Tom Beaumont of The Des Moines Register responded to my critique of his list of the top 50 GOP operatives for the upcoming 2012 Iowa Caucus.

Like Krusty, Caffeinated Thoughts blogger Shane Vander Hart gave a sharp-eyed critique. They both suggest the list over-emphasized aides to Terry Branstad, the Republican governor-elect. Vander Hart also says Branstad campaign aides who are going into his administration should not qualify because they will not be involved in 2012 campaigns.

My response is that the list is of people who will be contacted, not just for their support and for campaign jobs, but for advice. And the operatives, top staff and fundraisers for the first Republican campaign to win the governorship in 12 years, in my opinion, will certainly be on the call list.

Vander Hart notes others in the new class of tea party elected officials besides those noted in the Registers list, including incoming Secretary of State Matt Schultz. But I noted a few high profile, tea party-backed leaders such as Kim Pearson and Kent Sorenson. I noted in the text about the list that some of the names were representative of a type of activist of operative. For instance, we noted Ryan Rhodes, chairman of the Iowa Tea Party.

Point well taken, but still, you didn’t get my check Tom?

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