The Iowa Republican Party’s finances took a nose-dive during the last quarter, nearly reaching red ink.
The Iowa GOP was already significantly trailing Iowa Democrats in fundraising when Danny Carroll was elected chairman of the party in late March. By the end of June, the party had just $11,219 left in the bank.
On June 28, the newly elected members of the State Central Committee voted Carroll out and chose Jeff Kaufmann as the Iowa GOP’s new chairman. Carroll told Radio Iowa today that he doesn’t want to make excuses, but he said the “continuing air of uncertainty” created by the battle for party leadership “made it impossible” for him to find someone willing to be the party’s fundraising chairman.
The party under Carroll’s leadership collected $11,500 dollars in donations from individuals in June and was able to end the month in the black due to a $17,500 check from the Republican National Committee. Carroll said he was “preoccupied” in May and June with organizing the party’s state convention as well as the special nominating convention for over 500 delegates who selected the Republican candidate for Iowa’s third district congressional seat.
Carroll agreed to give the party’s only paid staff member — former executive director Steve Bierfeldt — an exit package that included severance pay so Bierfeldt would not file for unemployment benefits. Documents filed with the Federal Election Commission indicate Bierfeldt was paid up to $38,000 in his final month with the party.
Jeff Kaufmann, the party’s new chairman, said in a written statement that he is “disappointed in the mismanagement of party affairs by previous staffers and leaders,” but Kaufmann said his job is to “look forward” not backward. Kaufmann’s goal is to raise $300,000 for the party by the end of September. Since Kaufmann became chairman, he has hired new staff for the party, including an executive director, a communications director and a consultant.
On June 30, the Iowa Democratic Party had $366,474 cash on hand.