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Election Profile: Iowa's 5th Congressional District (2008)

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Smart Politics is running a series of election profiles of all the Upper Midwestern U.S. Senate and U.S. House races leading up to the November 4th elections. The series will culminate with Smart Politics' official projections. The seventh profile in the series is Iowa's 5th Congressional District race.

Candidates:
Republican: Steve King (3-term incumbent)
Democrat: Rob Hubler
Independent: Victor Vara

District Geography:
Iowa's 5th Congressional District comprises thirty-two counties across the western wing of the state: Adair, Adams, Audubon, Buena Vista, Carroll, Cass, Cherokee, Clarke, Clay, Crawford, Decatur, Dickinson, Fremont, Guthrie, Harrison, Ida, Lyon, Mills, Monona, Montgomery, O'Brien, Osceola, Page, Plymouth, Pottawattamie, Ringgold, Sac, Shelby, Sioux, Taylor, Union, and Woodbury.

History:
Western Iowa hasn't elected a Democrat to the U.S. House since Berkley Bedell won 7-straight terms from 1974 through 1986. King handily won the inaugural race of the newly drawn 5th Congressional District in 2002, beating Democratic nominee Paul Shomshor by 24.3 points. King then defeated Joyce Schulte by 26.7 and 22.9 points in 2004 and 2006 respectively.

King, a former state senator, serves on the House Committee on Agriculture, the House Committee on Small Business, and the House Committee on the Judiciary. The three-term Congressman has been one of the most outspoken opponents of illegal immigration and proponents of strict immigration enforcement. King also has been a critic of the financial bailout legislation, voting 'no' on both floor votes.

Democrat Rob Hubler, a Vietnam War veteran and retired Presbyterian minister, is campaigning in favor of increased regulatory measures and vigilant oversight of the financial industry, a national health insurance program, setting a timetable to withdrawal troops from Iraq, and increasing America's commitment to renewable energy, such as ethanol, wind, and nuclear production.

Outlook:
King represents the most conservative and reliably Republican district in the Hawkeye State. His return to D.C. for a 4th term would continue the streak of at least one Republican representing Iowa in the U.S. House in every year since 1856.

Previous post: The Sarah Palin Effect On Undecided Women Voters in Minnesota
Next post: Election Profile: Iowa U.S. Senate

3 Comments


  • Don't let the last paragraph fool you. King is a flaming embarrassment to the good people of the 5th District. He only won the first time because he snuck in through a vacuum left by Greg Ganske when he tried to make a grab for Senator Tom Harkin's seat in 2002. And since then, he's only won every election because he hasn't had a decent candidate to challenge him.

    If the Iowa DNC would put up someone better than a punching bag to run against King, you'd see that totalitarian bigot get his clock cleaned big-time.

  • I think Ron has run a great campaign and he has a chance to win

  • Steve King is an embarrassment to western Iowa and its residents. He wants a fence built between Mexico and the United Stateds, and guess who he wants to build it? His son's contracting company. His utterances this past year have been reported loud and clear across the nation by major news broadcasters and newspapers because of the absurdity and stupidness of his comments. Esquire magazine is begging the voters of Iowa to vote him out of office for the above mentioned reason. We, the constituency of 5th District Iowa, deserve good, intelligent, honorable, and respectable representation in Washington, and it is not Steve King.
    C. H.

  • Leave a comment


    Remains of the Data

    Strange Bedfellows: A Historical Review of Divided US Senate Delegations

    Over the last century, states have been twice as likely to be represented by a single political party in the U.S. Senate than have a split delegation; only Delaware, Iowa, and Illinois have been divided more than half the time.

    Political Crumbs

    Haugh to Reach New Heights

    The North Carolina U.S. Senate race between Democratic incumbent Kay Hagan and Republican Thom Tillis may go down to the wire next Tuesday, but along the way Libertarian nominee Sean Haugh is poised to set a state record for a non-major party candidate. Haugh, who previously won 1.5 percent of the vote in the Tar Heel State's 2002 race, has polled at or above five percent in 10 of the last 12 polls that included his name. The current high water mark for a third party or independent candidate in a North Carolina U.S. Senate election is just 3.3 percent, recorded by Libertarian Robert Emory back in 1992. Only one other candidate has eclipsed the three percent mark - Libertarian Christopher Cole with 3.1 percent in 2008.


    Gubernatorial Highs and Lows

    Two sitting governors currently hold the record for the highest gubernatorial vote ever received in their respective states by a non-incumbent: Republican Matt Mead of Wyoming (65.7 percent in 2010) and outgoing GOPer Dave Heineman of Nebraska (73.4 percent in 2006). Republican Gary Herbert of Utah had not previously won a gubernatorial contest when he notched a state record 64.1 percent for his first victory in 2010, but was an incumbent at the time after ascending to the position in 2009 after the early departure of Jon Huntsman. Meanwhile, two sitting governors hold the record in their states for the lowest mark ever recorded by a winning gubernatorial candidate (incumbent or otherwise): independent-turned-Democrat Lincoln Chafee of Rhode Island (36.1 percent in 2010) and Democrat Terry McAuliffe of Virginia (47.8 percent in 2013).


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