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Iowa Capital Dispatch

How election deniers are campaigning to control voting in four critical states

Mark Finchem, an Arizona state representative who has said he would not have certified the 2020 election, won the Republican primary for secretary of state on Tuesday, making him the latest election denier to move closer to controlling his state’s election system. Across the country, Republicans who say the 2020 election was rigged are vying […] The post How election deniers are campaigning to control voting in four critical states appeared first on Iowa Capital Dispatch.
MINNESOTA STATE
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U.S. Senate Democrats’ climate, health and tax bill clears first hurdle to passage

The U.S. Senate voted along party lines Saturday night to advance to debate on Democrats’ sweeping energy, health and taxes bill, clearing a major hurdle to passage. The 51-50 vote, with Vice President Kamala Harris breaking the tie, cleared the chamber to debate and vote on amendments to the measure and indicated that it had enough support from […] The post U.S. Senate Democrats’ climate, health and tax bill clears first hurdle to passage appeared first on Iowa Capital Dispatch.
INCOME TAX
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How Medicare prescription drug coverage would change under U.S. Senate Democrats’ bill

WASHINGTON — A major spending bill from U.S. Senate Democrats would allow Medicare for the first time in its history to begin negotiating the prices of certain high-priced prescription drugs — a proposal that’s been around for years but has never come so close to the finish line. Under the legislation, Medicare would start negotiating the […] The post How Medicare prescription drug coverage would change under U.S. Senate Democrats’ bill appeared first on Iowa Capital Dispatch.
CONGRESS & COURTS

Two wrongful-arrest cases show suspicion is not enough in our system of justice

It is difficult for many of us to muster empathy for people accused of crimes who have complaints about the way police treated them. This lack of empathy probably occurs because ordinary folks do not think they will be in situations like people accused of crimes. If that includes you, allow me to introduce you […] The post Two wrongful-arrest cases show suspicion is not enough in our system of justice appeared first on Iowa Capital Dispatch.
CORALVILLE, IA

Planned Parenthood, ACLU drop 24-hour abortion waiting period case

Planned Parenthood and ACLU of Iowa have decided to drop the lawsuit on Iowa’s 24-hour waiting period law for abortions to focus on fighting more stringent abortion restrictions. When Planned Parenthood of the Heartland filed the litigation, lawyers argued the law violated a 2019 Iowa Supreme Court ruling which established a state constitutional right to […] The post Planned Parenthood, ACLU drop 24-hour abortion waiting period case appeared first on Iowa Capital Dispatch.
IOWA STATE

Linn-Mar schools sued over new gender-identity policy

A conservative group calling itself Parents Defending Education is suing the Linn-Mar Community School District over its policy of facilitating students’ gender-identity transitions without parental notice. The lawsuit, filed this week in U.S. District Court, alleges the eastern Iowa school district is flouting nearly a century of Supreme Court precedent that says parents have a […] The post Linn-Mar schools sued over new gender-identity policy appeared first on Iowa Capital Dispatch.
POLITICS

U.S. Senate preps big tax, climate and health bill after deal struck with Sinema

U.S. Senate Democrats’ wide-ranging tax, climate and health bill appears set to pass after Majority Leader Chuck Schumer and Sen. Kyrsten Sinema of Arizona struck a deal to soften the measure’s corporate tax increase and a second tax hike aimed at wealthy finance-sector workers, Schumer told reporters Friday. The revenue lost to obtain Sinema’s support […] The post U.S. Senate preps big tax, climate and health bill after deal struck with Sinema appeared first on Iowa Capital Dispatch.
WYOMING STATE

D.C. Dispatch: Iowa’s senators introduce bipartisan bills on foster care, meat packing

 Iowa’s U.S. senators introduced bipartisan bills this week before the August recess addressing foster care and meat packing. Meanwhile, Iowa’s representatives addressed tenant protections for manufacturing housing, cybersecurity and additional funding for commercial trucker licensing programs.  Sen. Chuck Grassley introduced bipartisan legislation to address the shortage of foster placement in America.  The Data-Driven Foster Parent […] The post D.C. Dispatch: Iowa’s senators introduce bipartisan bills on foster care, meat packing appeared first on Iowa Capital Dispatch.
IOWA STATE

Iowans charged in Capitol riot argue self-defense and selective prosecution

Two Iowans criminally charged in the Jan. 6, 2021, insurrection at the U.S. Capitol are arguing in court that they acted in self-defense and are the victims of selective prosecution. Salvador Sandoval Jr. of Ankeny, and his mother, Deborah Sandoval of Des Moines, are facing charges that include with entering and remaining in a restricted […] The post Iowans charged in Capitol riot argue self-defense and selective prosecution appeared first on Iowa Capital Dispatch.
IOWA STATE

Company fined for nuisance ‘fugitive dust’ in Urbandale

A company tasked with expanding a road in Urbandale failed numerous times last year to control the dust from construction, which led to complaints from neighbors, according to the Iowa Department of Natural Resources. Concrete Technologies, of Grimes, recently agreed to pay a $2,500 fine for the violations, DNR records show. Those resident complaints stemmed […] The post Company fined for nuisance ‘fugitive dust’ in Urbandale appeared first on Iowa Capital Dispatch.
URBANDALE, IA

Arizona’s Kyrsten Sinema again pivotal as U.S. Senate Democrats scramble for 50 votes

U.S. Sen. Kyrsten Sinema, the enigmatic Democrat from Arizona, is once again at the center of attention in Congress, where she’s the linchpin in Democrats’ plans to pass a party-line climate, health and taxes bill. Democrats need every member of their Senate caucus to support the sweeping 725-page bill for it to pass in the […] The post Arizona’s Kyrsten Sinema again pivotal as U.S. Senate Democrats scramble for 50 votes appeared first on Iowa Capital Dispatch.
ARIZONA STATE

Legal battle over ownership of Terrace Hill artifacts escalates

The state of Iowa is asking a judge to dismiss a charity’s claim that it owns many of the artifacts on display in the governor’s mansion. Terrace Hill, located at 2300 Grand Ave. in Des Moines, is the official residence of the governor of the state, and is a National Historic Landmark built in 1869. […] The post Legal battle over ownership of Terrace Hill artifacts escalates appeared first on Iowa Capital Dispatch.
DES MOINES, IA

Federal officials declare a public health emergency for monkeypox

WASHINGTON —  U.S. Department of Health and Human Services Secretary Xavier Becerra announced Thursday a public health emergency for the monkeypox virus, which means the federal government can more quickly assist states with distributing vaccines and conducting testing and public health campaigns. “We’re prepared to take our response to the next level in addressing this virus, […] The post Federal officials declare a public health emergency for monkeypox appeared first on Iowa Capital Dispatch.
PUBLIC HEALTH

UNI professor in discipline case accused of ‘long-standing pattern’ of research misconduct

The University of Northern Iowa is defending its decision to discipline a professor who had previously been sanctioned for plagiarism. Gayle Pohl, an associate professor and public relations instructor at UNI, is seeking judicial review of the school’s decision last year to discipline her for allegedly violating school policies on research. According to newly filed […] The post UNI professor in discipline case accused of ‘long-standing pattern’ of research misconduct appeared first on Iowa Capital Dispatch.
CEDAR FALLS, IA

Iowa OB-GYN education future unclear as abortion training standards change

When Iowa lawmakers were considering legislation in 2018 to ban most abortions, University of Iowa officials said the law could threaten its standing to educate doctors who specialize in female reproductive health. Now that the state and U.S. supreme courts have eliminated obstacles to that law and Gov. Kim Reynolds is working to reinstate it, […] The post Iowa OB-GYN education future unclear as abortion training standards change appeared first on Iowa Capital Dispatch.
IOWA STATE

Iowa continues to lead the nation in puppy-mill violators

Iowa continues to lead the nation in puppy mills sanctioned by the federal government and is expanding its lead over other states. During the second quarter of 2022, a total of 23 Iowa breeders and brokers were cited for regulatory violations by the U.S. Department of Agriculture. Missouri came in a distant second place for […] The post Iowa continues to lead the nation in puppy-mill violators appeared first on Iowa Capital Dispatch.
IOWA STATE

Nunn promotes national tax cuts as people, businesses struggle with inflation

As Iowans face economic troubles from high gas prices to stagnant wages, Republican candidate Zach Nunn proposed federal tax cuts modeled after Iowa’s as an antidote for inflation. Nunn met with small business owners Wednesday for a campaign stop in his race against U.S. Rep. Cindy Axne. He criticized programs like President Joe Biden’s “Build […] The post Nunn promotes national tax cuts as people, businesses struggle with inflation appeared first on Iowa Capital Dispatch.
IOWA STATE

Members of U.S. Senate committee consider bipartisan changes to Electoral Count Act

WASHINGTON — Lawmakers and legal experts at a U.S. Senate hearing on Wednesday outlined the need to pass legislation clarifying an archaic election law so that the peaceful transfer of presidential power is ensured. The Electoral Count Reform and Presidential Transition Improvement Act, a bipartisan bill being pushed by 16 senators, was proposed after the […] The post Members of U.S. Senate committee consider bipartisan changes to Electoral Count Act appeared first on Iowa Capital Dispatch.

Election officials at U.S. Senate hearing describe threats, spread of misinformation

WASHINGTON — Democrats on the U.S. Senate Judiciary Committee on Wednesday explored how to combat violent threats lodged against election officials, while Republicans questioned why the Department of Justice isn’t doing more to investigate threats against crisis pregnancy centers and Supreme Court justices. During a hearing on protecting election officials, Assistant Attorney General Kenneth Polite […] The post Election officials at U.S. Senate hearing describe threats, spread of misinformation appeared first on Iowa Capital Dispatch.
CONGRESS & COURTS

Zoo owners lose battle to reduce fine for contempt of court

An Iowa judge has denied a request to reduce a $70,000 fine imposed against the owners of eastern Iowa’s shuttered Cricket Hollow Zoo. In May, zoo owners Pamela and Thomas Sellner asked the court to reduce the fine they face for contempt of court. The contempt finding stems from a court ruling that the couple […] The post Zoo owners lose battle to reduce fine for contempt of court appeared first on Iowa Capital Dispatch.
IOWA STATE