Politics & Elections
Small Business Owners and Middle Class Families From Across Iowa React to Romney’s Tax Plan That Would Raise Taxes on the Middle Class PDF Print E-mail
News Releases - Politics & Elections
Written by Stephanie Palla   
Tuesday, 07 August 2012 11:07

Des Moines, IA -- Today, small business owners and middle class families in Cedar Rapids, Davenport, Des Moines, Dubuque and Sioux City respond to an independent report, which found that in order for Mitt Romney to pay for his $5 trillion in tax cuts for millionaires and billionaires, he’d have to raise taxes by $2,000 on middle class families with children.

“We are a typical middle class family. We work full-time to provide for our son, Cooper, and a second child on the way. We had the opportunity to talk to President Obama about the $4,900 in tax relief we have received over the course of his first term. We told him the tax relief is vital to supporting our family whether it’s finishing our basement for more space for our growing family or putting money towards Cooper’s college education fund. That’s why we are disappointed to hear about an independent, non-partisan report finding Mitt Romney’s plan would hike taxes for families who have children and make less than $200,000 would see their taxes go up an average of more than $2,000. And Romney is raising taxes on middle class families to pay for a $5 trillion tax plan skewed to the wealthiest. To some people, $1,000 or $2,000 might not seem like that much. But to us, that’s a big deal. A thousand dollars is a big deal. Five hundred dollars is a big deal. Our family literally can’t afford Mitt Romney.” --Jason and Ali McLaughlin, middle class family in Cedar Rapids

“President Obama plans to extend middle class taxes that would prevent a tax increase for 97 percent of small businesses.  As a small, independent business owner in Iowa, that’s music to my ears. The President is looking out for the best interests of the middle class (many of whom are my regular customers), while Mitt Romney tax hike plan for the middle class gives huge tax breaks to the wealthiest Americans. The President believes that relieving millions of American families by extending middle-class tax cuts is the best way to grow our economy. That’s why I will be backing the President in the fall.” --Kevin Perkins, independent business owner/Clean Sweep QCA LLC in Davenport

“As a middle class Iowan and a Republican, I am standing by President Obama again this election. We tried Mitt Romney’s formula for the past decade, and it crashed our economy and punished the middle class. The President,  meanwhile, believes that relieving millions of American families by extending middle-class tax cuts is the best way to grow our economy. President Obama has provided the necessary health care for us, and the tax cuts will allow savings for education and funds for purchasing American goods and services. Working families just can’t afford Mitt Romney and neither can America. ”  -- Keith Uhl, lawyer in Des Moines

“My husband and I are proud to have had the opportunity to grow our small business and support our family right here in Iowa, and we couldn’t have done it alone. From support from my family and friends, to help from the Small Business Administration to write my small business plan, that support has helped my business succeed. Meanwhile Mitt Romney is looking to hike taxes on the middle class, while giving away more tax breaks for the wealthy. President Obama understands that, and that’s why he has helped small businesses like mine. He’s cut taxes for small businesses, helped them invest and grow, and his jobs plan will help them keep creating two out of every three new jobs. And the President has made it easier for small businesses to access credit, which is vital to adding small businesses to our economy. I know President Obama has my business’s back.”    --Anne McDonough, owner of Plane Art Designs in Dubuque

“Romney’s tax breaks for the wealthy are so large that to pay for them, he’d have to cut some of the most important tax benefits for the middle class. That could force my family to pay higher taxes on my home mortgage. President Obama’s plan reduces the deficit in a balanced way while Mitt Romney’s tax hike on the middle class would be detrimental to my family. That’s way I am supporting the President this election season.” --Andrew Emanuel, father/husband/small business owner in Sioux City


Who Wins the White House Doesn’t Matter – the System is Broken, Pundit Says PDF Print E-mail
News Releases - Politics & Elections
Written by Ginny Grimsley   
Tuesday, 07 August 2012 08:25
She Offers 5 Amendments to Fix It

A recent Gallup poll shows 81 percent of Americans are dissatisfied with the governing of the country, a historic number.

With the ongoing discussion among experts, pundits, politicians and the general public on whether or not America has lost its way, citizens are looking for solutions. They are out there, says Dixie Swanson, former TV personality, former Beltway insider and author of The Accidental President Trilogy (www.dixieswanson.com), a series of novels about an apolitical physician who stumbles into a Senate seat.

“Problems in our country are moving faster than solutions,” says Swanson. “Whether we elect Mitt or Barack, we are going to be facing the same gridlock that’s jamming and corrupting the process today,” she says.

To get the nation back to duly elected government officials who spend their time leading and making decisions in the best interests of the entire country, Swanson suggests the following five amendments:

• Abolition of Electoral Voting: The U.S. electoral process is as antique as a powdered wig. It has already failed three times, electing presidents who did not win the popular vote. As the system stands now, if a candidate wins by one vote in a state with a few people, like Wyoming, he gets three electoral votes. If he wins in California, he wins 55. This violates the idea that every vote counts equally. Romney could get “Gored” this year and win the popular vote but lose the electoral vote. All Americans want their votes to count equally.

• Single Six-Year Term for Presidents: Our country has enormous problems and the president and vice president need to be on the job full-time, not running for reelection beginning on Day 2. No one in the highest levels of the federal government is looking 20 and 30 years down the road. We need to lengthen the term to build in an opportunity for focus and visionary thinking.

• A Balanced Budget: The budget shall not exceed the previous year for which fiscal revenues are known. In the event of a national catastrophe, this can be overridden with a two-thirds vote of each house and the president’s signature. This should be gradually implemented throughout the next decade to reduce economic whiplash. This should include an income surtax that goes directly toward paying down the national debt.

• Constitutionally Mandated Campaign Reform: The big money of PACS and Super PACS is corrupting. Let’s return power to the voter. Only voters can donate, and then only to one candidate in each race for whom they can vote: his or her choice for representative, senator and one presidential ticket. Congress may set a limit on donation amounts. No entity of any kind may give money to the candidate or give it to an individual to donate. Any violations are a federal crime punishable by five years in prison with no parole. Just as your ballot is secret, your donations will not be published on the internet (with your address) as they are now, but will be reported daily to the Federal Election Commission by the campaign treasurer. All donations are to be made by check, credit/debit card or electronic funds transfer. No cash donations are acceptable and there are no in-kind donations. Lobbyists can still exist and do advocacy, they just can’t bring money, or anything of value, to the conversation. During an election, any advertising is to be paid for by the candidate and by no one else.

• The Line-Item Veto: Congressional attempts to give the president line-item veto power have been shot down by the courts as unconstitutional, so the only way to provide this is by amending the Constitution. As is stands now, the courts can throw out a part of a law, but the president cannot. That is inequitable.

About Dixie Swanson

Dixie Swanson was a pediatrician for 10 years and the Family Health Reporter for NBC’s Houston affiliate. She also spent time working for a Washington lobbyist with access to the White House.  Dixie is the author of “The Accidental President Trilogy – a Political Fable for Our Time.”

Braley Campaign Announces Jeff Giertz to Serve as Campaign Manager PDF Print E-mail
News Releases - Politics & Elections
Written by Jeff Giertz   
Monday, 06 August 2012 14:50
WATERLOO, IA – Rep. Bruce Braley (IA-01) announced that Jeff Giertz will serve as his campaign manager for the 2012 campaign, effective today.

Giertz will take an unpaid leave of absence from his position as Communications Director in Braley’s congressional office.  Molly Scherrman will remain the campaign’s Senior Advisor.

“Jeff is a smart and capable leader with deep Iowa roots and years of campaign experience,” Braley said.  “He’s an excellent addition to my growing grassroots campaign.”

Giertz will be based out of the campaign’s headquarters in Waterloo. 

Breaking News: Obama Wins Iowa, Despite Boycott PDF Print E-mail
News Releases - Politics & Elections
Written by Ed Fallon   
Monday, 06 August 2012 14:39
I am so tempted to tell you how I feel about the movement to Boycott the Presidential Election, but will bite my tongue and save it for today's civil-yet-spirited conversation with Terri Lee . . . and anyone else who wants to call-in at (855) 244-0077 and opine on either side of the issue.

I will, however, weigh-in briefly on Mitt Romney's decision to concede Iowa to President Obama. Yes, if there is a political move dumber than coming out against the wind energy tax credit and calling Iowa's booming wind energy industry a “stimulus boondoggle,” I can't think of what it would be.

Even Steve King disagrees with Romney.

Tom Latham cautiously chastised Romney, saying the latter's position “shows a lack of full understanding of how important the wind energy tax credit is for Iowa and our nation.” (DM Register, 07/30/12).

And rumor has it that Senator Grassley, the self-described "father of the wind energy tax credit," is livid . . . although there weren't any tweets to corroborate such speculation.

Possibly the most telling comment in terms of the political damage this causes Romney came from Senator Harkin, who simply said, “Good luck in Iowa!”

Unfortunately, Romney's fatal stumble means the presidential candidates will spend less money in Iowa, at a time when our economy could use a boost. On the up side, we won't have to view so many inane television commercials. Bottom line? Put Iowa in the win column for Obama . . . unless that crazy boycott idea catches fire.

Monday, in addition to Terri Lee and me sparring over the proposal to boycott the presidential election, Jeffrey Weiss with Catholic Piece Ministry and I discuss yesterday's deadly US drone attack in Yemen on the eve of the commemoration of the bombing of Hiroshima and Nagasaki (see Events calendar on my website).

Tuesday, Arnie Arnesen joins me. Arnie is, to some extent, my twin cousin from New Hampshire. Having served in the State Legislature and run for Governor and Congress, Arnie now hosts a daily talk show. With Arnie, one can never predict where the conversation will go, but let's start with the highlights posted in her e-mail message this morning: "Eliz Warren addresses the Dem. Convention good for the base? bad for the Pres?; Electing Ayn Rand for President?; Revolving Doors."

Wednesday, Sean Bremhorst with Students Beyond War is my guest. We'll discuss how some young veterans feel lied to by Army recruiters when the promise of $50,000 for college turns out to be a lot less. Also with me in the studio on Wednesday is Jim Gray, the Libertarian Party vice presidential candidate.

Thursday, we meet Kelli VanDyke-Wulfekuhle with Harbor of Hope Mission, which provides transitional housing for men released from jail or prison. Kelli is helping raise funds to refurbish the facility. Also Thursday, State Representative Dan Kelly joins us.

Friday, Ira Kurzban is my guest. Ira is an American civil rights and immigration lawyer and author. He received widespread media coverage during the 1980s for his representation of Haitian immigrants in Miami. Also Friday, we meet an innovative young entrepreneur: Emily Svec, whose business - Body by Svec - is turning plenty of heads.

So, join the conversation live, Monday-Friday, online from 12:00-1:00 pm on the Fallon Forum website. Call in at 244-0077 or toll free (855) 244-0077. And tune-in to Bradshaw, Monday-Friday from 1:30-2:30, also on the Fallon Forum website. Video and audio podcasts are available, too.

Thanks! - Ed



August 6 - Hiroshima to Fukushima: The Nuclear Fallout (DM)
At the Japanese Bell on the State Capitol grounds (next to the Supreme Court Building) at 7:30 pm. This annual lament of the Hiroshima/Nagaski nuclear bombings will feature speakers and music. Contact Jeff Weiss with Catholic Peace Ministry at This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it '; document.write( '' ); document.write( addy_text41742 ); document.write( '<\/a>' ); //--> This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it or (515) 255-8114.

August 8 - Modernizing Iowa’s HIV Statute (Ames)
Community Forum at the Ames Public Library and viewing of the film “HIV is Not A Crime," in response to efforts to change a state law criminalizing HIV transmission. It begins at 6:30 pm and is open to the public at no charge. Contact Mark Kassis at This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it or (515) 441-9944.

August 9 - Drinking Liberally (Des Moines)
You don't have to be a card-carrying liberal to enjoy political conversation and excellent libations at AJ's, 419 E Court starting at 8:00 pm every Thursday. If the revolution is going to start anyplace, it's over a frosty libation. Contact desmoines@drinkingliberally.org.

August 24-26 - White Eagle Multicultural Pow Wow (Waukee)
At Hawkeye Antique Acres, 3322 Ute Ave. Twelfth annual event, fostering better understanding of all cultures through drumming, music, dance and story-telling from Native American and other cultures. Contact This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it or (515) 266-3187.

August 30 - Green Drinks (Des Moines)
Join casual conversation with people interested in environmental issues and sustainable energy over something to eat and/or drink. It's from 5:30-7:30 pm at Gateway Market and Cafe, 2002 Woodland Ave. Contact Shari Hrdina at This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it .

October 20 - Contra Dance at Odd Fellows Hall (Des Moines)
Contra-Indications is hosting a contra dance at Odd Fellows Hall, 2904 Kingman Blvd, 8:00-11:00 pm, with lesson at 7:30 pm. Live music by Barn Owl Band; Jill Allen as caller. $10 adults; free under 12; $25 family maximum. Visit This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it .

News Releases - Politics & Elections
Written by Obama for America   
Monday, 06 August 2012 08:52

CHICAGO – Today, Friday, August 3, Obama for America will hold two events to talk with working families and middle class Iowans about the choice in this election between two fundamentally different visions of how to grow the economy, create middle-class jobs and pay down the debt.  The President believes the only way to create an economy built to last is to build it from the middle out, not the top down.

The events in Davenport and Dubuque will highlight President Obama’s plan to restore middle-class security and discuss the stark contrast between President Obama’s push for tax relief for middle class families and Mitt Romney, who supports raising taxes on millions of hardworking families to finance tax breaks for the wealthy.

A nonpartisan report out Wednesday found that in order for Romney to pay for his $5 trillion of tax cuts weighted toward millionaires and billionaires, he’d have to raise taxes by an average of $2,000 on a middle-class family with children. The Obama campaign also released a new web video and digital tool to underscore Americans have a clear choice in this election between two fundamentally different visions of how to grow the economy, create middle-class jobs and pay down the debt. President

View the new OFA video HERE, and check out the new digital calculator HERE.


Friday, August 3


WHAT: Middle Class Tax Cut Roundtable with Mayor Bill Gluba


WHERE: Davenport Public Library - Eastern Avenue Branch, Meeting Room A

6000 Eastern Avenue
Davenport, IA 52807


WHAT: Middle Class Tax Cut Roundtable with Senator Pam Jochum


WHERE: Home of Ken Kraus

2635 Renaissance Dr. Unit 2

Dubuque, IA 52001



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