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Unified Democratic Party Control a Rarity in Iowa Politics

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When Democrats took control of the Iowa House last November, it marked a rarity in Iowa politics that had not occurred in more than 40 years: concurrent Democratic control of the Governor's office, Senate, and House.

The last time Democrats were elected to sole control of both the executive and legislative branches of government in the Hawkeye State, Harold Hughes was in his second term of Governor way back in 1964. While divided government is the norm in Iowa, the Republican Party has managed to hold unified control of both branches 7 times during the past 24 legislative sessions (1960, 1968, 1970, 1972, 1978, 1980, and 1996).

Democrats picked up 5 seats to win the Iowa House in 2006 to gain a 54-49 advantage. The last time Democrats won the Iowa House was back in Election 1990. In 2006, Democrats also increased their biggest advantage in the Iowa Senate (10 seats, 30-20) since the 1988 Election. This 10-seat advantage is tied for the largest they've enjoyed since 1960.

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Remains of the Data

Gender Equality in the US House: A State-by State Quarter-Century Report Card (1989-2014)

A study of 5,325 congressional elections finds the number of female U.S. Representatives has more than tripled over the last 25 years, but the rate at which women are elected to the chamber still varies greatly between the states.

Political Crumbs

Final Four Has Presidential Approval

By edging Michigan in the final seconds Sunday, the University of Kentucky guaranteed that one school in the Final Four this year would be located in a state that was not carried by President Barack Obama in 2012. (Connecticut, Florida, and Wisconsin had previously earned Final Four slots over the weekend). Across the 76 Final Fours since 1939, an average of 3.1 schools have been located in states won by the president's ticket during the previous election cycle. All four schools have come from states won by the president 29 times, with the most recent being the 2009 Final Four featuring Connecticut, Michigan State, North Carolina, and Villanova. On 30 occasions three Final Four schools have been located in states won by the president, with two schools 11 times and only one school six times (the most recent being 2012 with Kansas, Kentucky, Louisville, and Ohio State). There has never been a Men's NCAA Division I Final Four in which no schools were located in states carried by the president's ticket.


Three for the Road

A new Rasmussen Poll shows Wisconsin Governor Scott Walker in a dead heat with likely 2014 Democratic nominee Mary Burke. Walker is seeking to win his third consecutive election after prevailing in 2012's recall contest. Eight of his predecessors accomplished this feat: Republicans Lucius Fairchild (in 1869), Jeremiah Rusk (1886), Robert La Follette (1904), Emanuel Philipp (1918), John Blaine (1924), Walter Kohler (1954), Warren Knowles (1968), and Tommy Thompson (1994). Three others Badger State governors lost on their third campaign: Democrat George Peck (1894), Progressive Philip La Follette (1938), and Republican Julius Heil (1942). One died in office before having the opportunity to win a third contest (GOPer Walter Goodland in 1947) while another resigned beforehand (Democrat Patrick Lucey in 1977 to become Ambassador to Mexico). Overall Wisconsin gubernatorial incumbents have won 35 of 47 general election contests, or 74.5 percent of the time.


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