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!

Celebrating working men and women

As we celebrate Labor Day this weekend, I think back to my childhood. My dad worked for a construction equipment dealership, and he was not covered by a union. But just down that same street was a factory where many of my friends’ dads worked. And they did have a union. Even from a young age, I could tell that their quality of life was better than my family’s. Unions gave my friends’ dads better wages and benefits that I wish my family would have had.

That’s why this weekend, while we’re enjoying parades, cookouts, and a day off of work, we must remember the labor of the men and women that make our country great. Because of their hard work, many Americans were able to get better wages, hours, and working conditions.

Yet my opponent, Roby Smith, and his colleagues in the State Senate instead vote to gut collective bargaining, taking that voice away from many hard-working Iowans.

I am proud that Unions representing working women and men are among the many supporting my campaign. And you can be assured that I will fight for these hard-working Iowans in the Iowa State Senate.

The fight for women’s rights isn’t over

This past Saturday marked the 98th anniversary of the 19th Amendment, guaranteeing women the right to vote. Suffragists protested, went on hunger strikes, and engaged in civil disobedience despite the threat of arrest, all to make sure they had equal rights to the men of this country. Without these women, I would not be able to vote in this November’s election, let alone see my own name on the ballot.

Make no mistake, my opponent Roby Smith will never vote in the best interest of women. He proved that this spring with his vote in favor of a catastrophic and cruel abortion ban. We cannot let him and his colleagues continue to erode our rights here in Iowa.

Last week I was honored to receive the endorsement of Planned Parenthood Voters of Iowa. This was incredibly meaningful to me, as one of my core beliefs is that women have the right to make their own decisions about their healthcare and bodies. If elected as your State Senator, I will fight back against the unconstitutional legislation that was passed earlier this year and restore rights to those who lost them.

This November, I hope you remember the hard work of the suffragists and exercise the right that they fought so hard for: the right to vote.

Voting should be easy

It may be difficult to believe, but there are some politicians that work to make voting harder while making it easier for them to get reelected. My opponent Roby Smith is one of those politicians. In 2017, he led the movement in the Iowa State Senate to make voting harder for Iowans. Fortunately, the Iowa Supreme Court agreed with a lower court and stopped the implementation of some of the restrictive measures on early voting that Roby wanted.

To me, it is clear that voting should be easier rather than harder. Besides, there are other ways to address the minuscule amount of voter fraud that occurs without disenfranchising thousands of voters.

This election it is more important than ever that we stand up to the self-serving politicians like Roby Smith by VOTING.  And you can do it from the comfort of your own home. To request a ballot for voting at home, go to our website to download the form to request a vote at home ballot. Also, you can visit the Scott County Auditor’s website to get more information about voting at home.  After you request your ballot, it will be mailed to you about a month before the election.

This election, let’s not only commit ourselves to vote but also to convince our friends and family to vote.

Yard Signs

In this day of high tech campaigning, yard signs may seem to be a bit old-fashioned. But it is clear that peer-to-peer advocacy is the most effective campaign strategy. Yard signs send a powerful message that you support me for State Senate in District 47.  Will you put up a yard sign?

Local regulations limit political yard signs until 45-days before an election.  We will adhere to those restrictions, and our team will install signs around the 21st of September.

In order to ensure we have the right amount of signs, we are asking folks to let us know if they want a sign by filling out the form on our website today.  We need to place print orders right away.

We will be in touch with you before we install the sign in your yard.  It is just as easy as that.

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.

Two actions you can take

As I walk door-to-door talking with voters, I hear a lot about what is going on in our country and the concerns you have about the direction our nation and our state are headed.  Right here in the Quad Cities, in the SD-47 Senate race, the choices we face in the upcoming election are crystal clear – an incumbent politician who is beholden to the extreme specials interests in Des Moines, votes against our public school students and teachers, and does not trust women to make their own health care choices.  Or myself; I will fight for OUR priorities like bringing good-paying jobs to Iowa, making Iowa a leader in education again, increasing access to affordable healthcare, and getting special interest money out of politics.

While the election is in November, TODAY there are two things you can do that will make a significant difference:

  1.  Sign-up to vote at home:  The most important thing you can do to turn our country around is vote, and you can do it from the comfort of your own home. Signing up to vote at home is a concrete action you can take TODAY.

Our current legislators here in Iowa have unfortunately made voting, an act that should be as easy as possible, into one of the most complicated processes in the country. The goal is undoubtedly to sow confusion and depress turnout.

To request a ballot for voting at home, visit the Scott County Auditor’s website, fill out the necessary forms, mail them in, and await your ballot which will be sent about a month before the election!

  1. Make a donation: As you know, it takes resources to get the word out about my campaign.  My opponent already has a healthy war chest funded by the wealthy Des Moines special interests. To effectively deploy our resources to deliver our message in the fall, we need to make planning decisions NOW. Your contribution to my campaign TODAY will send a strong message that you have had enough!!!  Help me by making a secure online contribution on our website TODAY.

Celebrating Independence Day

I hope that you had a safe and happy Independence Day. Team Gleason braved the heat to walk in Bettendorf’s annual Fourth of July parade. We had a productive morning talking with citizens and sharing our campaign (and of course giving out candy to happy children!)

A frightening possibility

This week Justice Anthony Kennedy announced his retirement from the Supreme Court. A lot of us are worried about what will happen next. Judging by the list of potential justices that President Trump released, we are in for a big change in SCOTUS. Replacing a moderate voice with one significantly more extreme has many worried about the rights of women, the LGBTQIA+ community, unions, and so many more voices that the far right wants to silence.

If the unthinkable happens and Roe v. Wade is overturned, we need to have legislators in place in Iowa who will defend a woman’s right to make her own choices about her health care. Roby Smith and his colleagues in the State Senate have already gone so far as to pass one of the most restrictive abortion bills in the country. If this landmark decision of the 1970s is overturned, he will act fast to make Iowa the first in the nation to outlaw abortion altogether. We cannot let this happen. And if elected as the State Senator of District 47, I will fight as hard as I can to make sure that it doesn’t.

And you can do your part to make sure Iowans don’t lose the rights that so many fought for over decades. Join us for canvassing this Saturday as we knock on doors and share information about our campaign. We’ll meet at 9:30 at Vander Veer Park and be back there in time for the Families Belong Together rally at 11:00. And if you can’t make it, you can still help our campaign by making a secure online contribution on our website.

We won’t go back.