We are pleased to announce that Gov. Mike Huckabee will keynote the 14th annual Iowa Faith & Freedom Coalition Spring KickOff. The event will be held on Tuesday, April 8th at Point of Grace Church (305 NE Dartmoor Drive, Waukee, IA). This year’s event will feature a reception at 5:30 pm, followed by the program at 6:30 pm. In addition to Gov. Huckabee, we are expecting many of the candidates running for the U.S. Senate as well as candidates running for the U.S. House in Congressional districts 1, 2 and 3. A capacity crowd of 500 to 750 activists are expected to be in attendance.
Governor Huckabee was the winner of the 2008 Iowa Precinct Caucuses and is the host of a weekly show, Huckabee, on Fox News. The Governor continues to be a strong advocate for American exceptionalism and the protection of the unborn.
“Gov. Huckabee will bring a message of optimism while stressing the urgency to elect constitutional conservatives here in Iowa this fall. We look forward to his perspectives on abusive IRS practices and new regulations that threaten free speech as outlined in our first amendment. The governor’s remarks are sure to be a call to action going into the 2014 election,” Steve Scheffler, president of Iowa Faith & Freedom Coalition stated.”
We also have another exciting addition to the program. We have invited the U.S. Senate candidates and the U.S. congressional candidates to attend. We will give each of them a brief period of time to address the crowd. They will also have the opportunity to have their own candidate literature table on display before and after the event so that you the voter can learn more about each candidate.
This will be an exciting time to network with friends and candidates as we enter this crucial election year. Refreshments will be provided. Load up your car and bring others with you. We are using this event as a fundraiser to raise the necessary resources to fund our 2014 voter projects–including the VoterTrak program. This project is the most sophisticated of its kind used by any pro-family organization in the country.
For further details on how to RSVP, see the flyer below.
In September, 2010, we applied for a Section 501(c)(4) tax exemption with the Internal Revenue Service (IRS), and they immediately started “slow walking” and abusing us for the past three and a half years, as they have done with Tea Party Groups. Lois Lerner, the employee of the IRS, who eventually took the “fifth amendment” indicating that her action might amount to criminal activity, apologized for the abuse that she gave to the Tea Parties, but her apology had no substance. It meant nothing.
The IRS is now increasing its abuse of the Tea Parties and of us and of all Americans by setting forth proposed regulation which will force us into silence, but allow the labor unions to be completely free to do whatever they want to do or say during campaign seasons.
Because labor unions have been exempted from requirements placed on 501(c)4 organizations, they will be free to shamelessly attack and smear conservatives and Christians all over the airways, and under the proposed changes, we would be silenced. Imagine what would happen in November – how the American people would vote – if they saw only anti-conservative, anti-Christian ads for two months on TV.
All of this is attempted, notwithstanding that all of us have a Constitutional Right to free speech, and it is ”political free speech” that is particularly protected by the first amendment to the US Constitution.
The Faith & Freedom Coalition, both at the national level and right here in Iowa, are doing everything we can to stop these regulations. However, we can’t take this fight to the American people, and force the IRS to change course, without your much needed help today.
There are Three things that you can do to help us today.
The 2014 Iowa Caucuses will be held on January 21, 2014 at 7 p.m. This caucus is going to be a crucial one. This may be one of the most important caucuses we have ever had, even though Iowans won’t be casting their votes for president. The Iowa Faith and Freedom Coalition and The FAMiLY LEADER understand the importance of the 2014 caucuses and because of that, we have decided to partner together to ensure that our pro-family values like life, marriage, religious liberty, etc. are elevated and defended.
Visit the 2014 Caucus to Convention page for all the up-to-date information you need to attend caucuses on Tuesday and a training webinar to equip you with the knowledge and tools you need to make our pro-family voices heard in Iowa this year!
The 13th annual Iowa Faith & Freedom Coalition Friends of the Family Banquet drew a record 1,100 activists, pastors, and civic leaders. Individuals that attended the event said that it was one of the most exciting and motivational events they had ever attended. This year’s dinner and rally drew a star-studded line up like never before!
Our keynoter was Sen. Mike Lee (R-Utah). Sen. Lee is widely recognized as one of the most courageous and principled leaders in the US Senate. Lee defeated an establishment incumbent in 2010 and has gone on to tackle the nation’s ills like few politicians do. He has been a leader in working to totally defund Obamacare. Because of his principled stance, the senator has been the target of the Republican establishment. Lee made a plea for action that Iowa activists would follow the example of our founding fathers–leading the fight for liberty, freedom and constitutional principles–even when the going gets rough.
Phyllis Schlafly, president of Eagle Forum, was awarded the 2013 IFFC Friend of the Family Award by IFFC President Steve Scheffler and Cong. Steve King. Both Steve’s saluted Phyllis’s huge contribution to the pro-family agenda. Mrs. Schlafly was “fighting the good fight” years ago, when no one was there. She is truly a conservative icon and no single individual has done more than she has to “grow” the conservative movement. Schlafly traced the steps to her leadership in fighting the long and hard battles to defeat the Equal Rights Amendment. She faced overwhelming odds in seeing its demise–including opposition from Republican leaders, as well as Democrats. Her presentation was an inspiration–showing us that with persistence and hard work–we can defeat the Far Left!
Gov. Sarah Palin was introduced by a stirring video presentation. Her remarks laid out the serious threat that the Left has used to attack religious liberties. As always, Sarah was truly a motivational speaker!
Gov. Branstad, Cong. Latham, Cong. Steve King, Faith & Freedom Coalition founder Ralph Reed and IFFC President Steve Scheffler also addressed the huge crowd.
We would like to give special thanks to our Master of Ceremonies for the night–IFFC Vice President Gopal Krishna. In addition to his hard work in helping to ensure the success of the event, we could not have pulled off this phenomenal event without the hard work and dedication of Diana Hansen, Liz Klein and Mike Canady.
Our special thanks goes out to the many, many volunteers who helped set up the convention hall and who helped clean up afterwards!
In addition, our gratitude and special thanks to everyone who attended, and gave financially so that the critical grassroots work of the organization could go forward on behalf of Iowa’s traditional God-fearing families.
Please let us share here with you a note that Steve received from one of our attendees, Phil Condo:
I just wanted to send along a brief e/m to thank you for a simply great IFFC / FFB Dinner event Saturday evening!! To put it succinctly, Steve, it was one of the best events that I have ever attended!! Your stirring remarks, host presence, and Mrs. Phyllis Schlafly’s speech were absolutely stunning!! I was absolutely captivated by her enthusiasm, charming wit, ERA historical reference, the progress of her defeat of the issue, and her gratitude to those that assisted, etc. simply blew me, and the listening audience away!! I gazed about the hall as she spoke and nary a soul was not totally absorbed with her remarks!!! I took the time afterward to thank her personally, and advised her that she ignited a “fire in my soul ” to help elect Republicans in 2014!!! I couldn’t get over how “Reagan-esque” she appeared, with her glow of the evening!! It was truly remarkable!!
Thank you so very much for the opportunity!! The food and the atmosphere were truly fantastic!!
My Best to you ~ Phil Condo
Moderate Republicans are bound and determined to deposit homosexuality – and homosexual marriage – into the Grand Old Party. If successful, the GOP will go the way of its predecessor, the Whig Party, which collapsed in the mid-1800s, ultimately over its attempt to bring expansion of a social evil, slavery – like present-day homosexual marriage and abortion – to the territories.
The Bible and prayer were removed from the public schools in 1963 by the U.S. Supreme Court – an 8-1 decision. The lone dissenting Justice Potter Stewart blasted, “It led not to true neutrality with respect to religion, but to the establishment of a religion of secularism.”
Since that ill-boding decision, two to three generations of America’s children have been denied – in God’s economy – a quality education. Proverbs 1:7 states, “The fear of the Lord is the beginning of knowledge.” In God’s economy, the “principal thing” in knowledge – the epistemological foundation – is “The fear of the Lord.”
To what was the foundation of America fastened? While still on the Mayflower the Pilgrim fathers wrote, “Having undertaken, for the Glory of God and advancement of the Christian faith …” Maybe you prefer the mission and purpose – the legal proclamation – for the founding of Jamestown and Plymouth Colony in 1606: “We, greatly commending, and graciously accepting of, their Desires for the Furtherance of so noble a Work, which may, by the Providence of Almighty God, hereafter tend to the Glory of his Divine Majesty, in propagating of Christian Religion to such People.” It’s easily defended that America was founded by Christians, as a Christian nation.
Ken Mehlman, Dick Cheney, Colin Powell, Barbara Bush, Laura Bush, Cindy McCain – nor anyone else – have the right to impose homosexual marriage – and indecency – on Christian America. How in the world do they presume that they have the right to say where the line of departure from morality shall be drawn? Are they omniscient and omnipotent?
Even secular Thomas Jefferson – quite religious by today’s low standard – author of the Declaration of Independence, wrote, “The Christian religion, when divested of the rags in which they [the clergy] have enveloped it, and brought to the original purity and simplicity of its benevolent Institutor, is a religion of all others most friendly to liberty, science, and the freest expansion of the human mind.”
While the United States has faced a number of catastrophic periods in her history, perhaps nothing has threatened our utter destruction more than the current moral crisis. God calls homosexuality sin – as He does adultery, stealing, lying, etc.
“Or do you not know that the unrighteous will not inherit the kingdom of God. Do not be deceived; neither fornicators, idolaters, nor adulterers, nor effeminate, nor homosexuals, nor thieves, nor the covetous, nor drunkards, nor revilers, nor swindlers, will inherit the kingdom of God. Such were some of you.” (1 Corinthians. 6:10)
All sins are equal and bring judgment in His kingdom. All men sin and fall short of His glory. This the the reason for the Savior. Thank God for the remedy – my sinfulness in itself would be reason for God to give up on me, yet His mercy and faithfulness is everlasting.
Declaration signer Dr. Benjamin Rush, America’s leading medical doctor and surgeon general of the Continental Army, recalled: “Upon my return from the army to Baltimore in the winter of 1777, I sat next to John Adams in Congress, and upon my whispering to him and asking him if he thought we should succeed in our struggle with Great Britain, he answered me, ‘Yes – if we fear God and repent of our sins.’”
The Founding Fathers understood that sin hinders victory, whether in personal or national life. Consequently, repeatedly throughout the Revolution, whether in personal or national life, the Continental Congress called for days of humiliation, fasting and prayer, urging the people to repent of any sins.
Virtue is a key component of freedom. In God’s economy, what does transgressing His law bring? Proverbs 28:2, “For the transgression of a land many are the princes thereof: but by a man of understanding and knowledge the state thereof shall be prolonged.”
Dr. Bruce K. Waltke noted that “the transgression of a land – widespread, systemic violations of the law – brings on anarchy, both as its natural consequence and as its fitting punishment, and with anarchy comes an oppressive multiplicity of rulers and factions.”
Dr. Michael V. Fox: “… the transgression of a land (a metonymy for the inhabitants of a politically governed area); the people, and with the totality of their break with Yahweh. As a result of the land’s total break with the Lord, the people need a large bureaucracy to keep an eye on each other and/or none survives.”
Christians – pastors and pews – responsible for the spiritual climate of our nation, must re-engage. Someone’s values are going to reign supreme. The estimated 65-80 million evangelicals – and pro-life Catholics – must be registered and vote, and bring biblical values to the front. This will – in the end – determine if America remains free.
Dr. Bruce K. Waltke (winner of the 2002 Gold Medallion Book Award and the 2008 Christian Book of the Year) wrote, “Immanuel Kant said you can tell whether or not something is right or wrong by whether it can be practiced universally. Same-sex marriage practiced universally is suicide. To survive gays and lesbians are parasites, depending for their cultural survival on couples that birth the next generation.”
Those doing this to our country must be removed from office and from leadership.
By Dan Boddicker
The timing of “Dr.” LeRoy Carhart’s announcement of his intentions to put a late term abortion clinic in Council Bluffs after the November 2 elections was wise. The abortion issue has pretty much been off the radar screen since the election of Chet Culver in 2006. This election cycle primarily focused on fiscal policy and social policy was dominated only by the judicial retention vote.
Carhart’s plans to move his abortion business from an Omaha suburb to Council Bluffs present some interesting challenges for the pro-life community eager to stop him, and Senator Mike Gronstal may find yet another prominent social issue sitting firmly in his lap, one that could alienate him and his declining caucus even more from the voters of Iowa.
The reason for Carhart’s move to Iowa is due to recent laws passed by Nebraska’s legislature, which ban elective abortions after 20 weeks, citing the scientific fact that a baby’s nervous system is sufficiently developed to feel the pain of being dismembered, chemically burned or getting scissors shoved into the back of its skull. A law like this is bad for business, or so says Carhart. Carhart claims late term abortions make up the majority of his business.
So how does Iowa respond? We already tolerate a city with the highest per capita abortion rate in America. Do we want a late term abortionist like LeRoy Carhart here? The sad fact of the matter is that, if there was no market for his grisly services, he wouldn’t be coming to Iowa. So while we work to stop him, we must also work to stop the demand for his “services.”
There are several options that the legislature, the Branstad administration, and the pro-life groups can pursue to thwart Carhart’s plans. They must work together if they hope for success.
Legislatively, the House can pass a bill making Iowa’s abortion laws like Nebraska’s. The bill should be brought up and passed as quickly as possible and sent over to the Senate. Senate Republicans should make this issue, along with the marriage amendment issue, their top two social-issue priorities. While they are working to bolster the House Republicans, efforts to cut and control spending, they need to get these social issues up for a vote. The closer Carhart gets to his ribbon cutting, the more pressure needs to be put on Gronstal to keep this menace out of his back yard. And like the Marriage Amendment, this issue is the one where senate tradition needs to be thrown out the window.
Rules exist for a reason, and it is high time that the written and adopted rules of the Senate prevail over the “good ol’ boy” agreement that has existed for decades not to use them.
Perhaps along with the post 20-week ban legislation, it’s time to revive “A-Woman’s-Right-To-Know” legislation. Those who are for “choice” should have no problem with “informed choice”, right?
Regulatory solutions may include the Certificate Of Need (CON) process. Whether or not Carhart’s type of facility falls under the CON process will depend on what equipment Carhart will require in his facility and whether his activities are considered outpatient surgery. If it does, then pressure needs to be put on the Department Of Public Health (DPH),and state health facilities panel to make sure that all the requirements are met and that the community actually has a need to have its unborn babies over 20 weeks killed. Governor Branstad must step up and make sure that his DPH Director makes sure that the law is followed.
The Appropriations process may also provide some opportunities to slow down or stop Carhart’s efforts. Perhaps this issue can be used to finally de-fund Planned Parenthood and any other facility that provides abortions or referrals. Most Iowans don’t want their tax dollars funding abortions and never have. Funds could be directed to crisis pregnancy clinics to provide for ultrasound equipment so that these girls and women can see the life that is in them. Then they can make an educated choice, something that the abortion industry and abortion rights advocates fear the most.
Whatever the legislature does, it is time for the sleeping giant to reawaken and get the attention of the legislature. The lobbying muscles of the pro-life community that existed back in the 90’s have gotten flabby, and the knowledge of how to do grassroots lobbying has become foggy. It’s time for Iowa Right to Life, the Iowa Catholic Conference, the Iowa Christian Alliance, and the other pro-life and conservative groups to step up and fight for our unborn children.
Dan Boddicker is a former Iowa State Representative from Tipton, Iowa. Boddicker served as the chairman of the House Human Resources committee.
COMMENTARY -Norm Pawlewski
November 3, 2010
TURN IN YOUR ROBES – YOU’RE FIRED
According to Rekha Basu in her column this morning, “Justice not served by vengeful ousters,” Rekha, as usual, still doesn’t get it. Almost a half million Iowans voted to deny retention to three Supreme Court justices, not out of any need for vengeance, but a need to restore the balance of power as provided in their constitution. The constitution ultimately belongs to all the people. Like Rekha, the justices either never appreciated that principle or forgot.
The losers— the elitists, the lawyers, the progressive left are, as expected, spinning their rejection by the voters as a hissy fit, a tantrum. Frankly, this is stupidity on their part. Rekha says, “Now, in a subversion of the judicial retention vote, a band of misguided activists look to have punished the justices……” She says also, “But because of a vengeful vote, that seemed all but certain at press time, judges now have to worry about the payback with every controversial ruling they make.” No Rekha, they only have to worry about controversial rulings that exceed their mandate, defy civility, create rights where they are unwarranted and/or non-existent and act like they are a law unto themselves.
One more quote from Rekha’s article: “The issue is, are the judges qualified to be on the bench? The vote –no people’s actions are at best arbitrary and at worst retaliatory.” This from a Sioux City attorney who served in three of Bob Vander Plaats’ gubernatorial campaigns before breaking with him on the judge retention issue.
When the sore losers start to whine about vengeful voters, out-of-state money, out-of state-activists, etc., remind them that almost one-half million Iowa voters voted to deny retention to these three judges, but allowed dozens more to keep their jobs. Your decision, whether you voted yes or no, was made after a considerable amount of discussion and debate. If anything, the main street media, like the Des Moines Register, went overboard to support retention. Every editorial and most guest columns were skewed toward retention. They did everything they could to frame the issue as one of guaranteeing judicial impartiality and keeping politics out of the courts. Every one of these judges was a political appointee. One article in the Register, “A question of BALANCE,” Thursday, October 28th, made it clear that the current system is controlled by Democrats, for Democrats.
Now that we the people have their attention, we need to work through the Legislature and our new governor to straighten out the imbalance in the judicial nominating and appointment process. That’s why I said in my last commentary on this issue, “This is not the end of the issue of dealing with Iowa’s activist judges. It is the beginning.”
SOME OTHER BIG WINS FOR THE PEOPLE
There were a few disappointments yesterday. I wanted Brenna Findley to be Attorney General and Brad Zaun to represent the 3rd Congressional District in Washington. I also thought David Jamison would be a great State Treasurer. And I wanted David Funk to shake up the Polk County Board of Supervisors.
But there were some real big wins. Kent Sorenson, who endured the most negative, unfair and downright disgusting campaign ads, won. Kent, who came to Christ about ten years ago, was savaged by Sen. Staci Appel (wife of Supreme Court Justice Brent Appel) for his life before Christ. Kent takes seriously Galatians 2:20~~”I have been crucified with Christ. It is no longer I who live, but Christ who lives in me, and the life I now live in the flesh, I live by faith in the Son of God who loved me and gave himself for me.” And Romans 12:2~~”Do not be conformed to this world but be transformed by the renewal of your mind, that you may prove what is the will of God, what is good and acceptable and perfect.” That’s how Kent has tried to live his life since coming to Christ. Fortunately, his neighbors and the residents of Senate District 37 saw this in him and gave Mrs. Appel a whipping. Kent won by almost 5,000 votes, 59% to her 41%. Bye Bye Staci.
Another big win (if it holds, because it’s close) Kim Pearson, attorney, home-schooler Mom and tea party activist, beat seven-term incumbent, Geri Huser, for House District 42. The last report I saw had Kim up by less than 200 votes. Geri Huser tried to tout her blue dog Democrat credentials during the last few days before the vote. It seems not to have worked.
I will say more soon in another commentary after we have had a chance to look at complete results. But congratulations are in order for Joel Fry for beating Mike Reasoner, to Bill Anderson taking an open Republican Senate seat and Rick Bertrand for filling an open Democrat Senate seat.
Leroy and Janice Cobia cordially invite you to a pro-family reception and fundraiser in support of the Iowa Faith & Freedom Coalition featuring Minnesota Governor Tim Pawlenty.
Friday, October 8, 2010 from 5:00-7:00 PM at the Home of Leroy and Janice Cobia: 17680 Newberry Circle, Council Bluffs. While the reception begins at 5:00 PM our speakers will not begin until 5:30.
Come at your convenience. Light refreshments will be served. General attendance:$25 per person or $30 per couple. Please RSVP to 515-225-1515.
Chris and Cathleen McGowan cordially invite you to a pro-family reception and fundraiser in support of the Iowa Faith & Freedom Coalition featuring Minnesota Governor Tim Pawlenty.
Friday, October 8, 2010 from 7:30-9:00 PM at the Sioux City Country Club. Light refreshments will be served. General attendance:$25 per person or $30 per couple. Please RSVP to 515-225-1515.
Also this Friday in Burlington: Restoring the Power. Friday, October 8th * 7:00 pm * Great River Christian School * 426 Harrison St * Burlington, Iowa Visit http://www.iowachristian.com/amen.htm for more information.
1) Understanding Terms
2) A Brief History of Nation Building
3) Understanding Church and State
4) The American Republic and the Source of Republicanism
5) The War Against Freedom
6) Restoring Our Republic
The attendees went away understanding the difference between a Republic and a Democracy, key terms that are part of our political language, increased knowledge of our history and foundational concepts that gave birth to our Constitution, important Christian values that support freedom, the battle we face, and hope for the future.
Several of those attending expressed a desire to bring Restoring The Power to other communities and an interest in leading or attending Constitutional Study Groups. People are realizing that we can no longer allow ourselves to be uninformed when it comes to the truth of our history, our form of government, and the tyranny that is being imposed upon us.
For information about hosting “Restoring The Power” in your community contact:
Norm Pawlewski – Lobbyist
February 11, 2014
“An act relating to the use of telecommunications technology in termination of pregnancies and providing penalties” was fast tracked through the Human Resources Committee of the House of Representatives and is now Committee Bill HF 2175.
The bill was drafted and introduced by Rep. Matt Windschitl (R) and co-sponsored by the following eighteen Republican House members: Rep. Dean Fisher, Rep. Mark Costello, Rep. Mary Ann Hanusa, Rep. John Landon, Rep. Tedd Gassman, Rep. Dan Huseman, Rep. Mark Brandenberg, Rep. Jarad Klein, Rep. Walt Rogers, Rep. Megan Hess, Rep. Ron Jorgensen, Rep. David Maxwell, Rep. Chuck Soderberg, Rep. Sandy Salmon, Rep. Larry Sheets, Rep. Dawn Pettengill, Rep. Greg Heartsill and Rep. Jason Schultz.
HF 2073 was debated in the Human Resources Committee for about five hours, with a few breaks allowing the Democrats time to discuss who was going to say what in opposition to the bill. The nine Democrats on the committee repeated, ad nauseam, the Planned Parenthood talking points, repeating most of PP’s distortions of what the procedure entails and how safe it is for the women who avail themselves of this method of disposing of their baby. Rep. Kevin Koester, who chaired the subcommittee for HF 2073, remained cool and polite while staunchly defending the merits of the legislation which, if enacted, would deny Planned Parenthood of their most profitable, gruesome and risky method of removing babies from the protection and sustenance of their mother’s womb. Rep. Koester was pummeled by silly questions and charges designed to get him off message. He didn’t fall for it and deserves the thanks of all life-honoring Iowans.
As I said earlier, this bill, now Committee Bill HF 2175, is on a fast track and may be debated on the House floor in the very near future. I expect a party-line vote, with the exception of one Democrat, Rep. Dan Muhlbauer, who has voted pro-life in the past. Another Democrat, Rep. Nancy Dunkel, has told her Dubuque constituents that she is pro-life. We shall see.
I hope you will call your state representative and urge them to vote for HF 2175. Before you do, go to the Iowa Right to Life web site and get the FACTS about webcam abortions www.iowaRTL.org. Planned Parenthood propaganda about these abortions is parroted by every liberal newspaper in the state. Democrats who get sizable campaign contributions from PP do not want to risk losing their blood money and, therefore, will not do what is right but what is profitable for them and for PP.
When you read the factual information about this awful health insult, the lies told to the women who consent to chemical abortions and the crass commercialism of Planned Parenthood, you will wonder, as I do, how this can go on in Iowa, the only state in America where abortion by “Skype” is being committed.
There are a number of bills we are tracking which deal with gas tax increases and alternatives to fund road and bridge repair, Common Core, abortion, etc. But most of these bills will die after the first funnel which is scheduled for February 21st. We will then have a better idea of which bills should be of concern and need action.
~~Therefore do not let sin reign in your mortal body that you should obey its lusts, and do not go on presenting the members of your body to sin as instruments of unrighteousness; but present yourselves to God as those alive from the dead, and your members as instruments of righteousness to God.~~Romans 6:12, 13, 14
As I said earlier in this report, this bill was on a fast track. Before we were able to get my report about the Human Resources Committee action out to you, it was put on the Calendar, debated and passed by the full House on a 55 to 42 vote. I will have more to say about that in my next report. In the meantime, contact your state senator. Urge them to vote HF 2175 through that chamber.
For more information about these Bills from the Iowa Legislatures homepage, click here.
Norm Pawlewski – Lobbyist
January 22, 2014
On Monday, January 13th, the second session of the 85th General Assembly began. The legislators in both chambers met just long enough to hear from the leaders of their party how they expect to work together to do the people’s business and then go home so they can campaign, get elected, and come back in 2015 to “work together again” to do the people’s business. I think I’ve heard that before….the “working together” part. Will they? We will see.
On Tuesday, Governor Terry Branstad gave his Condition of the State address to a joint session of the House and Senate. Taking into consideration the state of the nation and compared to many of our neighboring states, Iowa is in pretty good shape. We have a budget surplus. We can pay our bills. Unemployment is about half of what it is in most other states; and we are adding jobs and businesses. That’s not bad.
The Governor announced an effort by his administration to make Iowa a more military veteran friendly place, not just for Iowa vets, but any vet who would like to attend college at Iowa’s three state universities. If that translates into legislation, we will bring those bills to your attention.
On Wednesday, Iowa Supreme Court Chief Justice Mark Cady gave the Condition of the Judiciary address, also to a joint session of legislators. As for content, it was pretty much like all recent judiciary addresses…..”We are doing a good job with what we have, but we need more.” He asked for more money to raise the salaries of judges and additional staff to cope with an increasing case load. He did not mention that he got an $8,000 raise this year. His salary is now $178,538 a year. To be fair, this is the first raise that Cady and his colleagues have received in five years.
As I said, the content of his address was right on par with his and previous Chief Justices, but I detected a definite change in style and tone. This was a kinder, gentler Chief Justice, not the elitist, arrogant attitude conveyed in the past. He even employed a favorite tack of liberals, the heart tugging, personal tale of a beneficiary of the “Family Treatment Courts” program. A program designed to help families in turmoil as a result of substance abuse by a family member.
After listening to Justice Cady’s address, I believe the Governor should request nominees for future vacancies from the state’s social workers instead of the state’s lawyers.
Ever since Iowans exercised their constitutional privilege to remove judges periodically, the Supremes, in general, and Cady in particular, have been “campaigning” to convince the citizens of Iowa that the Iowa Judiciary is their friend and benefactor. They have been “speechifying” at small gatherings of like-minded Iowans all over the state. Of course I’ve never heard that they made a presentation at a conservative, constitutionalist, or biblical worldview group. I wonder why?
On Thursday, the Legislature had a short session, did some committee work, and went home for the long weekend.
In the coming weeks, I will alert you to the bills I believe will be of interest. There will be pro-life legislation, at least one gas tax increase bill, some education related legislation, and other House and Senate files to peak your interest in your state government at work. Keep the faith!
~~He who has My commandments and keeps them, he it is who loves Me, and he who loves Me shall be loved by My Father, and I will love him and disclose Myself to him.~~John 14:21