Sabato's Crystal Ball

Iowa (03) House 2010

Crystal Ball Outlook: Leans D

Democratic candidate: Leonard Boswell, Incumbent

Republican candidate: Brad Zaun, State Senator

Recent updates from the Crystal Ball

Background:

Democratic incumbent Leonard Boswell will face off against Republican challenger and state Sen. Brad Zaun to represent Iowa’s 3rd congressional district. The district includes Des Moines’s Polk County and covers 12 counties in central Iowa. Boswell, a Blue Dog Democrat, has a large financial advantage over Zaun so far.

In the primary Zaun struggled to capture rural votes, which could be a potential handicap for him in the general election. Despite being the underdog, Zaun could prove a tough challenge to Boswell if he succeeds in attracting rural voters and is able to portray Boswell as being too liberal for the district. For these reasons, Iowa’s 3rd district is a Toss-Up.