A Braley Charm Offensive? Good Luck With That – The Weekly Roundup

Screen Shot 2014-10-02 at 9.00.22 PMFor the first time since May, Congressman Bruce Braley is running a television ad that features him talking to the camera.  Typically, candidates running for a big statewide office like the U.S Senate want as much face time as they can get.  Braley, however, has avoided the camera and instead has used his campaign ads to attack his opponent, Republican Joni Ernst.

Braley’s latest ad features him talking about his efforts in Congress regarding Veterans.  While it’s about time that Braley himself made an appearance in his TV ads, the ad itself isn’t anything to write home about.  I understand why the Ernst campaign has focused heavily on Veterans issues; her service to the county is a key component to who she is as a person and leader.  Braley. on the hand, isn’t a veteran, but he seems determined to negate Ernst’s advantage with the group.

This is second time the Braley campaign has run an ad that attempts to sway veterans.  For the life of me I don’t know why his campaign is fighting so hard for the Veteran vote.  Look, I know it must be embarrassing for a member of the Veterans Committee to be getting beat up for missing hearings during the VA Hospital fiasco, but all he had to do is attend the hearings, and those attacks would never have occurred.

Braley is also attempting to soften his image.  This week Braley visited a nursing home with his mom in tow.  He was also waving around a pie that his mother apparently made.  Braley has an image problem, but with one month to go until Election Day, he doesn’t have enough time to deliver pies to all the nursing homes across the state.  It amazes me that Braley, who has been in the race since January of 2013, waited until October 2014 to start caring about his image.  I guess a bunch of poor poll numbers will do that to a person.

People seem surprised at how poor of a candidate Braley ended up being, but I think his purple campaign logo and the awful sleeveless campaign shirts were early clues.

Where is the Help for David Young?

In July and August, the two highest-ranking Republicans in the U.S. House of Representatives, Speaker John Boehner and Majority Leader Kevin McCarthy, headlined fundraisers for Third District Republican Congressional candidate David Young in Des Moines.  The events were low-key, but it was a good sign that Young was able to get them to come to Iowa on his behalf.

Since then, countless national figures have come to Iowa to help Republican candidates and political organizations in recent weeks, but it seems like Young is basically being ignored.  I understand why a sitting U.S. Senator like Ohio’s Rob Portman or South Dakota’s John Thune are helping Joni Ernst in her U.S. Senate race, but what I don’t understand is how high profile members of Congress, like Congressman Paul Ryan and Congressman Mike Rogers come to the Third Congressional District and help Ernst but not Young.

Young is in desperate need of money for his campaign.  Republicans love to make fun of Democrat gubernatorial candidate Jack Hatch for being broke and being forced to take down his TV, radio, and internet advertising, but Young is dealing with the same thing.  Young’s been dark on TV for a couple of weeks now.  He has canceled all of his reservations in the Omaha market, but he is expected to be back on the airwaves in Des Moines soon.

Donald Trump to Raise Money for Congressman King in Des Moines

Another candidate in need of an infusion of cash is Congressman Steve King.  As was tweeted by Des Moines Register reporter Jennifer Jacobs, Donald Trump will be in Iowa on October 18th to raise money for King.  Jacobs says the fundraiser will be held in a “gated neighborhood.”  I’m told it’s the same gated neighborhood that Ms. Jacobs’ father calls home.

Here is a copy of the invite.

Screen Shot 2014-10-03 at 7.22.56 AM

What $443,000 gets you these days…

House 2You can buy this 2061 square foot ranch home in Johnston that sits on a third of an acre for $443,500, or you can buy one week of TV in the Des Moines media market (1000 points).  Omaha TV is more modest as 1000 points of TV will only set you back $210,000.

A lot of people hate it when the discussion of candidates and campaigns gravitate towards fundraising, but campaigns are not cheap.  If you want to know why Jack Hatch, David Young, and Steve King are not currently on TV, you now know why.  And don’t forget this is just for the air time – you still have to pay to produce the TV ad.

One Person Who’s Not Struggling In the Fundraising Department? Joni Ernst 

Ernst raised a whooping $4.5 million in the last three months, Braley raised significantly less, having brought in only$2.8 million.

What kind of house can you buy for $4.5 million you ask?

house1Well this four bed, five bathrooms, 6,500 square foot Urbandale home is on the market for $4.5 million.  The home’s owner, Mike Vermillion, says, “This is an Austin Powers kind of house.”

Yeah, baby!

Don’t feel bad for Braley, his $2.8 million would get him this five bedroom, six bathroom home in Urbandale.