Letters to the Editor

ELECTION letters

Editor’s note: It was not possible to publish every letter concerning Tuesday’s primary election. We selected a representative sample, giving preference to shorter letters and those offering viewpoints not already shared in other letters.

LWV encourages you to vote Tuesday

In this crucial election year it’s no longer enough to be just a registered voter. You must exercise your privilege as an American and vote on Tuesday.

Americans have a unique freedom. Voting is one of our most important duties. As an American citizen you have the freedom to choose our elected representatives.

“Make Democracy Work” is the motto of the League of Women Voters of the United States for this election season.

Primary elections do matter. They determine which candidates will be on the ballot in November. Voting gives you a voice in decisions that affect you and your community. In Johnson County there are contested races for the U.S. Senate, U.S. House of Representatives, Iowa House District 77 and the Johnson County Board of Supervisors.

The League of Women Voters of Johnson County held two forums this spring for Iowa House District 77 and the Johnson County Board of Supervisors to help voters learn about the candidates and where they stand on issues. The more you know will help you make an informed decision about which candidate to support. Inform, Educate, Advocate is our adage.

Both LWVJC Candidate Race Forums can be viewed online at Cable Channel 4 http://citychannel4.com/ps4.shtml or CoralVision http://www.coralville.org/73/CoralVision-TV

Learn what the candidates stand for and vote for those who mirror your principles.

Syndy Conger


League of Women Voters of Johnson County

Iowa City

Pat Heiden is a team builder

We support Pat Heiden for supervisor with our unconditional support.


She sees the big picture of county government in cooperation with other governmental bodies in the area. She is a thoughtful and careful listener and responder. She is an organized planner and always follows through.

It has been our privilege to work with Heiden over the years on many projects and boards. She is by far the best team builder of any person we’ve ever worked with. Johnson County should feel privileged to have her on the ballot.

Of particular interest to us are her dedication to improving access to help for those with mental illness and alcohol and drug addiction, as well as her steadfast and continuous effort to improve the lives of one of our county’s most vulnerable populations, the elderly.

Kathryn and Peter Wallace

Iowa City

Hogg is committed to Iowans

Iowa Sen. Rob Hogg has been a Cedar Rapids attorney for 25 years. He served in the Iowa House for three terms and is in his second term in the Iowa Senate, where he serves on half a dozen committees. He is a dedicated supporter of climate control. His book “America’s Climate Century” is an explanation of climate change and a call for Americans to combat it.

He has been a consistent and tireless advocate for sustainable approaches to government that work for all of us. Hogg supports equality for all Americans and he has been endorsed by over 90 Iowa lawmakers. Since mid 2014 when he formed his Senate exploratory committee, he has spoken with and listened to the concerns of thousands of Iowans.

He is dedicated to Iowa and he will serve us well in Washington.

Liz Varnum

Cedar Rapids

Nielsen will bring a fresh voice

I’m glad that Amy Nielsen is running for the Iowa House of Representatives.

She will bring a fresh voice and new approaches to the challenges facing Iowans and their families. Her pragmatic problem-solving will make her an effective advocate for the people of House District 77. I know a little something about what it takes to be an effective state legislator and I know that she will be a great addition to the strong, progressive delegation from Johnson County.

It matters who we send to Des Moines to fight for us. Learn more about Nielsen at www.amyforiowa.com.

Sue Dvorsky


Monica Vernon will stick to the issues

Many would agree that a discussion of the issues should be the central piece of any campaign between two candidates for public office.


As I have observed the race between Pat Murphy and Monica Vernon for the 1st Congressional District of Iowa, I can’t help but be distracted from the issues because of how Pat Murphy behaves.

Given the dysfunctional nature of our Congress, I can’t fathom that Murphy would be a helpful addition. To the contrary.

That’s one of the many reasons I’ll be voting for Vernon on Tuesday.

Libby Gotschall Slappey

Cedar Rapids

Walker is dedicated to this community

I am supporting Stacey Walker for District 2 representative on the Linn County Board of Supervisors.

Walker was raised in Cedar Rapids by a loving extended family. His many accomplishments in high school and college led him to Washington, D.C. with opportunities for a prestigious career. He chose to return to Cedar Rapids and has immersed himself in service to his community. This speaks volumes for his commitment to home.

Walker is co-chair of the Safe, Equitable, and Thriving Community’s Task Force. This group is tasked with examining and recommending ways to address the causes of inequality and poverty in our community.

As a practicing social worker in Cedar Rapids for 40 years, I have seen first hand the barriers that confront individuals trying to move ahead with their lives. Systemic barriers inhibit opportunities for education, employment, adequate housing, nutritional, physical and mental health care.

The resulting despair and stress leads to community trauma which can turn to aggression and violence.

Walker is a leader in our city and county in understanding the need for an inclusive, comprehensive approach to these issues which will involve all citizens.

Walker chose not to apply for the appointed position on the board of supervisors. This speaks to his respect for the democratic electoral process. How refreshing this is in this era of self-absorbed and disingenuous politicians.

Elect Walker for a new generation of progressive and cooperative leadership.

Marcia Swift

Cedar Rapids

Hogan is qualified to be a supervisor


Most of us in East Central Iowa know Dick Hogan was a longtime Gazette reporter and spent at least 15 years covering Linn County government.

He kept a good eye on county government for the residents of Linn County. He wants to come out of retirement to seek the District 2 Linn County Supervisor seat.

I’ve known Hogan, both personally and professionally, for nearly 40 years. Having been a Linn County supervisor myself, and a former clerk of Linn County District Court, I believe that Hogan would be an excellent choice for District 2 supervisor.

Hogan was correct in his original newspaper candidacy announcement when he stated that he “knows Linn County government inside and out.”

I agree. His 15 years of covering Linn County government as a reporter uniquely qualifies him to serve as a Linn County supervisor.

I encourage Linn County District 2 Democrats to vote for Hogan.

Kenneth L. Perry Jr.

Cedar Rapids

Vote for Sullivan, Friese and Lewis

Johnson County Democrats have an opportunity to revitalize a moribund Democratic Party by voting for Rod Sullivan, Kurt Friese and Jason T. Lewis. They represent the future of the Democratic Party, a party that says “yes we can” rather than “no we can’t.”

Iowa Democrats also can cast a vote for Tom Fiegen for U.S. Senate. He has a distinguished record of campaigning against factory farming and corporate agriculture. He does not take campaign contributions from corporations, corporate political action committees or other campaign committees that accept corporate funding.

Jeff Cox

Iowa City

Neighborhood safety priority for Walker

I recommend Stacey Walker to fill the District 2 seat on the Linn County Board of Supervisors.

His efforts to focus on the safety of our neighborhoods are shown throughout his participation with the SET Task Force, the LBA Foundation and the Boys and Girls Club’s Young Mentor’s Movement.


Serving as trustee to the Cedar Rapids Community School District and as a board member for the Academy for Scholastic and Personal Success, he shows how dedicated he is to serving our youth. His example of perseverance and success is a great example to our youth.

His internship in Washington, D.C. allowed him to develop a deeper knowledge of entrepreneurship and innovation including issues in legislation to help small businesses.

A leader with a strategy for development and expansion will be what Cedar Rapids needs.

Lindsay Garner

Cedar Rapids

Nielsen will bring people together

Amy Nielsen will be an energizing new leader in the Iowa House on behalf of District 77. support her because of her desire to serve and her ability to bring people together around new, creative ideas.

When she talks about her desire to promote government and community cooperation, I think about all she’s done to make our Community Pantry a model for collaboration between non-profit and government forces. When she talks about education as a priority, I visualize her ‘driving’ our local ‘walking school bus.’

Leighton A. Smith

North Liberty

Hogg will work tirelessly for Iowans

We endorse Rob Hogg over Patty Judge.

Doug Schumacher first met Hogg a few days after the flood of 2008 when someone found out that a group of us were trying to put together a list of businesses that had suffered damage from the flood. Hogg had been doing the same thing, so we started working together.

From that day on, he became a valuable asset on our road to recovery and continues to be one of the most dedicated and committed politicians we know for flood prevention.

Hogg dug in, got dirty and worked tirelessly to help save our community. He will take that sense of urgency to the Senate to push for all Iowans’ needs.

Doug Schumacher

Gary Ficken

Cedar Rapids

Vote Donahue for House District 68

Vote for Molly Donahue for Democratic candidate for House District 68.

As an educator, Donahue has a stake in the terrible funding education has received over the past 20 years in Iowa. She will be a strong voice for kids, parents, and Iowans, making our state great again in education. Encouraging our community colleges and university to keep tuition low and Iowa students at home.

Vote for Donahue if you believe eduction in Iowa should be our top priority.

Daniel Lundby


Stutler has skills necessary to lead

I support Joe Stutler for Linn County Auditor.


As a Libertarian, I would normally not get involved in Democratic Party politics, but this cycle is different. I’ve known him for many years and I know him to be a good person and a competent professional who has the skills and willingness to work in a non-partisan way. His public service is an inspiration to me and to many in our community.

If you want an auditor you can be proud of, vote for Stutler. I know I do, which is why I changed my party registration to be able to vote for him.

Jay S. Clark


Fiegen cares about clean water, air

What distinguishes the former state senator Tom Fiegen from his competition is his passionate crusade to inform and warn us all of the danger to our water and food supply from modern agriculture.

To increase crop yields and battle more resistant weeds, farmers have had to apply more fertilizer and chemicals on their genetically modified crops.

A greater danger is the presence of a toxin from the use of glyphosate (roundup) to control weeds.

We are slowly poisoning ourselves and Fiegen has the courage to stand up for our future. He has proposed a tax on fertilizer and chemicals to diminish the danger, clean up our drinking water and pay for health care.

Larry Hodgden


Vote for Gull for a better government

I recommend Tim Gull to be the Republican candidate for Linn County Supervisor.

With a college degree, military service and being a successful Marion business owner, he has the qualifications and experience necessary to make “common sense” conservative decisions.

Gull and I support signing a petition, required to be placed on the ballot for vote, reducing the need for Linn County Supervisors from five to three. This would reduce total supervisors salary and allow the possibility for Linn County Supervisors to hire a county administrator.

For better Linn County government, vote for Gull.

Ivan Hardt

Cedar Rapids

Hogan will be an effective supervisor

Dick Hogan will be more than a good Linn County Supervisor. He’ll be an effective supervisor. He has the temperament to give county business careful consideration and the background to make good decisions. He has a realistic view of the job.


His years of volunteer service — as a past chairman of the Cedar Rapids Veterans Memorial Commission, past president of the Metro Veterans Council, as commander of American Legion Post 298 in Marion, and as Second District American Legion vice commander and commander-elect — give him insight into serving on committees and deliberative bodies. He knows how to get along with people to get things done.

He would re-examine the area’s approach to waste management and recycling, look into ways to improve cooperation with Linn County cities, and foster better relationships between the public and the board, and between supervisors and other officials.

Kurt Rogahn

Cedar Rapids

Sullivan will listen to your concerns

I am voting for Rod Sullivan for Johnson County Board of Supervisors.

I made my decision based on his intelligence, his character and his job performance. He is a compassionate individual who cares about the residents of Johnson County. He makes himself available to anyone who may have a problem and listens to their concern. He takes the time to study and research an issue before arriving at a solution.

He is not afraid to take a position. You never have to guess where he stands on an issue.

Tom Larkin


Green-Douglass is a team player

Vote for Lisa Green-Douglass for Johnson County supervisor. She has been endorsed by labor groups that advocate for the working class and for those disadvantaged or less fortunate: Iowa City Federation of Labor, AFSCME Iowa, and the Iowa State Federation of Labor (AFL-CIO).

She is dependable, fair-minded, knowledgeable on the issue, a team player, an excellent communicator. Given her long history of community involvement, she’ll enhance the board’s ability to constructively work with other local governmental groups. If one asks any school board member or city council member in Johnson County who knows her, I think they’ll tell you she is great to work with.

Mike Weinard

Iowa City

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We value your trust and work hard to provide fair, accurate coverage. If you have found an error or omission in our reporting, tell us here.

Or if you have a story idea we should look into? Tell us here.