Despite recent troubles, Terry Branstad scores decisive primary victory: Iowa state executive primary elections review

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June 4, 2014


By Maresa Strano

June 3, 2014 Election Review

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*Iowa Governor
*Iowa Lieutenant Governor
*Iowa Attorney General
*Iowa Treasurer
*Iowa Auditor
*Iowa Secretary of Agriculture

Des Moines, Iowa: Seven state executive positions are up for election in 2014 in the state of Iowa: governor, lieutenant governor, attorney general, secretary of state, treasurer, auditor and secretary of agriculture.

Six of the seven incumbents are seeking re-election, including Governor Terry Branstad (R), Lieutenant Governor Kim Reynolds (R), Attorney General Tom Miller (D), Treasurer Michael Fitzgerald (D), Auditor Mary Mosiman (R) and Iowa Secretary of Agriculture Bill Northey (R). Only Branstad drew a primary challenger.

The final incumbent, Secretary of State Matt Schultz (R), will leave his office behind after this term. He opted instead to seek the open U.S. House seat representing Iowa's 3rd District.

On June 3, voters faced a single contested primary field. Garnering 83% of the vote, Governor Terry Branstad handily defeated Tom Hoefling for the Republican party's nomination. He will face Democrat Jack Hatch and Libertarian Lee Hieb in the general election; the remaining major party candidates ran unopposed and automatically advance to the November 4 general election ballot.[1]

Branstad's primary win marked the first piece of good news in months for the nation's longest serving governor owing to a recent string of scandals inside his administration. In a short space of time, Branstad was accused of using his office to commit or facilitate a variety of crimes and improprieties, such as the wrongful firing of a state trooper who nabbed the governor for speeding, crooked dealings state judge, abuse in an Iowa juvenile home and giving hush-payments to fired state employees claiming to victims of political revenge. Amid the resulting storm of bad press directed at Branstad and his office, the governor maintained a policy of denying knowledge or involvement in these alleged transgressions. These stories caused a steep downturn in the governor's job approval and trust rating among Iowa voters. According to an April 22 Public Policy Poll for Progress Iowa, 83% of Iowa voters said they were either somewhat or very aware of the scandals and 56% indicated they were unconvinced by Branstad's official line of denial.[2] In addition, 30% of respondents said they thought Branstad should resign, with 36% believing he should stay and 34% responding "Not sure." Besides shedding doubt among voters about Branstad's honesty and integrity, these allegations cost the jobs of numerous state department leaders, including the firing of Iowa's administrative department head, and prompted state lawmakers to call for an independent investigation.[2][3] Branstad closed out April leading Hatch 45-43, his smallest-ever edge, according to a poll conducted on behalf of the conservative-leaning Daily Caller.[4]

Below, Ballotpedia has put together a review of yesterday's elections.

Iowa Governor
See also: Iowa Gubernatorial election, 2014
Republican Primary Results
Governor of Iowa, Republican Primary, 2014
Candidate Vote % Votes
Green check mark transparent.pngTerry Branstad Incumbent 83% 129,752
Tom Hoefling 16.8% 26,299
Write-in 0.2% 294
Total Votes 156,345
Election Results via Iowa Secretary of State.
General Election Candidates

Lost in the Primary

Iowa Lieutenant Governor
See also: Iowa Lieutenant Gubernatorial election, 2014
General Election Candidates

Iowa Attorney General
See also: Iowa attorney general election, 2014
General Election Candidates

Iowa Secretary of State
See also: Iowa secretary of state election, 2014

This seat is open in 2014 because incumbent Matt Schultz (R) is running for election to the U.S. House representing Iowa's 3rd District.

General Election Candidates

Iowa Treasurer
See also: Iowa down ballot state executive elections, 2014
General Election Candidates

Iowa Auditor
See also: Iowa down ballot state executive elections, 2014
General Election Candidates

Iowa Secretary of Agriculture
See also: Iowa down ballot state executive elections, 2014
General Election Candidates

See also

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