Talking to our neighbors

One of the joys of this campaign has been getting to meeting neighbors in Senate District 47. Every week during our Saturday morning Coffee & Canvassing event, I have interesting conversations with these neighbors, learning about their lives and what is on their minds.

Just recently I knocked on the door of a teacher named Emily, and she shared her concerns regarding public education here in Iowa. Unequal school funding means that her school is losing money next year, and she’s not sure what is going to be done to fix that. Not only are funding, teacher pay, and benefits a concern, but she and her students also have to worry about gun violence in schools. Though Emily had much to be worried about, she commented towards the end of our conversation that it was so nice to meet someone to actually talk to about these things, because that just doesn’t happen anymore.

I know it can seem scary to go knock on a stranger’s door and strike up a conversation. But I have not only learned valuable lessons about what residents of this district need from their legislators, I have also built connections and learned more about the community I live in. I couldn’t be prouder to have the opportunity to represent District 47 in the State Senate.

If you’re interested in getting to know your fellow Quad-Citians and get the word out about our campaign, please join us for Coffee & Canvassing! We meet at 9:30 am every Saturday morning. This week we’ll be meeting at the Coffee Hound located at 3451 Devils Glen Road, Bettendorf. Grab a cup of coffee and a walking list, and head out to enjoy the beautiful weather and good conversation!

See you there!

Back to school

It’s hard to believe that it’s already August and summer is nearly over. For many, that means it’s almost time to head back to school!

I am proud to announce that I have received the endorsement of the Iowa State Education Association (ISEA). ISEA and its teacher members work hard to ensure that students receive a quality public education. As a product of public schools from kindergarten all the way through college, I know that I am where I am today because of the hard work of those teachers.

Unfortunately, not all of our legislators here in Iowa understand the importance of a good education being available to all students. Roby Smith is bad for Iowa public schools. For example, he supports creating a massive private school voucher program that would take money away from K-through-12 public schools.

It’s time we start really investing in our communities by investing first in our children. Every child in Iowa deserves a good education from preschool onwards, no matter what city they live in or how much money their parents make. As your State Senator for District 47, I will bring these values to the Iowa State Senate.

Another disastrous legislative session

Now that the 2018 legislative session has ended, I’m reflecting on the damage that the GOP majority has done in the state of Iowa. They passed a bill effectively banning abortion in the state, taking away the rights of Iowa’s women and squandering taxpayer dollars to defend an unconstitutional law. They did not fix the problems created by privatizing Medicaid, leaving our most vulnerable citizens without the secure access to healthcare that they desperately need. And they failed to adequately invest in public education, even cutting our universities. Our public schools and University are Iowa’s opportunity engines and the majority in the legislature fails to recognize this .

We deserve legislators who look out for the best interests of our citizens, solidifying our rights to health care and creating educational and economic opportunity instead of taking it away. My opponent Roby Smith is making it clear with his votes that those are not his priorities. It’s time to make a change.