A western Iowa Republican lawmaker says he's holding a campaign fundraiser featuring U.S. Sen. Chuck Grassley at a shooting range despite calls for him to cancel the gun-centered event following weekend mass shootings in Texas and Ohio.
State Rep. Steve Holt says his Sweet Freedom Celebration in Denison remains scheduled for tonight and Grassley's staff confirms he will attend and deliver a speech.
Holt posted on his campaign Facebook page Sunday that "mental deviants have killed innocent people in El Paso and Dayton" and he offered his prayers. A writer responded that gun safety legislation was needed more than prayers.
Holt then noted his support for the Second Amendment. He blamed the shootings on "the loss of our value system brought about in part by an idiotic far-left ideology that forced Biblical values from our schools, the media, and the public square..."
Democrat J.D. Scholten says he will make another run for an Iowa congressional seat held for 17 years by conservative Republican Rep. Steve King.
Scholten announced Monday he would again seek the Democratic nomination in the 4th Congressional District, made up of 39 counties covering much of northwest and central Iowa, including the Siouxland area.
Since winning the seat in 2002, King has been re-elected eight times, usually by margins of 20 to more than 30 percentage points until last November, when he beat Scholten by 3 points. This time, King also will face competition for the Republican nomination amid criticism over statements he's made about race and immigration that led him to be stripped of his committee assignments.
Scholten, a former minor league baseball player, says he'll focus on issues such as health care and the economy.