Here we go again. The Governor of Iowa takes tax payer money that came from the federal government to help small businesses that have been harmed by the pandemic and uses some twisted logic to decide that money to ameliorate the damage of the pandemic could best be spent to buy a new computer system for her administration.
The logic works something like this: Government is a large and hard to manage bureaucracy. The pandemic has made it really hard to manage the bureaucracy with all its vacation, sick days and cross coverages. Much of what the bureaucracy is doing these days is centered around the pandemic, so it only makes sense to get a new computer system to help with that management.
Well, sounds like weak logic to me. For some it may make sense until you consider what the money was supposed to be used for. This was money that was meant to help small businesses hang in as the corona virus pandemic continues to lay siege to the business environment. Once this is all over we will once again be turning to small businesses for our needs. This money was supposed to help those businesses survive.
According to Iowa Auditor Rob Sand, the computer upgrade was already planned prior to the pandemic, so Reynolds was reallocating money toward an already planned project. Thus funding should have already been established.
Reynolds also reallocated money earlier in the year from the CARES Act to pay staff in her office.
The point in bringing this up is that governmental positions are positions of TRUST. In particular, We, the People, trust our elected officials to operate within established laws and norms as they go about the state’s business. We place our trust that governmental business will be conducted legally and above board.
In the example cited above we should reasonably expect that the Governor should have used that money only to help small businesses in a non-partisan way where recipients of government help would be chosen in a fair way. To use money earmarked to help small businesses to pay for a project in her own administration is a breach of the public trust. Same is true of her use of previous funds to pay staff. That was not the purpose of the funds and as such is a breach of the public trust.
As Republicans have been been placed in charge of legislatures across the country we have seen another form of breaching the public trust. That is to abandon promises that they run on and switch in wholly unexpected legislation in its place. Despite outcries from citizens on both sides of the aisle on being blindsided, such power plays have more become the norm than the exception.
We trusted what they said, what we got was a breach of promise or a breach or our trust.
Iowa was not the first state to jump into this kind of breach of trust. Wisconsin under Scott Walker was the first. Iowa jumped in quickly, though. The new majority Republican legislature wasted little time in rolling back what were considered pretty fair public union labor laws. The Republicans breached our trust. Next were things like privatizing Medicaid and changing the way judges are appointed turning that into a highly partisan system.
From the White House on down to the county courthouse Republicans have taken the laws and norms of being in positions of public trust and simply demolished the TRUST that had taken so long to build in governance. At this point we could write books on the current administration and their purposeful destruction of OUR government. Think of YOUR Post Office, for instance.
We have slightly over one week until the election season ends. If you are at all undecided, ask yourself which person or party has truly won your trust to do what they said would do. I will bet that you will come to understand that Democrats earn the trust of the public. I can’t think of any Republican that hasn’t betrayed the public trust.
Joni Ernst betrays our trust nearly daily these days from farmers to women, all have been betrayed by Ernst.
Do you trust the Republican congressional candidates claiming to support health care even as their party pushes hard to have the SCOTUS end the Affordable Care Act? I sure wouldn’t. Especially at the height of a pandemic!
On and on goes the roll call of republicans who promise one thing and deliver something entirely different – something much more pleasing to their wealthy donor base.