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Mary Lundby

Central City is Iowa's 2013 River Town of the Year

by: desmoinesdem

Tue Jan 22, 2013 at 08:05:00 AM CST

The non-profit organization Iowa Rivers Revival announced yesterday that its 2013 River Town of the Year award goes to Central City, a Linn County town on the Wapsipinicon River. Five Iowa towns have previously won the award: Webster City (Hamilton County), Elkader (Clayton County), Coon Rapids (Carroll County), Cedar Falls (Black Hawk County), and Charles City (Floyd County).

Details on Central City's award are below. At the end of January, a larger city in Iowa will be named River City of the Year.  

There's More... :: (0 Comments, 565 words in story)

Huge day for marriage equality in Iowa

by: desmoinesdem

Wed Nov 07, 2012 at 07:25:00 AM CST

Supporters of LGBT equality are celebrating yesterday's votes for same-sex marriage rights in Maine, Maryland, and Washington, as well as Minnesotans rejecting a constitutional amendment designed to restrict marriage rights to heterosexuals.

The election also slammed the door on any prospect of overturning marriage equality in Iowa.

There's More... :: (13 Comments, 525 words in story)

Iowa Senate district 18 election day news and discussion thread (updated)

by: desmoinesdem

Tue Nov 08, 2011 at 08:58:25 AM CST

Today's forecast calls for rain and cold temperatures in Linn County as Iowa Senate district 18 voters determine whether the Senate will remain Democratic-controlled for the 2012 session or deadlocked at 25-25. The weather doesn't seem bad enough to be a significant factor, but if it does keep some voters home, that's probably good news for Democrat Liz Mathis. She continues to lead Republican Cindy Golding in early voting.

The latest absentee ballot numbers and other news clips from the special election campaign are after the jump.

UPDATE: New absentee numbers for Senate district 18 are below.

There's More... :: (13 Comments, 1756 words in story)

Daniel Lundby will run for Iowa House district 68

by: desmoinesdem

Wed Jul 06, 2011 at 07:14:43 AM CDT

The son of one of Linn County's most influential Republicans during the past three decades will run for the Iowa House as a Democrat in 2012. Daniel Lundby on July 5 launched his campaign in the new Iowa House district 68. This swing district covers most of Marion (a suburb of Cedar Rapids) and some rural areas of Linn County, including the small towns of Ely and Bertram. As of April 2011, the new House district 68 contained 6,834 registered Democrats, 6,290 Republicans and 7,871 no-party voters.

Lundby's Republican opponent will be Iowa House Local Government Committee Chairman Nick Wagner. He has represented current district 36, covering suburban and rural parts of Linn County, since winning an open-seat race in 2008.

Lundby's first campaign press release refers repeatedly to his late mother, Mary Lundby. She was co-chair of the Linn County Republican Party before being elected to the Iowa House in 1986. After four terms as a state representative, she won several terms in the Iowa Senate, where she was among the more moderate Republicans. During the final weeks of the 2006 legislative session, she surprised most Iowa politics-watchers by ousting Stew Iverson as Senate Republican leader. She stepped down from the Senate in order to run for Linn County supervisor, but she dropped out of that race for health reasons. She died of cancer in early 2009.

Daniel Lundby's message to Linn County voters will be that today's Republican Party no longer shares his mother's values. From yesterday's campaign press release:

"My mother believed in a common sense approach to solving problems through partisan politics.  I want to bring that common sense back to the Iowa House.  My mother also strongly cared about children in Iowa and wanted them to get the best education possible.  Unfortunately, the needs of our young people now seem less important with the Republicans insisting on zero percent growth for local schools and education cuts to state universities.  None of which my mother would approve of.  Nor would she support cutting programs that protect our natural resources and our environment.  She would definitely not support attempts to deny equal rights to any Iowan.  Being my mother's son, I want the chance to continue her work for a better Iowa."

The comment about "equal rights" alludes to the fact that Mary Lundby was one of four Iowa Senate Republicans to vote against a constitutional amendment banning same-sex marriage in 2004. That amendment failed by a single vote in the upper chamber. Had it passed, the Varnum v Brien lawsuit challenging Iowa's Defense of Marriage Act probably would never have been filed.

I've posted a detailed map of the new House district 68 after the jump, along with the full text of Lundby's campaign announcement.

There's More... :: (0 Comments, 584 words in story)

Year in review: Iowa politics in 2009 (part 1)

by: desmoinesdem

Fri Jan 08, 2010 at 08:08:56 AM CST

I expected 2009 to be a relatively quiet year in Iowa politics, but was I ever wrong.

The governor's race heated up, state revenues melted down, key bills lived and died during the legislative session, and the Iowa Supreme Court's unanimous ruling in Varnum v Brien became one of this state's major events of the decade.

After the jump I've posted links to Bleeding Heartland's coverage of Iowa politics from January through June 2009. Any comments about the year that passed are welcome in this thread.

Although I wrote a lot of posts last year, there were many important stories I didn't manage to cover. I recommend reading Iowa Independent's compilation of "Iowa's most overlooked and under reported stories of 2009," as well as that blog's review of "stories that will continue to impact Iowa in 2010."

There's More... :: (0 Comments, 5197 words in story)

Rest in peace, Mary Lundby

by: desmoinesdem

Sat Jan 17, 2009 at 20:46:31 PM CST

Mary Lundby, a former leader of Iowa Senate Republicans and the first woman elected Speaker Pro-Tem in the Iowa House, passed away on Saturday after a long fight with cervical cancer.

Her funeral will be on January 21 at 1:00 p.m. at St. Joseph Parish in Marion.

Iowa politicians from both parties have paid tribute to Lundby. You can read their comments in Lynda Waddington's piece for Iowa Independent, this article from the Cedar Rapids Gazette, and this Des Moines Register article.

I only spoke to Senator Lundby once or twice. My friends who knew her well always spoke so highly of her. I appreciated her support for responsible land use in Iowa (land use issues often cut across party lines when they come up in the Iowa legislature). Lundby was on the advisory council of 1000 Friends of Iowa, a group I'm involved with.

Condolences go out to her loved ones. She was a strong and caring person.

Cancer is a monstrous disease. Women should educate themselves about ways to prevent cervical cancer as well as common symptoms of cervical cancer.

UPDATE: Lynda Waddington shares some memories and links to other reflections at Essential Estrogen.

SECOND UPDATE: 24-hour Dorman reports that Senate Majority Leader Mike Gronstal has "cancelled all committee and floor action" scheduled for Wednesday so that members of the Iowa Senate and the Senate staff may attend Mary Lundby's memorial service in Marion.

Discuss :: (1 Comments)

Update on new leadership for Iowa Republicans

by: desmoinesdem

Wed Nov 19, 2008 at 11:41:37 AM CST

Iowa Senate Republicans voted out Ron Wieck as minority leader on Tuesday. New leader Paul McKinley of Chariton promised "to rebuild this party from the ground up."

Wieck, of Sioux City, was selected for the job by Senate Republicans in 2007 after Sen. Mary Lundby of Marion chose to step down from the leadership role. He will continue to serve in his District 27 seat.

McKinley, former owner of the textile company Neely Manufacturing, stressed that all Republicans will continue to work together. Senate Republicans will focus on being a spending watchdog for the state, retaining Iowa's pro-business economy, providing tax relief and advocating for smaller government, he said.

Last week Iowa House Republicans picked Kraig Paulsen to replace Chris Rants as minority leader.

No consensus candidate seems to be emerging to take on the unenviable job of rebuilding the divided Republican Party of Iowa.

The Des Moines Register's David Yepsen wrote in his latest column,

Republicans are looking for a new state party chairman. The challenge for the party is to find a chair who is acceptable to social conservatives but who can raise money from more moderate business types. The new leader must look good on TV and execute a management turnaround, all while working for a board of directors that too often squabbles and micromanages.

Good luck. Polk County chairman Ted Sporer is running, but he may be too hot and scrappy for some. His critics say the Polk County GOP organization he heads isn't impressive. He says it's better than when he started.

Former state Rep. Danny Carroll of Grinnell is also mentioned. He's a smart, well-liked guy but may be too much of a social conservative for a party that needs to broaden its appeal. Carroll's also lost two consecutive legislative races.

Another former state representative, Bill Dix of Shell Rock, gets mentioned but may be more interested in another run for office someday.

If you're wondering why anyone would consider Sporer "too hot and scrappy," read his take on the Tom Harkin/Christopher Reed debate.

Appearing on Iowa Public Television the weekend after the election, Republican moderate and former gubernatorial candidate Doug Gross described his dream candidate:

Gross: Well, I can think of 1964 we had a debacle, the Goldwater debacle and Johnson won in a landslide.  The democrats took over the governorship in both houses of the legislature.  And then we brought in a young Des Moines attorney by the name of Bob Ray to run the party as a guy that understood the importance of communication, appealing to all factions of the party and worked his tail off to help rebuild the organization.  That's the kind of person we need as party chair again.  What we don't need is someone whose is ideologically pure on one side or the other, that's not what we should have.

Yepsen: Have you got some names?

Gross: Do I have some names?  I'm looking for Bob Ray's sons but he only has daughters but the daughters would be alright too.

Feel that inclusion, Republican ladies?

Even if Bob Ray had a son, I doubt a pro-choice moderate who welcomed increased foreign immigration to this state would have a prayer of winning a leadership contest in today's GOP.

Here's a tip for conservatives, though: Governor Ray was just about the only Republican my mother ever voted for.

For more speculation on a possible new leader for the Iowa GOP, read this post or this post at the Krusty Konservative blog. Check out the comments too. The conservatives sure are angry.

Discuss :: (2 Comments)
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