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Iowa Press #2937
May 10 and 12, 2002

Borg: CAMPAIGNS LEADING TO THE JUNE 4 PRIMARY ARE NOW IN THE FINAL STAGES, AND THEN IT'S ON TO THE NOVEMBER GENERAL ELECTION. INSIGHT INTO THE CANDIDATES AND THEIR CAMPAIGNS FROM TWO PARTY INSIDERS: REPUBLICAN MIKE MAHAFFEY OF MONTEZUMA, AND DEMOCRAT JERRY CRAWFORD OF DES MOINES, ON THIS EDITION OF "IOWA PRESS."

ANNOUNCER: FUNDING FOR "IOWA PRESS" HAS BEEN PROVIDED BY "FRIENDS" OF IOWA PUBLIC TELEVISION; BY THE IOWA BANKERS ASSOCIATION... FOR PERSONAL, BUSINESS, AND COMMERCIAL NEEDS, IOWA BANKS HELP IOWANS REACH THEIR FINANCIAL GOALS; BY THE ASSOCIATED GENERAL CONTRACTORS OF IOWA... THE PUBLIC'S PARTNER IN BUILDING IOWA'S HIGHWAY, BRIDGE, AND MUNICIPAL UTILITY INFRASTRUCTURE; AND BY IOWA NETWORK SERVICES AND YOUR LOCAL INDEPENDENT TELEPHONE COMPANY...IOWA NETWORK SERVICES, YOUR CLOSEST CONNECTION.

ON STATEWIDE IOWA PUBLIC TELEVISION, THIS IS THE FRIDAY, MAY 10, EDITION OF "IOWA PRESS." HERE IS DEAN BORG.

Borg: THE FIRST MAJOR EVENT ON THE 2002 POLITICAL CALENDAR NOW IS LESS THAN A MONTH AWAY. THAT'S THE TUESDAY, JUNE 4 STATEWIDE PRIMARY ELECTION. IT WILL SET THE TONE FOR THE SUMMER CAMPAIGNS LEADING TO THE NOVEMBER FINALE. THE 2002 ELECTION IS THE FIRST IN RECONFIGURED VOTING DISTRICTS REFLECTING THE CENSUS OF 2000. AT THE FEDERAL LEVEL, ALL FIVE IOWA DISTRICTS IN THE U.S. HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES HAVE A NEW LOOK. AT THE STATE LEVEL, IOWA GENERAL ASSEMBLY LEGISLATORS WILL BE ELECTED IN 50 NEW SENATE DISTRICTS, 100 NEW HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVE DISTRICTS. HERE'S A CLOSER LOOK. IN THE U.S. SENATE, DEMOCRATS HAVE A 50-TO-49 EDGE OVER THE REPUBLICANS, WITH ONE INDEPENDENT. IOWA HAS ONE DEMOCRAT AND ONE REPUBLICAN U.S. SENATOR. IN THE U.S. HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES, REPUBLICANS HAVE AN 11-MEMBER ADVANTAGE OVER THE DEMOCRATS, TWO INDEPENDENTS THERE. IOWA HAS FOUR REPUBLICAN REPRESENTATIVES AND ONE DEMOCRAT. WHILE REPUBLICANS AND DEMOCRATS SPLIT CONTROL OF THE CONGRESS, REPUBLICANS DO CONTROL BOTH CHAMBERS OF THE IOWA GENERAL ASSEMBLY. THERE ARE EIGHT MORE REPUBLICANS THAN DEMOCRATS IN THE IOWA SENATE. THIRTY-FIVE OF THOSE FIFTY IOWA SENATE SEATS ARE ON THE 2002 BALLOT. IN THE IOWA HOUSE, THE REPUBLICAN MARGIN IS 12. ALL 100 MEMBERS OF THE IOWA HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES WILL BE UP FOR ELECTION THIS YEAR. WELL, TODAY ON "IOWA PRESS" WE'RE GOING TO LOOK AT THE BIG PICTURE WITH TWO POLITICAL ACTIVISTS. REPUBLICAN MIKE MAHAFFEY IS A MONTEZUMA ATTORNEY, FORMER CHAIR OF THE IOWA REPUBLICAN PARTY, FORMER CANDIDATE FOR CONGRESS. DEMOCRAT JERRY CRAWFORD, A DES MOINES ATTORNEY. HE'S HEADED POLK COUNTY'S DEMOCRATIC PARTY, AND HE HAS EXPERIENCE IN THE PRESIDENTIAL CAMPAIGNS OF WALTER MONDALE, MIKE DUKAKIS, BILL CLINTON, AND AL GORE. GENTLEMEN, WELCOME TO "IOWA PRESS."

THANK YOU.

Borg: AND ACROSS THE TABLE: "DES MOINES REGISTER" POLITICAL COLUMNIST DAVID YEPSEN AND "ASSOCIATED PRESS" POLITICAL WRITER MIKE GLOVER. GENTLEMEN, WE'RE GOING TO -- AND VIEWERS TOO -- WE'RE GOING TO VARY A BIT FROM OUR TRADITIONAL FORMAT HERE ON "IOWA PRESS" TODAY. RATHER THAN THE USUAL QUESTION-AND-ANSWER FORMAT -- THERE WILL BE PLENTY OF THAT TOO -- BUT WE WANTED TO JUST IMAGINE A KITCHEN TABLE HERE AND REALLY GET DOWN TO BRASS TACKS. AND I WANT TO ASK YOU, MR. CRAWFORD, FROM THE DEMOCRATIC VIEW, HOW DO YOU ASSESS VOTER MOOD? WHAT'S DRIVING THE ELECTORATE IN THIS ELECTION? DID SEPTEMBER 11 CHANGE EVERYTHING OR WITH AL GORE COMING BACK SOMEWHAT WITH AN ATTACK NOW ON THE REPUBLICAN ADMINISTRATION, HAS THAT CHANGED AND NOW REMODIFYING THE MOOD AFTER SEPTEMBER 11?

Crawford: I DEFINITELY THINK, DEAN, THAT SEPTEMBER 11 HAS CHANGED THE POLITICAL LANDSCAPE IN TWO WAYS. THE FIRST IS THAT IT PUT AN EXCLAMATION POINT BEHIND AN ALREADY DIFFICULT TREND ECONOMICALLY ACROSS OUR COUNTRY. AND SECONDLY, IT HAS IN A TIME OF APPROPRIATE PATRIOTIC RESPECT FOR THE PRESIDENT AS HE LEADS US IN OUR OVERSEAS EFFORT AGAINST TERRORISM, IT HAS REALLY MADE HIM ABOVE CRITICISM, IF YOU WILL, ABOUT THE CURRENT ECONOMIC CIRCUMSTANCE. SO IF THERE'S DIFFICULTY AT THE STATE LEVEL ECONOMICALLY WITH STATE BUDGETS, AS THERE IS ALL ACROSS OUR COUNTRY, AND IF THE PRESIDENT IS IMMUNE FROM CRITICISM BECAUSE OF HIS LEADERSHIP CURRENTLY INTERNATIONALLY, THEN THAT CRITICISM CAN DROP DOWN TO THE STATE LEVEL. AND I THINK THAT'S WHAT YOU SEE REFLECTED IN SLIGHTLY LOWER JOB APPROVAL RATINGS OF GOVERNORS, OF LEGISLATURES, OF INCUMBENTS ALL OVER THE COUNTRY, ALL OF WHOM ARE SEEING UNUSUALLY LOW NUMBERS FOR THIS TIME OF THE CYCLE.

Borg: MR. MAHAFFEY, WHAT DO YOU THINK ABOUT THAT?

Mahaffey: WELL, I THINK JERRY MAKES A GOOD POINT. I WOULD SAY THAT WHILE SEPTEMBER 11 CHANGED THINGS, IN IOWA I THINK THE LANDSCAPE IS BEING CHANGED PROBABLY DAILY BY THE FACT THAT -- OF THE BUDGETARY CRISIS IN THE STATE, WHICH IS IMPACTING BOTH PARTIES AND IMPACTING PEOPLE. LET ME GIVE YOU A COUPLE OF STORIES ABOUT THAT. I GET MY HAIR CUT IN DAVENPORT BY MY SISTER-IN-LAW, AND I WAS THERE RIGHT WHEN THE SPECIAL SESSION WAS GOING ON. I WAS JUST LISTENING TO MOSTLY THE WOMEN IN THE SALON. THEY WERE TALKING ABOUT THE SPECIAL SESSION, WHY IT WAS CALLED, AND THE FACT THAT IT WAS GOING TO COST $38,000. THAT'S A LOT OF MONEY TO IOWANS. AND THERE WAS CONCERN ABOUT WHAT WAS GOING TO HAPPEN IN TERMS OF THE FUTURE AND WHETHER WE WERE GOING TO PUT OUR FISCAL HOUSE IN ORDER. THE SECOND THING CAME FROM A FRIEND OF MINE THAT WAS IN A BAR RECENTLY TALKING WITH PEOPLE, AND THERE THEY WERE CONCERNED ABOUT THE FACT THAT -- IT WAS IN POLK COUNTY -- THAT GRAZIANO'S, THAT LOVELY LITTLE ITALIAN GROCERY STORE ON THE SOUTH SIDE OF DES MOINES, WAS GOING TO BE CLOSED DOWN FOR THREE FRIDAYS IN A ROW, HOW THEY WERE GOING TO GET THEIR ITALIAN SAUSAGE FOR THE WEEKEND. THOSE ARE THE KINDS OF THINGS THAT START TO TRANSLATE INTO -- THAT'S FROM THE BOTTOM UP, IF YOU WILL. SO THAT CONCERN OUT THERE IS, I THINK, THE OVERRIDING CONCERN OF PEOPLE AND HOW IT IMPACTS THEIR LIVES.

Borg: MIKE, I WOULD HAVE THOUGHT BEFORE JERRY COMMENTED HERE THAT INCUMBENTS MIGHT HAVE HAD AN EASIER TIME, BUT HE'S SAYING VOTERS TEND TO LOOK DISPARAGINGLY RIGHT NOW AT INCUMBENTS.

Glover: WELL, ONE OF THE THINGS THAT'S HAPPENED SINCE SEPTEMBER 11 -- I THINK THE POINT JERRY MAKES IS GOOD -- IS THE ECONOMY IS TANKED. THE ECONOMY WAS HEADED IN THAT DIRECTION ANYWAY. SEPTEMBER 11 HELPED THAT. SOME OF THE THINGS THAT HAVE HAPPENED, IF YOU LOOK AT THIS STATE SPECIFICALLY SINCE THEN, HAVE CONTRIBUTED TO THAT. AND IT'S NEVER GOOD TO BE AN INCUMBENT IN TIMES OF ECONOMIC TROUBLE. PEOPLE TEND TO LOOK FOR SOMEBODY TO BLAME IN TIMES OF ECONOMIC TURMOIL. ECONOMIC TURMOIL IS GOING ON RIGHT NOW. THEY'RE LOOKING FOR SOMEBODY TO BLAME, AND THE MOST LOGICAL PERSON YOU CAN FIND TO BLAME IS PROBABLY THE GOVERNOR.

Yepsen: 9/11 CHANGED THE SUBJECT. I MEAN THE -- ALL THE POLLING, DEAN, SHOWS THAT VOTERS WERE TRENDING DEMOCRATIC BEFORE THEN. TIMES WERE TOUGH. 9/11 COMES ALONG, THERE'S A RALLY-AROUND-THE-FLAG THING WITH PRESIDENT BUSH BUT, ALSO, THE SUBJECT CHANGED TOO... THE ISSUES OF NATIONAL DEFENSE AND TERRORISM AND THINGS LIKE THAT, AND THOSE ARE ISSUES THAT MOST VOTERS GIVE CREDIBILITY TO THE REPUBLICANS ON. NOW THAT'S STARTING TO FADE SOME AS THE TERRORISM THREAT DIMINISHES. IT COULD CHANGE IF THERE IS ANOTHER TERRORIST ATTACK. WE COULD GO BACK TO THAT. BUT WHAT I'M CURIOUS IS HOW IS IT GOING TO PLAY OUT BY NOVEMBER, JERRY? I MEAN, ARE WE STILL GOING TO HAVE AN ELECTORATE FOCUSED ON ISSUES OF NATIONAL DEFENSE AND TERRORISM, OR IS IT GOING TO BE FOCUSED ON THE ECONOMY?

Crawford: WELL, LET'S TAKE JUST IOWA. I THINK THAT THE FOCUS WILL CHANGE SIGNIFICANTLY. YOU KNOW, HISTORY IS A GREAT JUDGE POLITICALLY. IF YOU LOOK BACK AT THE FOUR BRANSTAD ELECTIONS, AT THIS POINT IN THE CALENDAR, WE WERE LOOKING LIKE THERE WAS A VERY SOLID POSSIBILITY OF GOVERNOR CONLIN AND GOVERNOR JUNKINS AND GOVERNOR CAMPBELL, AND ON IT GOES. I DON'T REMEMBER GOING TO ANY OF THOSE INAUGURATIONS. THE REASON WAS THAT HE DIDN'T YET HAVE AN OPPONENT. GOVERNOR VILSACK DOESN'T YET HAVE AN OPPONENT. WHEN HE GETS TO BE COMPARED -- WHEN HE GETS TO GO OUT AND TALK ABOUT HIS RECORD AND GETS TO BE COMPARED TO WHAT SOMEONE ELSE IS PUTTING FORWARD, THEN I THINK THAT SAME INTELLIGENT, DECENT PERSON THAT IOWANS RALLIED AROUND FOUR YEARS AGO WILL EMERGE AGAIN.

Glover: WE'VE HAD ABOUT AS MUCH TIME SINCE THE TERRORIST ATTACKS AS THERE IS BEFORE THE NEXT ELECTION. WHAT'S THE MOOD GOING TO BE COME NOVEMBER? IS THERE TIME FOR CHANGE?

Mahaffey: YOU KNOW, THAT DEPENDS TO SOME EXTENT UPON WHETHER OR NOT WE HAVE ANY OTHER CATACLYSMIC EVENTS LIKE WE DID, AND I HOPE AND PRAY WE DO NOT. BUT YOU KNOW, ONE NEVER KNOWS WHAT'S GOING TO HAPPEN NEXT. THE MIDEAST IS VERY TROUBLESOME AT THIS TIME. THERE'S STILL TALK ABOUT FURTHER THINGS HAPPENING IN AMERICA AND THE FACT THAT THERE ARE CELLS OF THESE TERRORIST GROUPS IN CANADA, RIGHT NEXT DOOR. SO TO SOME EXTENT, MIKE, IT WILL DEPEND UPON WHAT HAPPENS THERE. IN TERMS OF IOWA AT THIS TIME, THOUGH, I MEAN JERRY MAKES A GOOD POINT ABOUT THE FACT THAT THE GOVERNOR WILL BE COMPARED TO SOMEBODY ELSE. BUT YOU'RE GOING TO HEAR A LOT ABOUT MANAGING THE GOVERNMENT, THE BUDGET, BEING A GOOD MANAGER, YOU KNOW, THE MANAGEMENT STYLE, IF YOU WILL, OF PEOPLE, BECAUSE IOWANS ARE CONCERNED ABOUT THIS BUDGETARY CRISIS. WE HAVE A GREAT STATE BUT THE FACT OF THE MATTER IS, BEHIND THE RHETORIC, THERE'S A LOT OF THINGS IN THIS STATE THAT WE NEED TO REALLY DISCUSS, AND WE NEED TO HAVE A --

Yepsen: HOW DOES THIS ECONOMY THING PLAY OUT? I MEAN DO DEMOCRATS BENEFIT BECAUSE THEY'RE THE INCUMBENTS? I MEAN THIS IS THE FIRST ELECTION WE'VE EVER HAD WHERE YOU'VE HAD AN INCUMBENT DEMOCRATIC U.S. SENATOR AND AN INCUMBENT DEMOCRATIC GOVERNOR. DO THEY BENEFIT BECAUSE THEY'RE THE INCUMBENTS AND INCUMBENTS GENERALLY DO WELL? DEMOCRATS GENERALLY DO WELL IN HARD TIMES. OR ARE THEY HURT BECAUSE THEY ARE INCUMBENTS DURING HARD TIMES? HOW IS THIS DYNAMIC GOING TO PLAY OUT?

Mahaffey: I WOULD SAY TWO THINGS: NUMBER ONE, PROBABLY AT THIS POINT IN TIME, IT HELPS THOSE THAT ARE IN WASHINGTON, SENATOR HARKIN AS AN EXAMPLE, WHO'S THE CHAIR OF THE AGRICULTURAL COMMITTEE. IN TERMS OF THE GOVERNOR, JERRY MAKES A GOOD POINT. IT HAS NOTHING TO DO WITH BEING REPUBLICAN OR DEMOCRAT; IT HAS TO DO WITH THE FACT THAT THE GOVERNOR IS THE MANAGER OF HIS OR HER STATE.

Yepsen: DO YOU BUY THAT, JERRY? I MEAN IS THAT YOUR TAKE?

Crawford: YES. AND ULTIMATELY, HE'S GOING TO HAVE A PRETTY GOOD STORY TO TELL. I MEAN THERE'S ALL THE POLITICAL RHETORIC, BUT THERE'S ALSO SOME OBJECTIVE THINGS YOU CAN LOOK AT. HE'S STILL BEING GIVEN AN "A-" GRADE BY "GOVERNING MAGAZINE." WE HAVE 1,700 FEWER STATE EMPLOYEES TODAY THAN WE DID EIGHTEEN MONTHS AGO. HE'S GOING TO HAVE A VERY GOOD STORY, I THINK, THAT HE CAN TELL ABOUT THE BUDGET AS WE GO FORWARD AND HAS FOUGHT HARD FOR EDUCATION DESPITE THE ECONOMIC DIFFICULTIES.

Yepsen: DID WE JUST GET THE COMMERCIAL HERE? IS THAT WHAT THAT WAS?

Mahaffey: BUT IOWANS ARE STILL CONCERNED ABOUT GRAZIANO'S, NOT "GOVERNING MAGAZINE." [ LAUGHTER ]

Borg: LET'S GO BACK TO THE REPUBLICAN PRIMARY FOR GOVERNOR, THEN. HOW DO YOU ASSESS THAT RIGHT NOW?

Mahaffey: THE WAY I ASSESS IT -- AND I'VE THOUGHT ABOUT THIS AND I'VE TALKED TO SOME FRIENDS OF MINE FROM AROUND THE STATE WHOSE OPINIONS I RESPECT -- I THINK THERE'S A GREAT NUMBER OF UNDECIDED VOTERS. I'M NOT SURE THAT THERE'S BEEN ANYTHING THAT HAS MADE ANYBODY LEAVE THE PACK, IF YOU WILL, AND MY SENSE IS THERE'S A TREMENDOUS AMOUNT OF UNDECIDED VOTERS. BUT I ALSO SENSE THIS: REPUBLICANS ARE THINKING THAT THIS NOMINATION IS GOING TO BE WORTH MORE THAN THEY DID THREE OR SIX MONTHS AGO.

Glover: JERRY, WHO DO DEMOCRATS WANT TO RUN AGAINST?

Crawford: I DON'T THINK WE HAVE ANY PREFERENCE. I THINK IT'S GOING TO COME DOWN TO A TWO-HORSE RACE, FRANKLY, BETWEEN DOUG GROSS AND STEVE SUKUP. THAT'S THE WAY IT SEEMS TO ME. BOTH OF THEM HAVE ADVANTAGES AND DISADVANTAGES. WE JUST ARE SORT OF HOPEFUL THAT THE TREND THAT'S BEEN SET THIS WEEK, WHERE ONE SIDE IS ACCUSING THE OTHER SIDE OF MCCARTHYITE TACTICS AND THAT SORT OF THING, WE'RE GOING TO BE HOPEFUL THAT THEY CONTINUE THAT PROCESS BETWEEN NOW AND PRIMARY DAY.

Glover: MICHAEL?

Mahaffey: WELL, --

Glover: WHO CAN BEAT TOM VILSACK?

Mahaffey: I THINK THAT WHOMEVER WINS THE REPUBLICAN NOMINATION, AGAIN BECAUSE OF THE PRESENT CIRCUMSTANCE, IS GOING TO HAVE A CHANCE TO BEAT GOVERNOR VILSACK. I'M NOT SAYING THEY WILL BUT I THINK THERE WILL BE THAT CHANCE. AND I THINK THAT'S ONE OF THE THINGS THAT THE REPUBLICANS VOTING IN THE PRIMARY ARE GOING TO LOOK AT IN THE NEXT FEW WEEKS.

Yepsen: JERRY MADE REFERENCE TO THE FACT THAT THERE'S A LITTLE DUST UP IN YOUR PARTY THIS WEEK: STEVE SUKUP ATTACKING DOUG GROSS FOR BEING -- ALLEGEDLY BEING A LAWYER FOR JACK DECOSTER. GROSS DENIES THAT. YOU GUYS KNOW THAT IN POLITICS WHEN YOU'RE A LAWYER RUNNING FOR OFFICE, YOU GET TO CARRY YOUR EX-CLIENTS ON YOUR BACK, RIGHT? I MEAN THAT HAPPENS. BUT HOW IS THAT GOING TO PLAY OUT, MIKE? IS THAT GOING TO HURT THE REPUBLICAN NOMINEE, OR IS IT IN FACT A GOOD THING TO SORT OF VET YOUR CANDIDATES NOW SO THAT YOU DON'T WIND UP WITH ANY SURPRISES IN JUNE?

Mahaffey: THE FACT OF THE MATTER IS IF STEVE SUKUP DIDN'T BRING SOME OF THESE THINGS UP NOW, THEY CERTAINLY ARE GOING TO BE BROUGHT UP IN THE FALL. SO I THINK YOU CAN ARGUE THAT BOTH WAYS. I DON'T KNOW AS SOMEBODY LIKES TO HAVE A -- REPUBLICANS PARTICULARLY. I THINK DEMOCRATS ARE MORE USED TO HAVING BRAWLS. REPUBLICANS I'M NOT SURE LIKE THAT. BUT AGAIN, IT GOES BACK TO THE FACT, DAVID, AND I THINK IT SHOWS THAT THIS IS WORTH SOMETHING. AND THERE'S NOTHING WRONG WITH BRINGING THESE THINGS OUT NOW, BECAUSE THEY DO NEED TO BE VETED, IF YOU WILL.

Glover: JERRY, ONE OF THE BASIC ISMS I'VE HEARD ABOUT POLITICS IS THE BASIC WORRY THAT INDEPENDENT VOTERS -- DISREGARD COMMITTED REPUBLICANS AND COMMITTED DEMOCRATS ASIDE -- ONE OF THE BASIC PROBLEMS THAT UNCOMMITTED VOTERS HAVE WITH REPUBLICANS IS THEY JUST DON'T THINK THEY CARE. THEY THINK THEY'RE HARD-HEARTED AND WANT TO HAVE AS A GOAL GIVING TAX BREAKS TO THEIR RICH FRIENDS. ONE OF THE BASIC PROBLEMS THEY HAVE WITH DEMOCRATS IS THEY DON'T THINK THEY'RE UP TO RUNNING THE STORE, THEY CAN'T RUN THE SHOW. IS VILSACK PLAYING INTO THAT WITH THIS WHOLE BUDGET THING?

Crawford: OH, I THINK -- LISTEN, THAT'S ONE OF THE ISSUES THAT TOM VILSACK WILL BE REELECTED ON. WHAT HAPPENS TO EVERY -- AND I AGREE WITH MIKE THAT YOU'VE GOT TO GET THIS DONE AT THE FAMILY LEVEL. EVERY FAMILY IN IOWA, WHEN FACED WITH A REDUCTION IN CASH FLOW, HAS TO SPEND LESS. THAT'S WHAT THIS GOVERNOR DID. WHAT DID THE PREDECESSOR, REPUBLICAN ADMINISTRATIONS DO? THEY RAISED TAXES IN COMPARABLE ECONOMIC TIMES. THIS GOVERNOR HAS NOT DONE THAT. HE'S DONE WHAT THE FAMILIES OF OUR STATE DO; HE'S LIVED WITHIN THE BUDGETARY CONSTRAINTS THAT HE'S FACING. I THINK THAT'S GOING TO BE A VERY STRONG POINT FOR HIM IN THE FALL.

Glover: WELL, WHY DID WE HAVE THAT FIRST SPECIAL SESSION?

Crawford: IN RETROSPECT, A VERY GOOD QUESTION. I THINK SOMETIMES THE GOVERNOR --

Glover: THERE ARE A LOT OF US ASKING THAT.

Crawford: I THINK SOMETIMES THE GOVERNOR ATTRIBUTES THE BEST TO PEOPLE WHEN PEOPLE HAVE OTHER MOTIVATIONS IN MIND. AND IT IS A POLITICAL SEASON, AND YOU CAN'T BEGRUDGE THE OTHER SIDE FOR LOOKING FOR ADVANTAGE. BUT THAT'S TOM VILSACK. HE BELIEVES IN PEOPLE, HE BELIEVES IN THE PROCESS, HE BELIEVES IN THE GOODNESS THAT PEOPLE CAN BRING ACROSS THE TABLE FROM EACH OTHER, AND HE WAS DISAPPOINTED.

Yepsen: HOW CAN YOU SAY, JERRY, THAT HE'S GOING TO HAVE THE GOOD MANAGEMENT SEAL OF APPROVAL WHEN HE'S SPENT MORE THAN THE RATE OF INFLATION? HE'S GOT THE BIGGEST DEFICITS IN STATE HISTORY ON HIS HAND. HE'S HAVING TO CLEAN OUT EVERY EMERGENCY FUND TO TRY TO PAY HIS BILLS ON TIME. DO YOU THINK YOU GUYS CAN GRAB THE HIGH MANAGEMENT GROUND IN THIS RACE?

Crawford: WELL, SOME PEOPLE LIKE TO TALK ABOUT HOW THERE'S BEEN A DECREASE, FOR EXAMPLE, IN THE STATE SURPLUS. BRENT SIEGRIST SAID, IN RESPONSE TO THAT SAME QUESTION, "LOOK, WE'RE VERY PROUD OF THE FACT THAT THE SURPLUS IS GOING DOWN, DOWN, DOWN. WE DID IT ON PURPOSE. WE DID IT THROUGH TAX CUTS, TAX DECREASES." THE GOVERNOR SIGNED ANOTHER ONE JUST THIS PAST WEEK, AND IT WAS AN IMPORTANT ONE FOR HIM TO DO TO PRESERVE THE COMPETITIVENESS OF THE INSURANCE INDUSTRY IN IOWA. REALLY, BOTH OF YOUR QUESTIONS ARE THE SAME, AND IT'S THE QUESTION DEMOCRATS HAVE FACED FOR MY ENTIRE LIFE IN POLITICS, WHICH IS "ARE DEMOCRATS COMPETENT AS MANAGERS? CAN YOU TRUST THEM WITH THE BUDGET?" THIS GOVERNOR IS INVESTING IN THE FUTURE WITH THINGS LIKE THE TAX CUT THAT AFFECTS THE INSURANCE INDUSTRY, AND HE'S LIVING WITHIN HIS MEANS. THAT'S A POWERFUL STORY FOR A DEMOCRAT TO TELL IN A GENERAL ELECTION.

Borg: GO AHEAD.

Mahaffey: THE FACT OF THE MATTER IS, GOING BACK TO WHAT YOU SAID, MIKE, I CALL IT THE EBENEZER SCROOGE FACTOR FOR REPUBLICANS, THAT THEY DON'T CARE. THAT'S NOT WHAT PEOPLE ARE TALKING ABOUT RIGHT NOW. THEY'RE NOT TALKING ABOUT THOSE ISSUES, IF YOU WILL, THAT I THINK IN SOME RESPECTS THAT HELP THE DEMOCRATS. WHAT THEY ARE TALKING ABOUT IS THE MINDING OF THE STORE. THE CONCERN IS THIS -- AND I DON'T THINK IT'S ALL ANYONE'S FAULT, BUT THE GOVERNOR, HE IS THE 800-POUND GORILLA IN IOWA POLITICS. THE CONCERN IS THAT WE SEEM TO BE GETTING MORE BAD NEWS, YOU KNOW, ONE PIECE OF BAD NEWS RIGHT AFTER THE OTHER. AND THE QUESTION IS: WHY DIDN'T WE ANTICIPATE THIS BETTER; WHY DIDN'T WE ANTICIPATE IT BETTER; WHY DIDN'T THE GOVERNOR ANTICIPATE IT BETTER; WHY DIDN'T THE LEGISLATURE ANTICIPATE IT BETTER?

Glover: AND THAT GETS BACK TO MY QUESTION, REALLY. IF THE BUZZ IN POLITICS IN THIS STATE IS WHAT SHOULD THE MINIMUM WAGE BE, WHAT SHOULD WE BE DOING FOR PEOPLE WHO HAVE LOST THEIR JOBS, HOW SHOULD WE BE HELPING PEOPLE WHO ARE OUT OF WORK, WHAT SHOULD WE BE DOING FOR THE LESS FORTUNATE, THAT WORKS FOR TOM VILSACK. IF THE BUZZ IS WHAT ABOUT THIS LATEST BUDGET SHORTFALL, WHAT AGENCY ARE WE GOING TO CUT, HOW MUCH ARE WE GOING TO PUT IN PHASE THREE, DOESN'T THAT WORK FOR REPUBLICANS?

Mahaffey: IT DOES. IT GIVES -- THAT'S WHY I SAID I THINK NOW THAT THE REPUBLICAN NOMINATION IS WORTH MORE. IT GIVES THEM THAT OPPORTUNITY. NOW, SOMEBODY STILL HAS TO MAKE THE MOST OF THAT, BUT AT LEAST THE ISSUES ARE THERE RIGHT NOW.

Yepsen: AND HOW DO THEY DO THAT, MIKE? I MEAN, LOOK, THE OLDEST RULE YET. TOM VILSACK MAY BE VULNERABLE, THAT'S FACT. BUT YOU CAN'T BEAT SOMEBODY WITH NOBODY. AND YOUR CANDIDATES OUT THERE AREN'T ON ANYBODY'S RADAR SCREEN RIGHT NOW. WHAT MAKES YOU THINK THAT REPUBLICANS ARE GOING TO BE ABLE TO PUSH THIS BALL OVER THE LINE? ARE THEY JUST GOING TO SAY "I'M THE NON-VILSACK SO, THEREFORE, I SHOULD BE GOVERNOR"?

Mahaffey: NO, I THINK THEY'RE GOING TO HAVE TO DO MORE THAN THAT, BUT THE FACT OF THE MATTER IS ON THE DAY AFTER THE PRIMARY ELECTION, SOMEBODY WILL BE THE REPUBLICAN NOMINEE, AND THAT PERSON ALL OF A SUDDEN WILL HAVE THAT OPPORTUNITY. SO I MEAN RIGHT NOW I AGREE, THERE'S A LOT OF PEOPLE THAT ARE --

Yepsen: BUT LOOK AT THOSE CANDIDATES. I MEAN BOB VANDER PLAATS HAS NEVER HELD OR RUN FOR PUBLIC OFFICE BEFORE. NEITHER HAS DOUG GROSS. STEVE SUKUP HAS ONLY BEEN A STATE REPRESENTATIVE. WHERE DO YOU GET IN THAT, THAT ANY OF THOSE THREE GUYS CAN TAKE OUT A SITTING GOVERNOR? HISTORY SAYS IN IOWA POLITICS, INCUMBENTS TEND TO GET REELECTED. WE MAY BE A LITTLE TICKED OFF WITH THEM FROM TIME TO TIME, BUT I DON'T SEE A CREDIBLE SCENARIO HERE WHERE REPUBLICANS CAN GO THE DISTANCE.

Mahaffey: THERE'S AN ELEMENT OF LUCK INVOLVED IN POLITICS. WHAT WILL HAVE TO HAPPEN IS THAT THERE WILL NEED TO CONTINUE TO BE THE FOCUS, I THINK, ON THE BUDGETARY PROBLEMS, AND THEN THEY'RE GOING TO HAVE TO MAKE THAT CASE FOR WHY, IN THE FIRST ELECTION FOR GOVERNOR IN THE TWENTY-FIRST CENTURY, THE STATE OF IOWA SHOULD ELECT A REPUBLICAN AS GOVERNOR.

Borg: JERRY CRAWFORD, I WANT TO SWITCH BECAUSE THERE ARE ANOTHER HIGH PROFILE, AMONG MANY OTHER HIGH-PROFILE, AND THAT'S FOR THE U.S. SENATE, TOM HARKIN'S SEAT. WERE YOU SOMEWHAT SURPRISED THAT BILL SALIER IS SHOWING AS STRONG A SHOWING AGAINST GREG GANSKE FOR THE REPUBLICAN NOMINATION TO RUN AGAINST TOM HARKIN?

Crawford: WELL, I MIGHT HAVE SAID PLEASED RATHER THAN SURPRISED. BUT, YOU KNOW, IT'S BEEN A HARD -- FROM A DISTANCE, FROM OUR SIDE, IT'S BEEN HARD TO UNDERSTAND WHAT CONGRESSMAN GANSKE'S PLAN HAS BEEN DURING THIS PRIMARY ELECTION. AT THE VERY TIME YOU EXPECT HIM TO TRY AND PLANT HIS TENT FIRMLY IN THE POLITICAL CENTER, SETTING HIMSELF UP FOR A GENERAL ELECTION, AT THE VERY TIME WHEN HE'S HAD AN OPPORTUNITY TO SHOWCASE THE THEME THAT HE WANTS TO CONVEY TO IOWA VOTERS AGAINST SENATOR HARKIN IN NOVEMBER, NONE OF THAT HAS HAPPENED. IF ANYTHING, YOU FEEL HIM DRIFTING TO THE RIGHT TOWARD SALIER IN THIS PRIMARY. WHILE HE'S DOING THAT AND FORFEITING WHAT I THINK WAS A TERRIFIC OPPORTUNITY, AT THE VERY SAME TIME TOM HARKIN, ON THE NATIONAL STAGE, HAS HAD HIS FIRST REAL TEST OF LEADERSHIP, AND HE PASSED WITH THE FARM BILL.

Yepsen: MIKE, SALIER VERSUS GANSKE, HOW DOES IT PLAY OUT?

Mahaffey: AN INTERESTING RACE. I TALKED TO SOMEBODY THAT WENT TO ONE OF THE DISTRICT CONVENTIONS, AND THEY SAID WHEN BILL SALIER CAME, HE WAS TREATED AS IF HE WERE A ROCK STAR. THAT'S INTERESTING IN A REPUBLICAN CONVENTION. [ LAUGHTER ] I THINK THAT HE'S MADE THAT RACE MORE INTERESTING AND, PERHAPS, IN LONG RUN WILL HELP THE GANSKE CAMPAIGN. LOOK, I THINK THAT 9/11 PROBABLY HURT GREG GANSKE, OF ANY POLITICIAN IN IOWA, MORE THAN ANYBODY ELSE IN IOWA. IT STOPPED THINGS, IF YOU WILL, IN ITS TRACKS FOR A PERIOD OF TIME. I HEARD HIM SPEAK LAST FALL SHORTLY AFTER THAT HAPPENED, AND IT WAS ALL ABOUT PATRIOTISM AND SUPPORTING THE PRESIDENT, WHICH WAS TRUE OF BOTH PARTIES. BUT WHEN YOU ARE ATTEMPTING TO TAKE OUT SOMEBODY WHO IS AS TOUGH AS TOM HARKIN, YOU NEED ALL THE TIME YOU CAN GET, AND THERE WAS A PERIOD OF TIME WHERE THAT WAS LOST. LOOK, GREG GANSKE IS A SMART, TOUGH GUY. HE'S BEEN A GOOD CONGRESSMAN. THAT RACE WILL GET CLOSER. BUT I DON'T DISAGREE WITH JERRY. IT'S A TOUGH RACE RIGHT NOW.

Glover: OKAY, THEN GET PAST THE PRIMARY. GREG GANSKE, ASSUMING HE WINS THE PRIMARY --

Mahaffey: I THINK HE WILL WIN THE PRIMARY.

Glover: -- AGAINST TOM HARKIN. HOW DO YOU TAKE TOM HARKIN OUT?

Mahaffey: YOU TAKE TOM HARKIN OUT -- FIRST OF ALL, I THINK GREG GANSKE HAS BEEN SPENDING TIME RAISING A LOT OF MONEY, WHICH YOU'VE GOT TO HAVE IN --

Glover: WHY IS HE SPENDING TIME RAISING A LOT OF MONEY? THERE ARE A HALF A DOZEN COMPETITIVE SENATE RACES IN THIS COUNTRY. ALL SIX OF THEM ARE GETTING ALL THE MONEY THEY WANT BY PICKING UP THE PHONE ONE TIME.

Mahaffey: WELL, I THINK THE FACT OF THE MATTER IS THERE IS PROBABLY NEVER ENOUGH MONEY FOR A SENATE RACE.

Glover: IF YOU WANT $10 MILLION TO RUN AN IOWA POLITICIAN, YOU CAN GET IT TOMORROW.

Mahaffey: THAT MAY VERY WELL HAPPEN. BUT THE FACT OF THE MATTER IS I THINK WHAT HE HAS TO DO BASICALLY IS HE HAS TO RUN FROM THE CENTER RIGHT, IF YOU WILL, BECAUSE THE FACT OF THE MATTER IS ELECTIONS IN IOWA ARE WON -- THERE'S ABOUT 40 PERCENT THAT ARE GOING TO VOTE REPUBLICAN, 40 PERCENT ARE GOING TO VOTE DEMOCRATIC. USUALLY YOU'RE LOOKING AT PERHAPS 20 PERCENT, MAYBE EVEN LESS THAN THAT, THAT ARE IN THE MIDDLE WHERE YOU'RE GOING TO HAVE TO MAKE THE DIFFERENTIATION. INTERESTINGLY ENOUGH ON THE FARM BILL, ISN'T IT INTERESTING THAT WE HAVE TOM HARKIN AS THE CHAIR OF THE AGRICULTURAL COMMITTEE WHO IS DEFENDING THE FARM BILL, AND WE HAVE SENATOR GRASSLEY AND CONGRESSMAN GANSKE WHO ARE SAYING THERE SHOULD HAVE BEEN A BAN ON PACKER OWNERSHIP AND THERE SHOULD HAVE BEEN MORE LIMITS, WHICH IS A MORE POPULIST APPROACH.

Glover: ISN'T IT INTERESTING THAT THE IOWA FARM BUREAU FEDERATION, THE IOWA FARMERS UNION, ALMOST EVERY ENVIRONMENTAL GROUP IN THE COUNTRY, VIRTUALLY EVERY PLAYER IN FARM ISSUES ENDORSED THE FARM BILL?

Crawford: PORK PRODUCERS, CORN PRODUCERS, SOYBEAN GROUPS, CATTLEMENS ASSOCIATION --

Yepsen: IT WAS A LOT SIMPLER WHEN THEY WORE WHITE HATS AND BLACK HATS. JERRY, ON THIS SENATE RACE, IF DEMOCRATS ARE SO GOD-AWFUL SURE YOU'RE GOING TO BEAT GREG GANSKE, WHY WERE YOU THE FIRST ONES TO GO ON THE ATTACK, TO GO NEGATIVE AGAINST GANSKE? AREN'T YOU A LITTLE BIT WORRIED ABOUT HIM WHEN WE'RE SEEING THE ATTACK ADS STARTING NOW IN MAY?

Crawford: FIRST OF ALL, IOWA IS A COMPETITIVE STATE. YOU'RE NOT GOING TO SEE A 65-PERCENT WINNER IN THE GOVERNOR'S RACE OR IN THE SENATE RACE. IT'S JUST NOT GOING TO HAPPEN. BOTH SIDES ARE GOING TO HAVE FINANCIAL RESOURCES. IOWA IS A COMPETITIVE STATE, BUT I THINK THAT SENATOR HARKIN, AGAIN LOOKING BACK AT POLITICAL HISTORY, BELIEVES THAT SIX YEARS AGO HE MAY HAVE MADE THE MISTAKE OF SITTING BY QUIETLY TOO LONG AGAINST JIM ROSS LIGHTFOOT. AND THAT RACE WAS JIM ROSS LIGHTFOOT'S TO WIN IN THE LATE STAGES, AND HE KICKED IT AWAY. SO I THINK HE'S GOING IN A VERY DIFFERENT DIRECTION THIS TIME.

Borg: I'M GOING TO GO TO CONGRESSIONAL RACES. YOU HAVE A PRIMARY OVER IN THE FIRST DISTRICT WHERE JIM NUSSLE IS THE INCUMBENT, BUT TWO DEMOCRATS IN A PRIMARY THERE... ONE, DAVE NAGLE. WELL, HOW DO YOU ASSESS THAT?

Crawford: WELL, I THINK THAT ANN HUTCHINSON, THE MAYOR OF BETTENDORF, I MIGHT GIVE HER A SLIGHT EDGE. WE DON'T, OBVIOUSLY, GET A LOT OF THAT MEDIA HERE, SO I DON'T PRETEND TO BE CLOSE TO IT. DAVE HAS GREAT RESIDUAL NAME IDENTIFICATION; THERE'S NO QUESTION ABOUT THAT. SOME OF IT'S A BIT CONTROVERSIAL BUT HE'S A WARRIOR AND AN ENTHUSIAST. IT'S NOT GOING TO BE LOPSIDED.

Borg: NUSSLE VULNERABLE, MIKE MAHAFFEY?

Mahaffey: I DON'T SENSE THAT AT THIS TIME, NO.

YOU HAD A QUESITON.

Glover: THERE'S A FOUR-WAY REPUBLICAN PRIMARY IN THE FIFTH CONGRESSIONAL DISTRICT. MOST OF US THINK THAT VOTERS IN WESTERN IOWA ARE GOING TO ELECT A CONGRESSMAN JUNE 4.

Mahaffey: I WOULD AGREE WITH THAT. IF THE DEMOCRATS WERE TO WIN THE FIFTH DISTRICT, THE RESIDENTS OF HELL WILL BE ICE SKATING THE DAY AFTER. [ LAUGHTER ]

Glover: SOMEBODY SAID IF THE DEMOCRATS WIN THE FIFTH DISTRICT, THERE WILL BE 435 DEMOCRATS.

Mahaffey: I WOULD HAVE TO SAY THAT WOULD BE TRUE.

Crawford: ALTHOUGH YOUR FRIEND LEONARD BOSWELL MIGHT HAVE ACTUALLY HAD A CHANCE OUT THERE IF HE HAD RUN IN THAT RACE.

Glover: SO SOLVE THE PROBLEM FOR US. TELL US WHO'S GOING TO WIN IT.

Mahaffey: I'VE TALKED TO A FRIEND -- AGAIN, WE DON'T GET A LOT OF THE MEDIA HERE. WHAT AN INTERESTING DISTRICT, THOUGH. I MEAN I LOOKED AT THAT THE OTHER NIGHT: 32 COUNTIES AND IT GOES FROM CLARKE COUNTY, OSCEOLA, WHERE I WENT TO HIGH SCHOOL, TO SIOUX CITY. AND THEN, I MEAN, IT GOES FROM -- IT BASICALLY GOES FROM THE MINNESOTA BORDER TO THE MISSOURI BORDER. IT IS -- THE SENSE I GET FROM TALKING TO PEOPLE UP THERE IS, AGAIN, MANY UNDECIDE VOTERS. WHEN YOU CONSIDER THE FACT THAT YOU HAVE TO GET 35 PERCENT OF THE VOTE TO A VOTING CONVENTION, THAT'S A LOT OF -- THAT'S A LOT OF VOTES. BUT I AGREE WITH YOU THAT IT'S VERY IMPORTANT, BECAUSE WHOMEVER WINS THAT PRIMARY IS GOING TO BE THE NEXT CONGRESSMAN THERE.

Glover: WELL, WHO LOOKS GOOD TO YOU OUT THERE?

Crawford: GIVE US A NAME. [ LAUGHTER ]

Mahaffey: YOU KNOW, BALLINGER AND SIEGRIST -- BALLINGER WAS OUT EARLY, AND I'VE HEARD SOME GOOD THINGS ABOUT HIM. BALLINGER AND SIEGRIST BOTH FROM COUNCIL BLUFFS. YOU CAN MAKE THE ARGUMENT, PERHAPS, THAT THEY WILL DIVIDE THINGS UP THERE. REDWINE IS ANOTHER NAME YOU HEAR. HE'S FROM SIOUX CITY, AND PERSONABLE. SO YOU CAN MAKE AN ARGUMENT FOR ANY OF THEM. THE WILD CARD MAY BE STEVE KING. HE HASN'T MAYBE RAISED AS MUCH MONEY AS EVERYBODY ELSE, BUT HE IS THE SOCIAL -- THE MOST SOCIALLY CONSERVATIVE IN THAT.

Yepsen: RIGHT, IT'S NEVER A BAD TO BE THE MOST CONSERVATIVE GUY IN A REPUBLICAN PRIMARY.

Mahaffey: NOT IT'S NOT. [ SPEAKING AT ONCE ]

Mahaffey: I THINK THERE'S A LOT OF UNDECIDED VOTERS RIGHT NOW, FROM WHAT I UNDERSTAND.

Yepsen: DID REPUBLICANS MAKE A MISTAKE CREATING THAT WESTERN IOWA DISTRICT WITH A 40,000 VOTE REPUBLICAN EDGE, AND WOULDN'T YOU HAVE BEEN SMARTER TO SPREAD SOME OF THOSE COUNTIES AROUND IN A COUPLE OTHER DISTRICTS TO MAKE THEM MORE COMPETITIVE FOR REPUBLICANS? I MEAN YOU'VE GOT A REAL SCENARIO HERE WHERE DEMOCRATS COULD RUN THE TABLE EXCEPT FOR THAT. WE'D WIND UP WITH FOUR DEMOCRATS AND ONE REPUBLICAN IN CONGRESS.

Mahaffey: YES. I THINK WE SHOULD HAVE SPREAD THE VOTES OUT. [ LAUGHTER ]

Crawford: ON THE TOPIC OF LEGISLATIVE DECISION-MAKING, I DID A LITTLE HOMEWORK LAST NIGHT LOOKING AT THE NEW LEGISLATIVE MAP, AND I'M VERY INTERESTED IN YOUR VIEWS ON THIS. I WENT BACK AND LOOKED AT HOW GORE DID IN EACH OF THE NEW 100 HOUSE DISTRICTS. GORE CARRIED 55 OF THEM. SO THEN I WENT BACK TWO YEARS BEFORE THAT, IN ANOTHER INCREDIBLY COMPETITIVE RACE. OUR VERY CAPABLE SECRETARY OF STATE, CHET CULVER, CARRIED 58 OF THE NEW IOWA HOUSE DISTRICTS. WE'VE GOT DICK MYERS AND MIKE GRONSTAL, TWO VERY EFFECTIVE LEADERS, TWO PEOPLE WHO ARE VERY PALATABLE TO THE CENTER AND VERY EFFECTIVE AT FUND-RAISING AND ORGANIZING. I THINK THAT'S A SLEEPER STORY IN IOWA POLITICS.

Yepsen: CONVENTIONAL WISDOM IS REPUBLICANS HOLD THE SENATE, DEMOCRATS HAVE A SHOT IN THE HOUSE. JERRY, DO YOU BUY THAT?

Crawford: WELL, THE STATISTICS I JUST GAVE YOU CLEARLY INDICATE THAT ALONG WITH THE EFFECTIVE CANDIDATE RECRUITMENT THAT'S BEEN DONE THAT WE'VE GOT A REAL SHOT AT THE IOWA HOUSE. AND I THINK WE'RE GOING TO -- I LOOK AT, LIKE, DICK DRAKE, DAVID, DOWN IN MUSCATINE, WHO HAS BEEN AN HONORABLE PUBLIC SERVANT MY ENTIRE LIFETIME, BUT HE'S GOT A TREMENDOUSLY CAPABLE -- IT SEEMS FOR THIRTY SOMETHING YEARS HE'S BEEN THERE. HE'S GOT A VERY EFFECTIVE OPPONENT, AND HE'S GOT A VERY TOUGH DISTRICT.

Mahaffey: THE REPUBLICANS, I'M CONFIDENT, WILL KEEP AT LEAST ONE HOUSE IN THE LEGISLATURE. I THINK THEY MAY BE ABLE TO KEEP BOTH. I TALKED TO A FRIEND OF MINE THAT DOES SOME WORK FOR CANDIDATES, WHOSE OPINION I RESPECT. HE SAID THIS IS A GOOD CROP OF REPUBLICAN CANDIDATES. AND AT THAT LEVEL, YOU'VE GOT TO HAVE GOOD CANDIDATES. I THINK THERE WILL BE SOME VERY INTERESTING RACES, BUT I THINK WHAT'S HAPPENING IN TERMS OF THE FACT THAT THE GOVERNOR'S RACE IS BECOMING MORE INTERESTING -- AND I THINK THERE WILL BE A NARROWER MARGIN THERE ONE WAY OR THE OTHER -- PROBABLY HELPS REPUBLICANS IN TERMS OF THE LEGISLATURE.

Glover: JERRY, LET'S LOOK AT POLK COUNTY FOR A SECOND. ON THE SOUTH SIDE OF DES MOINES, THERE'S AN INTERESTING KIND OF A SENATE PRIMARY, CHUCK GIFFORD AND MATT MCCOY.

Crawford: THIS IS WHERE THEY GET EVEN WITH ME FOR YOU HAVING TO ANSWER THE WESTERN IOWA QUESTION. [ LAUGHTER ]

Glover: WEIGH IN ON THAT. WHY DO DEMOCRATS HAVE A PRIMARY IN THAT DISTRICT?

Crawford: WELL, FIRST LET ME SAY THIS ABOUT CHUCK GIFFORD: I'VE BEEN NOTHING BUT IMPRESSED BY THE PASSION THAT SOMEONE WHO HAS BEEN AROUND AS LONG AS CHUCK HAS, HAS BROUGHT TO THAT --

Yepsen: EXCUSE ME. CUT TO THE CHASE HERE. WHO'S GOING TO WIN THE PRIMARY?

Crawford: MCCOY WILL WIN.

Yepsen: WHY DO YOU SAY THAT? GIFFORD IS THE MOST LIBERAL GUY IN THE RACE.

Crawford: HE'S GOING TO WIN FOR TWO REASONS: FIRST, THERE'S ALSO A SUPERVISORS PRIMARY ON THE SOUTH SIDE, AND THERE ARE GOING TO BE A LOT OF ABSENTEE BALLOTS. AND IT DOESN'T MATTER WHETHER THEY'RE GENERATED FROM THE JOHN MAURO CAMPAIGN OR THE PHILLIPS CAMPAIGN, THEY'RE GOING TO BE FOR MATT MCCOY FOR STATE SENATE FROM THE SOUTH SIDE.

Glover: MICHAEL, DO YOU ENJOY THAT SORT OF THING, WATCHING THAT?

Mahaffey: SURE. YOU ALWAYS ENJOY A GOOD FIGHT, PARTICULARLY IF IT'S IN THE OTHER PARTY.

Yepsen: AND OF COURSE, ALL THOSE ABSENTEE BALLOTS, JERRY, WILL BE LEGALLY CAST.

Crawford: JUST LIKE THEY WERE THE LAST TIME. I THINK PEOPLE FINALLY FIGURED THAT OUT.

Borg: WHAT DOES -- IN THE SECOND DISTRICT, JUST IN THE FINAL SECONDS THAT WE HAVE HERE, WHAT DOES JULIE THOMAS HAVE TO DO TO TAKE OUT JIM LEACH?

Crawford: VERY INTERESTING DYNAMIC. LEACH HAS NOT RUN AGAINST A CAPABLE, HIGHLY ORGANIZED, WELL-FUNDED WOMAN BEFORE. AND THAT DISTINCT IS 57 PERCENT DEMOCRATIC. FAR BE IT FOR ME TO NOT REALIZE THAT JIM LEACH IS ENORMOUSLY POPULAR WITH DEMOCRATS AND IN JOHNSON COUNTY AND IN IOWA CITY AND SO ON, BUT THIS IS A DIFFERENT DISTRICT. HE'S ALWAYS WON ON THE STRENGTH OF HIS SUPPORT IN DAVENPORT. HE DOESN'T HAVE THAT IN THE DISTRICT ANYMORE, AND NOW HE'S RUNNING AGAINST A WOMAN WHO IS VERY CAPABLE. INTERESTING RACE.

Borg: THANK YOU VERY MUCH.

Mahaffey: AND JIM LEACH WILL WIN.

Borg: I HAVE NO TIME. WE'RE OUT.

Crawford: AND SO WILL JOHN NORRIS.

Borg: THANK YOU. AND THAT'S IT FOR THIS WEEK'S EDITION OF "IOWA PRESS." I HOPE YOU'LL WATCH NEXT WEEK... 6:30 FRIDAY NIGHT, SUNDAY AT NOON. UNTIL THEN, I'M DEAN BORG. THANKS TO OUR GUESTS TODAY, AND THANKS FOR JOINING US.

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