Letters to the Editor

Criticism of Iowa Congressional delegation is misleading

A recent letter, “Democrats’ denial of Republican motion is telling,” is misleading.

Its writer notes Iowa’s Democratic members of Congress voted against a motion: “It is the sense of Congress that allowing illegal immigrants the right to vote devalues the franchise and diminishes the voting power of United States citizens.”

On the face of it, voting for the motion is a no-brainer. However, that’s not the real story.

The motion was one to recommit HR1, the first bill passed by the House this year. HR1 is a broad bill that guarantees voting rights of U.S. citizens. It also addresses questionable campaign funding.

The vote that so enrages the letter writer was part of a blatant political ploy by House Republicans to destroy HR1. The recommit motion was couched in language that, on its surface, is commendable.

No part of HR1 would give noncitizens the right to vote. Quite the contrary. The bill strengthens voter rights in ways many citizens would find welcome. The cynical motion to recommit was merely a partisan attempt to squelch voter rights.

Please read the entire bill, as well as the motion to recommit. They’re available online. I applaud Reps. Dave Loebsack, Abby Finkenauer, and Cindy Axne for voting against the attempt to limit U.S. citizens’ right to vote. It’s unfortunate HR1 will never see the light of day in the Senate. The bill contains election reforms that are desperately needed.

John Klaus

Mount Vernon

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