All Posts Tagged With: "Iowa Politics"

The Stench Of Impropriety: Tom Harkin, Al Franken, Herbalife International, And The F.R.E.E.D Act (Part 1 of 2)

Harkin and Herbalife

Every reasonable American with a pulse knows that much of what goes on in the undercurrents of Washington D.C is disturbing. It is not often, however, that one proposed piece of legislation encapsulates nearly everything that is wrong in our Federal Government, unfortunately that is exactly the case with Senate file 481.

The name of this bill is the Federal Response to Eliminate Eating Disorders, or the F.R.E.E.D Act. It is sponsored by Sen. Tom Harkin (D-IA), co-sponsored by Sen. Al Franken (D-MN) and Sen. Amy Klobuchar (D-MN), and was introduced in the Senate on March 3, 2011. If you have ever wondered what Tom Harkin and Al Franken have been up to lately you are about to find out not just …


Our First Baby: TCR Iowa!

We’ve finally given birth to our first regional site “The Conservative Reader: Iowa“.  Henceforth, the site you are currently reading will be focused on international and national topics, and stories that are specifically tied to regional topics will appear in an appropriate regional site.

We expect that there may be times when a regional story will warrant national focus, and as such we may promote the story either by reference or by elevating it to the national site.  For instance, if a story related to Illinois Governor Rod Blagojavich’s improprieties in selecting a Senator to replace Obama were to appear in an Illinois TCR site (we don’t have one yet), it would likely get placement on the national site, or at least promotion …


Election Updates For Iowans

Following are updates on races that are particularly important to Iowa:

Tom Harkin (D) is reelected to the US Senate.

Bruce Braley (D) reelected as Iowa District 1 US Congressman.

Dave Loebsack (D) reelected as Iowa District 2 US Congressman.

Leonard Boswell (D) reelected as Iowa District 3 US Congressman.

Tom Latham (R) is reelected as Iowa District 4 US Congressman.

Steve King (R) reelected as Iowa District 5 US Congressman.

Iowa Constitution Amendment passed.

Bill McCarthy (D) reelected as Polk Country Sheriff.

The Iowa State House and Senate races are still not all settled at this writing.  However, it appears that Democrats like have a majority in both houses again.…


TCR Endorsements: US House District 3 Iowa

Yes, I am specifically attached to this race since I live in the district currently served by Leonard Boswell (D).

Leonard came into office in 1997. When he first entered Congress, he promised that he would serve no more than 4 terms. He has served 6 already. He votes along party lines over 95% of the time. Although he has supported President Bush on some key bills that served a more conservative agenda, he also voted with Bush on the $700 Billion Bailout. Reviewing his record, he appears to be both socially and fiscally moderate to slightly liberal.

Kim Schmett (R) has served as the chief administrative law judge with the Iowa Department of Inspections and Appeals, the investigations division administrator for the Iowa Department …


What A Week: Party Unity

On the Republican side, the increase in McCain’s position in the polls, slow as it is in coming, is a reflection of the unity that is starting to build within the Republican Party.  I think what you’re really seeing is that as the various state conventions come to a close, and people have finished jockeying for position to attend the Republican National Convention, that the dust is settling, people are getting into position for victory and are finally realizing the inevitable: John McCain is going to be the Republican Candidate… there’s little that could change that now.  People are seeing more and more clearly the need to get past the differences and work toward victory in November, both in the Oval Office and in …


Iowa State Fair – Day 1

Today was the first day of the Iowa State Fair.  I had intended to participate in the early morning event (but slept in instead) to break the record for the most corn-dogs eaten by the most people at the same time in the same place.  Sounds like it was a rip-roaring success, with over 15,000 people showing up, only 10,000 of which were able to enter the Grand Stand, and I’m not sure, but I think only about 8,400 corn-dogs were available.  We listened to the actual “Chomp!” on the radio, and it sounded like a lot of fun!

All 15,000 or so were admiteed to the fair for free.  By late this afternoon, I was still meeting people who had been there since the …


Iowa Smoking Ban Remains In Effect

As mentioned here last week, Polk County District Court Judge Douglas Staskal made his ruling on the request to temporarily block Iowa’s new smoking ban on Monday.  The ruling left the door open for bar owners to to proceed with the case.  According to a story on the Des Moines Register web site:

Staskal found it “safe to conclude that the plaintiffs have at least a reasonable chance of succeeding on these claims because, on first impression, the exemptions appear to make the statute as a whole substantially under inclusive in relation to its stated purpose.”

Basically, the bar owners did not provide enough evidence that the law was causing irreperable harm:

Staskal’s 10-page ruling says complaints of lost business due to the


Iowa Smoking Ban In Court

Bar owners got their first shot in court to get a stay ordered on the 2008 Iowa Smoking Ban.  Some bar owners say they are losing business, some preparing to shut down for good.  Although one admitted that gasoline prices and other economic issues may be impacting business as well, there should be no doubt that some patrons who enjoy smoking and drinking with their pals probably figure they can spend less buying their own six-pack and drink at home where they can at least smoke (as long they they don’t have a daycare business operating out of the home).

George Eichhorn, fresh off of a Republican primary loss for the honor of running against Democrat Tom Harkin, is representing the group members of the …


Working From The Grassroots

Tonight I attended my first Polk County (Iowa) Republican Central Committee meeting. I have never been at this level of politics (okay, 2008 continues to be a year of firsts for me in local politics), and it was more interesting than I expected.

I won’t get into a lot of details about the meeting, except that it was half speeches (which was good, actually) and half business. Fund-raising is definitely a high priority for the party, along with voter turnout.

I was impressed with the variety of people there, various ages, ethnicities, and walks of life. We definitely have a party with a cross-section of the community that takes the time to participate.

Just to clarify, the Central Committee is made up of as many …


Reforming The Process In Iowa – For Republicans

When I attended the Iowa State Republican Convention, one thing that I found odd was the district level meetings that were held on Friday night to select district delegates and alternates to the National Convention, electors to go to Washington if our candidate for President wins in Iowa, and representatives to the State Nominating Committee (who select the slate of additional at-large delegates and alternates to the National Convention).  What I could not understand was, why we didn’t do this in April when we had the actual District Convention.

Although I still don’t have the answer to why it works this way, Ted Sporer published some recommendations to reform our process, which included centralizing the planning for the State Convention (that is, have the …


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