Wes Enos elected to the State Central Committee

Wes Enos of Des Moines is the newest member for the GOP State Central Committee. Wes was Iowa political director for Mike Huckabee and Campaign manager for Peter Teahan who was defeated in a primary race to challenge Dave Loebsack in the 2nd District.

Wes was elected to fill Steve Scheffler’s term since Scheffler is now serving as National Committeeman.

Sign, Sign Everywhere a Sign …

My kids complain that I have a song for everything. I was home this weekend after being on the road for two weeks and missing the Cedar Rapids, McCain-Palin event. As I drove in my neighborhood, I saw two of the major streets, Stoney Point Road and 1st Avenue lined with McCain-Palin signs.

I could not help but start singing:

Sign, sign everywhere a sign …

The song of course is Signs by the Canadian group Five Man Electrical Band from 1970. My kids just roll their eyes when I do that.

But the signs are significant. It shows that people are fired up about the ticket. It also shows that the McCain camp and Victory teams are doing their job. They are making calls, knocking on doors, giving out signs and recruiting volunteers.  Shout out to Luke Martz, the Victory staffer based in Marion — keep up the good work.

I’m going to be in Iowa for the next few weeks so I plan on getting out and doing some voter contact through the Victory office.

Cedar Rapids in the News

I travel as a part of my job and it seems that if I am on the road and Cedar Rapids makes the news — it cannot be good. I was in Kansas City during the flood and I watched whenever I could to see how Cedar Rapids fared.

This week, while working in New Jersey, I saw Cedar Rapids on CNN. It was a Robin Meade talking about former Democrat state rep and current Cedar Rapids mayor, Kay Halloran sleeping during a City Council meeting.

The Bailout

In this post, I am going to break the First Rule of Blogging. What is the First Rule you ask?

Act like you know all the answers!

I have to admit that I do not know the answer to the current financial crisis. In fact, I started a new training and consulting business on September 15, 2008. That’s right, I left a company job to fly solo on the day the financial markets crashed. Talk about timing.

My dilemma is that I don’t know how I feel about the bailout. On the one hand, I realize that if these bank failures continue unchecked the results will be devastating. On the other hand, I am a free market guy. I am not convinced that government intervention will actually solve the problem and I fear that we will be faced with unintended consequences.

The mortgage implosion reminds me of the Tech Boom. I am a techie and at the time I told my father that being in high tech was like printing money. I was getting about a dozen headhunter calls a day. Jobs and money were plentiful. The problem is that while the market cap of tech companies and their IPO’s were shooting for the moon, there was no grounding. Investors were throwing money at companies that did nothing and produced nothing. Investment gurus said that this was a new economy and traditional metrics like Price to Earnings Ratio simply did not apply. While they were wrong and when the crash came, it was huge.

Likewise in the Housing Boom, people lost sight of history and reality and operated on the mis-guided belief that housing prices could only go up and quickly. Banks were lending money without income verification, borrowers were using creative vehicles like interest-only loans.

This current problem is a crisis of our own making. It is no surprise that Ron Paul opposes the bailout. I am surprised to see that Mike Huckabee also opposes it. I agree with Congressman King that the bailout is essentially a form of socialism. As Iowans we have not contributed much to the crisis. Lenders in the state did not generally utilize these creative forms of financing. Most borrowers bought homes to live in not to cash in. Yet in a bailout, Iowans will pay just like Californians.

I don’t know the answer but I am watching closely.

Rathje Write-In?

The Cedar Rapids Gazette reports this morning that there is a write-in campaign to elect Steve Rathje to replace Tom Harkin in the US Senate. The problem is that we Republicans already have a candidate. We had a three way primary race between Rathje, George Eichhorn and Christopher Reed — Christopher Reed was the winner. In fact Rathje came in third.

Apparently, Clinton Clayton County GOP Chairwoman Gwen Eilers is sending out e-mails asking Republicans to support Rathje. Let me be absolutely clear on this: as a Republican leader, Eilers should support our candidate, Christopher Reed — or step down. Reed won the primary and he deserves our support.

Nothing personal, but why Rathje? Wasn’t Eichhorn second?

[[Correction: The e-mails were sent by the Clayton County chair. I know Clinton County Chair, Nicky Baker and she is definitely a Reed supporter.]]

GOP Convention Day 3 — All In!

Day 3 of the GOP Convention was incredible. Of course Iowans know Mitt Romney and Mike Huckabee well. Both men gave very good speeches. Meg Whitman, former CEO of EBay and Carly Fiorona, former CEA of HP both spoke. Several Hispanic business people (but strangely no Asians) were also on the podium.

Rudy Giuliani gave a great speech and he really took on Barack Obama and set the stage for Sarah Palin. But the moment of the night was Governor Palin herself. She was awesome, the atmosphere in the hall was electric. Everyone I have spoken to here is jazzed about the ticket.

In choosing Sarah Palin, John McCain has done what no one else could — he has united the Republican base. As I have been telling people here about the McCain-Palin ticket, I’m all in!

Vilsack Sighting in St Paul

Today while standing in line to get into the Excel Center. I saw someone I thought I recognized. I introduced myself and sure enough, I was right. The person I saw was former Democrat Iowa Governor, Tom Vilsack. The same Tom Vilsack who ran for president as a Democrat.

The Governor was standing in line to get into the venue and he had what looked like a guest pass. He was standing in the normal line and waited like everyone else. I asked if he were switching parties. He said, “No you’ll have to do a lot more convincing.”

GOP Convention Day 2


Today, the convention is back to normal. I believe that
President Bush will adress the delegates via video, Fred Thompson and
Joe Lieberman will also speak. Hopefully, today food and water will be
available at the venue.

The Iowa delegation is sharing a hotel
with Oregon. Last night a group of very conservative Iowa delegates
were sitting in the lobby and the self-described most liberal member of the Oregon delegation came and joined us for about 4 hours of spirited discussion.

One of the side shows at this convention is the protesters. Yesterday there were
some 10,000 protesters and almost 300 arrests. The protests turned
violent with windows being broken and more. I will be at a party away
from the convention site so I will be trying to walk to the convention
center – through the gauntlet.