Jim Mowrer, a twice-failed Congressional Democratic candidate, is running for Iowa Secretary of State. In 2016 he launched a new PAC, The Majority Rules, that focuses on getting states to adopt a compact that would circumvent the Electoral College by encouraging states to pass laws that would allocate electors based on the National Popular Vote.

A horrible, rotten idea and the fact he supports it should eliminate him from consideration as it would diminish Iowa’s influence in the presidential election cycle. This is also evidence that he lacks basic knowledge of civics.

Mowrer, who wants to be the state’s chief election officer, also lacks knowledge about Iowa’s campaign finance law.

The Majority Rules PAC, of which he apparently is still the treasurer of, endorsed his candidacy. So essentially he endorsed himself. The Iowa GOP captured a screenshot of an email sent by the PAC back in April.

The PAC’s endorsement of Mowrer is beyond sad and pathetic it’s also illegal.

Iowa Code 68A.303(5) says, “A candidate for statewide or legislative office shall not establish, direct, or maintain a political committee.”

He established it, and his name is still on the PAC’s filings.

Yesterday, the Republican Party of Iowa filed a formal complaint with the Iowa Ethics and Campaign Disclosure Board. The complaint, filed by the Iowa GOP treasurer Bill Gustoff who is an attorney, reads:

Iowa Code section 68A.303(5) states in pertinent part: “A candidate for statewide or legislative office shall not establish, direct, or maintain a political committee.”

Jim Mowrer is a candidate for “statewide office” as evidenced by Statement of Organization filed in August of 2017 with the IECBD for the office of Secretary of State.

The Majority Rules is a federal PAC registered with the FEC as evidenced by the State of Organization filed on November 21, 2016.

Jim Mowrer is listed as the “Treasurer” of the PAC and the PAC makes expenditures to “JDM Consulting” a company listed as the same mailing address as Jim Mowrer. The PAC also reported making a $1,500 campaign contribution to “Jim Mowrer for Iowa” on January 2, 2018. This information is found on campaign disclosure reports filed by The Majority Rules (Committee ID: C00629063).

Apart from the unseemly situation of a Treasurer of a PAC making expenditures to his own consulting company as well as his own campaign committee for public office, it is clear that Jim Mowrer has “established, directed, or maintained a political committee” in violation of Iowa Code section 68A.303(5).

As such, IECDB should fully investigate this matter, and if a violation is found, impose all appropriate sanctions and penalties on Jim Mowrer.

Yes, they should.

3 comments
  1. The National Popular Vote bill would give a voice to the minority party voters for president in each state. Now they don’t matter to their candidate.

    In 2012, 56,256,178 (44%) of the 128,954,498 voters had their vote diverted by the winner-take-all rule to a candidate they opposed (namely, their state’s first-place candidate).

    And now votes, beyond the one needed to get the most votes in the state, for winning in a state, are wasted and don’t matter to presidential candidates.
    Utah (5 electoral votes) alone generated a margin of 385,000 “wasted” votes for Bush in 2004.
    Oklahoma (7 electoral votes) alone generated a margin of 455,000 “wasted” votes for Bush in 2004 — larger than the margin generated by the 9th and 10th largest states, namely New Jersey and North Carolina (each with 15 electoral votes).
    8 small western states, with less than a third of California’s population, provided Bush with a bigger margin (1,283,076) than California provided Kerry (1,235,659).

  2. The National Popular Vote bill is states replacing state winner-take-all laws that award all of a state’s electoral votes to the candidate who get the most popular votes in each separate state (not mentioned in the U.S. Constitution, but later enacted by 48 states), in the enacting states, to guarantee the majority of Electoral College votes for, and the Presidency to, the candidate getting the most popular votes in the entire United States.

    The bill retains the constitutionally mandated Electoral College and state control of elections, and uses the built-in method that the Constitution provides for states to make changes. It ensures that every voter is equal, every voter will matter, in every state, in every presidential election, and the candidate with the most votes wins, as in virtually every other election in the country.

    Every voter, everywhere, for every candidate, would be politically relevant and equal in every presidential election.
    Every vote would matter equally in the state counts and national count.

    The vote of every voter in the country (Democrat, Republican, Libertarian, or Green) would help his or her preferred candidate win the Presidency. The National Popular Vote plan would give voice to every voter in the country, as opposed to treating voters for candidates who did not win a plurality in the state as if they did not exist.

    The bill would take effect when enacted by states possessing a majority of the electoral votes—270 of 538.
    All of the presidential electors from the enacting states will be supporters of the presidential candidate receiving the most popular votes among all 50 states (and DC)—thereby guaranteeing that candidate with an Electoral College majority.

  3. The Founders created the Electoral College, but 48 states eventually enacted state winner-take-all laws.

    Unable to agree on any particular method for selecting presidential electors, the Founding Fathers left the choice of method exclusively to the states in Article II, Section 1
    “Each State shall appoint, in such Manner as the Legislature thereof may direct, a Number of Electors….”
    The U.S. Supreme Court has repeatedly characterized the authority of the state legislatures over the manner of awarding their electoral votes as “plenary” and “exclusive.”

    Neither of the two most important features of the current system of electing the President (namely, universal suffrage, and the 48 state-by-state winner-take-all method) are in the U.S. Constitution. Neither was the choice of the Founders when they went back to their states to organize the nation’s first presidential election.

    In 1789, in the nation’s first election, a majority of the states appointed their presidential electors by appointment by the legislature or by the governor and his cabinet, the people had no vote for President in most states, and in states where there was a popular vote, only men who owned a substantial amount of property could vote, and only three states used the state-by-state winner-take-all method to award electoral votes.

    The current winner-take-all method of awarding electoral votes is not in the U.S. Constitution. It was not debated at the Constitutional Convention. It is not mentioned in the Federalist Papers. It was not the Founders’ choice. It was used by only three states in 1789, and all three of them repealed it by 1800. It is not entitled to any special deference based on history or the historical meaning of the words in the U.S. Constitution. The actions taken by the Founding Fathers make it clear that they never gave their imprimatur to the winner-take-all method. The winner-take-all method of awarding electoral votes became dominant only in the 1880s after the states adopted it, one-by-one. The Founders had been dead for decades

    The constitutional wording does not encourage, discourage, require, or prohibit the use of any particular method for awarding a state’s electoral votes.

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