With so many issues facing us, it is more important than ever that we work together to find solutions.
Campaign Issues: Moving forward
During the course of this campaign, a pandemic has created a time of great uncertainty for Iowans. It has become a time of great uncertainty for our country, and in fact, the world. Our democracy will move forward through this difficult time as it has done so many times before. My grandparents like so many others, lived through the Spanish Flu Epidemic of 1918, the Great Depression, both WWI and WWII, and the civil unrest and turbulence of the 1960s. Many of us, perhaps even most of us, find ourselves facing difficulties of a magnitude that we associate only with the history books. It is this same history that should give us comfort now. Whether you are a recent immigrant, your family has been here since the 1600s, or your family history in America predates the European arrival, we are one and all made out of the same cloth as those who came before us. They faced times as difficult, or even more so, as the one we are facing now. Many of the lessons we will learn through this difficult time are ones that our grandparents learned. As our democracy moves forward for both our nation and Iowa, it is more important than ever that during the upcoming election we elect public servants in the best sense of those words to represent us. Public servants who will ask the right questions, seek the best answers, answers for the benefit of all Iowans. Public servants to represent us and leave a legacy for future generations. A legacy for future Iowans to be proud of when they reflect upon the history which we are now writing.
The Coronavirus and Iowa’s Future
The Coronavirus pandemic will have an impact on Iowa’s economy; it will impact the United States, and disrupt global trade. The extent to which this pandemic will create added burdens for Iowans will be determined in part by the effectiveness of our national response. The economic effects of the Coronavirus will take time to unfold, and Iowa’s revenues are likely to drop. Revenues will probably drop for all states, and it is our hope that the Federal Government will work with them to backfill their budgets so they are able to maintain pre-pandemic levels of public services. In Iowa, we must be prepared to be adaptable in charting our course going forward. Creativity, adaptability, and innovation will be vital in moving past the economic challenges we will probably face; however, there will be new opportunities along with some lessons learned, a chance to see the world anew, and a chance to move ahead with a renewed sense of purpose, and a clearer vision.
Iowans have always prioritized educating their kids, yet several years of underfunding have left many of the schools in this district making tough choices. Kids born in small towns, or rural districts, should have the same access to a quality K-12 education as kids born in affluent urban or suburban districts.
Kevin supports; increasing the state’s investment in public K-12 schools, especially in small towns and rural areas, empowering Iowa’s teachers in both the classroom and at the bargaining table, He also supports maintaining affordability at trade schools and two-year institutions like Southeastern Community College and Muscatine Community College so workers can get the training and apprenticeships they need for today’s jobs and those going on to four year schools can earn degrees without incurring unnecessary debt.
Unions have played a vital role in the rise of the middle class and they will play an important role in its revitalization. They are the counterbalance to corporate management and help to ensure that a worker’s input is fairly compensated. Since 1978, CEO salaries plus bonuses have grown 940% while average worker compensation has grown only 12%. The minimum wage if it had been tied to inflation in the late 1960s—as it should be—would now be twelve dollars and change. Kevin supports a living wage, equal opportunity, and equal pay for equal work. He also stands with teachers and other public employees in restoring their collective bargaining rights.
The privatization of Medicaid in Iowa hasn’t worked, and low Medicaid reimbursements have contributed to reduced services for pregnant women in rural areas—as well as other health care related negative outcomes. Nearly one third of Iowa’s people live in rural areas and over thirty small hospitals have closed their delivery rooms. Mental health is neither adequately funded or efficiently addressed in this state. The cost curve on health care needs to be bent downward, but bending it shouldn’t come at the expense of Iowa’s most vulnerable.
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