DES MOINES – Sioux City businessman Bob Vander Plaats topped former House Speaker Christopher Rants by more than a two-to-one margin and outdistanced two other potential GOP gubernatorial candidates by even larger margins in a poll conducted by TheIowaRepublican.com. Meanwhile, actor and martial arts legend Chuck Norris has announced his backing for a Vander Plaats candidacy, drawing more national attention and a broader fund-raising base to the campaign.
Vander Plaats received 52.4 percent of the 559 votes in the poll, followed by Rants with 25.6 percent, Senate Minority Leader Paul McKinley with 18 percent and former state Sen. Jeff Lamberti at 4 percent.
“This is only one poll and it’s early in the campaign cycle but TheIowaRepublican.com is a respected and unbiased information source and the results of this poll are very encouraging. Christopher Rants is well known across the state, especially in Republican circles, for his years in the legislative spotlight. For Bob Vander Plaats to have such an impressive showing against him and two other respected leaders is a reflection of the deep and broad support he has within our party,” said Vander Plaats spokesman Eric Woolson. “That said, the Vander Plaats organization is going to continuing working very hard every day to build the grassroots organization necessary to win the primary next June and defeat Chet Culver next November.”
Announcing his support for Vander Plaats, former Rep. John Kasich of Ohio and Judge Roy Moore of Alabama, Norris wrote in his national syndicated column, “I encourage you to spread the word about these gentlemen and patriots, learn about their platforms, support their campaigns, and see to it that they are elected in their gubernatorial races. Theirs is leadership we can trust. I’m convinced that if we are to win back America, it’s going to start in the heartland and spread out from there because of the influence of leaders like them.”
He continued, “Don’t like what you see in government? Tired of incumbent lethargy and inactiveness? Does a political issue grind on you like fingernails on a chalkboard? It comes down to this: Either you will change our country or your opponents will, and if you let them change it, you might not like the outcome.” (To see the complete column, click here.)
Norris has taken an increasingly higher profile on issues of national importance since his prominent role in former Arkansas Gov. Mike Huckabee’s 2008 presidential campaign.
Vander Plaats, who served as Huckabee’s Iowa chairman said, “I had an opportunity to get to know Chuck Norris during the 2008 campaign and we’ve remained in touch because we share the same values and public policy goals. He’s committed to defending Americans’ constitutional rights and the principles that made this country so great. I’m honored to have the support of Chuck and Gena Norris. They are great friends and they’re going to play an important role in our winning campaign.”
For more information about Bob Vander Plaats, click here.
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