Iowans Start Planning Gun Safety Rallies For March 24

Rallies planned by Iowa organizations to speak out on gun violence are quickly attracting attention and interest. A “March For Our Lives” rally will be held in conjunction with national marches on March 24 in Des Moines at the Capitol, organized by Progress Iowa (the Facebook event page is here). Well over 2,000 have expressed interest in attending after just one day of the event’s creation. A similar rally and march is also planned in Waterloo on that day by Americans for Democratic Action (Facebook event here). Junior high and high school students in Iowa City yesterday held an impromptu […]

Students Warn GOP Budget May Be “Final Nail In The Coffin” For College Affordability

Iowans gathered in a Statehouse conference room this morning to sound off in front of legislators about another year of deep budget cuts implemented by the Republican majority. Half of the speakers at the public hearing were college students from one of the three regent universities. At issue was Republicans’ Senate File 2117, which cuts about $34 million from the current fiscal year to address the continuing revenue shortfalls. Democrats have assailed runaway tax credit programs and tax cuts as causing the budget problems. The largest mid-year budget cuts come from higher education. $14.56 million was originally planned to be […]

Iowa Caucus-Goers Need To Be On Guard For Russian Tricks In 2020

The release of Special Counsel Robert Mueller’s indictment of 13 Russians charged with interfering with the American election added extra proof to what many already suspected and knew of Russia’s 2016 meddling. The 37-page indictment added plenty of new details to the far-reaching efforts of Russian operatives’ efforts to use social media to turn Americans against themselves. The most disturbing aspect of it may be just how easy it was for a small group of dedicated people with some money to implement it – and the fact that there’s little to stop them from carrying it out again in 2020. […]

Iowa Democrats Release Initial Candidate Caucus Result Numbers

The Iowa Democratic Party has released additional information and numbers from the Iowa Caucus held on February 5. While the vast majority of precincts did not break into preference groups for the governor’s race or congressional races, some did, and we now know how some of those turned out. Overall, the party reports that 4,944 delegates were elected on caucus night, 82% of which have had their names entered into the party’s database. Only 109 precincts broke out into preference groups, which account for 6.49% of all precincts. Some of those precincts were larger than others, however, and 582 delegates were […]

Joni Ernst Got $3.1 Million In NRA Money, Made Gun Laws More Dangerous

Iowa Senator Joni Ernst is a national darling of the NRA’s effort to eliminate any and all meaningful gun safety laws that might keep children like those at Parkland, Florida from getting blown to pieces on a regular school day. Ernst received over $3.1 million in financial support from the NRA, the seventh-most of any senator, according to an analysis of campaign spending last October. Money from the gun rights organization poured into Iowa to help her get past the finish line in her race for Senate against Bruce Braley in 2014. The NRA got what they paid for with […]

David Young Has Thoughts, Prayers And $700,000 Of NRA Cash

The nation is coming to terms today with yet another horrific mass shooting at a school, this time in Parkland, Florida. Will anything substantive on gun laws change now that we’ve had our 18th mass shooting in just the first month and a half of 2018? As long as Iowa Congressman David Young is office, that answer will be no. As the New York Times found in a story during the aftermath of the Las Vegas massacre, Young has received the third-most financial support from the NRA than any other member of the U.S. House – $707,662 through mid-last year […]

Ep11: 3rd District Democratic Primary & Interview with Austin Frerick

 The six Democratic candidates in Iowa’s 3rd Congressional District held a forum on Tuesday night this week. the Iowa Starting Line sat down with several of the students involved and who attended to get their reaction to the field. We also interview Austin Frerick, one of those 3rd District Democratic candidates, and discuss his campaign that has largely focused on wealth inequality and anti-trust issues. Let us know what you think about this episode by calling (515) 635-5076 and leaving a voice message that we may use on a future episode. Callers can discuss any topic they choose and […]

Iowa Republicans’ Copy-And-Paste ALEC Constitutional Convention Bill

Iowa Republicans are pushing a sneakily dangerous resolution through the Iowa Legislature that could upend the nation’s constitution in unpredictable ways if successful. A Senate subcommittee recently moved forward Senate Joint Resolution 8 to full committee, which would add Iowa to a national movement calling for a convention of all 50 states to amend the U.S. Constitution. It’s part of an effort by the American Legislative Exchange Council (ALEC) and Iowa’s bill is literally word-for-word the same as their proposed legislation, as Progress Iowa discovered recently. Compare the introduction of both documents for yourself. Here’s the text of Iowa’s Senate […]

The Most Laughable Part Of Kim Reynolds’ New Tax Cut Plan

Governor Kim Reynolds released her wide-ranging tax cut plan earlier today, which included a total of $1.7 billion in tax reductions for Iowa businesses and taxpayers. In-depth details of the proposal have not yet been made public, and the initial plan put out today essentially amounted to a bullet point press release of all the potential positive aspects of the bill. The tax rate for the wealthiest Iowans will be slashed by about 23%, from 8.98% down to 6.9% – it will also now be applied to only people making $150,000 or more (currently it’s about $73,000 or more). Middle […]