When former Iowa Governor Terry Branstad entered the race to regain his old job, we knew that we would be seeing some history made.
After a hard-fought primary, Branstad is now focused on building up his campaign coffers for the general election battle against Gov. Chet Culver. Observers are already predicting that this year's race for governor will be one of the most, if not the most, expensive races in the state's history.
Even before Branstad entered the race, attacks on his record had begun. Now, in mid-July, we have been listening to and seeing negative ads for over a half year.
When the primary was decided last month, the attack ads from both sides began right away. We knew then that we would be in for a long, nasty fight to decide who gets to be governor.
During the summer, candidates traditionally focus on fundraising. On Monday, the Branstad and Culver campaigns released their respective financial reports.
From June 2 - July 14, Branstad raised over $2 million. Since the campaign began, the former governor has raised $5.5 million. His campaign has $1.5 million in the bank.
Gov. Culver raised about $700,000 during the same period. While this is a third of what his opponent has raised, Culver did not have a primary challenge and was able to preserve his cash. He has raised a total of $6.6 million and has $2.8 million in the bank.
Combined, the pair have raised over $12.1 million dollars.
Think about that for a moment. If you spent a million dollars a month, it would take you more than a year to exhaust the funds that have been raised to date. This is before the big push this fall and even more money is raised.
With all of this money being raised and spent, it truly gives one pause as to what the people that are giving these large amounts of money are expecting to receive in return.
One thing we can guarantee: before November rolls around, you will know much more than you ever cared to about both of the candidates.
Let's hope that whoever wins the election can do what needs to be done to make things better.