Whose Climate Change Plan Will Stand Out In The Debates?

Iowa Democrats evaluating presidential candidates in this week’s debate will weigh a number of issues and factors in making their choice. How big a role will climate change play in the debate, and who will be the best climate candidate? Addressing climate change has become one of the major policy issues that has leap-frogged ahead of nearly every other topic for Iowa caucus attendees. The June CNN/Des Moines Register poll has climate change as the number two priority for likely Iowa caucus-goers. The poll asked caucus participants what issues their candidate must have to gain their support. “Recognition of climate […]

Bernie Sanders’ Iowa Campaign Helps Rally Local Unions

Photo from Bernie Sanders in a march with striking McDonald’s workers in Cedar Rapids three weeks ago. In a show of solidarity with labor, Bernie Sanders’ Iowa campaign used their extensive email list to help rally union members in Southeast Iowa for a march this weekend. The campaign sent around emails encouraging Iowans to show up to the “No to NAFTA 2.0” rally in Keokuk on Sunday. Abshir Omar, Sander’s Iowa Political Coordinator, said union members gathered for a march to protest President Donald Trump’s proposed changes to NAFTA. He said several unions showed up to the march, including the […]

Tulsi Gabbard Makes Iowa TV Buy

Congresswoman Tulsi Gabbard is set to go up on the Iowa airwaves this week, according to a media buy schedule that Starting Line has seen. Her campaign is making a statewide ad buy worth around $42,000 from June 25 to June 30. Hers will be the second presidential campaign to launch Iowa TV ads this year; John Delaney has been running a steady set of commercials since last year. A Super PAC backing Jay Inslee also ran some climate change-themed ads in support of Inslee earlier this year. Gabbard is spending close to $22,000 in the Cedar Rapids market, advertising […]

How Bono’s ONE Campaign Is Organizing In Iowa

Foreign aid is often used more in political campaigns as a punching bag than as an applause line, but more Iowans may be pressing their candidates and elected officials on the subject if the ONE campaign is successful here. ONE, a non-partisan advocacy organization co-founded by Bono, works to end extreme poverty and preventable diseases, particularly in Africa. They’re currently running a grassroots campaign in Iowa to get voters to contact their senators and urge them to support the Global Fund and to maintain America’s leadership in the global AIDS fight. They have volunteers in Des Moines, Iowa City and […]

Joni Ernst Doesn’t Want To Be Your Senator

Joni Ernst is running for reelection to the U.S. Senate in 2020. She just isn’t necessarily running to be your senator. In her announcement speech last weekend, as well as in subsequent tweets this past week, Ernst laid out her central rationale for another six years in the Senate: fighting and defeating Democrats and the left. “Make no mistake: the forces of the radical, socialist left are on the march across our state and our nation,” Ernst said at her campaign kick-off. “We must – we must – do our part to defeat them! I’m asking all of you, can […]

Iowa Fire Fighters Union Endorse Biden

The Iowa Professional Fire Fighters union has voted to endorse former Vice President Joe Biden for the 2020 Iowa Caucuses. “Vice President Biden is honored and humbled to have the endorsement of the Iowa Professional Fire Fighters. Every day, Iowa’s firefighters put their lives on the line in communities across our state,” said Biden’s Iowa State Director Jake Braun. “As he has throughout his life, Vice President Biden remains committed to ensuring fire fighters have the resources, tools and support they need to return home safely to their families.” “Iowa firefighters run toward danger to protect the communities they serve […]

Trump Rethinks Refinery Waivers After Pushback From Farmers, Democrats

Several reports late this week revealed that Donald Trump has ordered EPA Administrator Andrew Wheeler and Secretary of Agriculture Sonny Perdue to reconsider their approach to small refinery ethanol waivers. President Trump was in Iowa earlier this month to celebrate the year-round sales of E15 and to fundraise for his reelection campaign, but received blowback from farmers about the high number of small refinery waivers being granted. His administration has continually allowed oil companies, even ones operating sizable refineries, to not mix ethanol into their fuel production, thus limiting demand for ethanol. While many corn farmers were excited about the […]

Newman Abuissa Lends New Perspective To 2nd District Race

Newman Abuissa has never run for a political position before, other than lobbying fellow Democrats to serve as a convention delegate during the 2004 presidential election. But a lack of political chops is part of the appeal of his unconventional candidacy to represent Iowa’s 2nd Congressional District, Abuissa said. “I am a grassroots candidate,” Abuissa, 58, told Starting Line. “I think there’s a need for dialogue and debate, and I think it’s important that we do that in a democratic country and try to be a model for the rest of the globe.” He was undeterred by the fact Rita […]

Candidates React To Court Ruling On ‘Domestic Gag Rule’

Yesterday, the Trump Administration got one step closer to restricting abortion access in the United States at the federal level. A three-judge panel on the 9th Circuit Court of Appeals, covering the Western part of the United States, ruled that the federal government can block federal grant money from health care providers if they offer information about abortion or have family planning services in facilities where doctors also perform abortions. In response, ten of the Democratic candidates running for president made statements on Twitter as of early Friday afternoon reiterating their support for Planned Parenthood and their opposition to this […]

Iowa Women Face Longer Travel Times To Abortion Services, Limiting Access

Despite recent efforts to limit it, abortion is still legal in Iowa up to 20 weeks. However, the procedure isn’t easily accessible to all Iowans. Iowa has eight Planned Parenthood clinics, five of which provide abortion services. There are also a few other clinics that provide the service. But these providers are concentrated mostly in the central and east-central parts of the state with locations in Des Moines, Urbandale, Ames, Iowa City, Cedar Falls, Cedar Rapids and Council Bluffs. This means people in the northern, western and southern parts of the state have to travel, sometimes hours, to access abortion […]