Kevin Warth offers unique perspective for Iowa Senate district 44

Tyler Mills is a Democratic activist in southeast Iowa who is consulting for Kevin Warth, one of three Democrats seeking the nomination in Senate district 44. -promoted by Laura Belin

Kevin Warth’s voice is desperately needed within the Democratic caucus in the Iowa Senate. Agriculture has always been the backbone of our state’s economy, and that isn’t going to change.

One of the key issues we are facing as a state is finding a way to make our young people willing to stay in the communities they grew up in–or at the very least, maintaining an interest in the overall benefit of those communities.

There are too many stereotypes out there, and one is that only educators care about funding our public schools. Kevin Warth is a farmer and small businessperson who finds immense value in properly funding our school districts, not only to help our state’s economy grow in this rapidly changing world, but also to make sure that students have a fulfilling experience. He supports a broad curriculum to give students an idea of the opportunities out there. The arts should never take a back seat to any other aspect of the educational process.

Educational experts see a growing divide in funding levels between rural and urban school districts. Kevin’s statement below highlights the need to close this gap:

“I believe music and art programs are vital to primary education, not necessarily to produce artists and musicians, but to produce better citizens who have had exposure to things that broaden their experience and enhance their capacity to approach and understand the world from varied viewpoints—something that is vital to effective citizenship in what is still the world’s most important democracy. I would also add that we should strive to give kids born in rural school districts the same caliber education as kids born in wealthy suburban public-school districts.”

Kevin has also taken the time to highlight the need for more rural health care providers, particularly the concept of maintaining our maternity units in small-town hospitals.

The legislature will continue to debate possible changes to the state’s main public pension system, IPERS. It is time to elect people who will go into these discussions with clear eyes, ready to learn the facts. If voters elect the same people who are ideologically rigid, lawmakers will never find a long-term solution. Iowa needs to retain and acquire high-quality state employees, and we can’t do that without a high-quality pension system.

The state is looking at billions of dollars of unfunded liabilities within IPERS, which has some 300,000 Iowa members. We need legislators who don’t leave good people on both sides of this debate in limbo. This should not be a partisan issue. Many people understand we must increase private sector opportunities in order to meet our obligations to wonderful state employees.

Kevin’s experience in agriculture, paired with his degree in politics and government, would be invaluable to Senate District 44.

The reality is we don’t get enough Democrats from places like Mediapolis to run for office. For that reason, too many voters from Louisa, Muscatine, and rural Des Moines counties automatically view our party with a skeptical eye. Kevin is one of the those who can change that, because he wants to talk about kitchen table issues and maintaining a certain quality of life in rural communities.

We must stay committed to growing the Democratic Party in the rural parts of the district for decades to come. Democratic voters in Senate District 44 should support Kevin Warth in the June 2 primary, to make sure that his voice is heard. It’s time turn the page, hear fresh voices and move southeast Iowa forward.

Top photo of Kevin Warth provided by the candidate and published with permission.

Editor’s note: Bleeding Heartland welcomes guest posts advocating for candidates in Iowa Democratic primaries. Please read these guidelines and contact Laura Belin if you are interested in writing.

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