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Iowa Plays Key Role in 1980 Political ‘Massacre’

Marc C. Johnson discusses his new book, Tuesday Night Massacre on how four US Senate elections in 1980 laid the groundwork for the ‘radicalization of the Republican Party. One of these races occurred in Iowa when Chuck Grassley defeated incumbent John Culver after a dry run for new conservative methods defeated incumbent Dick Clark two years earlier. Johnson’s book argues that new tactics developed by outside groups in these races led to the current polarization in today’s politics.

Robin A. Johnson is a governmental relations, public policy and political consultant. He is an expert on government reform issues and has consulted with numerous local governments on consolidation/merger, public-private partnerships and full-cost accounting of public services. Robin has also helped candidates win elections for the U.S. Senate, U.S. Congress, state legislature, judiciary and local government. Robin served as a consultant to the Office of Statewide Performance Review in the Illinois Governor’s Office and is former director of the Illinois Center for Competitive Government, a partnership between the Illinois Comptroller’s Office and the Illinois Institute for Rural Affairs at Western Illinois University. Prior to that, he was Director of the Local Government Affairs Division of the Illinois Comptroller’s Office. Robin served on the Board of Directors of the National Council for Public-Private Partnerships (NCPPP) in 1999-2000.