Iowa's Single Party District

Jim Mowrer for Congress

Jim Mowrer for Congress

Does Iowa’s fourth congressional district have only one political party? Art Cullen, editor of the Storm Lake Times seems to think so. He welcomed delegates to the district’s Democratic convention in the April 24 edition.

“Sad to say that progressive candidates and causes are lost in the fourth,” wrote Cullen. “The Democratic Party has become patently uncompetitive and apparently unappealing to even independents. Outside of Fort Dodge, Sioux City, Mason City and Ames, we can think of no Democratic legislators from the Fourth District serving in the Statehouse. The Democratic Party in Northwest Iowa is largely irrelevant.”

A harsh assessment for candidate Jim Mowrer who is hard at work raising money and organizing his district-wide campaign to beat incumbent Republican Steve King.

“Even though Mowrer outpaces King three to one in fundraising,” wrote Cullen, “money doesn’t matter thrown against the wall again and again with no good result. It is the job of every delegate in Storm Lake today to get out and work for Mowrer and Braley. But they have a bigger task ahead: revitalizing and rebuilding their party in the rural stretches of the state.”

“We live in a one-party district,” concluded Cullen. “That is not how democracy is supposed to work. The Republican Party has done its job in building a political infrastructure all over rural Iowa. We wish Democrats would do the same.”

Blog for Iowa readers should read Cullen’s entire letter for its frank assessment of the district.

If Democratic infrastructure is lacking in Iowa’s Fourth Congressional District, Mowrer has support, evidenced by strong fund raising, and his recent promotion in the DCCC ‘s “Red to Blue,” a program that targets open-seat races and districts held by Republicans.

“(Jim Mowrer) met and surpassed demanding campaign goals, and showed he has a path to victory and has what it takes to win,” DCCC Chairman Steve Israel said in a statement. IA-01 Democratic candidate Pat Murphy was also promoted in “Red to Blue,” along with seven other campaigns.

Whether or not Mowrer can defeat King in the general election is an open question only if one has hope. It seems clear he will do the work required of a candidate. He will have outside support. The better question is whether moderate voters will organize around him between now and Nov. 4, and whether or not delegates to the convention will heed Cullen’s call to action. Blog for Iowa hopes they will.

To learn more about Jim Mowrer’s congressional campaign in the fourth district, visit his web site at

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2 Responses to Iowa's Single Party District

  1. trish nelson says:

    Great article. To Cullen’s point, I think it is possible that the 4th can send Republicans to the state house and still dump King in favor of Mowrer.


  2. Art Cullen says:

    Update: Jim Mowrer did not address delegates at the Fourth District Democratic Convention in Storm Lake. He did attend a fundraiser following the convention. — Art Cullen, editor, The Storm Lake Times


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