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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.

Senate Majority Leader Mike Gronstal addresses the labor rally Monday night at the Iowa Capitol.
Senate Majority Leader Mike Gronstal addresses the labor rally Monday night at the Iowa Capitol.

Collective bargaining bill DOA in Iowa Senate

By Lynda Waddington | 03.14.11 | 4:42 pm

The chairman of the Senate Labor Committee announced Monday that a bill passed by the Iowa House to limit collective bargaining rights is dead for the remainder of the session.

Sen. Wally Horn (D-Cedar Rapids) said that there weren’t enough votes in the Democratically-controlled Senate to bring the bill out of committee. Members of the Republican-controlled Iowa House spent three days last week debating the bill, which was ultimately passed Friday on a party line vote.

The bill, House File 525, allowed employees to become “free agents,” able to negotiate their terms of employment directly with employers even in a union shop. The bill also prohibited unions from negotiating on health benefits, retirement or layoffs, and required arbitrators to consider comparisons with non-union workers and the private sector, and whether taxes would be increased.

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Comments

  • http://qcblue.blogspot.com/ UIGrad2010

    At least working Iowans won’t be stripped of their rights that were built up for generations. Thank you Senate Democrats!

  • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_XEFGEOUH52QNNSCD233KGH7UE4 Wendy Peterson

    Most of the Democrats in the Iowa Senate just ushered their chances of getting elected again back to the 1980s.

    • http://qcblue.blogspot.com/ UIGrad2010

      Lol you’re so dumb. They still have control after 2010, they aren’t going anywhere. Your dumb, troglodytes in control of the House are going though. P.s. after this we should all ignore Wendy because she’s a worthless cause and an uneducated parrot spewing republicans bs talking points. I should’ve done that sooner.

      • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_XEFGEOUH52QNNSCD233KGH7UE4 Wendy Peterson

        So what job does President Obama have in mind for you UIGrad2010?

        • http://twitter.com/polymath22 polymath22

          a FEMA camp?

          • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_XEFGEOUH52QNNSCD233KGH7UE4 Wendy Peterson

            a hardware store?

    • http://twitter.com/polymath22 polymath22

      i remember the 1980s … reagan was potus, branstad was governor, mom and dad BOTH got laid off…almost everyone i knew was on welfare… we spent a lot of time standing in charity soup lines. our christmas was donated to us by salvation army and/or secret santa. it was very humiliating to be poor. my family was very ashamed of our situation. this went on well into the early-mid 1990s, when college educated people were working entry level jobs at IBP in waterloo, iowa, working side-by-side with an illegal immigrant and a moonlighting farmer. turns out that union busting and family farm busting didn’t work too well for most iowans. we are STILL in a hangover from the reagan branstad excesses.

      • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_XEFGEOUH52QNNSCD233KGH7UE4 Wendy Peterson

        That’s a real sad story. Why weren’t your parents protected by a union?

        • Anonymous

          Since it is apparent to the good people on this web site that you have no shame, heart, or humanity, I have to ask the question Wendy.
          What exactly do you stand for? Don’t get me wrong, I know what you are against. I just want to know what principles you think you are
          promoting with your comments.

          I’m challenging you to come up with something that doesn’t include the word Liberals, Obamacare, Nazi, Homos, etc. Come on, are you up for a challenge that would mean typing more than 10 words at a time?

          What is your manifesto?

          Please, don’t disappoint.

          • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_XEFGEOUH52QNNSCD233KGH7UE4 Wendy Peterson

            If I typed my “manifesto” you would rip into it and it would really make your day. If you are still wondering, I’m against doing stuff like that.

          • http://twitter.com/PhoenixWomanMN Phoenix Woman

            How Randian of you. Screw the 98% — they’re all “parasites” anyway! Right?

          • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_XEFGEOUH52QNNSCD233KGH7UE4 Wendy Peterson

            That sounds like a manifesto I could adopt. What about the other 2 percent?

          • Anonymous

            Not that it was needed but thanks for the confirmation anyway. You have no principles.

            Squawk On Wendy!!

          • Anonymous

            Not that it was needed but thanks for the confirmation anyway. You have no principles.

            Squawk On Wendy!!

      • Citizen Kane

        Math wiz, Please don’t reply to Wendy, she needs no replies from this blog. Unfortunately she can’t read even the name of this blog site, or comprehend it perhaps. “Iowa Independent”, here is a story of a fledging independent.

        http://www.globegazette.com/news/opinion/editorial/article_e0813da8-4bb7-11e0-aae8-001cc4c002e0.html
        Little slow in realization, but now knows why we independents are out here.

  • Anonymous

    Way to go IOWA!!!!! now get on up here and help us!!!

  • http://qcblue.blogspot.com/ UIGrad2010

    Now I hope all of the workers and lgbt groups will come together and work hard to ensure his reelection and the reelection of the Democratic controlled Senate.

    • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_XEFGEOUH52QNNSCD233KGH7UE4 Wendy Peterson

      And in particular, Senate Majority Leader Mike Gronstal just put his chances for re-election back into the 1970s.

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=1436370143 Peggy Keller

    Iowa is a big Union state. They are a Right to Work state but have more union members than non RTW states. Although John Deere etc are private union, four of the top five employers in the state ARE union corps ( or similar i.e. Hyvee) and they generally support the public union fight. There are dozens of non-union shops who get contracts via Deere and other companies who would cease to exist without Deere in Iowa and via the Union contract, Deere is guaranteed to stay in Iowa for the length of the contract- meaning all those small business manufacturers that do work for them will stay solvent. ‘
    No matter what you think about collective bargaining in the public sector, unions over all keep many towns in Iowa alive and should be supported.

  • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_I6RF3FJGQQ4YMGGI2OP6SFVD5E Mark

    Anyone who’s ever had to cut household spending knows it ain’t easy or fun. So I want to acknowledge the difficulty of the task our legislators face.

    Is it a self-inflicted problem? Maybe. Earlier this year, House File 194 proposed a 20 percent income tax cut – a reduction in the INCOME side of the ledger. And now, Iowa state is in crisis mode for bringing the EXPENSE side into balance.

    But even in crisis mode, removing collective bargaining rights seemed like a strange way to negotiate a change in health care contributions.

    From my perspective, it seemed like House File 525 was an admission that IA House Republicans didn’t want to do one of the things they were elected to do. And I’m relieved it didn’t make it out of committee.

    Seriously – come to the bargaining table.

  • Anonymous

    Why do the highly paid superintendents and administrators who can most afford to pay for their health insurance have FULL FAMILY HEATH INSURANCE given to them FREE while they fight with the school board association to force teachers and support staffs to pay for all or most of a SINGLE health insurance policy? In other words, administrators make twice to three times as much as teachers and then get their family health policy handed them for free. Why aren’t the Teahadists upset about that?

  • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_I6RF3FJGQQ4YMGGI2OP6SFVD5E Mark

    When a medical pro prescribes amputation as treatment for a headache, there’s a problem with the doctor.

    Seriously, legislators!

    If you don’t like the contracts you’re negotiating… look in the mirror.

  • Anonymous

    This bill was an overreach from the start. The new Republican “hot shots” in the house need to learn that if you take office and there’s 10 things you want to change, you change 1 a year. Anything more is just an effort to institute shock and awe to your opposition. The Tea Party candidates are like little puppies on their first hunt. They stray too far, they don’t listen, and they have no idea what they’re doing.

    And let’s be a little nicer to Wendy. I don’t want her to leave! She is my comic relief on this site. Everybody needs a doppelganger!

  • Anonymous

    As Iowans, we are represented by two chambers – the House AND the Senate. We elected all of the members of the General Assembly and the divide between the chambers is a reflection of our votes. If we don’t like the members of the House putting forward “extreme” bills and/or the Senate “killing” them, we only have ourselves to blame and ultimately we will get what we collectively voted for.

    FYI – I stole this “Iowans voted and Iowans spoke” argument from the proponents of Iowa’s judicial retention vote…

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