Convention could decide Democratic nomination for Iowa Governor
CEDAR RAPIDS, Iowa (CBS2/FOX28) —
Monday was Caucus night in Iowa. Turnout is expected to be low as there is no Presidential race in 2018, but that doesn’t mean tonight’s selection of delegates to the state convention is any less crucial.
For Democrats, tonight’s discussion could shape the race for Governor. Here’s why.
Of the seven Democrats that are right now in the race, four are considered to be well funded. State Senator Nate Boulton, Des Moines Businessman Fred Hubbell and Registered Nurse Cathy Glasson have all reported raising more than a million dollars in 2017.
That money likely makes all four capable of staying in the race until primary day in June.
Further down the line, Doctor Andy McGuire raised more than half a million dollars and has the advantage of once leading the party in Iowa, providing her name recognition across the state.
John Norris was the only other Democrat to raise more than 100-thousand dollars. That parity in fundraising means a number of candidates could choose to go the distance in seeking the party’s nomination.
So here’s where that gets tricky. With several well-funded candidates, if no one earns more than 35-percent of the vote on Primary Night, this race would go to an open convention. And unlike a Presidential race, it’s likely that delegates selected tonight would NOT be committed to a particular candidate.
So, with just 11 days between the primary and the convention in June, such an event would trigger a frantic free-for-all for the candidate to wheel and deal with the delegates for critical votes.
And if you think it’s not possible, know that it’s happened before.
Republican State Senator Brad Zaun LOST in an open convention vote between himself and David Young just four years ago. Young went on to become Iowa’s 3rd District Representative to Congress.
As for Senator Zaun, he’s introduced a bill to eliminate the open convention and require a runoff election if the primary vote doesn’t reach 35%. That bill passed the Senate last year and is awaiting debate in the Iowa House.