Huge thanks to Paul Deaton for taking over as BFIA weekday editor for July-August.
Happy Labor Day!
“Labor Day is a creation of the labor movement and is dedicated to the social and economic achievements of American workers. It constitutes a yearly national tribute to the contributions workers have made to the strength, prosperity, and well-being of our country.” – Department of Labor
But for me, this year, Labor Day has another meaning. Labor Day is the unofficial start of election season. This November is one of the most important elections in our lifetime, even though it is a “non-presidential” year. Pundits say it will be a symbolic referendum on Trump. But beyond mere symbolism, it will be our one shot at containing the daily harm he and his fellow Republicans are doing to the country.
When Donald Trump took office in 2016, everyone I know held off pure panic by telling ourselves, “If we can survive the next two years and elect a Democratic congress in 2018, it may be possible to save the country from ruin.” That was the singular hope back in November of 2016, to avoid taking a deep dive into the depths of despair. And that is the hope that we’ve been hanging onto for the last two terrifying years.
The time has now come to get serious about throwing every single Republican out of office, because they are all enablers of Donald Trump, the pussy-grabber-in-chief, who somehow became the accidental president.
There is a lot of work to do in addition to calling and door-knocking, if that’s not your thing. You can donate to campaigns, help with mailings, register voters at events, volunteer to work the polls on election day, post a yard sign, talk to your friends and neighbors, attend fund raisers, have a house party, write a letter to the editor.
If you are already involved and active in politics, you have probably been writing to your Republican senators, members of congress, and state reps, telling them what you think about their horrible policies.
It is now time to stop doing that.
The Iowa Republicans are unpersuadable. That is the reality in today’s political climate. It is an exercise in futility contacting Grassley or Ernst or Blum or Young or King or any Republican. Whatever you want to say to them, put it in a letter to the editor of your local paper instead, where they will see it – because they do pay attention to media that is about them – and where other voters who are persuadable, will see it. Speaking to them through the media is way more effective than writing directly to this current batch of Republicans who lie anyway, and say they are not even hearing from us, and that they are only hearing from constituents who just happen to support their views.
To illustrate how effective one letter can be, read this excellent letter to the editor in the Cedar Rapids Gazette last Monday exposing Joni Ernst for lying about receiving NRA money.
If everyone who writes letters to their representatives would instead or also write a letter like this to their local paper, that would be a winning strategy.
Well done, Tyler Juffernbruch of Indianola.
In regard to Sen. Joni Ernst’s falsehood that she has never received dollars from the NRA, she owes her constituents an apology and clarification.
When asked if NRA donations affect policymaking, she claimed, “(The NRA does) not give us money. That would be illegal and I would be driving a nicer car.”
To clarify: Ernst may not be receiving money directly from the NRA, but as a PAC, that money is “indirectly” streaming into her re-election fund. Whether that comes in campaign contributions or independent ads in support of Ernst, it’s still dollars going her way. Further, her claim attests to the dishonesty and half-truths current elected officials are willing to commit in order to maintain their re-election appeal.
We must hold elected officials accountable. Unequivocally, money impacts policy. As Ernst’s constituents, we should demand she sever ties with the NRA or openly admit the money she received.
We deserve honesty, free from half-truths or deceiving claims. She owes her constituents an apology.
The Iowa Republicans have been instrumental in Trump’s success. And they are standing by their man. So they have to go. We have four representatives in the U.S. congress and two senators. Of these six, five are Republicans. Republicans currently hold the Iowa governorship, the Iowa Senate, and the Iowa House. It would be a blow to Trump if Iowa were to turn blue. So let’s do our job and turn Iowa blue.