Midterms a Huge Victory for Pro Gun Candidates in Iowa
Iowa--(Ammoland.com)- Tuesday was a huge victory for pro-gun candidates across the state of Iowa!
It was the culmination of a two year battle that you've been a part of.
To find out the good news, keep reading the article below!Yours for the Right to Keep and Bear Arms, Signature Aaron Dorr Executive Director
Gun owners across the state, and Iowa Gun Owners members and supporters in particular, have dealt a telling blow to the anti-gunners in the State of Iowa.
We have fantastic results to report below in detail.
In a nutshell though, pro-gun candidates that IGO ran our election program for picked up 14 additional seats in the House! These are candidates that have answered perfectly on our candidate survey. 2 additional seats were picked up by marginally pro-gun candidates that will likely support us when the time comes.
In the Senate, pro-gun candidates that IGO ran our election program for picked up an additional 6 seats!
Two of the above races are still being contested by the gun-grabbing candidate so there may be some changes still. More on those below.
To be clear, Iowa Gun Owners can not expressly advocate for candidates. That's the job of the Iowa Gun Owners PAC, which supported many good candidates this election cycle. But we do survey candidates and inform you, our members, and other gun rights supporters in the district, about the results of these surveys and all anti-gun votes cast by anti-gun incumbents.
And it sure paid off last night!
In the Senate:
- District 1 – Pro-gun candidate Rick Bertrand, who was being supported by Iowa Gun Owners by sending 1,000's of pieces of mail to pro-gun voters in the area, WON by 286 votes. This seat was previously held by an anti-gunner.
- District 5 – Pro-gun candidate Robert Bacon, who likewise received a lot of support from Iowa Gun Owners in the form of direct mail, WON by almost 2,000 votes against anti-gun Rich Olive. This seat was previously held by an anti-gunner.
- District 9 – Pro-gun candidate Bill Dix trounced anti-gunner William Heckroth by 3,584 votes! Heckroth voted against REAL Right-to-Carry and refused to answer the survey. This is another pro-gun seat that was previously held by an anti-gunner.
- District 37 – Pro-gun champion, and Iowa Gun Owners lead bill sponsor for two years in a row, Kent Sorenson destroyed gun grabber Staci Appel by over 5,000 votes! This is especially sweet for Iowa Gun Owners since Appel spent approximately $500,000 attacking Sorenson – mostly over his pro-gun positions. IGO volunteers went door knocking and lit dropping for Kent, worked the phones to get out the vote for Kent, did TONS of pro-gun mail in the district, and did robo calls for Kent. This does not count the direct financial support that the IGO PAC gave to Sorenson. Clearly the voters in SD37 saw through the lies in Appel's campaign and they threw a gun-grabber out of the Iowa State Senate! Congrats to Representative (soon to be Senator) Sorenson.
- District 45 – Sandy Greiner has returned to Iowa politics by defeating incumbent gun-grabber Becky Schmitz by 1,481 votes. Greiner is fully supportive of REAL Right-to-Carry and the Stand-Your-Ground bill that IGO is pushing. This is another pro-gun seat that was previously held by an aggressive anti-gunner.
- District 47 – In what is shaping up to be the closest race of the Fall, Mark Chelgren is currently ahead of extreme gun grabber Keith Kreiman. Kreiman was the Floor manager of the 2010 Disarmament Act and he was directly behind the watered down bill that ensured REAL Right-to-Carry failed by 6 votes in the Senate. Kreiman is currently losing to pro-gun candidate Mark Chelgren by 13 votes!!!
Clearly there will be a recount here. Iowa Gun Owners is trying to route some help to Chelgren to make sure that this race is not stolen from him by a gun grabber. But for now, this seat has flipped to a pro-gun legislator.
In the House:
- District 1 – Jeremy Taylor defeated David Dawson by about 7% in this open seat race. Dawson refused to answer the survey and the members of IGO let him hear about it after receiving our campaign mail.
- District 8 – In what was one of the most enjoyable House races to be involved with all year, Tom Shaw crushed anti-gunner Susan Bangert by 3,554 votes. Bangert was contacted repeatedly by IGO supporters in the district and refused to answer the survey. In fact, she said that IGO (and you by default) were an extremist group that was advocating for violence against the government! Tom received direct support from the Iowa Gun Owners PAC as well as a bunch of election mail from IGO, and we are very pleased that it paid off. This seat was previously held by a legislator who did not support gun rights.
- District 9 – McKinnley Bailey was the incumbent in this race. In 2008, Bailey promised to support and vote for REAL Right-to-Carry in his survey. Bailey broke that written promise two years in a row and the voters in that area sent a clear signal by electing Stew Iverson in his place by a solid 700 votes, in part because they received our mail on the situation. This is another pro-gun seat that was previously held by an anti-gunner!
- District 14 – Josh Byrnes won this open seat race by almost 20% against an anti-gun candidate. Josh answered our survey 100% pro-gun and will be a much better supporter of gun rights than Mark Kuhn was.
- District 16 – Bob Hager won this seat last night by a slim margin against incumbent John Beard. Beard voted against REAL Right-to-Carry and refused to do our survey. Hager took a little convincing but ultimately completed our survey with good answers. Hager ran his campaign largely without help from any other political organizations. When our mail and autocalls landed in this race we received a flurry of calls about it and we're pleased that this helped Hager.
- District 20 – Iowa Gun Owners was very pleased to see that Walt Rogers handily beat Doris Kelley by almost 1,000 votes. Kelley was a solid anti-gun vote and Rogers has promised to sponsor legislation for IGO! This is another flip for pro-gunners.
- District 23 – Dan Rasmussen pledged to support our legislation in writing by completing the survey. Rep. Gene Ficken, on the other hand, voted against REAL Right-to-Carry and refused our survey. When our mail and autocalls landed in this race, IGO received howls of complaints from Ficken supporters, and with good reason as we detailed Ficken's anti-gun stance. The voters heard about this and ejected Ficken from office by a slim 206 vote difference.
- District 31 – This race was of special note to Iowa Gun Owners as incumbent Ray Zirkelback is one of the most hostile people in the entire House of Representatives against Iowa Gun Owners. Members will recall that Zirkelbach tried to file criminal charges against representatives of IGO last year for asking him where he stood on REAL Right-to-Carry. So we were pleased to do campaign mail into the district detailing his hostility towards gun rights and those who advocate for them. Lee Hein defeated Zirkelbach last night by 847 votes and so another anti-gun vote was converted to a pro-gun vote as Hein answered all our questions pro-gun.
- District 42 – Another close race in Iowa, which is perhaps too close to call completely is this race. Extremely pro-gun candidate Kim Pearson is currently leading Geri Huser by a 159 vote margin. However, there are still absentee votes to count in this race. Huser has flip-flopped on guns for the last few years, voting pro-gun one year, anti-gun another. She answered some questions correct on our survey and other portions of the survey were very troubling like her willingness to ban semi-auto weapons. For these reason Iowa Gun Owners did a significant amount of mail into this district to all of our members and other known pro-gun supporters. In addition, Iowa Gun Owners PAC contributed to Pearson's race. We will wait to see what happens but a Pearson win would be a huge step forward for gun rights as Pearson has promised to sponsor legislation! For the record, the AP has already called this race for Pearson.
- District 75 – Notorious anti-gunner Eric Palmer was soundly rejected by the voters last night by over 700 votes. Palmer was a “no” vote on REAL Right-to-Carry and refused to do the survey. Our mail informed the voters about this and our members went to work. Hank Vander Linden did the survey and has pledged support for the 2nd Amendment. Here is another vote for pro-gun supporters.
- District 84 – Ross Paustian completed our survey with solid answers and has pledged to support IGO legislation. His opponent refused to do either and thankfully the voters supported Paustian by over 15%!
- District 89 – Jared Klein is the winner of this race by a margin of over 1,200 votes. Klein has talked with IGO often and is strongly pro-gun. He also completed the survey 100%. Larry Merek was the incumbent in this race and arrogantly voted against our bill and won't do the survey. Marek supporters called us in anger when our educational mail landed in the district, but an anti-gun vote is hard to argue with. This is another flip for gun rights where the anti-gun vote was rejected.
- District 95 – Michael Reasoner was the incumbent in this race and he was an antagonist towards the 2nd Amendment based on all of his past votes. He refused to do the survey as well. Joel Fry, on the other hand, did the survey 100% and we were pleased to report that to people in the district. The result: another pro-gun flip in the House as Fry won by 1,456 votes.
- District 100 – This seat was held by Rep. Paul Shomshor who liked to pretend he was pro-gun until the moment of truth came and Shomshor voted anti-gun and refused to complete a simple gun rights survey. Mark Brandenburg was the opposite. We've had multiple conversations with Mark and he's clearly a pro-gun candidate. His public support of the 2nd Amendment, as evidenced by his survey responses, was released to the district in waves of IGO mail and autocalls and the voters responded by ousting Shomshor by 411 votes.
These are all the races where Iowa Gun Owners, with your help, were able to see anti-gunners sent packing!
Exposing anti-gunners takes work. It takes recorded votes (yet another reason why forcing votes in the legislative session is vital.) It takes persistence as well, but now we are seeing the payoff.
Folks, we were 5 votes short of passing REAL Right-to-Carry in the House last year. We've now picked up 14 additional pro-gun votes!
In the Senate we fell 6 votes short last session and we've just picked up 6 votes!
Now, there are some races that need to be certified as we discussed. But we've made tremendous gains here.
Our job now will be to make sure that these politicians keep their word to the voters and to Iowa Gun Owners. We've experienced some betrayal in the past and can't assume anything at this point.
But we are in a good position. Thank you for all of your support and action taken in the past few weeks!
Iowa Gun Owners (IGO) was formed in January of 2009 to combat the oppressive gun laws in the State of Iowa. IGO does not believe that you, as a law abiding citizen, should have to beg permission from the government to be able to defend yourself and your family. That's why we are working so hard to get a Vermont/Alaska style carry law passed in Iowa. In these states, unless you are a convicted felon or otherwise barred from possessing weapons, you don't need a permit to carry a gun for self-defense! Join us now! Visit: www.iowagunowners.org