Republican Governor Terry Branstad today announced he has $2 million in his campaign account and four people hired for his 2014 campaign.
Jack Ketzner, an aide in the governor’s office who ran Congressman Steve King’s 2012 reelection campaign, will be Branstad’s campaign manager. Jimmy Centers, another Branstad staffer who worked on King’s last campaign, will be the governor’s campaign spokesman. A veteran of Mitt Romney’s 2012 presidential campaign was hired several weeks ago serve as Branstad’s political director.
Branstad, who is 66 years old, plans to make his formal reelection announcement next year, but told supporters these moves ensure he is able to “hit the ground running.” If Branstad’s bid for a sixth term as governor is successful, he could become the nation’s longest-serving governor.
A slightly younger Republican, 63-year-old Rick Perry — the longest-serving governor in Texas history, could have challenged Branstad for that national record, but Perry has announced he will not run again in 2014. Perry didn’t rule out another run for president, though, saying he would reveal a decision about his future path “in due time.”
Democrat Tyler Olson — a state representative who served about half a year as the chairman of the Iowa Democratic Party — is expected to announce tomorrow that he is running for governor. Olson has scheduled events in Cedar Rapids, his home town, as well as in Des Moines and Mason City.
Two women have recently emerged as potential congressional candidates. Anesa Kajtazovic of Waterloo — a two-term member of the Iowa House — says she may run for congress in the second district. It’s the seat Bruce Braley is vacating to run for the U.S. Senate.
Former State Senator Staci Appel of Ackworth has filed to run for Iowa’s third district congressional seat. It’s the one held today by Republican Congressman Tom Latham. Appel, a Democrat, served one term in the state senate before losing her reelection bid in 2010. Her husband is an Iowa Supreme Court justice. The couple has six children.