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Branstad announcement termed boast, warning

Published: Wednesday, Jan. 8, 2014 11:03 a.m. CDT

DES MOINES (MCT) — Gov. Terry Branstad’s announcement that his re-election campaign has $4.1 million cash on hand is both a boast and a warning.

“First, it’s bragging. That’s what he’s doing,” said Drake political science Professor Art Sanders. “He’s saying, ‘Look how much we have.’”

Campaign spokesman Tommy Schultz is more modest, saying the campaign merely wanted to share its good. Branstad has not yet formally announced his candidacy, but has campaign office and staff raising money and organizing support.

“It’s a tremendous number,” he said. “It shows what folks in Iowa think about the governor.”

On the Democratic side, Sen. Jack Hatch of Des Moines is the frontrunner with Webster City bus driver Paul Dahl also eying the race.

Hatch was neither surprised nor impressed with the governor’s big number.

“The governor is very good at politics and loves to campaign, so a strong fundraising number comes as no surprise,” Hatch said. “Iowans aren’t impressed with big money — they have given organized people the victory over organized money time and time again. What they value is straight talk, honesty and results — and the truth is Iowa is succeeding in spite of, not because of, Branstad.”

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