DNC: Debate The Debate On Climate

The Democratic National Committee (DNC) is engaged in a peculiar debate. Since April, there has been a growing grassroots crusade by such groups as the Sunrise Movement, 350.org, Greenpeace, Friends of the Earth and Credo Action demanding the DNC sponsor a presidential debate focused exclusively on climate change. The DNC leadership has pushed back, pointing to the number of critical single issues that could be individually debated. In June, DNC Chair Tom Perez argued that devoting debates to single issues, especially those issues pushed by single candidates, was unfair. “We don’t have enough debates to do that,” Perez said. The […]

A Look Inside The Fight To Save Iowa Voting Rights

The battle to overturn portions of the Republicans’ 2017 voter ID law raged on in a Polk County District Court trial several weeks ago. The League of United Latin American Citizens (LULAC) and Iowa State University student Taylor Blair are challenging several key portions of the law. If LULAC and Blair are successful, the worst aspects of the law may be overturned. The voter ID law restricted Iowa voting by requiring very specific, government-issued voter identification at the polls, changes in early voting and absentee voting requirements. The June 2019 trial is a continuation of the suit filed in May […]

Reynolds’ DNR Concealing Real Extent Of Iowa Water Contamination At Lakes

Each week from Memorial Day to Labor Day, the Iowa Department of Natural Resources (IDNR) takes water samples from Iowa public park beaches. They test for dangerous bacterial contaminants and post those beaches that are unsafe for recreational swimming. However, there are serious concerns that the standard the IDNR is using to test the water fails to adequately alert the public to the dangerous bacterial contamination. Governor Reynolds and her IDNR are putting Iowa family’s health at risk by refusing to follow the EPA health standards for Iowa recreational waters. E. Coli and Microcystins This is the third week we […]

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 […]

Where Was Joni Ernst’s Squealing Over Tariffs?

Making Washington squeal was a major theme used by Joni Ernst in campaigning for the Senate in 2014. She has continued to claim that she is holding Washington accountable by declaring a monthly, “Joni’s Squeal Award.” She has used that squeal award to highlight numerous trivial spending issues and attack various Democratic proposals. Where is her squealing fury over Trump’s destructive tariffs? If Ernst is serious about bringing to light Washington policies that damage Iowans, why is she failing to call out the unbearable tariff pain inflicted on Iowa farmers, businesses, consumers and communities?  The massive costs imposed on Iowans […]

Iowa Water Festival Planned To Fight Iowa’s Water Quality Emergency

The first Iowa Water Festival is this Sunday, June 23 from 11:30-2:30 at the Izaak Walton League and Water Works Park in Des Moines. The clean water advocacy organizers have a lineup of speakers, educators and scientists dedicated to improving Iowa’s deteriorating water quality. It is a free public event. The Izaak Walton League will be providing lunch for $15. The urgency of addressing Iowa water quality was reinforced last week as the state was rated number one in the nation in the production of number two. The Raccoon River, one of Iowa’s most polluted rivers, runs through Water Works […]

Trump’s Real Russian Collusion: NATO

The real collusion between President Donald Trump and Russian President Vladimir Putin is evident in Trump’s pro-Russian actions across the world. President Trump’s relentless attacks on NATO, his promotion of far-right nationalist politicians, his defense of authoritarian leaders, and his assaults that weaken the European Union all directly benefit Putin. Trump’s actions and statements advance Putin’s goals of dividing Europe and weakening NATO. Robert Mueller explained that his investigation “established that the Russian government perceived it would benefit from a Trump presidency… it would benefit electorally from information stolen and released through Russian efforts, [though] the investigation did not establish […]

Can Iowa Democrats Avoid A Family Feud In 2020?

Can the Iowa Democratic family avoid a repeat of the 2016 family feud that seriously fractured party unity?Because the Sanders-Clinton race was so close that year, there was a plethora of hard feelings and theories about unfair or a rigged result in the 2016 caucuses. Some argue that the deep division dampened support for Hillary Clinton and resulted in Trump’s election. The “ugly ghosts of division” of 2016 lasted longer in Iowa than nearly any other state. It took more than two years to mend the bitter divide created by the 2016 fight. The 2018 midterm successes did wonders to […]

Joni Ernst Blames The Corp, Not The Climate, For Iowa Flooding

In a May 5th guest article in the Des Moines Register, Senator Joni Ernst blamed the Army Corps of Engineers for lack of timely warning prior to the epic Missouri River flooding. She claimed we need better communication and warning about potential flood risk. Ernst’s call for more communication is in sharp contrast to her refusal to engage in the debate about the cause of these extreme weather events. Iowa climate scientists have been warning for years about the increasing flood risk to Iowa. Iowa now ranks fourth in the nation in the number of floods since 1988. With record-setting […]

Iowa Student Activists Raise Voices For Climate Action

Certain issues reach a political tipping point when timing, events or actions captures the public’s attention. One of the reasons that action on climate has skyrocketed to the top of the Democrats’ priority list is the actions of the world’s youth. In March, over one million students held climate strikes in over 123 countries calling for urgent climate action. In April, another climate activist group, the Extinction Rebellion, nearly brought London to a standstill with nearly ten days of protests. Student groups are active in promoting the New Green Deal in cities across the country. The Sunrise Movement, a group […]