Five questions inspired by the Des Moines Register's IA-03 poll

Iowa’s third Congressional district Democratic primary has no clear front-runner, according to the first public poll of the race by Selzer & Co for the Des Moines Register and Mediacom. If the June 5 election were held today, 27 percent of respondents would support Eddie Mauro, 26 percent Cindy Axne, 11 percent Pete D’Alessandro, 10 percent “none of these/someone else/would not vote,” and 26 percent unsure/refused to answer.

Mauro has the highest name recognition in this field–not surprising, since he comes from a well-known Polk County political family and began advertising on Des Moines television stations in mid-April, about two weeks before Axne and D’Alessandro did. Selzer found 42 percent of respondents had a favorable view of Mauro, 13 percent unfavorable, and 46 percent didn’t know enough to have an opinion, William Petroski reported for the Des Moines Register today. The comparable numbers for Axne were 33 percent favorable, 8 percent unfavorable, 59 percent unsure, and for D’Alessandro, 22 percent favorable, 10 percent unfavorable, 68 percent unsure.

I have no idea who will win the nomination. Five questions came to mind after reading Petroski’s write-up.

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Wishing is not a strategy

Bruce Lear, a longtime regional director for the Iowa State Education Association, ponders what a new governor could do to help pass a fairer law on bargaining rights for public-sector workers. -promoted by desmoinesdem

I wish the new Democratic governor could simply wave a magic wand and restore public sector collective bargaining rights.

I also wish every day in Iowa were 70 degrees, the Cubs won the World Series, and I lived in Mayberry. But wishing is not a strategy.

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Des Moines Register poll: Bad news for Hubbell, worse news for everyone else

After spending millions of dollars more than his closest competitor, Fred Hubbell leads the Democratic field of gubernatorial contenders, the latest Selzer poll for the Des Moines Register and Mediacom finds. But Hubbell hasn’t locked up the race: this snapshot suggests his support is below the 35 percent level needed to win the June 5 primary outright, and three-quarters of respondents said they are open to changing their minds.

While other candidates have an opportunity to gain ground, they likely lack the capacity to reach as many Iowans as Hubbell will during the home stretch. And no one is in a position to make a case against the front-runner that large numbers of voters will see.

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Choose hope: Vote Nate Boulton for governor

Cody Woodruff is a rising junior studying political science and speech communication at Iowa State University and a member of the Carlisle School Board. -promoted by desmoinesdem

“Just as man cannot live without dreams, he cannot live without hope. If dreams reflect the past, hope summons the future.” -Elie Wiesel, 1986 Nobel Peace Prize speech

When I began to write this piece, it began as your usual endorsement that we’re all accustomed to reading. However, that’s not what it turned into. We live in unusual times, so the case I’m going to make is unconventional, but hopefully more compelling than an average editorial. Many of us know where the candidates stand on the issues, we have a general idea of each candidate’s electability, and we’re aware of their background. If someone doesn’t know these things already, there are plenty of resources out there to check out, because I’m not going to talk about them here.

The focus of this piece is on one simple, powerful, extraordinary thing: hope.

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Iowa remains one of worst states for puppy mills

Ten dog breeding facilities in Iowa made the Humane Society’s latest annual report on the country’s “Horrible Hundred” puppy mills. Iowa has long been one of the worst states for unscrupulous dog breeders, and a 2010 law designed to “crack down on the bad actors in this industry” did little to resolve the problem. Only Missouri and Ohio had more dog breeders listed in the latest Humane Society report. Iowa was among the five worst states for puppy mills in similar reports for 2013, 2014, 2015, 2016, and 2017.

Two of the Iowa breeders mentioned this year are “repeat offenders” from past “Horrible Hundred” lists.

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The case for each Democrat running for Congress in IA-03

With less than three weeks remaining before the June 5 primary, many Democrats (including myself) are still undecided in the primary to represent Iowa’s third Congressional district. All three candidates left standing in the once-crowded field have raised enough money to run strong, district-wide campaigns.

This post focuses on how Cindy Axne, Pete D’Alessandro, and Eddie Mauro have presented themselves in stump speeches, direct mail, and television commercials aimed at Democratic voters.

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