Government

No time for complacency, Reynolds warns Republicans

Iowa Gov. Kim Reynolds greets a supporter during a stop at the Iowa GOP Victory Office in Hiawatha, Iowa, on Monday, Aug. 27, 2018. (Jim Slosiarek/The Gazette)
Iowa Gov. Kim Reynolds greets a supporter during a stop at the Iowa GOP Victory Office in Hiawatha, Iowa, on Monday, Aug. 27, 2018. (Jim Slosiarek/The Gazette)
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HIAWATHA — Gov. Kim Reynolds’ question for voters is simple:

“Do you want to keep moving Iowa forward or do you want to stop and reverse?” she asked a roomful of supporters Monday morning.

Their response was clear.

“For all our sakes, I hope she has four more years,” Linn County GOP Chairman Justin Wasson of Cedar Rapids said.

Reynolds, who participated in a fundraiser for Rep. Ashley Hinson, R-Marion, Sunday night, led a pep rally at the Republican Party of Iowa Victory Office, 764 N. Center Point Road, Hiawatha.

She’s sensing momentum building for the Nov. 6 election.

“I think that’s typical that the closer we get to the election people start to engage,” she said.

Reynolds, who joked that her staff made sure there weren’t any empty chairs for her to jump on to cheerlead, said she doesn’t want to take a chance Republicans will get complacent.

“Because we have the majority in the (Iowa) House and Senate, and the governor’s office and in Washington, sometimes people think, ‘We’ve done that, we’re OK,’” Reynolds said. “We can never be complacent because it’s worth fighting for. That’s my message.”

As successful as the last two sessions of the Iowa Legislature have been under all-Republican control, “I’m not done,” Reynolds said.

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“I’m the CEO of the state and I may be a little biased, but I think great things are happening,” she said. “There’s still a lot of work to do. Our work’s not done. Things aren’t perfect, but we’re building from a platform of success.”

However, her Democratic opponent, retired Des Moines businessman Fred Hubbell, charges that the Reynolds administration is “virtually running our state into the ground.”

He’s characterized her administration as “fiscal mismanagement and the misguided priorities,” trends he says he wants to reverse.

Reynolds, who also visited MJ’s Restaurant in Marion to meet with diners, warned that Hubbell wants to reverse tax cuts lawmakers approved this spring.

“They want to raise taxes,” she said. “I don’t. They didn’t believe we need alternative health care plans. I do. I’ve invested in education. It’s a priority.”

She also reminded her audience that Republicans and Democrats unanimously supported comprehensive mental health reform, suicide prevention in schools and Future Ready Iowa, her initiative to build Iowa’s talent pipeline by, among other things, making sure that 70 percent of the state’s workforce has education or training beyond high school by 2025.

l Comments: (319) 398-8375; james.lynch@thegazette.com

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