UP FOR GRABS: Senate And House Control

We could see some big changes at the Statehouse.  Republicans currently control the House and the Governor’s Office, and are hoping for the trifecta by winning the Iowa Senate.

A lot is at stake in local races Tuesday.  Meaning, the laws that Democrats and Republicans promise they will fight for, should they win control.

“Control” means a constitutional majority, 51 votes will pass a bill in the House.

The majority Republicans have enjoyed 59 seats to the Democrats’ 40 for the last two years.

Even if Democrats manage to gain seats in the house, most observers doubt they can win enough to win control from the Republicans.

The Senate, no matter what happens Tuesday will make news.  Democrats kept control back in 2010.  They had the 26 to 24 majority.  The parties and the special interest groups have been in an all-out assault for these seats.

Take the incumbent majority leader, Michael Gronstal was seen as a lock for re-election, but suddenly, he’s had to come up with money to combat TV ads for his challenger in Council Bluffs.  That’s Republican Al Ringgenberg.

Re-districting pits two incumbents against each other.  Republican Merlin Bartz faces Democrat Mary Jo Wilhelm.  This is the battle for north central Iowa in Floyd County and Charles City.

Our democratic insiders say this race is critical for the Democrats to maintain control.  It’s the incumbent Democrat Jeff Danielson taking on Matt Reisetter.  Danielson was elected in 2004.

Reisetter used to work for Bob Vander Plaats at the Family Leader.  That’s the choice tonight for voters in Cedar Falls.

Both parties know what’s at stake.  Both are trying to stay confident.

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