From Surplus To Deficit: Branstad And Reynolds’ Sad Legacy

A mere four years ago, Iowa’s budget sat at a healthy $927 million surplus. Fiscal Year 2013 saw the state in a very strong budgetary position. Now? Fiscal Year 2017 is estimated to bottom out at a $130 million deficit. So what happened? Well, it turns out that four years of huge property tax cuts for corporations does a number on how much revenue Iowa can bring in, and they clearly haven’t stimulated Iowa’s economy in the way Terry Branstad and Kim Reynolds promised. House Democrats this week pointed to that deficit as further proof of the Republican administration’s fiscal mismanagement. “First, the […]

Climate Justice Unity March Coming In April

The People’s Climate Movement is gaining momentum for what should be a landmark day of action on April 29, marking the 100th day of the Trump Presidency. The major event is in Washington, DC — a march for climate, justice and jobs. Hundreds of related marches, rallies and events are planned in cities across the U.S. and around the globe. In Iowa, the People’s Climate Movement will rally at the Iowa State Capitol from 1:00-3:00 on Saturday, April 29. A broad coalition of groups is working to make this rally a statewide event involving thousands of Iowans concerned about a […]

Where Are They Now: Recent Iowa Political Hires Round-Up

In the world of Iowa politics, people move around from job to job a lot. This is especially so in the months after an election, as former campaign staffers figure out their next move. It hasn’t been an easy transition for many Democratic operatives, as when all your candidates lose in an election, there’s not that many landing spots in government to go to. But plenty of talented, experienced political staffers and former candidates find new opportunities all the time. Here’s an update on some Iowa politicos that you might know, and where they’ve moved to in the last month […]

Does Iowa GOP Think Miscarriages Should Be Brought To Term?

A very bizarre moment occurred during last night’s committee hearing over Iowa House Republicans’ 20-week abortion ban. Republican Representative Shannon Lundgren, during an exchange with Democratic Representative John Forbes, suggested that a woman who suffered a miscarriage would need to carry that fetus to term. Forbes posed the question to Lundgren in relation to his daughter, who is in her 21st week of pregnancy. He said that while everything is going well with the pregnancy, he worried what would happen if she were to miscarriage, whether this new legislation would force her to continue on with the fetus until her own […]

What Mike Carberry Could Bring To A Gubernatorial Race

Mike Carberry, a Johnson County Supervisor, said in a recent interview he was considering beginning an exploratory committee in a run for Governor. That admission sounds like he could be persuaded to run if he received sufficient encouragement. He said his interest in running is growing as a result of the prodding by others, most notably by former Bernie Sanders campaign leaders. Carberry was an active leader in the Iowa Sanders’ movement, serving as a member of the Sanders’ Iowa Environmental Leadership Committee. “Bernie Sanders believes that fossil fuel billionaires’ money in our political system poses the greatest threat to […]

You Did This: Democrats Pumped After Big Win On Obamacare

Democrats and their grassroots supporters’ victory at blocking the Republicans’ Obamacare repeal provides a much-needed boost to morale. Since the election, national Republicans have been riding a wave of enthusiasm as they anticipated turning back the clock on everything Obama. Democrats needed a win and this is a giant one. The odds of saving Obama’s signature health care legislation against a massive Republican majority seemed slim to none. But Republicans didn’t anticipate that the Democrats’ supporters would ignite an immense and enthusiastic resistance to the Trump agenda. This passionate grassroots support for Obamacare exploded across the country following Trump’s election. […]

Omaha, Please Elect Richie Rich So Des Moines Can Get An NFL Team

In the race to be the next economic powerhouse city of the Midwest, the future winner will be crowned by one decisive factor: whether Omaha or Des Moines lands an NFL team. Wait, what? That’s emerged as a key issue for Omaha’s increasingly ridiculous mayoral race, or at least for its most colorful candidate. Taylor Royal, a Donald Trump-loving, 27-year-old business grad being financed by himself and his rich father, has made attracting an NFL team to Omaha a central part of his campaign since last Fall. That’s gotten him some mocking national attention, and now he’s running ads on that and more […]

The State Of Iowa Democrats’ Gubernatorial Primary

After some quiet early months following the 2016 elections, the Democratic field to take on Kim Reynolds (or maybe Ron Corbett) is quickly taking shape. Last week Representative Todd Prichard officially launched an exploratory committee for governor and appears to be all-in. Senator Nate Boulton spoke at Scott County Democrats’ annual fundraiser this weekend and sounds increasingly likely to run. And Andy McGuire, who had perplexed some Iowa political insiders by not announcing already, has reportedly hired Maura Tracy as her campaign manager [update: or perhaps not. That didn’t last long] and is shooting an announcement video this week. This weekend a […]

Oops: Group Runs Ad Thanking David Young For Vote That Didn’t Happen

Central Iowa viewers watching the NCAA tournament last night may have been a wee bit confused when they saw a TV ad congratulating David Young for a vote he didn’t take on a bill he didn’t support. Deadspin found the humorous mixup made by the conservative American Action Network PAC, which somehow ran a number of ads thanking Republican members of Congress for supporting Paul Ryan’s healthcare bill. The legislation was dramatically pulled from a vote Friday afternoon after Ryan decided he didn’t have enough support to pass it, and the White House announced they were moving on from healthcare reform. “Thank […]

Another Mess: Branstad And Reynolds Are Bankrupting Iowa

By the time Terry Branstad leaves for China, Iowa’s treasury may be as empty as his many campaign promises about fiscal responsibility. And Kim Reynolds is about to take on both the political responsibility and near-impossible governing responsibility of cleaning up her and her current boss’ huge mess. The Des Moines Register reported late Friday the disheartening news that Iowa would once again be shelling out hundreds of millions of dollars for the Branstad/Reynolds failed Medicaid privatization scheme. The three private insurers have lobbied the Governor’s office for yet another payout to cover their “catastrophic” losses under the new setup, and […]