A view from the nose bleed seats.
A view from the nose bleed seats.

Congressman Steve King (R-Iowa) opened up the Iowa Freedom Summit by asking those in attendance – “Is our next President here today?”

The crowd responded positively.  Today is literally a who’s who of Republican politics.

Who isn’t here today?

  • Former Florida Governor Jeb Bush took a pass.
  • 2012 Republican Presidential Nominee Mitt Romney is not here.
  • Louisiana Governor Bobby Jindal is not here.
  • Senator Rand Paul (R-Kentucky) is not at the Summit.
  • Senator Marco Rubio (R-Florida)

I have not heard why Jindal is not here, but he has come to the state numerous times so I don’t believe he’s avoiding the state.  He has come to a number of events like these. Update:  I was reminded that Jindal is at a long-planned prayer event in Louisiana that he organized.

One can’t help up but assume that Bush and Romney are sending a message that Iowa is not a priority, and grassroots conservative events are certainly not going to be a priority.

I have to wonder about the message that Paul is sending.  He is in the state today, and has an event in Ames which is only 40 minutes away.  He is doing an event with Congressman Rod Blum (R-Iowa) in Marshalltown today as well.  Blum will be here later today. Correction: I had bad information Paul is not going to be in Iowa until February 6 & 7.  So he is not in Iowa, but he is still missing the event.  My apology for the error.

Is this a strategic error on Paul’s part?  He seems to avoid events like these.  He wasn’t at The FAMiLY Leadership Summit in August either. I’m sure there is a reasonable explanation, but even if they don’t mean to send a message.  It does a message not only to King, but to conservatives who attend.

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