By Scott Levine
On the 40th anniversary of the annual fall event, Clinton County Republicans commemorated the occasion with cake.
In less than 30 days, they’re hoping for an even bigger celebration.
GOP candidates seeking election in November made their pitch Tuesday at the Clinton County Republicans fall event at the Vista Grande. Republicans John Archer (U.S. Representative candidate), Andrew Naeve (Iowa Senate candidate), Rep. Steve Olson (Iowa House incumbent) and Tom Determann (Board of Supervisors candidate), joined Iowa Lt. Gov. Kim Reynolds in addressing the 250 attendees.
Speakers urged the crowd to not only put the local candidates into office, but also place former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney into the White House over President Barack Obama.
“If we get it wrong this time, America, as we know it, will cease to exist,” Archer said.
Archer, of Bettendorf, will square off against Rep. Dave Loebsack in the Nov. 6 election in the newly created second congressional district. In a race that was once considered an uphill climb for Archer, polls are showing Loebsack’s lead narrowing, and the contest has been rated competitive by several national media outlets and political reports.
Loebsack has served in the U.S. House of Representatives since 2007, but Archer, who earlier appeared at the Republican National Convention, is seeking to end the Democrat’s run.
“We’re excited where we’re at right now,” Archer said. “We need new leadership in the White House and in the Second District.”
Reynolds echoed Archer’s sentiment, but focused more on the state races, where she said a two-seat swing in votes could mean a major turnaround in Iowa government.
Republicans hold a 59 to 40 edge in the Iowa House, while Democrats hold a 26 to 24 advantage in the Iowa Senate. If Republicans maintain their lead in the House, and take over the Iowa Senate, it would be the first time in 14 years that the GOP controlled the House, Senate and Governor’s seat in Iowa.
“Win just two more Senate seats and the majority understands that the private sector creates jobs and grows the economy,” Reynolds said.
Reynolds believed not only would the Iowa Senate be controlled by Republicans, but Iowa would send four Republicans to the U.S. House of Representatives.
“We’re optimistic this year,” Reynolds said. “It’s a tremendous challenge and the immediate battle begins 28 days from now.”
In other races, Naeve will face Rita Hart in the newly created Senate District 49, which includes all of Clinton County and portions of northern Scott County; Olson, who received a $3,000 award from the Iowa Corn Growers Association during the event, will square off against Ted Whisler in Iowa House District 98; and Determann will challenge John Staszewski for a Clinton County Board of Supervisors seat.