Branstad urges 2012 candidates not to skip Ames Straw Poll

Home > News Poll Problem: Incoming Governor Warns Presidential Candidates Not to Skip Event If They Want His Support
Branstad said pre-caucus endorsement is possible

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8:47 a.m. CST, December 1, 2010
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Iowa Governor-elect Terry Branstad, a Republican, could become the king of the caucus. He is the state’s top Republican and Republican candidates for president would love to get his support before the caucuses.

Branstad said candidates could learn something from him, although he isn’t saying at this point that he will endorse a candidate before the Iowa Caucuses. He said, “I think I’ve demonstrated how you can win elections in Iowa and you do it by going to all 99 counties and meeting with a lot of people and articulate a vision and plan for where you want to lead the state, or in this case, the country.”

Branstad said he doubts he would support a candidate who skips the Republican Party’s Straw Poll, which raises tens of thousands of dollars for the party. Branstad said, “Not participating is certainly not a very good strategy. So I would certainly come and participate.”

Republican Party of Iowa Chairman Matt Strawn told Channel 13 the Straw Poll is scheduled to take place next August, like it has since 1987. In 2008, John McCain and Rudy Giuliani skipped the Straw Poll.