Christopher Reed on IPTV

Christopher Reed of Marion, the Republican US senate candidate who got more of the votes counted in Tuesday’s primary, is to be the guest on Iowa Public Television’s "Iowa Press" program which airs tonight at 7:30 and again on Sunday at 11:30 a.m. The show was taped Friday morning.

Reporter Jason Clayworth of The Des Moines Register, reporter Rod Boshart of The Cedar Rapids Gazette, reporter Dave Price & cameraman Travis Jungling of WHO-TV 13 and I were gathered in a lobby at IPTV, prepared to watch the show’s taping when the phone on the wall began ringing and ringing and ringing.  After we all looked at one another, I got up and answered.  It was Brent Littlefield from the campaign of George Eichhorn, the fellow who finished second — behind Reed — when the votes were counted Tuesday.  He demanded that the show not go on; I explained I don’t work at IPTV and don’t know how to transfer phone calls around the building, nor do I know the main phone number for IPTV.  He continued his argument to me as I tried to drive home that I don’t work at IPTV and have no role in making decisions for IPTV.  (It’s a bit like talking to the clerk at Quik Trip and demanding that the price of gas at the Phillips station be changed.)

After a few minutes, Mr. Littlefield ended our conversation and rang the building back.  He was able to talk with Mike Newell, the producer of Iowa Press.  Mr. Newell reports the demand was that the show not go on, then there was a threat of "an injunction" to keep the show off the air.  Littlefield’s argument, according to Newell, is that the campaign is still underway and the show’s airing will influence Republican delegates to the state convention who may be required to select a US senate nominee. 

In case you’re just joining this episode, Eichhorn has not conceded the election.  He issued a statement on Wednesday morning.  The upshot is Eichhorn is waiting for the official canvas of votes, then he may opt for a recount — and if neither he nor Reed pass the 35 percent threshold required to win a primary in Iowa, the nominee is to be chosen at a oonvention.  In this case, it would likely be the Republican Party of Iowa’s state convention on June 14.

The first questions of Reed dealt with whether he believed he would secure the nomination without the matter going to state convention.  He identified himself as the "presumptive" US senate nominee.

Later, Reed was asked to contrast himself with US Senator Tom Harkin, who he ran to face in November   "I am the anti, the antithesis of Tom Harkin," Reed said.

UPDATE:  Here’s the Radio Iowa story.

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About O.Kay Henderson

O. Kay Henderson is the news director of Radio Iowa.