An Iowa Republican leader on Wednesday urged voters to oust Justice David Wiggins from the Iowa Supreme Court, a call seen by some as a way to boost turnout in November and spur outside groups to spend money in the state.
A “no” vote on Wiggins’ retention would show the justice that “his arrogance and disregard for the law does indeed have consequences” and would “send a strong message to the judicial branch and activist judges who may not fully understand the power that individual voters have within Iowa and our entire nation,” A.J. Spiker, Republican Party of Iowa chairman, said in a release Wednesday.
…Jeff Angelo, a former state senator from Creston and founder of Iowa Republicans for Freedom, said Spiker’s decision injects a new and possibly unwelcome issue into Iowa campaigns — one that is likely to be pushed most strongly by out-of-state advocacy groups.
…Angelo said Republican Party endorsement of an ouster campaign could hurt Republican candidates this fall if it distracts from a potentially winning economic message.
“If you’re a Republican or an independent, you want your candidate talking about the economy,” Angelo said. “If the party attempts to divert from that discussion, you create questions in each individual race: Is this candidate really focused on the economy?”
The Iowa State Bar Association issued a statement chastising Striker and denouncing statements that “show a fundamentally flawed view of the function of the courts and a clear lack of understanding of basic civics.”