IA-Sen: Brad Zaun not running

State Senator Brad Zaun announced today that he will not run for the open U.S. Senate seat in 2014 (hat tip to WHO-TV’s Dave Price).

Price posted a Facebook status update from Zaun today:

To all my friends: After much consideration on a potential run for US Senate and believing that there is true benefits from being the first candidate to announce. As you might know I had been working with David Polansky/Ed Rollins, we were preparing to announce next week. The website was being reworked, contracts were sent from a DC attorney who was going to set up the FEC requirements, this potential campaign was going to be run efficiently and by the Pros! Well for the first time in the last 17 years I decided I am putting my family and my Grapnel Tech business before public service. My son Greyson will be a senior next year and Devon will be a sophomore, and Drew will be transferring to U of Iowa to play football. As you can see I have just too much to miss!

Zaun would have become acquainted with Polyansky and Rollins while stumping for presidential candidate Michele Bachmann around Iowa. Polyansky and Rollins were senior officials in the Bachmann campaign until September 2011. Zaun stuck with Bachmann to the end and introduced her to the crowd at her Iowa caucus night party in 2012.

I was never a believer in Zaun’s prospects to win the GOP nomination. He’s not a fundraiser despite representing one of Iowa’s most wealthy Senate districts, and how do you not beat Leonard Boswell the year House Democrats lost more than 50 seats?

Still, Zaun has been angling for higher office. Perhaps he will take a crack at the U.S. Senate in 2016 if Chuck Grassley retires. But he’d have to choose between that race and his Iowa Senate seat, because he’s up for re-election himself in 2016.

Any comments about the Senate race are welcome in this thread. Bonus points for anyone who can answer Timothy Noah’s excellent question: Why do candidates hire Ed Rollins?

  • King/Rollins

    If it’s King/Braley I just don’t see how King picks up some of the voters who vote for less conservative Republicans like the GOPers that represent dmd.  I’m not even sure how he picks up more conservative and yet still swingish areas like Muscatine or Waverly.  Northey could  do it and possibly Renyolds, but she’s got to be authentic and not just given canned responses.

    I think Rollins doesn’t really fit well with any popular brand in the GOP (not with the Huckabee types or the Ron Paul types) and he would probably call Mitt Romney on his baloney.  

    Rollins would probably still be working for the Nixon-Ford wing of the GOP if such candidates still existed.  Linda McMahon, Dean Heller, others, any GOP candidate in Oregon or Washington State that honestly wanted to win in their state.) Heller may be able to make it through two more terms by being as conservative as he is, but hiring a guy like Rollins might help.

    Rollins was involved with Perot only to turn his back on Perot later for a variety of reasons.  I don’t think Rollins did his homework on Perot’s personality and was just happy to cash the checks.  That’s not a criticism of Rollins, just what seems to be a fact.

    • I can't see Reynolds

      winning a statewide GOP primary. Who is her constituency?

      Northey could be a decent statewide candidate if his support for the gas tax doesn’t sink him in the primary.

      Ed Rollins has turned on multiple candidates before. At some point you’d think people would stop hiring him.

      • Rhoughts

        Renyolds wouldn’t beat King, but if you had a couple of fire breathing, lesser known Tea Party types going against her she could win.  There are people within the Iowa GOP who are smart and would like to see the GOP break that Congressional glass sealing first. (it would be at the same time as a Liz Mathis for example, but at a higher office)

        Northey and King have to defer in order for Renyolds to win however.  She could beat A.J. Spiker or a Spiker hand picked candidate.  Spiker isn’t trusted among social conservatives.  I know Renyolds isn’t either, but there were people worried about Kelly Ayotte within the GOP on social issues and when she got to the U.S. Senate she fell in line.

        I’m still taken back by the fact that King is more likely to run than Latham is.  The GOP just seems hell bent on doing everything they can to keep the U.S. Senate in Democratic hands.

        Who knows what may go on in Alaska, Louisiana and other places?  Thankfully for them the different groups haven’t raised too much fuss in West Virgina.  Mike Rounds should watch his right flank in South Dakota as well, LOL.    

        • I am still very confident

          that King won’t run for Senate, in which case at least three or four other candidates will. It’s not going to be a two-way contest between Reynolds and someone else. I expect at least one or two “establishment” candidates, maybe Northey or Reynolds but maybe Matt Whitaker or some former legislator, plus someone from the Ron Paul faction, and someone from the FAMiLY Leader orbit.

          If Republicans were smart, they would nominate a woman for Senate and in IA-01.

          • Spiker

            It would be very interesting if someone from the Ron Paul faction won the nomination.  Most of the GOPers of course would home, but this would only embolden the Paul faction in the future.  Spiker has been labeled ineffective, at this point the money bomb success that the Pauls and Peter Schiff have seen doesn’t currently translate to larger operations and I’m not sure it ever would.  You still have to be some sort of quasi-celeb in order to have that kind of success.

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