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A community blog about Iowa politics
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    All but one of the 29 Republicans who will serve in the Iowa Senate for the next two years elected their leaders on Friday, changing little from the group that led the minority caucus during the last legislative session. Bill Dix moves from Senate minority leader to majority leader. Jack Whitver moves from minority whip […]

    The post After campaigning on lies, Iowa Senate Republicans still won’t lay out agenda appeared first on Bleeding Heartland.


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    The Iowa legislature’s 2017 session begins today with minor adjustments to business in the state House but massive changes in the Senate. After ten years of Democratic control, the last six with a one-seat majority, the upper chamber now contains 29 Republicans, 20 Democrats, and one independent (former Republican David Johnson). I enclose below details […]

    The post Who’s who in the Iowa Senate for 2017 appeared first on Bleeding Heartland.


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    A Republican bill that would have made Iowa courts far less accessible to ordinary people will die in an Iowa Senate subcommittee, GOP State Senator Charles Schneider told Bleeding Heartland on February 25. Bill Brauch, former director of the Consumer Protection Division in the Iowa Attorney General’s Office, explained here how the so-called “loser pays” […]

    The post Key Iowa Senate Republican: “Loser pays” bill going nowhere appeared first on Bleeding Heartland.


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    One of the anti-abortion community’s top legislative priorities, a bill declaring that life begins at conception, appears likely to perish in this week’s “funnel.” Social conservatives introduced companion “personhood” bills in the Iowa House and Senate two weeks ago. Under legislative rules, all non-appropriations bills must pass at least one committee in one chamber by […]

    The post “Personhood” in trouble as Iowa legislative deadline approaches appeared first on Bleeding Heartland.


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    Republicans have already inflicted immeasurable harm on Iowans during the 2017 legislative session, taking rights away from more than 180,000 workers, slashing funding for higher education and human services, and approving the third-smallest K-12 school funding increase in four decades. The worst part is, they’re nowhere near finished. Iowa Senate Minority Leader Rob Hogg has […]

    The post What you need to know to fight the next four terrible Iowa Republican bills appeared first on Bleeding Heartland.


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    Iowa Senate Appropriations Committee Chair Charles Schneider has pledged not to include language dismantling the Des Moines Water Works in any spending bill this year. Legislative action to transfer authority over the Des Moines Water Works from an independent board of trustees to area city councils was once seen as nearly a sure thing, thanks […]

    The post Top Iowa Senate appropriator: No Water Works language in my spending bills appeared first on Bleeding Heartland.


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    A comprehensive medical cannabis bill received strong bipartisan support in the Iowa Senate Appropriations Committee today and could pass the full chamber as early as tomorrow. The big question now is whether key House Republicans will accept a giant step toward relief for thousands of sick and suffering Iowans. When a broad medical cannabis bill […]

    The post Broad medical cannabis bill moving fast in Iowa Senate appeared first on Bleeding Heartland.


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    Times won’t be equally tough all over when Republican cuts take effect in the justice systems budget. The Attorney General’s Office receives only about 3 percent of state funding in this area (totaling some $559 million for the next fiscal year) but will absorb about 84 percent of the $2.9 million in cuts Republican lawmakers […]

    The post Iowa Republicans slash funds for sexual violence and domestic abuse survivors appeared first on Bleeding Heartland.


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    Governor Kim Reynolds is considering at least four Republican farmers–all current or former state lawmakers– to replace Bill Northey as Iowa secretary of agriculture, James Q. Lynch reported for the Cedar Rapids Gazette today. In addition to State Representative Pat Grassley and former State Representative Annette Sweeney, whom Bleeding Heartland discussed here, State Senators Dan […]

    The post More names surface as contenders for Iowa secretary of agriculture appeared first on Bleeding Heartland.


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    “There’s not one Republican in this state that could win an election under the rules they gave us,” asserted AFSCME Council 61 President Danny Homan after the first round of public union recertification elections ended this week. He was only slightly exaggerating. A review of the last two general election results shows that Iowa’s capitol […]

    The post If all Iowa candidates had to win under rules Republicans forced on unions appeared first on Bleeding Heartland.


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    State Representative Pat Grassley tweeted this afternoon that he will seek re-election in Iowa House district 50. The six-term Republican lawmaker was widely seen as a likely 2018 candidate for Iowa secretary of agriculture, since the current office-holder Bill Northey will leave the state upon confirmation to a senior U.S. Department of Agriculture post. Grassley […]

    The post Pat Grassley not running for Iowa secretary of agriculture appeared first on Bleeding Heartland.


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    Iowa will soon have its first new secretary of agriculture since 2007. The U.S. Senate confirmed Bill Northey on February 27 as undersecretary for farm production and conservation at the U.S. Department of Agriculture. He should have been confirmed months ago; senators on the Agriculture Committee unanimously endorsed his nomination in October. But Senator Ted […]

    The post Weekend thread: Statewide candidate edition appeared first on Bleeding Heartland.


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    Matt Chapman reports on the lengthy Iowa Senate debate over a bill that is terrible on many levels. You can watch the proceedings on video here, beginning around 9:07:30. -promoted by desmoinesdem Republicans approved Senate File 2311, the omnibus energy bill, on March 6 after yet another late-into-the-evening debate this session. I guess the logic […]

    The post Terrible Iowa Senate energy bill returns – Michael Breitbach edition appeared first on Bleeding Heartland.


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    Despite support from his predecessor Bill Northey, Iowa Secretary of Agriculture Mike Naig needed four ballots to secure his party’s nomination at the June 16 Republican Party of Iowa state convention. Governor Kim Reynolds appointed Northey’s longtime deputy to serve out his term in March. Naig finished far ahead of the other four Republicans running […]

    The post GOP nominates Mike Naig for ag secretary, Jeremy Davis for treasurer appeared first on Bleeding Heartland.