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Cedar Rapids, Iowa 52401
Former President Donald Trump endorsed Iowa’s top elected Republicans this past weekend.
Just as notable is who Trump did not endorse.
Trump on Sunday announced his endorsement of Gov. Kim Reynolds and U.S. Reps. Ashley Hinson and Randy Feenstra.
Trump previously endorsed U.S. Sen. Chuck Grassley.
Trump did not endorse Republican U.S. Rep. Mariannette Miller-Meeks, and has not weighed in on the competitive Republican primary in central Iowa’s 3rd Congressional District.
Miller-Meeks, who is completing her first term in the U.S. House and is running for re-election in Eastern Iowa’s new 1st Congressional District, was one of just 35 House Republicans to vote in support of establishing a commission to investigate the Jan. 6, 2021, attacks on the U.S. Capitol that were an attempt to stop Congress from certifying President Joe Biden’s 2020 election victory over Trump.
In the 3rd District, three Republicans are vying for the party’s nomination and the chance to face Democratic U.S. Rep. Cindy Axne.
The Republicans in that primary are state legislator and Iowa National Guard officer Zach Nunn of Bondurant, financial services professional Nicole Hasso of Johnston and construction consultant Gary Leffler of West Des Moines.
In endorsing Reynolds, Trump in a news release praised the governor for working with him on changes to federal trade policy, and said Reynolds “is fighting hard to create jobs, cut taxes, eliminate needless regulations, and protect the livelihoods of our great farmers and ethanol producers.”
In a separate news release, Trump described Hinson as “a fierce advocate for our America First agenda” and Feenstra as “an unwavering advocate for our wonderful farmers and ethanol producers.”
REYNOLDS ENDORSES ANOTHER CHALLENGER: Gov. Kim Reynolds has endorsed a third challenger to a Republican incumbent state legislator in the Iowa House.
This time, Reynolds has endorsed Republican Helena Hayes of New Sharon in the new Iowa House District 88. Hayes is challenging Rep. Dustin Hite of New Sharon.
Hite is chairman of the Iowa House education committee. As with other incumbents whose primary opponents Reynolds has endorsed, Hite was not a supporter of Reynolds’ proposal to shift taxpayer funding from public schools to private school tuition assistance.
“Helena is a strong, conservative leader prepared to defend parental choice in education,” Reynolds says in a recording posted on Hayes’ campaign page on Facebook.
Previously, Reynolds also endorsed the challengers to Iowa House Republicans Jon Thorup of Knoxville and Dennis Bush of Cherokee, both of whom also said they would not vote for Reynolds’ private school tuition assistance bill.
WASSON ENDORSEMENTS: Justin Wasson, one of three candidates for the Republican nomination in Iowa Senate District 42, which covers rural Linn County and much of Benton County, has been endorsed by a number of “high-profile Republican influencers,” according to his campaign.
The other Republicans running in Senate District 42 are Rep. Charlie McClintock of Alburnett and Colman Silbernagel of Vinton.
Wasson was endorsed by state Rep. Mark Cisneros, R-Muscatine, who, according to Wasson’s campaign, has the highest Conservative Political Action Committee rating of all Iowa legislators.
Also among those endorsing Wasson, a Cedar Rapids business owner, ahead of Tuesday’s primary are:
Travis Kolder, Iowa Credit Union executive; David Chung, Iowa's 2nd District chairman; Matt Rollinger, Linn-Mar school board member; Chris Price, Bertram City Council member; John Thompson, president of Iowa veterans' nonprofit; Bill Dahlsten, Linn County GOP leader; Linn-Mar Parents' Protest organizers; Cedar Rapids Mound View GOP precinct; Jim Campbell, Lisbon community schools; Jacob Long, Linn County businessman; Whitney and Ryan Hubbell, Eastern Iowa family values activists; Kevin Bullard, Samantha Buchheit and Deb Gilbert, Eastern Iowa business leaders; John Morgan, Eastern Iowa businessman and Linn County GOP leader; Heidi Liegl, Eastern Iowa agricultural leader; and Torri and John Freese, president and vice president, respectively, and Alex Buchheit, treasurer, of Iowa GOP grassroots organization.
Gazette Des Moines Bureau