(Lohrville, IA) Iowa Governor Terry Branstad officially has a primary challenger after Tom Hoefling turned in the requisite amount of signatures to the Secretary of State’s office last week. Hoefling was the 2012 America’s Party Presidential nominee, a party he helped found, and he is a long-time national conservative political activist and consultant having worked for candidates such as Alan Keyes.
Hoefling said he’s running because he wanted to force a debate. “I don’t have any illustions about winning,” Hoefling said during a recent interview last month on KQWC Radio . “I’d love to win. I think I could win, but this is about forcing a public debate about the future of this state.”
To that end yesterday he challenged Governor Branstad to five debates leading up to the June 3rd primary.
His proposal includes four smaller events hosted and organized by willing county GOP organizations within the four congressional districts, and would culminate in a large venue debate hosted by the state party. Any proceeds would be split proportionally between the various party organizations participating, for use in electing local Republicans in November. Moderation would be provided by the state and county party chairmen.
Hoefling said, “I think ‘Building Iowa’s Future,’ which is Terry Branstad’s campaign theme, is the right focus for debate. But I also think that the people of Iowa deserve to hear both candidates in this primary explain fully what they think that future should look like.”
He added, “If Governor Branstad does not find this reasonable, constructive proposal to be acceptable, I am willing to debate any time, anywhere in the state, under any circumstance.”