Friday, April 02, 2010

Gubernatorial debate, Branstad tv ads, Culver's acccomplishments

It looks like the debate over the debate is now over. KTIV, the NBC affiliate in Sioux City, hosts the first debate of the 3 Republican gubernatorial (that is such a weird word, isn't?) The station first planned on blocking other media and the public from watching the taping of the debate. It wouldn't be aired live, just shown on tape later. Other media weren't happy. The Iowa Democratic Party challenged Republican candidates to back out of the debate if KTIV didn't change the rules. It looks like things have changed. The station will broadcast the debate live on the web. Plus, Iowa Public Television will carry it, as well. That would seem to be good for everyone involved. Thanks to the media for being accessible to the media.

Speaking of tv, you're about to see former Governor Terry Branstad on it more. He starts tv ads Monday and also lays out his job creation plans.

Democratic Governor Chet Culver's campaign released a list of highlights of the week. I don't recall seeing something like this from the campaign before. Here's the release.


Iowa’s economy continued to improve for a fifth straight month, according to the Iowa Leading Indicators Index for February.
The index of eight economic indicators gained 0.7 percent in February, according to the Iowa Department of Revenue, which compiles the data.


Gov. Chet Culver signed into law Thursday a bill making it illegal for people younger than 18 to use cell phones while behind the wheel and for older drivers to send or read text and e-mail messages.

"It's a commonsense, bipartisan bill that will save lives and keep Iowa drivers safe," Culver said.

With Culver's signature, Iowa became the 21st state to enact a texting-while-driving ban, according to the Governors Highway Safety Association.

( I don't recall the governor speaking out strongly about what he specifically wanted to see on this texting ban before lawmakers passed the bill.)


The Iowa General Assembly shortened its session to 79 days to save taxpayers' money, yet managed to balance the budget in a severe recession, streamline state government and pass a raft of bills affecting everything from bicycle safety to puppy mills

The state will get by for another year without going into the red or raising taxes in a recession, which is no small feat.

(Republicans school districts will have no choice but to raise property taxes because of Culver's budget. I wonder when we will know for sure who is right in this fight.)


The 2010 legislative session was a victory for all Iowans. As a former teacher, I give the legislature an “A.” As a former coach, the Democratic legislative leaders each get my vote for MVP.

I thank legislators – both Democrats and Republicans – who made the 2010 session so successful. On several occasions we worked together and reached across party lines on bills such as the one to honor former A-P football coach Ed Thomas. This legislation honored the wishes of his family and hopefully will prevent another similar tragedy.

We worked together to save taxpayer dollars, create jobs, and protect our priorities. We’ve kept our promises and, most importantly, we have moved Iowa forward.

And, as other states continue to debate how much taxes will increase, we balanced our budget – just as we have done every year since I took office—without raising taxes!

(Do you ever notice how politicians keep taking credit for balancing the budget? In Iowa, they are constitutionally required to balance the budget. Shouldn't that be expected of them then to balance the budget?)

CULVER: GAY MARRIAGE DISCRIMINATION HAS NO PLACE IN IOWA’S CONSTITUTION Chet Culver today made his strongest public statements to date about gay marriage, telling reporters that discrimination has no place in Iowa’s constitution.

“We stood firm for the civil rights of every Iowan by saying loudly and clearly that any and all efforts to add discriminatory amendments to our state constitution have no place in our state constitution,” Culver said of the legislature’s resistance to multiple attempts to end equal marriage right for same-sex couples.

(I don't believe the governor said anything this strong before lawmakers ended the session and ended any possibility of allowing voters the statewide chance to amend the constitution and ban same-sex marriages.)


Under intense pressure from Iowa politicians and other members of the media, Sioux City NBC affiliate KTIV has changed its coverage plans for Wednesday's first Republican gubernatorial debate. However, the public and other members of the media are still barred from attending the event.

KTIV and the three Republican candidates for governor in Iowa came under increased scrutiny Thursday for agreeing to take part in a debate that is closed to the press and the public.

(I can't remember any media organization getting hammered this month for its handling of a debate.)

What do you think?

Thanks for reading.

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