United States Senate elections in Iowa, 2014

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2014 U.S. Senate Elections in Iowa

General Election Date
November 4, 2014

Primary Date
June 3, 2014

November 4 Election Winner:
Joni Ernst Republican Party
Incumbent prior to election:
Tom Harkin Democratic Party
Tom Harkin.jpg

Race Ratings
Cook Political Report: Toss Up[1]

Sabato's Crystal Ball: Toss Up[2]

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2014 U.S. House Elections

Flag of Iowa.png
Voters in Iowa will elect one member to the U.S. Senate in the November 4, 2014 elections.

Iowa is one of 21 states with a mixed primary system. The primary is closed, but voters are allowed to change their political party affiliation on election day.[3]

The election will fill the Senate seat currently held by Tom Harkin (D). Harkin was first elected in 1984. On January 26, 2013, Harkin announced that he would not seek re-election once his current term expires. Upon his retirement, he will have served in the U.S. Senate for 30 years. Prior to this, he served in the U.S. House for ten years. He told USA Today, "I have mixed feelings. You know what, it's somebody else's turn. To walk away from this position and this power is not an easy thing. But I think it's the right thing."[4]

If no Republican candidate gets 35 percent of the vote in the primary, a convention picks the nominee.[5] The nomination would be decided by 2,000 delegates during the convention.[5] The convention process begins in January 2014 with precinct caucuses, which then go to a March county convention, a district-wide convention in April and ultimately a statewide convention on June 14, 2014.[5]


Note: Prior to the signature filing deadline, candidates will be added when Ballotpedia writers come across declared candidates. If you see a name of a candidate who is missing, please email us and we will add that name. As the election draws closer, more information will be added to this page.

Announced candidates

Potential candidates




Race background

Most vulnerable seats

The FiscalTimes compiled a list of the seven most vulnerable Senate seats up for election in 2014. The seven included in the list are: Alaska, Arkansas, Iowa, Louisiana, North Carolina, South Dakota and West Virginia. Going into the 2014 election, all seven seats were held by Democrats.[34]

Campaign donors

Bruce Braley (D) reportedly transferred $179,000 from his U.S. House campaign account to his U.S. Senate campaign, and spent $113,000 in the first three months of the 2013.[35] Braley ended the first quarter of 2013 with $1,004,606 in cash on hand and reported that he already received contributions from Iowans in all 99 counties.[35] He announced on July 2, 2013 that he raised $1.25 million in the second quarter, from April 1 to June 30, and had $2 million in cash on hand.[36]

Possible Republican candidate and current Representative Steve King reportedly raised $93,000 and had $90,000 cash-on-hand as of April 2013.[37]

On July 9, 2013 Republican candidate Matt Whitaker reported raising $110,506 in campaign cash in the 27 days since he entered the race on June 3, 2013.[38] He had 134 donors from Iowa, which represents 78 percent of his donors.[38] A fundraiser featuring U.S. Sen. Chuck Grassley in Washington, D.C. is set for July 23.[38]

David Young (R) announced on July 9, 2013 his June 2013 fundraising efforts totaled $152,785 with $151,500 cash-on-hand at the end of the quarter.[39]

District history


On November 2, 2010, Chuck Grassley won re-election to the United States Senate. He defeated Roxanne Conlin (D) and John Heiderscheit (L) in the general election.[40]

U.S. Senate, Iowa General Election, 2010
Party Candidate Vote % Votes
     Republican Green check mark transparent.pngChuck Grassley Incumbent 64.4% 718,215
     Democratic Roxanne Conlin 33.3% 371,686
     Libertarian John Heiderscheit 2.3% 25,290
Total Votes 1,115,191


On November 4, 2008, Tom Harkin won re-election to the United States Senate. He defeated Christopher Reed (D) in the general election.[41]

U.S. Senate, Iowa General Election, 2008
Party Candidate Vote % Votes
     Republican Green check mark transparent.pngTom Harkin Incumbent 62.7% 941,665
     Democratic Christopher Reed 37.3% 560,006
Total Votes 1,501,671

See also

External links


  1. Cook Political Report, "2014 SENATE RACE RATINGS FOR JULY 18, 2014," accessed August 5, 2014
  2. Sabato's Crystal Ball, "2014 Senate Races," accessed August 5, 2014
  3. Iowa Secretary of State Website, "Voter Registration FAQ," accessed January 3, 2014
  4. USA Today "Iowa Sen. Harkin will not seek re-election," January 26, 2013
  5. 5.0 5.1 5.2 Roll Call "Rare Convention Presents Hurdle in Iowa Senate Race" Accessed July 9, 2013
  6. The Iowa Republican, "Grassley Chief of Staff David Young set to enter U.S. Senate race," May 23, 2013
  7. 7.0 7.1 7.2 Washington Post "Northey won’t run for Iowa Senate seat, hopes Steve King will" Accessed May 2, 2013
  8. 8.0 8.1 KMALand, "Ernst still undecided on Senate bid," May 23, 2013
  9. Des Moines Register, "Former U.S. Attorney Matt Whitaker pursues open Senate seat," May 6, 2013
  10. Roll Call "Matt Whitaker Announces Senate Campaign Team #IASEN | Shop Talk" Accessed June 11, 2013
  11. Des Moines Register "Sioux City radio host to reveal U.S. Senate intentions Monday" Accessed June 7, 2013
  12. The Gazette, "Sioux City radio host considering U.S. Senate run," May 23, 2013
  13. Des Moines Register "Sioux City radio host Sam Clovis joins U.S. Senate race" Accessed June 12, 2013
  14. Des Moines Register "Senate candidate David Young: Bruce Braley is ‘vulnerable’" Accessed June 18, 2013
  15. Daily Times Herald "Kuemper alum Schaben plans U.S. Senate bid" Accessed July 10, 2013
  16. Des Moines Register "Candidate for U.S. Senate suggests African American wife is evidence he’s not racist" Accessed July 10, 2013
  17. Politico "Iowa Republican Senate primary 2014 a free-for-all" Accessed May 28, 2013
  18. Des Moines Register "Joni Ernst announces bid for Senate seat" Accessed July 10, 2013
  19. 19.0 19.1 The Wall Street Journal, "Harkin's Exit Heralds Scramble for Senate Seat," January 26, 2013
  20. Politico, "Iowa Republican Senate primary 2014 a free-for-all," May 24, 2013
  21. Des Moines Register, "Mark Jacobs, possible Senate candidate, hosts education reform forum," May 8, 2013
  22. The Des Moines Register, "Vilsack will not seek U.S. Senate seat in 2014," February 15, 2013
  23. Globe Gazette "Loesback won't seek U.S. Senate seat" Accessed May 31, 2013
  24. Des Moines Register "Iowa House Democratic Leader McCarthy “absolutely” won’t seek higher office" Accessed May 31, 2013
  25. Cite error: Invalid <ref> tag; no text was provided for refs named hill
  26. Radio Iowa, "Iowa Ag Secretary discussing a run for the U.S. Senate," March 1, 2013
  27. Washington Post "Northey won’t run for Iowa Senate seat, hopes Steve King will" Accessed May 2, 2013
  28. Des Moines Register "Matt Schultz flies to D.C. to size up GOP Senate bid" Accessed May 15, 2013
  29. Omaha.com, "Iowa Secretary of State Matt Schultz travels to D.C. as he mulls Senate bid," May 15, 2013
  30. Washington Post "Matt Schultz won't run for Senate in Iowa" Accessed May 31, 2013
  31. Washington Post "Iowa Lt. Gov. Kim Reynolds won’t run for Senate" Accessed May 2, 2013
  32. Washington Post "Steve King is out. The next phase of the Iowa Senate race starts now." Accessed May 25, 2013
  33. Fox News "Iowa's Steve King rules out GOP bid for Senate in 2014" Accessed May 25, 2013
  34. Fiscal Times "7 Senate Seats Most at Risk—Hint: They’re All Blue" accessed February 15, 2013
  35. 35.0 35.1 Des Moines Register "Braley Raises 1.07 millino for U.S. Senate Race" Accessed April 16, 2013
  36. Des Moines Register "Braley has $2M on hand for U.S. Senate run" Accessed July 3, 2013
  37. Roll Call "Steve King’s Cash Raises Eyebrows, Doubts About Senate Bid" Accessed April 17, 2013
  38. 38.0 38.1 38.2 Des Moines Register "Republican Matt Whitaker raised $110,000 for his U.S. Senate race" Accessed July 9, 2013
  39. Iowa Republican "Young Raises $152,000 for US Senate Campaign" Accessed July 10, 2013
  40. 'U.S. Congress House Clerk "Statistics of the Congressional Election of November 2, 2010"
  41. 'U.S. Congress House Clerk "Statistics of the Congressional Election of November 4, 2008"