Republicans are calling on the Democratic candidate for secretary of state to release a “comprehensive list” of his political clients and projects.
Brad Anderson was President Obama’s 2012 Iowa campaign manager and he was former Governor Chet Culver’s first press secretary. Iowa Republican Party chairman Jeff Kaufmann says Anderson doesn’t mention on his campaign website that he worked for “disgraced former Senator John Edwards” in 2004.
“I’m not suggesting that Mr. Anderson has done anything illegal or anything like that,” Kaufmann says. “I just believe that it’s fair for the voters to understand completely his resume.”
Anderson’s website does mention his work for Edwards, however. “After working on U.S. Senator John Edwards’ 2004 Iowa caucus campaign, Brad joined Link Strategies, where he continues to advise campaigns and assist local communities,” it says in the “about” section.
Kaufmann calls Anderson a “Chicago-style partisan with a political axe to grind.” According to Kaufmann, Anderson has “lobbied” for clients in eastern Europe and Africa, too.
“I don’t know how someone that has been this heavily involved in partisan lobbying, you know internationally, I don’t see how you can remove yourself and be the chief executive officer of Iowa’s elections,” Kaufmann says.
A spokesman for Anderson says Anderson has never been a lobbyist and the consulting firm where he works does not lobby the state legislature or congress.
Republican Paul Pate, the former secretary of state who is running for reelection to the office, says voters deserve a full accounting of Anderson’s past political activity.
“You look at the candidates he’s chosen to work for and what they stand for, I think he would represent that as well,” Pate says.
Anderson released a written statement this morning in response.
“I’m very proud of my work over the years addressing climate change and promoting Iowa’s renewable energy industry, and this is yet another silly attempt by my opponent to avoid offering any substantive plan for what he wants to do in office,” Anderson said. “I’m going to continue running a positive campaign focused on finding ways we can increase voter turnout, strengthen election integrity, and modernize the Secretary of State’s office.”
Matt Schultz, Iowa’s current secretary of state, chose not to seek reelection. After losing in June’s third district congressional primary, Schultz was nominated to be the Republican candidate for county attorney in Madison County.
(This post was updated at 1:28 p.m. with additional information.)