Sen. Tom Harkin retires from the U.S. Senate in January. He discusses his congressional legacy with Morning Edition, and gives a hint to his life's next chapter.
Clay Masters: It’s Morning Edition on Iowa Public Radio. I’m Clay Masters. U.S. Democratic Senator Tom Harkin is retiring. He’s been a member of congress for 40 years—10 years in the House, and 30 in the Senate. Sen. Harkin is with me to discuss his career, and also what’s next. Hello, Senator.
Sen. Tom Harkin: Good Morning. Good to be with you, Clay.
The head of an Iowa Senate committee looking into the hiring and firing practices of the Branstad administration is warning that the governor’s department heads may face tough prospects for reappointment in the Iowa Senate.
This week, Iowa State University discovered a security breach affecting computer servers that contained Social Security numbers of thousands of students. Host Ben Kieffer speaks with Provost Jonathan Wickert about how ISU is protecting their data against hackers.
Iowa Congressman and Democratic Senate candidate Bruce Braley has apologized for comments he made at a January fundraiser in Texas.
"If you help me win this race, you may have someone with your background, your experience, your voice ... on the Senate Judiciary Committee," Braley said. "Or you might have a farmer from Iowa who never went to law school, never practiced law, serving as the next chair of the Senate Judiciary Committee."
On a strict party-line vote, the Iowa Senate approved legislation backers say will help crack down on employers who stiff workers for their wages. Lawmakers say they hear often from immigrant workers in particular in construction and other industries who say they did the work for contractors but didn’t get paid. Some employers tell a different story.
On a strict party line vote, the Iowa Senate approved a Democratic bill calling for a facility for delinquent girls in Iowa comparable to the boy’s facility in Eldora. But Republicans say a state-run institution isn’t necessary, and the private sector can fill the need.
Former Senate Majority Leader George Mitchell has made a career out of crafting compromise. First in the U.S. Senate, then later brokering peace in Northern Ireland, and finally tackling peace in the Middle East. Host Ben Kieffer talks with Mitchell about Syria and Iran. He’ll also share his views on what is driving the hyper-partisan atmosphere in Washington.