to be visiting all of the District Conventions around the state on April 22nd.
Who the hell is John Cox?
Corny, I think McCain and Allen (if he wins...) will have the advantage of still mattering for the two years that Romney, Huckabee, and Frist collect their pensions. Sure the three of them can camp out here and in New Hampshire, but a lot of good that did Howard Dean.
Isn't John Cox the Victory Enterprises candidate of the 2008 caucuses?
John Cox's claim to fame is that he was the chair for county party that Chicago is in, maybe the whole state. I don't remember. He's never held an elected office from what I have heard. But, there are some who will get a lot of attention from him that others will ignore. Those people have votes too!
Check out this column about Huckabee's disorganization. Doesn't speak to IA at all, but does make some decent points.
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