It was another day of partisan debate at the statehouse. Advocates with competing plans for tax cuts for business and industry appear to be dug in on their positions. That’s throwing into question whether the legislature will meet its goal of lowering commercial property taxes to attract more jobs to the state.
In critical swing states like Iowa, President Obama’s re-election campaign is already in full gear, with staff and volunteers on the ground. Meanwhile Governor Romney’s had to focus on one primary race after another, as he sews up the nomination. As Iowa Public Radio’s Kate Wells reports, the President’s campaign hopes their head start will make the difference in November.
A sex offender next door at the nursing home? It could pose a very real problem as Iowa’s population ages. After a 95-year-old woman was attacked by a fellow resident at her nursing home, the legislature stepped forward to act. But there's been some heated debate in the Iowa Senate.
After a long debate, the Iowa House today voted to put a limit on how early Iowa schools can start classes in the fall. The tourism industry is behind the bill, including advocates for the Iowa State Fair, who say it’s hard to participate in the annual August event when kids are back in school. But some education advocates resent talking about the school start date when weightier education issues remain unresolved.
Tax Increment Financing, or TIF, is facing reform in the legislature. The House Ways and Means committee approved a bill that would limit what cities and counties could use TIF to do. Supporters say TIF has become a way to reel in businesses at the tax payer’s expense. Opponents of the legislation says it undermines cities and counties ability to fix blighted and underdeveloped areas. Iowa Public Radio's Sandhya Dirks reports.
Some smokers have always saved money by buying loose tobacco and rolling their own cigarettes. Now a number of smoke shops around the state are making it not just cheap but very easy. But the state’s tax police are on the case.
Iowa’s tourism industry has mounted a last minute effort in the Iowa House to stop schools from starting earlier in the fall. Representatives from the lodging and travel sectors pleaded with lawmakers to let them ply their trade from June to late August without interference from schools. But there was bitter division within the Republican majority.
As candidates for President continue to criss-cross Iowa, they are often delivering stump speeches that are very carefully crafted to use just the right words. But how those words are delivered can be just as important as the words they include.
Emily Woodbury, a talk show producer for Iowa Public Radio, worked with communication experts and political operatives to analyze the speech patterns of some of the candidates for the G-O-P nomination for president.
One of the drawbacks to living in the first-voting state is those automated phone messages known as “robocalls", and it’s not just pollsters and presidential contenders on the other line. Robocalls are now a staple of local elections too – and they’re not always civil. Iowa’s Attorney General is investigating one particularly nasty example from this month’s special election. But as Iowa Public Radio’s Kate Wells reports, robocall regulations are all too easy to subvert.
Today, Iowa Public Radio continues its look at African-Americans living in Iowa. So far, reporter Rob Dillard has examined some of the educational and economic challenges they face. Now he turns to the political scene. There have been very few black politicians elected to public office in Iowa – none to statewide office. Rob met with some of these African-American leaders to find out what their time in office has meant to the state.
Republicans flexing new majority muscle were in a triumphant mood as the 84th general assembly convened at the statehouse. But Democrats promised to protect their priorities including health care and education for young children.
Morning Edition Host Sarah McCammon talks with Drake University Professor of Politics Dennis Goldford about what to expect from Iowa's primary election. Goldford says candidates tend to run when they think the tide may turn in their favor.
Planned Parenthood of Eastern Iowa observed its 30th anniversary in Cedar Rapids. Protesters from several states showed up. Anti-abortion activists are unhappy about a new program expanding abortion services to small rural communities.
Two of the Republican candidates for Governor attacked one another’s creditability during the final debate of the Primary season. Bob Vander Plaats questioned Terry Branstad's trustworthiness, while Branstad questioned Vander Plaats understanding of state government. The third candidate Rod Roberts tried to remain above the fray and afterward warned the bickering is dividing the party.
State regulators say wild Fourth of July parties at the Iowa Great Lakes are endangering public safety. Morning Edition Host Sarah McCammon talks with Department of Natural Resources Director Rich Leopold.
The Republican candidates for Governor attacked Chet Culver and then each other, during the second debate of the primary campaign yesterday (Saturday). The three GOP hopefuls agreed on most issues but clashed over party loyalty.
With the Republican and Democratic primaries just over a month away, legislative candidates are busy knocking on doors and handing out literature to prospective voters. But there is no primary race in the heavily Democratic House district 69, despite the retirement of long time Des Moines lawmaker Wayne Ford. Ford didn’t announce his intentions until a week and half before the filing deadline to get on the June ballot. Iowa Public Radio’s Jeneane beck reports some democrats are accusing party leaders of keeping the retirement a secret to avoid a primary race.
President Obama received an enthusiastic welcome when he brought his White House to Main Street tour to Ottumwa. More than two thousand people turned out to cheer the president’s record so far on the economy, even though unemployment persists in southeast Iowa.
An unusually crowded field of candidates is vying for the Republican nomination in Iowa's third congressional district. Seven men are competing to take on incumbent Leonard Boswell in the general election. That's causing headaches when it comes to holding candidate forums.
The Iowa Legislature adjourned over the noon hour today (Tuesday) after putting the finishing touches on a six billion dollar budget. The final compromise includes concessions for the Governor, new incentives for small businesses, and last minute public safety measures.
Work continues at the statehouse on the final pieces of a more than five billion dollar state budget. Lawmakers now have an eye on adjournment sometime this week. Over the weekend, the Senate found time for a long debate about concealed weapons permits.