Category Archives: Iowa

Idealism vs. Realism: Alternative Paths to Redistricting Reform in an Anticompetitive World

By: Ben Williams In my previous post for this blog, I compared the competitiveness of congressional races in various states which have enacted redistricting reform to one another—and to the nation as a whole—to discover if Iowa’s acclaimed redistricting reform … Continue reading

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Iowa’s Redistricting Reform “Miracle”: Do the Outcomes Live Up to the Hype?

By: Benjamin Williams When average Americans think of Iowa, they likely picture pastoral scenes apropos for a Norman Rockwell painting. What they may not realize is that sleepy Iowa is an election law trailblazer, with what some consider to be … Continue reading

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Crafting Competitive Criteria: The Institution is Critical

By: Benjamin Williams With the rapid increase in political polarization in recent years, momentum is building in several states to dramatically alter the redistricting process after the 2020 Census. True to the idea of the states being laboratories of democracy, there … Continue reading

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Redefining unconstitutional: Varnum justices continue to be targets in Iowa

by Patrick Genova What do you do when you don’t like the ruling of the Supreme Court? In Iowa the answer is easy: get a new Supreme Court. Iowa’s system of judge retention elections makes it unique. Judges are appointed … Continue reading

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U.S. Court of Appeals for the Eighth Circuit Validates Iowa Judicial Nominating Commission’s Makeup

by Nick Mueller On April 9, 2012 the Eighth Circuit dismissed a case brought by four Iowa voters challenging the constitutionality of the process for the selection of members of the State Judicial Nominating Commission, the commission that selects candidates … Continue reading

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Mr. Colbert: or, How states might learn to love campaign finance reform

Its opponents deride its existence as a farce upon campaign finance law.  Its supporters suggest that it is the only way to set the system straight.  News of it has reached the public’s consciousness, rarified air for anything in the … Continue reading

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A Vote for [Candidate] is a Vote for Slight Changes to Regulations!

The sheer number of elected officials is a unique factor of the American political system. Jobs that would be filled by civil servants or via appointment in other countries are chosen by the voters. There is something appealingly ‘American’ about … Continue reading

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Let the Staff Handle it: Iowa’s Answer to Redistricting

In the wake of the 2010 Census, reapportionment and redistricting of seats of the US House of Representatives looms large on the political horizon. Those who have lost hope that redistricting can ever be anything but dysfunctional should spare some … Continue reading

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Some will Win, Some will Lose, Some States are Born to Sing the Blues: The Coming Battle Over Reapportionment

The stakes are incredibly high, reapportionment is looming, and recent data from Election Data Services shows that neither Democrats nor Republicans will be too pleased come next year. States which have been recently labeled as ‘safe Republican’ in Presidential elections … Continue reading

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Redistricting Reform Part 4

Let’s make some sausage, the first half When we last saw our intrepid hero…. He was explaining why redistricting by partisan actors is  a bad thing. It’s been about a month, so it may be worthwhile to go back and … Continue reading

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