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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

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

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.

Frank Luntz focus group

Iowa focus group on Fox News: Obama is Muslim

By Tyler Kingkade | 02.08.11 | 12:50 pm

On Sean Hannity’s program Monday night, pollster Frank Luntz hosted a focus group of Iowa Republican caucus-goers, gauging their reaction of President Barack Obama’s Sunday afternoon interview with Fox News’ Bill O’Reilly.

After a question by O’Reilly about the Muslim Brotherhood’s role in transitioning a government for Egypt, Luntz began to ask the Iowa Republicans why the meters showed them all having such a negative reaction to Obama’s answers.

One woman said she believed the president’s religious convictions guide his policies. When Luntz asked her to clarify, she said, “I believe that he is a Muslim.”

Luntz then asked the rest of the group how many believed Obama is Muslim. About a dozen, or nearly half, raised their hands.

“Now do you understand the implications of what you’re saying here,” Luntz began to ask. “What the media’s going to say about this group and about the Iowa Caucus voters in the future. Do you realize what you’re opening up here?”

After that comment, several other members of the focus group said they believed Obama’s religious belief is “liberalism,” which they said was “the most intolerant of all.”

The president is of course Christian, but some of the Republicans said they did not believe him.

This isn’t the first time Iowa has garnered headlines for questions about the president’s faith. Kim Lehman, one of Iowa’s three representatives on the Republican National Committee, was criticized last summer when she publicly questioned the president’s religion. In response, several prominent Iowa Republicans sounded off, with state Sen. Sandy Greiner saying she respects the point of view of anyone who says the president is a Muslim.

Gov. Terry Branstad said at the time that he would take the president at his word that he’s a Christian.

Luntz’ panels have been criticized as seeming too far right to be an accurate representation of any segment of the US population. The Pulitzer-prize winning website PolitiFact said Luntz coined the “Lie of the Year” in 2010, with the phrase “government takeover of health care.”

Luntz previously complained his airtime had been cut on Fox because his findings didn’t comport with the outlet’s orthodoxy, resulting from focus groups he conducted that ended up favoring Obama.

Also, on cable Monday night, on MSNBC, Lawrence O’Donnell concluded O’Reilly had interupted the president 43 times during the interview.

Follow Tyler Kingkade on Twitter


  • UIGrad2010

    omg, is this a joke? This is the republican voter of Iowa. HA! Wow. Half of them are conspiracy theorists that think the President is a Muslim as well as a worshiper of liberalism, which would really butt heads with Islam, ya know, having two ‘gods’…in Christianity too. The President isn’t even a liberal Democrat. These people need to read a textbook and look up some basic definitions in political science. And clearly they need to quit watching fox news, listening to drug addict, unqualified idiots like Limbaugh and Beck, and actually take some individual initiative themselves. Wow. Can we just divide Iowa into Eastern and Western Iowa so as to cut off a majority of Steve King’s voters. Thanks.

  • Anonymous

    Can we start having a test on common misconceptions prior to voting, and ban those who don’t begin to know what they’re voting on from making major decisions ignorantly?

    There may be a reason there’s a legal restriction against driving while legally blind (besides that it’s hard on the dogs). It’s not done to offend the visually impaired (of which I am one), but to recognize that in combination with 3000 pounds of steel, that impairment becomes hazardous to others. Yet here we are allowing the politically blind to drive the country.

    Can we establish a range of intelligence and cognizance of the issues, beyond which one is declared legally stupid and banned from voting?

    “I’m sorry, ma’am, your voter’s registration has you listed as legally stupid. No, you cannot just put on your FoxVision glasses and view the world accordingly.”

  • income tax calculator

    he is and everyone knows it

    • UIGrad2010

      No, just wingnut conspiracy theorists think they do.

    • Anonymous

      What if he were? It shouldn’t matter.

    • MattS

      If you are anywhere near serious, you too are a disgrace. a boil on humanity. A worthless, mindless waste of cells.

  • Anonymous

    Just proves what everyone says about Iowa… nothing.

    • Joe

      We like it that way.

  • Anonymous

    Wow… ignorance is rampant.

  • Blog for Iowa

    We have to get over being so shocked that these people are so horribly misinformed. This is a logical consequence of the conservative media,and not just Fox. These people are being fed a huge, unchallenged dose of daily lies on the Iowa public airwaves. Of the 17 commercial radio stations in iowa that have talk formats, 15 broadcast only conservative talk; 7 of these broadcast 12-14 hours daily of conservative talk. Another 7 stations broadcast 6-9 hours per day of conservative talk. The mainstream media, cable and networks, just keep the conversation going, leaving it seemingly unclear to any low information voter what the truth is. Conservative pundits have answers for everything – lies, but they sound good. Check out our research at

    • Anonymous

      You’ve got it totally right. Traveling in the midwest, the only media available is far right conservative talk. Lies and hate rhetoric. This is character assassination when being muslim equates to terrorism in the minds of the ignorant. We need to bring back regulation of the media.

  • Anonymous

    They’re worried at the White House. This focus group means that Obama probably has little chance of winning the 2012 Iowa Republican Caucuses.

    • egc52556


  • MetalNick

    I have a sneaking suspicion that Obama is actually an Atheist, which would be awesome, but it doesn’t matter. The faith of the President isn’t an issue unless he starts to use it in his governing policies (read: George W. Bush). Obama may be many things but he is not a Muslim, and even if he were it wouldn’t make any difference.

  • egc52556

    The GOP clearly believes that fostering ignorance is in their political favor. Just think about that: they benefit from the voters being more ignorant. Wow.

  • MattS

    I sent this to my father. He is still in a rage. I asked that if he happened to know any of the lowlifes on this panel, he needs to publicly shame them and never speak to them again. They are a lost cause. Not only are they a dispicable disgrace to their state of Iowa, they are a disgrace to humanity.

  • Anonymous

    If Obama is a Muslim he’s really not a good one. 1) Last week he told the group of our nations leaders at the National Prayer Breakfast that Jesus Christ was his Lord and Savior. 2) He has been a smoker for the past 30 years. 3) He consumes alcohol.

  • Anonymous

    If Obama is a Muslim he’s really not a good one. 1) Last week he told the group of our nations leaders at the National Prayer Breakfast that Jesus Christ was his Lord and Savior. 2) He has been a smoker for the past 30 years. 3) He consumes alcohol.

  • Anonymous

    If Obama is a Muslim he’s really not a good one. 1) Last week he told the group of our nations leaders at the National Prayer Breakfast that Jesus Christ was his Lord and Savior. 2) He has been a smoker for the past 30 years. 3) He consumes alcohol.

    • Privacy Manager

      And he likes Spam processed meat product.

  • Anonymous

    Well now we know Iowans aren’t the smartest group in the bunch.

  • John Doe

    With the midwest so full of such intellectually daft people, is it any wonder the “elitist” coasts are more important than you?

  • NadePaulKuciGravMcKi

    all Iowa knows exactly what Frank Luntz is
    19 Dancing Oswalds = 5 Dancing Mossad

  • Joe

    I don’t believe the Republican party exists. I mean a lot of people say they are “republicans” but that doesn’t make it true now does it?

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