Monday Musings

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I started my day off in a meat locker. At least it felt like it. Apparently, Governor Culver’s staff tried to avoid the sweating that took place last week during his news conference (it had nothing to do with the questions from his friends in the press:) So this week, someone opened the windows. Wow, that was a Morning morning eye opener! Definitely, no drooping eyes during his news conference. Not that there ever are, of course.

Now, to the real news…Culver didn’t seem to be too worried that the senate’s bill doesn’t come up with nearly as much reorganization savings as he wants. He said he is looking for about $200 million from the bill. And his budget depends on the savings. He admitted last week he doesn’t have much cushion in it. But Mary Mascher, the Iowa City Democrat leading the savings bill in the house, said she couldn’t rule out a second reorganization bill, if the first bill doesn’t come up with enough savings. She added that she told her members if they take anything out of the bill (which would reduce the amount of savings), they need to add something back in it.

As I write this at about 4:45, we are still awaiting senate debate on the bill. A lot of caucusing on the topic so far. The original email I got was that senators would start debating at 10am. Apparently, a lot of debating going on here before the debate.

NBC’s First Read had an interesting story about Sarah Palin. Obviously, a lot of people are trying to figure out whether she will run for president or whether she is just trying to make a bunch of money (not that she couldn’t try to do both). First Read’s story will likely give fuel to the folks who think she is only after the money right now. The story shows her political action committee spent more money on her books than giving money to candidates (which is often how potential prez candidates try to win over influential leaders across the country).

Speaking of money, Republican Jim Gibbons campaign is trumpeting (I played trumpet in school, so I just like to work that word into my writing from time to time) how he out-raised Democrat Leonard Boswell in Iowa’s Third District race. Here’s part of the release from the National Republican Congressional Committee:

Gibbons, former wrestling coach for the Iowa State Cyclones, raised $207,310 in the first six weeks of his candidacy, leaving $205,069.90 in the bank. Most of these contributions came from individual donors and not Political Action Committees (PACs).

In contrast, Boswell raised $ 169,621.27 in the final three months of 2009, with $462,193.02 in the bank, with most of this money, $133,400 coming from PACs and not individual donors. Not only is Boswell getting out raised by one of his opponents, he is also struggling to find the necessary signatures to get his name on the ballot. Boswell’s campaign put an ad on Craigslist earlier this year that offered Iowans $2 for every valid petition signature they turn into the campaign. If Boswell continues to lag behind in fundraising and grassroots organization, he’ll be in for a rude awaking on Election Day.

You can view Boswell’s FEC report here.

You can view Gibbons’ FEC report here.