Grief over Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg and dread for what comes next

BY: - September 21, 2020

Bereft. That’s the only word I can think of that fits how I felt at the news of Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg’s death. It’s not just about the loss of a stalwart warrior for equality and justice for people like me. Without Ginsburg, perhaps our country still would not recognize a constitutional right against sex […]

Iowa political leaders respond to news of Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg’s death

BY: - September 18, 2020

Iowa political leaders and candidates of both parties offered condolences Friday evening after news of U.S. Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg’s death at age 87. Both of Iowa’s U.S. senators are members of the Senate Judiciary Committee, which will consider any nominations for a successor. U.S. Sen. Chuck Grassley, a Republican and former chairman […]

Iowa Supreme Court refuses to hear appeal of absentee ballot rulings

BY: - September 17, 2020

The Iowa Supreme Court has refused to hear appeals from the Linn County and Woodbury County auditors seeking to overturn district-court rulings that invalidated tens of thousands of absentee ballot applications. The Republican National Committee, Republican Party of Iowa and Trump campaign sued the auditors of those counties and Johnson County. The auditors had sent […]

nterior of an empty courtroom with gavel and sounding block on the desk.

Lawsuit: Iowa court debt collected illegally, with millions routed to private firm

BY: - September 16, 2020

A federal lawsuit alleges that the debt-collection company hired by the Iowa Judicial Branch has been paid millions of dollars in fees while violating state and federal laws through deceptive, high-pressure tactics. The lawsuit also alleges that Iowans in rural areas of the state are at a financial disadvantage when it comes to fees for […]


We should not just accept deaths like Sabrina’s and Natalie’s

BY: - September 15, 2020

Twenty years ago, when the death of 2-year-old Shelby Duis outraged Iowans, I was confident the Spirit Lake tragedy would soon bring change to our state. I probably was naive. In 2016, when Natalie Finn, 16, was found near death in a middle-class neighborhood in West Des Moines, I was confident that tragedy would bring […]

LGBT flags

Transgender students from Florida, Virginia score victories in landmark lawsuits

BY: - September 14, 2020

WASHINGTON — Transgender teen Andrew Adams used the boys bathroom, which aligned with his gender identity, when he enrolled as a freshman in 2015 at Allen D. Nease High School in Ponte Vedra, Fla. Then two girls lodged a complaint and school authorities ordered Adams to use a gender-neutral or girls restroom instead. In 2017, […]


Why police unions are not part of the American labor movement

BY: - September 5, 2020

In the wake of George Floyd’s death at the hands of a Minneapolis police officer, news reports have suggested that police unions bear some of the responsibility for the violence perpetrated against African Americans. Critics have assailed these unions for protecting officers who have abused their authority. Derek Chauvin, the former police officer facing second-degree […]

Former Iowa public health spokeswoman sues state, seeks $5 million

BY: - September 3, 2020

The former spokeswoman of the Iowa Department of Public Health has sued the state and Gov. Kim Reynolds, claiming she was ousted for fulfilling open records requests for reporters, which was part of her job.  Polly Carver-Kimm, 57, who had worked in public affairs for the department since 2007, is asking the court for damages, […]

Thousands on parole still can’t vote and one hurdle may be inability to pay restitution

BY: - August 31, 2020

The last time Marlon Graham Sr. was allowed to vote, he cast his vote for Barack Obama while he was living in Minnesota. But back in Des Moines where he’s lived most of his life, Graham is still waiting for his chance to make his voice heard on matters ranging from who should be president […]

Democrats challenge absentee voting order, seeking to salvage thousands of applications for mail-in ballots

BY: - August 31, 2020

Democratic Party organizations are suing the Iowa secretary of state in an effort to salvage more than 200,000 absentee ballot request forms that two judges have now declared were improper. The lawsuit claims Iowa Secretary of State Paul Pate violated counties’ constitutional right to home rule when he sent out an emergency directive on July […]

‘You just have to act’: Thousands outraged by police brutality rally at March on Washington

BY: and - August 28, 2020

WASHINGTON – On the 57th anniversary of the original March on Washington and in the throes of a pandemic, thousands of demonstrators on Friday joined Democratic lawmakers on the steps of the Lincoln Memorial to demand Congress act on police brutality and voter suppression. The event, organized by the Rev. Al Sharpton’s National Action Network, […]

A ‘call to arms’ that filled Kenosha with combat weapons

BY: - August 27, 2020

The man who called gunmen to gather on the streets of Kenosha, Wis., Tuesday night — culminating in the deaths of two people and an injury to a third — says he did so to keep the city safe. Despite the deaths, he believes they made it safer. Kevin Mathewson is a former Kenosha alder […]