Voters of Iowa's 3rd Congressional District heard from two candidates Friday at the Des Moines Register's soapbox at the Iowa State Fair.
Freshman Rep. David Young took the stage first, and boasted to a crowd of roughly 45 people that he has not cashed a pay check since April, because Congress has failed to pass a budget. The Republican incumbent says his salary will be in escrow until this happens, or until January 3, 2017, which is the last day of the 114th Congress.
"I’m on a bill called 'No Budget, No Pay,' and it simply says this: If you don’t do a federal budget by law annually, well then you should have your pay withheld and you shouldn’t get that paycheck until you get the budget done," says Young. "I am the only member of Congress who has followed up on that, saying what I mean, and meaning what I say. And not taking a federal paycheck from you, the tax payer."
Young says the lack of a budget is at least partly to blame for the $19 trillion national debt. He also spoke of the virtues of compromise, and working across the aisle.
Addy critical of inaction on Zika
About forty minutes after Young finished, independent candidate Claudia Addy delivered her first stump speech. The retired foot and ankle surgeon came out swinging, taking aim at Congress for going into recess without appropriating funds to fight the Zika virus.
"I would call on the CDC, the Centers of Disease Control, the NIH, National Institutes of Health, to contact the companies, biomedical or the institutions in this country that do produce virus vaccines,"says Addy. "This is a particular virus, that’s not particularly difficult. We did all the ground work for virology back in the days of AIDS, so we know viruses inside and out. "
Addy also criticized Young, calling him a "crybaby," who abandoned his convictions by not voting for a bill that would protect LGBT employees from discrimination by federal contractors. She then described Democrat Jim Mowrer as a carpetbagger, and seemed to imply the lives of Mowrer’s children have been disrupted because the candidate moved his family to Des Moines so he could run for Congress in Iowa's 3rd District.
Iowa's 3rd District comprises 16 counties in southwest Iowa, and includes both Des Moines and Council Bluffs. Of the district's 489,282 active registered voters, nearly 33 percent are Democrats, 35 percent are Republicans, and almost 32 percent identify as independent or with a third party.