An error of judgment

Apologizing for this poorly-conceived protest was the right decision. Many people who attended events in Ankeny and Cedar Rapids were upset by the symbolism. -promoted by Laura Belin

This past weekend, Bold Iowa held an action intended to dramatize the severity of the climate crisis. Our inspiration came from students in Germany, who stood on melting blocks of ice in a gallows with nooses around their necks.

Our message — As the Arctic melts, the climate noose tightens — was well received by many. Yet we inadvertently hurt some individuals whom we had hoped to inspire, either because the image of the noose raised the specter of lynchings or because it kindled sadness over a loved one who died of suicide by hanging.

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Iowa Democrats vote to kill new impeachment resolution

The U.S. House voted on July 17 to kill a new resolution seeking to impeach President Donald Trump for “racist comments that have legitimized and increased fear and hatred of new Americans and people of color […].”

Iowa’s Representatives Abby Finkenauer (IA-01), Dave Loebsack (IA-02), and Cindy Axne (IA-03) were among 137 Democrats who voted to table the resolution (roll call). So did all 194 Republicans present, including Steve King (IA-04), and independent Justin Amash, even though Amash has previously said Trump engaged in impeachable “conduct satisfying all the elements of obstruction of justice.”

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IA-01: Strong fundraising for Abby Finkenauer and Ashley Hinson

Iowa’s first Congressional district will be among the country’s top-targeted U.S. House races next year. Both the Cook Political Report and Sabato’s Crystal Ball rate this district a toss-up, for good reason. Although voter registration numbers slightly favor Democrats, voters in northwest Iowa swung heavily to Donald Trump and to Republicans for down-ballot offices in 2016.

Three Republican candidates have announced plans to challenge first-term U.S. Representative Abby Finkenauer, but at this writing, only State Representative Ashley Hinson appears relevant to the conversation. Thomas Hansen announced his candidacy on May 1, but his first Federal Election Commission filing shows just one donation from the candidate and one expenditure for gas, leaving $18.36 cash on hand. (FEC staff have already dinged Hansen for not filing his campaign’s statement of organization on time.) The third GOP candidate, Darren White, filed a statement of candidacy with the FEC last month but has not filed a July quarterly, indicating that he has not raised or spent any significant sum.

Former U.S. Representative Rod Blum, who lost to Finkenauer in 2018, raised nothing during the second quarter and spent only a token amount to keep campaign e-mail accounts working. Blum paid for some polling during the first quarter and has not ruled out running for Congress again. Republican insiders appear to prefer Hinson, for reasons Bleeding Heartland discussed in detail here.

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