My time with Lieutenant Governor Jo Ann Zimmerman

Janis Bowden clerked for Jo Ann Zimmerman in the Iowa House. Zimmerman went on to become Iowa’s first woman lieutenant governor and a member of the Iowa Women’s Hall of Fame. She passed away in October. -promoted by Laura Belin

I met Jo Ann Zimmerman in Dallas Center, Iowa. She was campaigning for the Iowa House as a Democrat.

Initially I was impressed by her obvious intelligence and demeanor. It did not take long to jump on board to help her campaign. Dallas Center was known as a hub of Republicans in the early 1980s, as opposed to the very active Democrats living in most of Dallas County.

Continue Reading...

IA-Gov: Andy McGuire has her work cut out for her

I’ve never seen a bigger disconnect between Iowa Democratic Party donors and activists than in their attitude toward Dr. Andy McGuire as a candidate for governor.

I’ve never seen a bigger disconnect between Iowa pundits and activists than in their assessment of McGuire’s chances to become the Democratic nominee.

Since McGuire rolled out her campaign three weeks ago, I’ve been thinking about how she might persuade enough rank-and-file Democrats to support her in a crowded gubernatorial field. I’m stumped.

Continue Reading...

IA-Sen: Patty Judge highlights support from women in first batch of endorsements

Claiming to have “a broad, statewide network that can work together to defeat Chuck Grassley,” former Lieutenant Governor Patty Judge today released a list of nearly 60 prominent Iowa Democrats supporting her candidacy for U.S. Senate. I enclose below the full campaign statement, which highlighted endorsements from:

• “every living Democratic woman to hold a statewide office in Iowa,” namely former Attorney General Bonnie Campbell, former Secretary of State Elaine Baxter, and former Lieutenant Governors Sally Pederson and Jo Ann Zimmerman. Gender will be a factor for many Iowa Democrats weighing their choices in the four-way IA-Sen primary.

• “activists and community leaders,” such as LGBTQ advocates Nate Monson, Cecilia Martinez, and Bobbi Fogle; Jill June, the longtime leader of Iowa’s largest Planned Parenthood chapter; Joe Henry, national vice president of the League of United Latin American Citizens; and former Secretary of State nominee Brad Anderson.

• “current and former elected officials,” including former U.S. Representative Leonard Boswell, Polk County Auditor Jamie Fitzgerald, former Davenport Mayor Bill Gluba, and former Cedar Rapids Mayor Kay Halloran.

• former Iowa Democratic Party chairs Rob Tully and Michael Kiernan (and Bonnie Campbell), along with current and former county party chairs.

Also worth noting:

• While Judge’s list is heavy on Iowans who backed Hillary Clinton for president, it includes some well-known Bernie Sanders endorsers like Gluba and Henry.

• Judge has not peeled away any of the 61 Democratic state lawmakers (including 25 women) who endorsed State Senator Rob Hogg for IA-Sen earlier this year, before the former lieutenant governor and Iowa secretary of agriculture was known to be considering this race.

Any comments about the Senate campaign are welcome in this thread. With all respect to Judge and the women and men named below, someone who aligned herself with the Iowa Farm Bureau against efforts to clean up waterways will never get my vote in a Democratic primary.

P.S.- I got a kick out of seeing both Joe Henry and Des Moines activist Sean Bagniewski on Judge’s supporter list. Less than two weeks ago, they were key players on opposite sides in the epic drama also known as the Polk County Democratic Convention.

Continue Reading...

Forum on women in Iowa politics at Drake on Friday

Normally I mention these Iowa Politics events on my weekly calendar, but I only found out about this one today. There are still some spots available for reservations:

Drake to host forum on women in Iowa politics

Drake University will host a bipartisan forum Friday, Nov. 14, on the role women play in Iowa politics and future prospects for women to be elected to represent Iowans in Congress.

The featured speakers will be:

   * Dianne Bystrom, director of the Carrie Chapman Catt Center for Women and Politics at Iowa State University

   * Becky Greenwald, Iowa Congressional candidate

   * Mary E. Kramer, former U.S. ambassador

   * Mariannette Miller-Meeks, Iowa Congressional candidate

   * Jo Ann Zimmerman, former Iowa lieutenant governor

The event, which is free and open to the public, will start at 11 a.m. in Levitt Hall in Old Main, 2507 University Ave.

Reservations are required for the event, which is sponsored by Drake, IowaPolitics.com and Mediacom, as part of the Cookies and Conversation Series. For reservations, call 515-226-8774 or send an e-mail to Julie Rutz at rutz@IowaPolitics.com.

IowaPolitics.com Des Moines Bureau Chief Lynn Campbell will moderate the program and questions will be accepted from audience members. The panel discussion will be televised to a statewide audience on the Mediacom Connections Channel and will be available for On Demand viewing from Mediacom on Channel 1.

Doors to Levitt Hall will open at 10:30 a.m. Free parking will be available in Drake lots at 26th Street and University Avenue and at 25th Street and Carpenter Avenue.

IowaPolitics.com is an independent, nonpartisan news operation offering a free Web site at www.IowaPolitics.com and paid subscriber products.

This is an open thread for discussing women in Iowa politics.

I still believe that the most important reason Iowa has never sent a woman to Congress is the fact that almost every woman who’s tried was challenging an incumbent.

Many women failed to defeat incumbents in other states too this year, including quite a few who had more money to spend on their campaigns than Miller-Meeks or Greenwald did in IA-02 and IA-04.

Continue Reading...
View More...