Reader enjoyed ‘Doing Time’11/26/2014
Great cover story last week (“Doing Time in Des Moines”). I enjoyed reading of this committed activist and the challenges he faced by choosing to serve jail time. After author Steve Clemens painted his word picture of the toilet paper pillow, I felt compelled to flip back three pages to the “Paid for by taxpayers” column. Surely there would be a corresponding expose article on this paper expense to the city. Nope, just $19.95 more spending on EZ kneeler kneeboards. In regard to the “room and board fee” of $195 imposed by his jailers, even Al Capone learned that if they can’t get a jury to convict on the crime there is always a financial trail and penalty.Mike Rowley –Clive
President Obama acts on Immigration
President Obama followed through on his pledge to act on Immigration Reform because House Republican leaders were too cowardly to act. A bipartisan Senate (with 14 Republican votes) passed a comprehensive Immigration Reform bill more than a year ago that would seal the border, offer documented status to millions of immigrants and set in motion a long path to citizenship. But Boehner, fearing a backlash from his Tea Party extremists, cowered to their irrational demands and refused to bring that Senate bill to a vote. Republican leaders have reacted to the President’s bold action by attempting to blame the President for their own incompetence and refusal to act. The Republicans, and specifically Boehner, bare full responsibility for their refusal to fix the immigration system. A broad coalition of business, labor, agriculture and faith groups as well as the immigrant community have been demanding action by Congress on Immigration Reform for years and have lost patience. Remember, if the Republicans don’t like the President’s action they can simply do their job and pass the Senate bill or some alternative. The President warned Boehner repeatedly and finally he was forced to act in the best interests of all Americans.Rick Smith –Urbandale
Hopes to vote again for Braley one day
Michael Gartner’s piece (Comment, Nov. 13) about how Bruce Braley is no Tom Harkin fails to say anything new about Braley’s loss aside from suggesting that Braley would’ve been better off sleeping with his strategist(s). Harkin did, but then his strategist was/is his wife. That aside, what Gartner wrote has the familiar drumbeat of “he shouldn’t have made that crack about Grassley;” I believe the quote from Gartner is “it was as snooty as it was snotty.” Fact: a farmer who never went to law school is being considered to chair the Senate Judiciary Committee. Then Cityview publishes a letter to the editor supporting Gartner’s piece in which the author trots out that his Independent friend didn’t vote for Braley because Braley shouldn’t have said that about Grassley, and he shouldn’t have missed all those VA committee meetings and that he is arrogant. Each of these reasons were spoon-fed to you by outside PACs like Americans for Prosperity that spent tens of millions of dollars on ads spinning these “facts” on TV and on other media outlets — and now it’s being spun for free by Cityview and its readers. You bought the spin, and now you are selling it back to us as if these are your own conclusions about why Braley lost. It would seem that your conclusions were brought to you courtesy of the Supreme Court’s decision in Citizens United. Before Braley became a public servant, he was a big brother volunteer with the Big Brothers and Big Sisters organization in Waterloo. He mentored a boy who became very sick and as a result required a lengthy stay for medical treatment at the University of Iowa hospitals in Iowa City. The little brother’s family did not have the means to take time off work to be with their son in Iowa City without risking losing their job. You know who went and slept at the hospital and worked from his “little brother’s” hospital room? Yes, that arrogant Bruce Braley. So no, Braley is no Harkin, he’s Bruce Braley, and I hope to one day be able to vote for him again.