DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) — The Iowa Republican Party is calling planned police traffic checkpoints in western Polk County this weekend unnecessary and are urging motorists who are stopped to comply albeit minimally.
The position by the state GOP is being criticized by influential Republican establishment figures as outside the party’s charge.
It marks another in a series of disagreements over strategy between the party’s statewide organization, led by supporters of former Texas Congressman Ron Paul, and longtime party leaders led by Gov. Terry Branstad.
State party spokesman Steve Bierfeldt says the police checkpoints announced Friday don’t improve public safety and are a waste of the officers’ time.
Longtime Republican fundraiser and strategist Doug Gross of Des Moines says the party’s statement was “nuts,” and a distraction from the goal of winning elections.