Every four years, the political spotlight turns to Iowa. Politics was our family business. Advocacy is an integral part of how we interact in our community. Every election is important. We say it every time. But this time? Well, this time feels different. This time is different. So we waited longer. We read more. We listened harder. We watched more closely.
Together, we came to the conclusion that we will stand with Senator Kamala Harris when we go to caucus.
Kamala embodies what our country needs. Kamala’s policies are deeply rooted in her life experience. Lifting up the voices and experiences of women, communities of color, people who are LGBTQ, is her life work, and her passion. A fearless leader who has fought for the people every step of her career. A moral compass that saw inequalities in our criminal justice system and worked to fix them, who beat out the big banks and put money back in the pockets of those they wronged. She’s a fighter.
When she talks about her “3 a.m. Agenda” to address the worries that keep folks up in the middle of the night, she’s talking to Americans wherever they live. She recognizes that all Americans worry that their parents will need more support than they can provide. All Americans are anxious for the future of children they love. Whether it’s about how far their paychecks will go to support their own kids in a bedroom down the hall, what we are going to do to ensure children in neighborhoods across the country can access clean air and drinking water, or how we will protect millions of children simply walking into schools every single day.
And she knows that when we invest in teachers and public education, we tell the world what our priorities are.
Being able to relate to and understand the problems families face is a big part of the battle, but Sen. Harris really shines when you look at her tangible solutions to improve Iowans’ lives. Her ideas are sharp. Our country’s lack of support for our teachers is a national failure, so she’s going to give Iowa’s teachers a $12,200 raise. She’s going to take the tax cut that Republicans handed corporations and the top 1%, and instead give that money to families who make under $100,000 a year in the form of a $6,000 tax cut so they can afford those surprise expenses like a flat tire, a broken washer or dryer, or an unexpected medical bill. And she’s done waiting for Congress to act on gun violence, laying out what she plans to do by executive action to get assault rifles off our streets and out of our schools and require universal background checks.
We need to dream again. We need to remember that we are indeed, as Kamala says, “so much better than this.” We all need to make an active choice to stand up, and be counted. This isn’t the time for timidity. Kamala is fearless, joyful, and ready. And now, so are we.
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Bob Dvorsky is a former state senator representing Coralville. Sue Dvorsky is a former Iowa Democratic Party chair, former school teacher and National Education Association activist.