There are two big reasons why Iowans should not let Bobby Kaufmann anywhere near the Iowa state house as an elected representative.
First, his lack of judgment, indicated by his history with law enforcement should be a disqualifier, at least for now. He should demonstrate that his judgment has improved by going a couple of years without getting in trouble with the law before he decides to run for public office.
More than a single incident or two, Kaufmann the younger has quite a long rap sheet by any standard, so it seems appropriate that he have to at least answer questions about how it came to be that he has 17 offenses, 4 occurring as recently as 2011-2012. It is a matter of public record so it is fair game.
For the curious, Kaufmann’s history with law enforcement is available at Iowacourts.gov and Blog for Iowa did a blog post about it back in April based on a story in the West Branch Times. The Solon Economist conducted an interview with Kaufmann the younger back in July in which Bobby attempted to explain away his most recent drunken mishap. In Wednesday’s Iowa City Press-Citizen Bobby characterized the public intoxication conviction as an “unfortunate misunderstanding.” The QCTimes picked up the story this week: “Opponent Dick Schwab said ‘We’re hiring somebody to represent us in Des Moines. In almost every employment search I’ve ever done, you do a background check.'”
Kaufmann tried to cry smear, but he can’t even do that because “smear” by definition is an unsubstantiated charge. These citations are documented.
Even if you accept Kaufmann’s questionable framing of what happened, when the Solon Economist reported, “out of fear and uncertainty he plead guilty to the charge,” one wonders how, if elected, Kaufmann would stand up for constituents to the increasingly right wing Republican caucus, if he is so easily intimidated.
So let’s say none of the above matters. There is another more important reason to not elect Bobby Kaufmann.
– He would vote for and support extremist, tea party legislation.
-As a “friend of agriculture,” Kaufmann was endorsed by the Iowa Farm Bureau, partly because he supports avoiding “needless regulations.” This is code for underfunding or dismantling the Iowa DNR and regulations that pertain to the quality of our air, water and land.
– He would overturn the landmark Varnum v. Brien decision with a constitutional amendment on the nature of marriage.
– While clerking in the legislature, he was a supporter of a house joint resolution that defines life as beginning at conception, co-sponsored by his father (HJR 2003, 83rd General Assembly).
– Branstad’s Lt. Gov Kim Reynolds has said, “we need to make sure we do everything we can to elect Bobby Kaufmann,” to an audience that included Rep. Dawn Pettingill, who famously led a petition effort, signed by 41 Republicans, to stop abortions in Iowa even in the cases of rape and incest, something Republicans plan to do if they gain control of the legislature. Here is Kim Reynolds weighing in on marriage, and criminalizing abortion. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zhTIp2hTC1w
In classic George W. Bush 2000 style, Bobby Kaufmann is pretending to be a moderate, bipartisan Republican for campaign purposes, but as with Bush, that is nothing but an election year facade. The reality is that if elected, he would be called upon to push the tea party agenda and it is unlikely that he would be able to stand up to his dad’s powerful GOP cronies when it comes time to call in the votes.