Jeff Mullen, the Lead Pastor of Point of Grace Church in Waukee, IA announced Sunday that he is throwing his hat in the ring and will run for the Iowa Senate in the newly redrawn Iowa Senate District 22 which will have an open seat. State Senator Pat Ward (R-West Des Moines) is likely to run in that district. Her current residence in West Des Moines will be located in the newly redrawn Senate District 21 which includes most of Democratic State Senator Matt McCoy’s district. The heavier Republican precincts in western part of her current district will be included in the newly redrawn SD 22. Needless to say she will find herself in a district with a distinct Democrat voter registration advantage.
So expect State Senator Ward to go west or perhaps north and instead face a primary with Mullen. This will pit a pastor vs. a politician; establishment vs. political newbie, solidly right vs. center-right.
Des Moines Dem at Bleeding Heartland points out that Ward backed adding sexual orientation to the Iowa Civil Rights Act, and she also voted in favor of the anti-bully bill which protected only certain classes of students. She has voted in favor of a marriage amendment however. Des Moines Dem points out (and I concur) that she hasn’t been a leader in calling for the removal of the three Iowa Supreme Court justices (all seven in 2009 ruled against Iowa’s DOMA law) who were up for retention in 2010.
In contrast Mullen has been a leader through his Iowa Pastors Network and personal advocacy. He was instrumental in the retention election campaign through mobilizing pastors to communicate to their congregations the importance of being politically engaged.
It will be a primary to watch for sure. I’m also making my first endorsement of the primary season. Looking at the two candidates in Iowa Senate District 22 I believe the choice is clear. While I can’t personally cast a vote in the district I’d encourage primary voters in that district vote for the candidate who is a fiscal and social conservative leader. Vote for the candidate who supports individual rights and responsibility, the respect for the Constitutional rule of law, free enterprise, restraints on taxing and government spending, limited government, inalienable human rights for the born and unborn, the integrity of the traditional family as the basic unit of society, and the freedom of religion. Simply put, Jeff shares my worldview, State Senator Ward I’m not so sure about. Jeff is man of convictions, and State Senator Ward seems to take positions that are politically expedient and comfortable, but does not lead. Jeff does.
If you are an eligible GOP primary voter in Iowa Senate District 22, please vote for Jeff Mullen.
Here’s his campaign announcement below: