Why Bobby Kaufmann Would Be Bad For Iowa

This is the first in a BFIA series on eastern Iowa GOP House candidates.

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.


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4 Responses to Why Bobby Kaufmann Would Be Bad For Iowa

  1. CLARA OLESON says:

    I voted for Schwabb early, but his mailings are a smear and a mess. There was a major inaccuracy on the first one, claiming that Kaufman was on probation when he was not. These are basically traffic violations and a bar fight. It will come home to haunt Senator Dvorsky whose own drunk driving conviction is now an issue in his race.

    This campaign mailing is completely, totally inappropriate for cedar and only the gutter standards of many Johnson County dems made it happen. The Tipton Conservative has been OWNED by kaufmann for the last two issues because of this mailing.

    It also implies that the statehouse is the property of old white guys. Negative mailers that target an issue of a candidate may be fair game, but this attempt at character derision is harmful to those who do it, the party in whose name it is done and any semblance of a civil political climate. The supporters of this have forgotten that we are supposed to be actors of principle, not pragmatic utilitarianism boosters.

    Neither candidate conducted himself with honor in this mess and Blog for Iowa you tar and feather your own lack of responsibility on this one, not Kaufmann.


  2. Trish Nelson says:


    Thank you for reading Blog for Iowa.

    Blog for Iowa feels this is a balanced and responsible piece addressing both factual information about Kaufmann’s lengthy 10-year
    repeated record of arrests and citations which again is part of the public record (that we have viewed at iowacourts.gov) as well has his
    political right wing ideology.

    We feel the print media have been irresponsible in their failure to fully vet this candidate. They have gone along with the “a few minor incidents” narrative without doing their homework about it. The Press-Citizen incorrectly reported that Kaufmann’s record has been “clean for years.”

    Why can’t some Democrats sort out that there is a difference between having one or two incidents during an otherwise responsible
    history and a 10-year history of repeated violations? (17 of them by our count). We acknowledge everyone makes mistakes.

    Yes, electeds do have run-ins with the law and typically they have to pay a pretty high price in the local papers for it. To your point, it seems to us that Dvorsky was open and contrite about his single incident, which to us makes a difference. [See Dave Bradley’s post today].

    Conversely, Kaufmann has been arrogant and minimizing.The letters to the editors from his supporters smacked of pre-packaged astro-turf. Democrats bought into the phony outrage and failed to fight back in the papers.

    And Kaufmann was on probation when we wrote our original post.

    We find it interesting that Democrats prefer to attack fellow Democrats for trying to win an election to writing a letter to the editor about the right wing policies of Bobby Kaufmann.

    Where is your outrage about how Kaufmann will most surely vote if elected? Do you support Kaufmann’s right wing ideology, because he
    will vote with Republicans to end marriage rights for gays and to take away women’s reproductive rights. Our post addresses both issues where it seems to us no one else has.

    We sense a bit of hypocrisy here. Why not stick to the issues yourself? Your time would be better spent writing a letter to the editor outlining the very good reasons why it would be a disaster to elect Bobby Kaufmann to the state house.


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