To listen to certain moderates in the party, you would think that the sky is falling. The Mason City Globe Gazette spoke to former Republican Senate Leader, Mary Lundby:
The state party’s central committee has given short shrift to other topics in favor of social issues, and that could turn off voters, Lundby said.
“Voters have got so many other issues on their minds and when you only coalesce on those (social) issues, you lose those voters in the chatter, and we can’t afford that,” she said.
Lundby, a state legislator for 22 years, said the central committee has lost touch with rank-and-file voters, and her hopes for Republicans to retake the Iowa House this fall have faded.
I was surprised to see these comments. As a member of the SCC, I have trouble pinpointing how the committee has given short shrift to other topics in favor of social issues? In the prioritization and allocation of resources the focus has been on those races that give us an opportunity to retain or gain a seat — not ideological purity. Perhaps I have not been paying close enough attention, can anyone give an example of the SCC acting in the manner described by Senator Lundby?
Lundby further suggests that the focus is only on social issues. Once again, I will make a plea for a focus on all of our party’s core issues, not just social issues. Likewise, I would suggest that we not exclude social issues either.
As for being out of touch, the SCC is elected by the rank-and-file. Every member of the SCC was elected or re-elected at our recent district conventions. Scheffler and Lehman were elected by large majorities by the rank-and-file at our state convention. I would suggest that the current SCC and our newly-elected National Committee members in fact are a representation of rank-and-file Republicans in Iowa. So just who is out of touch?
The Globe Gazette also spoke to former chairman Ray Hoffman. According to the paper, Hoffman:
I had to do a double-take when I read the article. From a distance (I was not on the SCC at the time) I always thought that Ray was a social conservative. He certainly presented himself that way. Again, I would like to know how party leaders are pushing social issues at the expense of other concerns.
It’s funny that social conservatives always get criticized for failing to support all Republicans. If you read the Des Moines Register, it seems that it is the moderates, not the socons who want to take their ball and go home.