In recent years, Iowa has led the nation in conservative policy reforms. Governor Kim Reynolds rightly deserves a great deal of credit for her leadership in implementing pro-growth tax reforms, championing a student-first approach to education, fighting against the woke cultural Marxist agenda and leading Iowa responsibility through the pandemic. Nevertheless, Governor Reynolds has been able to achieve many of these great accomplishments because of a conservative legislature. Iowa Senate Majority Leader Jack Whitver is a “quiet conservative” who is not only an ally of the Governor but is a crucial leader who is advancing a conservative policy agenda.
This week on ITR Live, John and Chris cover a lot of ground from aquatic centers, the state fair, the latest CDC Covid-19 guidelines, and another history lesson. Many cities believe the magical solution to local economic development and to improve quality of life is to build aquatic centers and other recreational areas. However, many of these facilities are struggling […]
By John Hendrickson In a vote of 95-1, the United States Senate approved the expansion of NATO (North American Treaty Organization) by allowing membership to two new nations Sweden and Finland. The only Senator to vote “no” was Senator Josh Hawley (R-MO). Senator Rand Paul (R-KY) voted “present.” In his floor speech before the vote Sen. Hawley made a powerful […]
By John Hendrickson The growing influence and power of China should be a concern for all policymakers. China is growing more aggressive militarily and they are attempting to control resources across the globe, including the United States. China is also taking advantage of the United States in terms of trade. The United States is running over $350 billion trade deficit […]
In unprecedented fashion, the FBI raided former President Donald Trump’s Mar-a-Lago estate, on behalf of the National Archives. Immediately, social media exploded with people taking a stand on both sides of the issue. On this week’s ITR Live podcast, ITR President Chris Hagenow and ITR Foundation Policy Director John Hendrickson discuss why this is such a startling development. The law should be […]
Rolling blackouts may be coming to the Upper Midwest—including Iowa— this summer, according to an analysis from the North American Reliability Council (NERC), a nonprofit international regulatory authority whose mission is to assure the effective and efficient reduction of risks to the reliability and security of the grid.
The United States is growing more dependent on foreign nations for necessities, including potentially hostile nations such as China. As we examined last month, 2021 was the 10th straight year America’s trade deficit with the Chinese eclipsed $300 billion. If that pattern is not alarming enough, though, there’s more worrisome activity being undertaken by China: the massive acquisition of American farmland. By the United States Department of Agriculture’s own estimate, investments from China held $2 billion of American agricultural land at the beginning of 2020.
Somehow Hunter Biden has managed to make himself the common thread that ties together a war in Eastern Europe with everything people dislike about politics in America, while pointing to this country’s collective and completely justified distrust of the media. We are not suggesting that Hunter’s activities in Ukraine have anything to do with Russia’s invasion. But if American citizens […]
By Alan Ostergren You should consider running for local office. No, really, you should. Later this year Iowans will elect representatives to school boards and city offices (county offices are elected in even-numbered years). These elections are nonpartisan and take little organizational effort to mount a campaign. Most of these elections are very low turnout, meaning that a person who […]
The late intellectual historian Stephen J. Tonsor wrote that in America, “the Founding is determinative, and the Constitution stands at the very center of American political conservatism.” As Tonsor wrote: Central to conservative doctrine, and the translation of this doctrine into the politics of a particular time and place, is the fear of unchecked power and its centralization…It is for […]
Iowa’s economy is reopening, but the economic impact of COVID-19 (coronavirus) is still uncertain. Iowa’s April unemployment rate was 10.2 percent because of business closures resulting from social distancing policies used to mitigate the virus. The economic impact of COVID-19 is still a fluid situation. One of the uncertainties is the impact of the virus on state and local revenues. […]
David Kennedy, prominent historian and Stanford University professor, in an interview with Governing discussed the COVID-19 (coronavirus) emergency in relation to the Great Depression. In that interview he stated, “[President] Calvin Coolidge said that if the federal government went out of business, the average person wouldn’t notice for six months, except for the post office. Now, the federal government is twice the size of the states all put together.” […]
The COVID-19 (coronavirus) national health emergency is requiring national sacrifice, the scale of which has not been seen in some time. Governors in each state are tasked with filling dual roles: providing up to date information to their citizens and coordinating resources and relief. Iowa’s Governor Kim Reynolds is demonstrating remarkable leadership in this crisis. Even in times of […]
“Why can’t the greatest economy in the history of the world produce swabs, face masks and ventilators in adequate supply?” asked Larry Summers, who served as Secretary of Treasury under President Bill Clinton. If COVID-19 (coronavirus) is not scary enough, Americans are learning that, as a nation, we have become dependent on foreign countries for essential medicines and medical supplies. […]
Iowa needs to audit the Medicaid program to ensure that not only are the people who truly need the services are protected, but taxpayer dollars are not wasted. Amity Shlaes, an economic historian and author of the just-released Great Society: A New History, argues correctly that the “lesson of the 1960s is that political compromises with progressives can be […]
“When I started my business 40 years ago, the regulations I had to follow fit into a binder. Now, I can stack them from the floor to the ceiling.” A longtime business owner near Pella shared this thought recently and while we didn’t actually break out a measuring tape to verify his claim, it is certain that regulations on businesses […]
Five state policy organizations recently met to discuss principles that create opportunity and promote liberty. TEF Iowa recently hosted and sponsored the second meeting of the Midwest Policy Summit. Policy organizations from Iowa, Michigan, Minnesota, Missouri, and Nebraska met to discuss public policy issues confronting the Midwest. Some of the policy topics at the Midwest Policy Summit included: […]
We are in a Social Security danger zone of over-promised benefits. Will it still be around for younger generations? Anyone below the age of 52 today is on track to receive only a percentage of their scheduled benefits. In August 1935, President Franklin D. Roosevelt signed into law the Social Security Act. When signing the landmark legislation, President Roosevelt […]
It has been almost 100 years since government has shown spending restraint. What can be done to slow down our $22,000,000,000,000 national debt? The $22 trillion national debt symbolizes not only the broken budget process of today’s federal government, but decades of overspending by both Republicans and Democrats. MarketWatch recently reported how much the national debt has grown under […]
A pander bear should be the official mascot of the Democratic presidential debates. Never have so many candidates proposed so much spending. They are clearly trying to bribe voters to support the one who offers the most “free” stuff. In 1935, Ohio’s Robert A. Taft described President Franklin D. Roosevelt’s New Deal as “one of those fabulous creatures of […]
Unfortunately, for many young and low skilled workers, raising the minimum wage actually results in lowering their wage to $0 because they will no longer have the legal opportunity to sell their labor to provide for themselves. Guest Column By Christina Herrin As presidential candidate hopefuls make their trek to the cornfields of Iowa, they bring with them socialist policy […]
This case is another example of our cultural decline. Since the mid-20th century the United States has been on a steady course of secularization. The Supreme Court will decide if a Bladensburg, Maryland memorial cross dedicated to soldiers who died in World War 1 is a violation of the First Amendment’s Establishment Clause. In 1925 the American Legion established […]
The freest economies operate with minimal government interference, relying instead on personal choice and free markets. Learn more about the Economic Freedom work that has been done by our partners at the Fraser Institute and see how Iowa measures up with the rest of the United States.
Certificate of Need laws not only prevent competition but work to limit health care services and increase medical costs for Iowans. The purpose of a Certificate of Need (CON) law is to regulate (limit) health care supply unless a need is determined by a state government agency or board. When CON laws were introduced in the 1970s, it was hoped […]