Commentary

Presidential candidates should address felon voting rights in Iowa

BY: - January 14, 2020

It used to be that Florida, Kentucky and Iowa were the last states to strip people of their voting rights permanently but that changed in 2019. Amendment 4 went into effect after Florida voters overwhelmingly approved a ballot measure in November 2018 to restore voting rights to people with felony records. Last month, newly-elected Kentucky […]

he State Capital of Iowa is reflected by the Henry A Wallace Building

Iowa Legislature 2020: IWILL or IWON’T?

BY: - January 13, 2020

IWILL or IWON’T?  That’s a dilemma for Iowa Republican legislators as they open their new session in an election year that could challenge their majority. Will they raise the state sales tax a penny to pay for expensive water quality and mental-health programs? Or won’t they? Here are a few factors lawmakers may consider as […]

The Des Moines River in downtown Des Moines serves as a water supply and a growing recreational draw.

Don’t let special interests hijack natural resources fund

BY: - January 10, 2020

I have lived and worked on a small Sac County farm for the past 41 years. During our time on the farm, my family has restored wetlands and used sustainable farming methods. We have planted native trees and shrubs and worked to restore native fish habitats for endangered species. We have planted native grasses in […]

Welcome to Iowa Capital Dispatch: Community journalism for democracy

BY: - January 7, 2020

We are bringing over 100 years of combined Iowa journalism experience to coverage of state and federal government policy and politics.

Declaration of Independence

We have a constitutional right to pursue happiness but many don’t know how

BY: - January 7, 2020

Happiness is a distinct American virtue. It is one of three natural rights along with life and liberty in the Declaration of Independence whose author, Thomas Jefferson, never explained what he meant by pursuing it. 

Governor signs mental health legislation

Iowa needs money for mental health care. Here’s one place to get it.

BY: - January 7, 2020

Over the last two legislative sessions, many have worked to improve the treatment of adults and children who suffer from mental illnesses in Iowa.  The recommendations of workgroups yielded bills that legislators overwhelmingly passed, and Gov. Kim Reynolds signed into law. These laws call for enhancing the continuum of care for adults with complex mental […]