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Open letter to readers: Today and tomorrow

By Lynda Waddington | 11.17.11

Wednesday was a difficult day for The American Independent News Network, which is the larger entity that operates The Iowa Independent. Our chief executive and founder announced two of our sister sites would close and their content would be moved to The American Independent.

ACS lockout continues; plan emerges to repeal sugar protections

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By Virginia Chamlee | 11.15.11

A recently introduced bill could have far-reaching impact on the U.S. sugar industry, including American Crystal Sugar, a farmer-owned cooperative that locked out 1,300 Midwest workers on Aug. 1.

Cain campaign: Farmers know more about regulations than EPA

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By Andrew Duffelmeyer | 11.15.11

The chairman for Herman Cain’s Iowa effort says the campaign “relied more on the word of farmers than Washington regulators” in deciding to run an ad containing claims the Environmental Protection Agency says are false.

Mathis wins, Democrats maintain Senate control

Liz Mathis
By Lynda Waddington | 11.08.11

The Iowa Senate will remain under the control of a slim 26-25 Democratic majority when it reconvenes in January 2012.

Press Release

PR: Nation should work to address veterans’ challenges

By Press Release Reprints | 11.11.11

BRUCE BRALEY RELEASE — As US involvement in Iraq and Afghanistan ends, it’s more important than ever that our nation works to address the challenges faced by the men and women who fought there.

PR: Honoring veterans, help in hiring

By Press Release Reprints | 11.11.11

CHUCK GRASSLEY RELEASE — A difficult job market is challenging the soldiers, sailors and airmen who have protected America’s interests by serving in the Armed Forces.

PR: In honor of America’s veterans

By Press Release Reprints | 11.11.11

TOM LATHAM RELEASE — No one has done more to secure the freedom enjoyed by every single American than our veterans and those currently serving in the armed services.

PR: Honoring and supporting our nation’s veterans

By Press Release Reprints | 11.11.11

DAVE LOEBSACK RELEASE — Veterans Day is an opportunity to reflect on the service of generations of veterans and to honor the sacrifices they and their families have made so that we may live in peace and freedom here at home.

Grassley unfamiliar with plan to execute gay Ugandans

By Jason Hancock | 12.10.09 | 7:30 am

Responding to calls from gay-rights activists to denounce an anti-homosexuality law being considered in the African nation of Uganda, U.S. Sen. Chuck Grassley said he is not a member of that country’s parliament and is unfamiliar with the particulars of the law, an aide to the Republican lawmaker told The Iowa Independent on Wednesday.

U.S. Sen. Chuck Grassley (Photo: Lauren Victoria Burke/WDCPIX.com)

U.S. Sen. Chuck Grassley (Photo: Lauren Victoria Burke/WDCPIX.com)

“Subsequent to inquiries like yours this week, [Sen. Grassley’s] office contacted the U.S. State Department to get more information,” said spokeswoman Beth Levine. “The office was told that the administration hasn’t made an official statement, but an assistant secretary has privately relayed concerns to the Ugandan president.”

Des Moines-based One Iowa is conducting a petition drive demanding Grassley denounce the bill, which originally called for people convicted of being a homosexual to be  sentenced to life in prison. People who test positive for HIV would have been executed along with anyone who has homosexual sex more than once.

According to a report by Bloomberg News, the death penalty and life imprisonment portion of the law have been dropped, however it still contains portions that would sentence homosexuals to prison. The bill is expected to be presented to the Ugandan parliament in two weeks.

Activists felt Grassley could have an impact on the situation due to his reported affiliation with a group of lawmakers known as “The Family.” Investigative journalist Jeff Sharlet, who has written a book about the group, said Grassley has been involved with the secret fellowship of Christian politicians since the 1980s and has been active in African affairs on the group’s behalf.

Levin said Grassley has not been in contact with “The Family” on this or any other issue and has never lived at or attended a prayer meeting at the group’s townhouse on C Street near the U.S. Capitol.

“He worships at Prairie Lakes Church in Cedar Falls, and on the rare occasion he’s in Washington on a weekend, he worships at Woodlawn Baptist Church in Alexandria, Virginia,” Levin said.

She said Grassley hasn’t participated in a Sunday prayer breakfast often associated with “The Family” in “probably 10 years,” and when he did it was made up of senators of all faiths and denominations, “including Protestant, Catholic, Mormon and Jewish.”

Follow Jason Hancock on Twitter


Comments

  • jrship

    It appears that The Family is promoting the careers of hateful bigots in places like Uganda. The sponsor of this legislation in Uganda is a member of The Family whose political career has been advanced by those connections. Grassley should make a stronger statement denouncing the promotion of religious fundamentalism and religious violence against oppressed groups rather than just trying to distance himself from the issue. It's one thing to claim not to be in contact or to minimalize hi contact and promotion of the group, it would be another if he clearly denounced their fundamentalist and bigoted agenda. Why can't he just take a clear stand against violent religious extremism?

  • ugandans

    Western media that is so quick to berate all things African. The law is meant to restore the cultural values, virtues and norms of Ugandans which homosexuality is targeting, especially among children.The law nothing to do with Western religion, neocolonialism or interference, it is simply a common theme in most African cultures.There is no need to seek out western Christian fundamentalists to explain thousands of years of African culture.

    • RegularJoe

      So you're saying they're sick, twisted, hate-filled scum already? Our radical phucked-up psycho-theo-fundies are merely icing on Satan's cake? Sorry, I'm not buying it. I've meet too many Africans that weren't like that – sane ones.
      Interesting to see Chuckles back-pedal from his neo-theo-cons, though.

  • jrship

    It appears that The Family is promoting the careers of hateful bigots in places like Uganda. The sponsor of this legislation in Uganda is a member of The Family whose political career has been advanced by those connections. Grassley should make a stronger statement denouncing the promotion of religious fundamentalism and religious violence against oppressed groups rather than just trying to distance himself from the issue. It's one thing to claim not to be in contact or to minimalize hi contact and promotion of the group, it would be another if he clearly denounced their fundamentalist and bigoted agenda. Why can't he just take a clear stand against violent religious extremism?

  • ugandans

    Western media that is so quick to berate all things African. The law is meant to restore the cultural values, virtues and norms of Ugandans which homosexuality is targeting, especially among children.The law nothing to do with Western religion, neocolonialism or interference, it is simply a common theme in most African cultures.There is no need to seek out western Christian fundamentalists to explain thousands of years of African culture.

  • RegularJoe

    So you're saying they're sick, twisted, hate-filled scum already? Our radical phucked-up psycho-theo-fundies are merely icing on Satan's cake? Sorry, I'm not buying it. I've meet too many Africans that weren't like that – sane ones.
    Interesting to see Chuckles back-pedal from his neo-theo-cons, though.

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