Government + Politics

Parental consent requirement for students’ gender identity change fails in committee

BY: - January 31, 2023

A bill that opponents said would endanger LGBTQ students failed Tuesday in the Iowa House Education Committee after heated debate. Meanwhile, Republican lawmakers advanced two other bills Tuesday that would restrict school instruction related to gender identity and data collection on topics such as students’ sexual orientation and mental health. The bill that failed, House […]

Iowa House panel advances bill to reduce reports for coal plants

BY: - January 31, 2023

An Iowa House subcommittee advanced a bill Tuesday that would eliminate a requirement for electric utilities to submit biennial reports about their plans to control emissions from coal-powered plants. House Study Bill 73 is identical to one that got preliminary approval from a Senate subcommittee earlier this month. It would make optional the multiyear plans […]

Of more than 7,500 threats against members of Congress in 2022, just 22 prosecuted

BY: - January 31, 2023

WASHINGTON —  Members of Congress receive thousands of threats a year, though just a fraction of the people who call, mail or email will ever be prosecuted — a situation that’s of great concern to the police who guard members. Just 22 of the 7,501 threats lobbed at members during 2022 led to prosecution, the […]

New bill would allow ‘airbows’ for Iowa deer hunting

BY: - January 31, 2023

New legislation that would allow deer hunters to use weapons that propel arrows with compressed air advanced Tuesday from an Iowa Senate subcommittee. So-called airbows are a relatively new weapon that some states allow for hunting. They are similar to a crossbow in that they use scopes to aim and are powerful and accurate. But […]

Iowa House panel advances liability protection for trucking companies

BY: - January 31, 2023

A year after a similar bill died on the floor of the Iowa House, Republican lawmakers are again advancing legislation to expand liability protection for trucking companies whose employees cause injury, death or other damages while on the job. An Iowa House subcommittee on Tuesday advanced House Study Bill 114, which would put a $1 […]

Medical malpractice bill advances to House floor

BY: - January 30, 2023

Legislation capping noneconomic damages in medical malpractice cases could be headed for floor debate in both chambers of the Iowa Legislature as soon as this week. The House Health and Human Services Committee passed House File 161 on a 12-9 vote Monday. The Senate Judiciary Committee approved a version of the bill, Senate File 148, […]

New bill would expand farmers’ ability to trap or kill varmints

BY: - January 30, 2023

Several wild animals could be trapped or killed without state permission if they pose a “nuisance” to farmers, under an Iowa House bill that was discussed Monday. Those animals include coyotes, groundhogs, opossums, raccoons and skunks. The new legislation — House File 118, introduced by Dean Fisher, a Garwin Republican — follows a significant increase […]

Rita Hart: National party’s decision to drop Iowa’s caucuses is not a ‘done deal’

BY: - January 30, 2023

While the Democratic National Committee plans to ratify the new presidential nominating calendar in Philadelphia this week, the Iowa Democratic Party’s new chair, Rita Hart, said the early state lineup is not a “done deal.” “There’s many facets of this decision-making process that have got to be figured out, as we see the, you know, […]

U.S. House Oversight chair’s agenda: Hunter Biden, COVID origins, classified documents

BY: - January 30, 2023

WASHINGTON — House Oversight and Accountability Committee Chair James Comer on Monday previewed his priorities for this Congress, which he says will include a heavy focus on the handling of classified documents, the origins of the COVID-19 virus, and what he described as possible “influence peddling” by Hunter Biden. The Kentucky Republican addressed reporters and […]

COMMENTARY

New Iowa Democratic Party chair Rita Hart has her work cut out for her

BY: - January 30, 2023

The Iowa Democratic Party’s State Central Committee elected Rita Hart as the next party chair on Jan. 28 by 34 votes to 14 for Brittany Ruland and one for Bob Krause. Hart promised to focus “squarely on helping our party begin winning elections again,” and had submitted a detailed plan (enclosed in full below) to make that happen. She touted her experience […]

D.C. Dispatch: Iowa lawmakers focus attention on China, agriculture

BY: - January 28, 2023

Iowa’s congressional delegation focused much of its attention on China and agriculture this week, while Rep. Ashley Hinson helped introduce legislation that that expands Pell Grant eligibility. Meanwhile, Sen. Chuck Grassley introduced multiple bills, including several addressing pharmaceutical costs, foreign lobbying and child sex abuse. Grassley introduced the Preventing Child Sex Abuse Act with Sen. […]

Rita Hart elected to lead Iowa Democrats

BY: - January 28, 2023

Former state senator Rita Hart was elected Saturday as the next chair of the Iowa Democratic Party. “As a teacher, a farmer, a state senator and lieutenant governor and congressional candidate, I’ve seen time and time again how the policies that our leaders implement affect everyday Iowans. My focus is squarely on helping our party […]