The Lawsuit Fight To Save Iowa’s Voting Rights

Iowa Democrats owe a debt of gratitude to the Asian and Latino Coalition, League of United Latin American Citizens (LULAC) of Iowa, and Iowa State University student Taylor Blair for continuing their fight to overturn the Republicans’ 2017 voter suppression ID law. In May of 2018, LULAC and Blair, assisted by Priorities USA, successfully sued Iowa’s Secretary of State Paul Pate, preventing Pate from fully implementing the ID law. The Asian and Latino Coalition helped initiate the process, and got LULAC involved to lead it forward. The LULAC/Blair suit significantly aided Democrats in 2018 elections by maintaining important absentee ballot […]

Ankeny 8th Grader Organizes Des Moines Youth Climate Strike

This Friday, March 15, tens of thousands of the world’s students will strike for climate in 80 different countries. This is predicted to be the largest global environmental protest in history. It was all ignited by Greta Thunberg, a 15-year-old Swedish student, last summer. Thunberg has become a world-renown climate activist after speaking at the United Nations Climate Conference in Poland and the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland. She has shamed the world’s leaders by calling out their lack of action on the climate crisis. Her brutal honesty about the catastrophic threat of climate change has inspired climate activists […]

Iowa Wind Energy Under Attack By Disinformation Campaign

A very small but vocal group, Coalition for Rural Property Rights, is attacking Iowa’s clean renewable wind industry. This coalition of anti-wind energy fanatics have convinced some Republicans in the Iowa Senate to sponsor a bill that could severely damage Iowa’s wind industry. The bill SF 361 sponsored by Waylon Brown (R-St Ansgar) would increase the minimum distance a wind turbine can be placed from an adjacent property line, increasing the distance to 1,250 feet. It seems designed to be a way to kill the wind industry. Setting unreasonably large setbacks will severely limit the potential sites available for future […]

The Green New Deal Isn’t New. Obama’s Already Proven It Can Work

The Green New Deal introduced by Representative Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-NY) and Senator Ed Markey (D-MA) has an inspiring goal of net-zero greenhouse gas emissions within a decade. The resolution proposes to reach that goal with an audacious plan to rapidly transition to renewables. In addition to decarbonizing the American economy, it simultaneously proposes making that transition with a focus on social justice. Behind the scenes, economists, scientists and political staffers are attempting to find the best ways to do it. In 2009, President Obama and Congress passed the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act that leveraged $90 billion dollars in loans, […]

Is Reynolds’ Voting Rights Proposal A Sham?

Democratic legislators and the public should be very suspicious of Governor Reynolds’ proposed constitutional amendment to restore former felons’ voting rights. There are several glaring reasons to distrust her proposal as simply a public relations stunt. She can claim she supports restoring former felons’ voting rights knowing that it’s likely to run into a buzz saw from Republican lawmakers. The public must ask Reynolds why she publicly claims to believe in redemption but refuses to exercise her executive authority as Governor to automatically restore former felons’ voting rights. “Let’s begin that process now. I believe Iowans recognize the power of […]

GOP’s 2020 Plan: Shout “Socialist!” At Democrats

Republicans are beginning their 2020 messaging early with campaign attacks that paint all Democrats as socialists. They plan to demonize Democrats as crazy leftists out to destroy America. They have focused on the Green New Deal (GND) resolution sponsored by Representatives Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez and Ed Markey as evidence that all Democrats have suddenly gone socialist. The GOP is quickly developing their 2020 national playbook theme that all Democrats have abruptly lost their minds and have shape-shifted into Marxists. The truth is the GND is simply a very bold roadmap pointing toward aggressively addressing climate change while simultaneously promoting social justice […]

Iowa’s Newest Medicaid Insurer Rents Palatial Office Space

Why is Iowa Total Care, the state’s newest Medicaid insurer, renting the most expensive office space in metro Des Moines? Not only will their new West Des Moines Westfield Campus offices be the most expensive in the metro, they will be paying 37.5% higher rent than the average in greater Des Moines. Their offices in the Jordan Creek development are rated as the 42nd highest rental in the country according to JLL an international realty research company. The Westfield Campus includes heated underground parking, a food truck court, a rooftop patio, a coffee bar and an amphitheater. Iowa Total Care’s […]

From CAFOs To Fireworks, Iowa Republicans Dismantle Local Control

Republicans have long preached that the best government is the one closest to the people. Based on this basic conservative principle, one might expect that they would promote the autonomy of local governments from the overreach of federal or state rules and regulations. Historically, the GOP has been an advocate for local control and has been critical of using state and federal power to overturn local government decisions. However, Republicans in many red states have reversed their long-standing support for local control as blue state cities and counties have flexed their muscles by pursuing progressive agendas. The Iowa GOP has […]

GOP Court Scheme Is “Largest Judicial Power Grab Ever Attempted”

Republican legislators have introduced bills in the Iowa House (HSB 110) and the Iowa Senate (SSB 1101) that are a direct attack on Iowa’s merit-based judicial selection process. The Iowa group Justice Not Politics describes the proposed changes as the largest judicial power grab ever attempted in Iowa. Iowa’s current merit-based judicial selection process significantly removes politics from the choice of judges. The intent of the Republican changes is to overturn Iowa’s impartial selection system and replace it with handpicked political appointees of the governor’s party. Currently 8 of the 16 members of the nominating commission for Iowa Supreme Court […]

Iowa Republicans Take Aim At Loosening Even More Gun Laws

This week’s Moral Monday at the Capitol focused on several proposed Republican gun bills as well as the consequences of the ones they passed in 2017. The discussion was led by Representative Tim Kacena (D-Sioux City) and Scott Peterson, Chair of Iowans for Gun Safety. Over a dozen Democratic legislators attended and participated in the noon meeting. Republicans in the Iowa House and Senate are continuing their goal of increasing the availability of guns and weakening gun control measures. They have again introduced a constitutional amendment that poses a serious danger to the public. It goes beyond the Second Amendment […]