Sunday, July 31, 2011

Body Found in Ashes of Home

Missing Couple: Iowa investigators want the public's help in finding an elderly couple who lived in a home near Norwalk. The home burned around midnight. Investigators found a body in the ashes of the home's remains. But they say they don't know who it is yet.

3 Iowans on Politico List

Hawkeye State Strength: Iowa is a pretty small state, the 31st largest in the country, with around 3 million people. But it shows its strength in a new Politico list of the "50 politicos to watch". Three Iowans made the list:
Former Iowa First Lady Christie Vilsack--It won't be easy to upset Republican Congressman Steve King in the state's newly configured 4th district. But Vilsack should be able to give King a better run for his money than previous candidates. And maybe he'll even have to debate her unlike most of his previous challengers?
Bruce Rastetter--He gave a bunch of money to help put Terry Branstad back in the governor's mansion. And the new governor gave Rastetter a spot on the Board of Regents. Rastetter is also part of the small group of Iowans who flew to New Jersey to try to talk Governor Chris Christie into running for president.
Scott Bailey--He may not be a household name outside of political circles. But Bailey is known within the home school community, where he serves as the president of the Network of Iowa Christian Home Educators. Mike Huckabee showed how valuable tapping into Bailey's network can be when he surprised many people with his win in the 2008 Iowa Republican Caucuses.

Saturday, July 30, 2011

Bachmann Coming to Iowa

Bachmann's Back: I must say I was surprised to see Republican presidential candidate and current Minnesota Congresswoman Michele Bachmann setting plans to campaign in Iowa this weekend, in light of the debt debacle in Washington. The house was going to vote on lifting the debt ceiling (or not lifting it) at some point. I first read about the congresswoman's plans Friday night when I saw the email from the campaign. It said she would come to Iowa Saturday, Sunday and Monday. But several hours later, the campaign then said she would not come here in person after all. She would phone into the event instead. And that's what she did in Sioux City. The Des Moines Register reports Bachmann called in and again cast doubts on whether the country would really go into default if Congress fails to come to agreement before Tuesday on lifting the debt ceiling. Now today, her campaign emailed again to say she would return to Iowa Sunday. Stay tuned.
Bachmann's opponent, fellow member of Congress Ron Paul, had planned to have his son, Kentucky Senator Rand Paul, campaign for him Friday and Saturday in Iowa. Paul's campaign sent out an email Thursday morning to say Rand Paul's tour had been canceled, citing the pending debt ceiling vote this weekend.

Friday, July 22, 2011

Bachmann's Migraines

Campaign Headache: Story or no story? Issue or not an issue? Presidential candidate Michele Bachmann prolonged the story about a former aide claiming she suffers from debilitating migraines. Wednesday during her backyard chat at a Norwalk couple's home, Bachmann could have stopped to talk to reporters to fully explain the concerns over whether her migraines can knock her out of commission for days at a time. Instead, she mostly ignored reporters' questions. And her staff tried to form a human wall around her as she made her way from the crowd to inside the home. Later, she emerged from the house arm in arm with the homeowner and walked into her campaign bus. She again ignored reporters' questions, boarded the bus, thanked the homeowners again for their hospitality and then encouraged people to go swimming to stay cool in the oppressive heat. Later in the day, we heard from her brother, her son and her doctor. But why didn't Bachmann herself just give more background on this issue? If the headaches don't affect her work performance, then why not explain that and let everyone move on? Is it more serious than that?

Tim Pawlenty is the only candidate who tried to make an issue of the migraines. We talked to him right after the Bachmann event. We asked whether Bachmann's condition should be an issue for voters. He could have said, "That's a question for her doctors about how severe this is. I've known her for years and have never seen anything that questions her ability to serve as president. I think the bigger question is the health of our economy right now and the president's failure to find the right prescription to fix it." Instead, he told us about three versions of a phrase that candidates need to be president "all of the time".

How do those comments not seek to cast doubt on Bachmann's health? Cain, Romney and Gingrich all said the migraines aren't an issue. Now, it looks like Pawlenty is changing his response. He now calls the matter "a sideshow". So what part has be played in this sideshow?

I received a handful of emails after we ran our story on the migraines. I thought our story would look at the bigger question of whether the headaches are an issue for voters or just a campaign distraction. I didn't realize the reaction it would get from some people. Here are a few emails:

Are you kidding me? You lead with a story about a candidates headaches? Why the hell haven’t you investigated Mr. Obama’s admitted cocaine use? You want even ask why he hasn’t released his medical records. You sycophantic hypocrites. Do some real investigative reporting and ask Barak. He did say he was going to be transparent.

I can hardly make my self watch your liberal so called news. If it wasn’t for the good looking dames on the set I just couldn’t take it.

Also tell Andy he buggs me.

Sincerely: Chris Dover

Thanks for your INVESTIGATIVE journalism on Mechelle Bachman. I was undecided on who I would support. Your attack peice on her "migrains" told me which to support. I will be supporting her 100 percent.
What is next for you liberals? Maybe a story on Obama's memory porblems when he told Jay Leno last week he was cellabrating his 50 th birthday during that week, while his "REAL" birth certificate says he was born on August 4th.
You are just evil. Pure evil.

Thursday, July 21, 2011

Christie Vilsack for Congress

Congressional Campaign: The congressional race for Iowa's new 4th district should be interesting. The state loses what is now the 5th district, so the lines will change. Republican Steve King represents the 5th now. He hasn't given his Democratic opponents much attention over the years. He refuses to debate them. He rarely even talks about them. But this race could be different. But there's no question the new numbers are still in his favor.

Here are the latest numbers from the Iowa Secretary of State's Office for registered voters:

176419 Republicans
135482 Democrats
178295 Independents
456 Others (Green, etc.)
490652 Total registered voters

King would have about a 40,937 registered party advantage. We can't, of course, assume all Republicans will vote for him and all Democrats will vote for Vilsack. But, for the sake of argument (and more importantly simplicity of the math for me!), let's assume people only vote along party lines. That would mean Vilsack will have to dominate the Independent vote. By my count she would have to get more than 61% of the Independents...109616 votes to 68678.

Perhaps, that explains what we heard during her announcement in Ames. She never once mentioned during her remarks that she was a Democrat. She later told me that, of course, she is a proud Democrat. But she said she is running "as a citizen". Vilsack knows the numbers here. So will she try to run more as an Independent, assuming the Democrats' strong dislike of King will bring them along without as much courting? She mentioned the importance of finding solutions in the middle and said Iowans don't believe compromise "is a dirty word". Vilsack said the solution to the country's $14 plus trillion debt problem is a combination of spending cuts and tax increases. She declined to say what income threshhold would trigger a tax hike and later told me she isn't in congress yet. We expect that specifics will follow. During her remarks she had said not paying your fair share of your taxes is like showing up at a "potluck without bringing a dish". It was just one of the more folksy lines she used as she sells herself as the small town Iowa girl looking to represent the small towns of the 4th district.

Republican Party of Iowa Chairman Matt Strawn sent out a statement calling Vilsack's announcement a "non-starter".
DES MOINES- As Christie Vilsack 'officially' enters the race for the 4th Congressional District, Iowa GOP Chairman Matt Strawn calls the former First Lady's campaign a non-starter citing her close association with the Obama Administration and ties to liberal special interest groups.

"Iowans need a principled leader in Congress, not someone who had a front row seat in Washington, D.C. as President Obama racked up record debt and stifled private sector job creation," said Strawn

Strawn pointed to Mrs. Vilsack's association with the President's failed stimulus, expansive health care takeover and disastrous cap and trade energy policy as examples of issues where the newly-minted Ames resident is out-of-step with the district's voters.

"Perhaps that explains why only a few dozen actual Fourth District residents donated to her campaign," said Strawn noting recent campaign filings indicate only 31 contributors to the Vilsack campaign came from the district.

Strawn concluded by saying the new 4th Congressional District has more Iowa Republicans than any other district and Congressman Steve King has represented half of the new district since 2002. In 2010, Republican Congressman Tom Latham won every county that is now part of the new 4th District.
This "non-starter", however, attracted an ad from the National Republican Congressional Committee before she had even officially announced her campaign yet. Hmmm, so someone from the other side is apparently paying attention, don't you think?

Here's the ad:

Sunday, July 17, 2011

Congressman Boswell's Family Attacked, Tiger Attacks Iowa Man

Two Attacks: What a bizarre day this has been. Some guy breaks into Des Moines area Congressman Leonard Boswell's home late last night. Boswell owns a farmhouse in rural Decatur County near the Iowa-Missouri border, near Lamoni. He was there with his wife, daughter and grandson, according to a spokesman. The intruder held a gun to Boswell's daughter and demanded money. Boswell, who had been in another room, came rushing in and struggled with the attacker. Boswell is a 77-year-old man, who's battled some serious health problems in recent years. But let's not forget he was also a U.S. Army helicopter pilot who fought in the Vietnam War. And whatever he did (Boswell wasn't talking to reporters about the incident on Sunday), he managed to help his daughter and distract the attacker. Boswell's grandson ran into another room and grabbed the congressman's shotgun. The attacker took off into the fields by the home. Boswell and his daughter got roughed up a bit in the fight, but mostly just scrapes and bruises. Everyone can be thankful for that. Who knows who this guy was who broke in? We don't know much about the investigation at the county. We called the sheriff's office numerous times but never got a call returned.

Then, there's this story about a tiger attacking a man at a zoo in eastern Iowa. What? The Associated Press reports the Cricket Hollow Zoo's owner was trying to feed the adult tiger when, for some reason, the tiger turned on him. Cricket Hollow's website says the zoo has about 300 animals, reptiles and birds in Manchester. It started with one "old, ugly llama".

Congressman Boswell Fights with Attacker

Developing: A release from Des Moines area Congressman Leonard Boswell says someone broke into the congressman's farm in Lamoni and attacked his daughter last night. His office says the congressman fought with the intruder. Boswell's grandson got a shotgun and scared off the attacker, who then ran off into the fields by the house.

Here's the release from Boswell's office:

Des Moines, Ia. – Please find a statement below from Congressman Leonard Boswell’s Chief of Staff, Grant Woodard, concerning an incident at the Congressman’s farm on the night of July 16th.

At approximately 10:45 p.m. on Saturday there was an attempted home invasion at Congressman Leonard Boswell’s farm outside of Lamoni, Iowa. At the house at the time was Congressman Boswell, Dody Boswell, his daughter Cindy Brown, and grandson Mitchell Brown. The intruder entered the front door of the farm house and physically assaulted Cindy while demanding money at gunpoint. Hearing Cindy’s screams, Congressman Boswell entered the entryway and attempted to disarm the intruder of his weapon. While the scuffle between Congressman Boswell and the intruder was occurring, Mitchell was able to secure a shotgun from another room. Mitchell pointed the shotgun at the intruder who then retreated into the fields around the house.

Besides some scrapes and bruises, Congressman Boswell and his family are fine.

The Decatur County Sheriff’s Department is currently investigating the incident along with state and federal authorities.

Congressman Boswell would like to express his sincere thanks to all the members of the law enforcement community who have worked through the night on this matter.

Saturday, July 16, 2011

Christie Appearing for King Fundraiser

Guess who's coming to dinner?: We've been waiting to find out if New Jersey Governor Chris Christie will do more while he comes to Iowa than just speak at Governor Terry Branstad's education summit. Apparently, he will. Christie will headline a fundraising dinner for 5th District Republican Congressman Steve King (who is running in the 4th District next year because redistricting eliminated the 5th). I'm told the dinner will start at 5:30 pm, Monday, July 25th (after he speaks at Branstad's summit). Businessman Denny Elwell will host the event in West Des Moines. Tickets are $250.

It sounds like King is taking his race seriously against former Iowa First Lady Christie Vilsack, who is expected to announce her candidacy Tuesday a.m. in Ames.

Friday, July 15, 2011

Christie Vilsack to Announce Plans for Congress

Breaking: Former Iowa First Lady Christie Vilsack is expected to announce her intentions to run in Iowa's 4th Congressional District to take on Republican Congressman Steve King, according to Democratic sources. This shouldn't shock many people following the former first lady's travels in the state. The Vilsacks sold their home in Mt. Pleasant months ago and later left the home where they lived in Des Moines. They got a place in Ames and Vilsack has been traveling the district and raising money for the better part of this year. Vilsack has an event scheduled to announce her plans Tuesday morning at Iowa State's Memorial Union.

Tuesday, July 12, 2011

Rick Perry for President

Dialing for Perry: Iowans have been getting some long distance calls lately from Texas. Lieutenant Governor Kim Reynolds got one. So did former Senate Majority Leader Stewart Iverson (who is now a state rep. from Clarion). And House Speaker Kraig Paulsen did, too. Paulsen told me his call came this weekend and lasted "a few minutes". Paulsen said Texas Governor Rick Perry told him he would be coming to Iowa "soon". I asked what the two talked about. He said they talked about the Air Force. Both served in it. Paulsen said he spent time in San Antonio while he served, 93 days. He remembers, especially the heat.

But back to politics...Paulsen said Perry asked him if he could set up some time for the two to meet when he comes to Iowa. Paulsen said he told him "of course".

Paulsen said Perry didn't say whether he planned to run for president and he didn't ask him.

If you're keeping score...Paulsen said he has met or talked to Pawlenty, Romney, Cain, Bachmann and McCotter this year. He said when Paul came to the Iowa Statehouse, he didn't get to meet with him. He said he may or may not endorse someone before the caucuses. Paulsen hasn't exactly spent a lot of time outside the statehouse checking out the presidential scene since the last legislative session went overtime by two months.

Sunday, July 10, 2011

Cedar Rapids Man Killed, Marshalltown Man Injured

Guard Update: A Cedar Rapids soldier died and a Marshalltown soldier is recovering from his injuries after fighting overseas in Afghanistan. The Iowa National Guard sent out a release with more information about both men:

Mission Focused – Warrior Ready

The Iowa National Guard regrets to announce the death of Sgt. 1st Class Terryl L. Pasker, 39, of Cedar Rapids, Iowa. Pasker was killed by an Afghan National Directorate Security officer during a mounted patrol, Saturday, July 9, in Panjshir (pan jeer) Province, Afghanistan at approximately 9:30 a.m., local Afghanistan time. As Pasker conducted the mounted patrol, the security officer stopped Pasker’s vehicle, then shot and killed both Pasker and a civilian in the vehicle. Master Sgt. Todd Eipperle (EPP er lee) of Marshalltown, Iowa, driving an armored vehicle in front of Pasker, stopped as soon as the shots were fired, and exchanged gunfire with the Afghan security officer, killing the security officer. Eipperle was wounded in
the attack.

Pasker was assigned to Co. B, 334th Brigade Support Battalion, 2nd Brigade Combat Team, 34th Infantry Division, Iowa Army National Guard, Cedar Rapids, Iowa. Eipperle is assigned to the Headquarters and Headquarters Company, 2nd Brigade Combat Team, 34th Infantry Division, Iowa Army National Guard, Boone, Iowa, and is currently receiving medical treatment at a U.S. Army facility in Afghanistan. The attack is under investigation.

Pasker was born Feb. 26, 1972 in Anamosa, Iowa and graduated from Lisbon (Iowa) High School in 1990. He enlisted in the U.S. Army in July 1990 and joined the Iowa Army National Guard in April 1995. Pasker was serving as an Electronic Maintenance Supervisor during his current deployment. He previously deployed to Afghanistan for Operation Enduring Freedom in 2004-2005.

Pasker was part of the approximately 2,800 members of the 2nd Brigade Combat Team, 34th Infantry Division deployed to Afghanistan. These Iowa Soldiers reported to their mobilization station at Camp Shelby, Miss. in Aug. 2010 for additional training and preparation before departing for the Afghanistan theater of operations. The unit arrived in Afghanistan in November 2010, where the Soldiers provide full-spectrum operations in a combat theater, including lethal and non-lethal capabilities, support to Afghan National Army and Police units, and assistance to humanitarian relief initiatives.

Pasker is survived by his wife, Erica of Cedar Rapids; his mother and father, Mary and David Pasker, of Blairstown; brother Andrew Pasker of Lisbon; and sisters Christine Ross of Oakland, Tenn. and Rebecca Southard of Salem, Ore

Iowan Dies in Afghanistan

Another Sacrifice: A Cedar Rapids man has died fighting in Afghanistan, according to a release from the U.S. Army. The Iowa National Guard will provide more details in a news conference Sunday night at 6:30. Terryl Pasker is the 7th Iowan to die fighting overseas this year.

Here's the release:

DOD Identifies Army Casualty

The Department of Defense announced today the death of a soldier who was supporting Operation Enduring Freedom.

Sgt. 1st Class Terryl L. Pasker, 39, of Cedar Rapids, Iowa, died July 9 in Panjshir province, Afghanistan, when enemy forces attacked his unit with small arms fire. He was assigned to the 334th Brigade Support Battalion, 2nd Brigade Combat Team, 34th Infantry Division, Cedar Rapids, Iowa.

Iowa National Guard Announcement

Developing Story: Forgive me for sounding alarmist, but when we get an alert from the Iowa National Guard about an announcement for the same night, we've learned it's not comforting news. We've been through this before as 6 Iowans have already lost their lives fighting in Iraq and Afghanistan this year. Nearly 3,000 Iowans are deployed now and are scheduled to return this summer.

The guard has to wait a certain amount of time before it can confirm casualties and that's why we've seen some of these evening announcements. Tonight's is scheduled for 6:30pm central time. To make that pending announcement even worse, Iowans are already burying a soldier today killed in the war in June. Army Captain Matthew Nielson's family and friends offer their farewells today in his hometown of Jefferson. He will be buried at the Iowa Veterans' Cemetery in Van Meter.

On a personal note, our neighbor, Josh, is supposed to finish his 2nd deployment overseas later this month. I know his wife and young son are counting the days. So are we.

Here's the release from the National Guard:


The Iowa National Guard will hold a press briefing on Sunday, July 10 at 6:30 p.m. regarding recent events in the Afghanistan theater of operations. This event will be of special interest to media from central and eastern Iowa. The briefing will be held at the Camp Dodge Freedom Center, 7105 NW 70th Avenue, Johnston, Iowa.

Saturday, July 09, 2011

Bachmann Opens Iowa Headquarters, Campaign Oopsie

Campaign Calls: Michele Bachmann officially opened her Iowa campaign headquarters in Urbandale, a suburb of Des Moines Saturday. It's a popular town for Republicans. Rick Santorum, Tim Pawlenty and Herman Cain (as of Monday) also have Urbandale headquarters. Ron Paul chose Ankeny. Bachmann took a turn on the phones to call potential supporters. So did Urbandale State Senator Brad Zaun. Although he had an unfortunate "oops" in front of our camera and microphone.

Zaun may have had some Boswell on the brain. Zaun lost to Des Moines' Democratic Congressman Leonard Boswell last year by about 11,000 votes.

Sweet Return: That video is good for a chuckle. But it's by no means my favorite of the day. This is! Hello, sweet corn!

Jeter Hits 3,000, Good-Bye, Friday Night Lights

Jeter's Jack: Derek Jeter is a professional athlete. He's in great shape. He's had his share of dates with famous women. And today he became the first member of the New York Yankees to get 3,000 hits. And he did it in style with a home run. I'm not a Yankees fan. I don't hate them or anything. But since I was born and raised in the St. Louis area, I'm loyal to the redbirds. But I'm a rabid baseball fan. And I've always appreciated Jeter's work ethic and professionalism. He seems like a true leader. And while I don't have intimate knowledge of his dating life (and really don't want to either), I do remember an interview he did a while back. He knows the life of a ballplayer (and the female luxuries it can bring) and he decided that he would stay single until he was old enough and mature enough to settle down. Apparently actress Minka Kelly convinced him he was ready for that now (and randomly he is building a HUGE house just a few miles from where my in-laws live in Tampa).

I don't mean this to be a love fest, but it's just refreshing to follow a player who seems to play the game the right way. And there's been no talk of him juicing up so he can hit more homers, or getting busted for DUI's, or getting involved in bar fights. He just play the game. And he has done it better than few other shortstops ever have.

Here's the video of his record-setting hit.

Speaking of Minka...her old show, Friday Night Lights, shows its series finale this Friday at 7pm central on NBC. She doesn't seem to be part of the show any more. But the rest of the cast make this show amazing. I'm very disappointed to see it's coming to an end. NBC hasn't exactly found itself full of prime-time hits the past few years, so I had hoped it would find a way to keep the show going. But it doesn't look like that's going to happen. Five seasons just aren't enough. If you haven't seen it, the show's about a couple in Dillon, Texas. He's the high school football coach. She's the guidance counselor. They have been the constants on the show. The cast of high schoolers changes from season to season which keeps the plot ever-changing and fresh. It's a feel- good show that's not too cheesy. Great acting. Great writing. A great show. I'll miss it.

Wednesday, July 06, 2011

Sarah Huckabee Sanders in Iowa for Pawlenty

Back in Iowa: "What it means, over the next 39 days, I will spend every one of them here in Iowa and working hard to make sure Tim Pawlenty is our next Republican nominee for president." That's what Sarah Huckabee Sanders told me inside Tim Pawlenty's Iowa campaign headquarters in Urbandale. Her name added the "Sanders" part since she worked in Iowa 4 years ago to help her dad go on to win the Iowa Caucuses (she met her husband, Bryan, in Iowa during the last cycle. He worked for Kansas Senator Sam Brownback's presidential campaign. Although she adds they didn't start dating until AFTER Brownback's campaign ended and he came over to Huckabee's campaign).

Huckabee Sanders will serve as a special advisor. But basically she will focus heavily on Pawlenty's Republican Party of Iowa Straw Poll efforts. And those efforts could be crucial. Pawlenty has campaigned and invested heavily in Iowa with frequent visits and an all-star ensemble of staff members. But that hasn't produced a strong showing in the polls yet. He finished 6th in the Des Moines Register's Iowa Poll of presidential candidates. Hard to see how a 6th place finish at the straw poll allows him to continue in the race. Does he have to finish in the top 2 or at least top 3 to keep going or risk having the campaign donations dry up?

So why Pawlenty? She said, "Authenticity. He comes from a place most people can identify with, whether it's his personal story or just who he is as a person, also his executive experience and leadership. We're at a time where we have seen what great speeches can do for us. And that's very little."

I asked Huckabee Sanders what her name brings to the race. She answered with a great line. She said, "I've heard Sanders is pretty common all throughout Iowa. I'm hoping that brings all kinds of extra attention."

So what about the talk about Huckabee supporters that he would change his mind and decide to run for president again after all? His daughter seemed very direct with us that this wasn't going to happen. She said, "You know. I think he made it pretty clear in his announcement (on his Fox show last month) what his intentions were and so I don't ever pretend to speak for my dad. I learned a long time ago when I was very young, not to try to interpret anything for him. But I think his intentions were very clear on his show on his announcement."

Monday, July 04, 2011

Fox Twitter Account Hacked, Claims President Killed in Iowa

Hack Hoax: Fox said somebody hacked into its Twitter account and posted that someone had assassinated President Barack Obama at a restaurant in Iowa. Fox has taken down the malicious tweets. But, according to Mediabistro, one said:

@BarackObama shot twice at a Ross' restaurant in Iowa while campaigning. RIP Obama, best regards to the Obama family.
The Ross' restaurant comment wasn't completely random. There is a restaurant by that name in the Quad Cities' area and, according to WQAD-TV, candidate Obama had promised the restaurant's owner he would return one day to try the signature dish there. The president kept his word and stopped by the restaurant during his visit to the Alcoa plant last week.

Cain's Campaign Turnover

Cain Counters: Herman Cain doesn't seem to think there's anything wrong with his presidential campaign despite recent prominent staff defections in Iowa and New Hampshire. In fact, he told reporters Sunday, "I'm just telling you that's not a story." Cain's Iowa and New Hampshire state directors quit. So did his Republican Party of Iowa Straw Poll director and his regional director. Pretty high-profile positions in two high-profile states. And the straw poll is only about 6 weeks away. Cain said, "Turnover is a natural thing in any organization you're trying to put together, you know. Sorry to see her (Iowa director Tina Goff) leave. But I wish her luck."

Organization is huge getting people to the straw poll August 13th. So who is doing this organization for Cain? Cain said he's replaced the departures. He said, "We have already replaced them, quite frankly, almost immediately, so this is not a major hiccup to this campaign." He didn't name names. I've left a message with his national campaign asking who these replacements are, but haven't heard back yet. Cain also said he has secured an Iowa campaign headquarters but wouldn't say where it is or when it would open (before or after the straw poll?)

Before this bit of news, Cain seemed to have some mojo going, finishing 3rd in the Des Moines Register's first Iowa Poll of presidential candidates. Will he overcome the staff departures and get a top 3 finish in the straw poll? Or is that out of the question now?

Here's the raw interview with Cain:

One more Cain note...According to a tweet from the Fayette County Republican Chairman Jim Kirkpatrick, Cain canceled on the group. He tweeted this:

@TheHermanCain has cancelled on our aug 6th fayette gop summer picnic

I haven't heard back yet for the reason for the cancelation.

Sunday, July 03, 2011

Iowa Parades

Politicians on Parades: In case the floats, free candy and bands aren't enough, presidential candidates will also be stepping off around Iowa on Independence Day. Here's the lineup I have so far...

Rick Santorum--Hopefully, he has comfortable shoes. And he might want to pack an extra t-shirt, too. Santorum's schedule shows him walking in 3 parades Monday.

10:00am CT: Senator Santorum will take part in the Urbandale, IA Independence Day parade. Parade begins on 70th Street south of Douglas Street and heads to Old City Hall.

2:30pm CT: Senator Santorum will take part in the Pella, IA Independence Day parade. Parade route begins at Scholte Church, 2805 Fifield Road in Pella.

5:30pm CT: Senator Santorum will take part in the Iowa Falls, IA Independence Day parade. Parade begins on the corner of River Street and Union Street.
Newt Gingrich--It's a much lighter schedule for Gingrich than Santorum (that's one of the complaints from his former Iowa staffers). Gingrich's schedule says he will take part in the Clear Lake Parade at 10am.

Michele Bachmann--Gingrich will have some company in Clear Lake. Bachmann's coming, too. Maybe they could walk a little step-for-step debate along the parade route?

I don't see any Iowa parades on the schedules for Ron Paul, Tim Pawlenty or Hermain Cain.

Oh, yeah, I saw nothing on Mitt Romney or Jon Hunstman's schedules for Iowa parades either, just in case you wondered.

Saturday, July 02, 2011

Pujols Coming Back Early?

Too Soon?: St. Louis Cardinals superstar Albert Pujols wasn't supposed to return to action until August because of a broken bone in his forearm. Or that's what people thought. But the St. Louis Post-Dispatch reports Pujols could be back before the All-Star break and maybe even sooner? I get it that Pujols doesn't want to sit. But how about letting him sit until AFTER the break. That may get him almost another week to heal. I'm sure he doesn't want his skills to atrophy. But the Cards need him to be healthy for the second half of the season.

Brett Baier's Show and Jimmy Kimmel

TV Time: My friends and family back home got the chance to see me twice on national television this week. One I expected. The other? Not so much.

Here's the clip from Brett Baier's show on Fox where we talked about the 2012 presidential race in Iowa. I had hoped we could much on those ridiculously good chocolate chip cookies at Baby Boomers where we shot that interview. But I guess chocolate in the teeth wasn't what the Fox folks wanted.

OK, now the clip that WASN'T expected. I wrote about the Sarah Palin in Pella experience earlier this week.
A guy, who apparently does skits for Jimmy Kimmel's Show on ABC, (sorry, but I don't watch that show) was doing his thing in Pella. He also made his way into my wife's "live shot" and then got into mine (he also messed with CNN's reports, too).

Here is our unexpected part of this that aired Wednesday night.

What a weird week.