Varney: Obama Wants to Control the Banks

April 8, 2009

Stuart Varney writes in today’s Wall Street Journal that there’s a reason President Obama refuses to accept repayment of TARP money. For the full story, click here.

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Vander Plaats Responds to Culver 180-Turn on Same Sex Marriage: ‘Leaders Don’t Cut and Run’

April 7, 2009

SIOUX CITY – Bob Vander Plaats released the following statement in response to Gov. Chet Culver’s reversal of his earlier pledge to defend one-man, one-woman marriage:

“Chet Culver’s inaction and self-serving political double talk on one of the most fundamental issues in our state – the definition of marriage and the defense of our culture – is truly one of the most astounding political reversals I’ve ever seen in my life. Just over two years ago, he took an oath to defend our constitution. Just over a year ago, he promised to defend the institution of marriage from the full frontal assault of narrow interests who would destroy the bedrock of 5,000 years of human culture.

“Leaders do not cut and run when the pressure is on. Leaders do not abdicate their responsibility. As governor, I will do what Chet Culver has not, cannot and will not do. I will lead. I will work to ensure that Iowans are allowed to vote on this most fundamental issue and that the law of the land – the majority voice of Iowans — prevails. Despite the Iowa Supreme Court’s opinion last Friday, we can have a constitutional amendment upholding the only real definition of marriage – the union between one man and one woman. It’s time for Chet Culver to get out of the way and let real leaders take charge so Iowans finally have a voice in this matter.”

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Change We Can Believe In?

April 3, 2009

In the New York Times story, “Financial Industry Paid Millions to Obama Aide” published in today, reporter Jeff Zeleny writes:
WASHINGTON – Lawrence H. Summers, the top economic adviser to President Obama, earned more than $5 million last year from the hedge fund D. E. Shaw and collected $2.7 million in speaking fees from Wall Street companies that received government bailout money, the White House disclosed Friday in releasing financial information about top officials.

Mr. Summers, the director of the National Economic Council, wields important influence over Mr. Obama’s policy decisions for the troubled financial industry, including firms from which he recently received payments.

Last year, he reported making 40 paid appearances, including a $135,000 speech to the investment firm Goldman Sachs, in addition to his earnings from the hedge fund, a sector the administration is trying to regulate.

To read the entire story, click here.


Vander Plaats: Iowa Voters Should be Allowed to Answer Same-Sex Marriage Question

April 3, 2009

DES MOINES – Sioux City Republican Bob Vander Plaats issued the following statement on the Iowa Supreme Court’s ruling concerning same-sex marriages:

“Like hundreds of thousands of Iowans, I respect the rule of law but I am certainly disappointed by the court’s ruling. The Defense of Marriage Act had strong bipartisan support when it was introduced and debated in our legislature. That bipartisan support for traditional marriage between one man and one woman reflected the will of the people then – and reflects the will of the people now. On an issue of this monumental importance to the very foundation of our society, I believe a vote of the people is necessary. I hope the General Assembly will take the necessary steps to give Iowans a voice is this process on the most basic of issues – and that Governor Culver will take a leadership role to let all Iowans express their opinion.”

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Vander Plaats: Culver ‘Out of Touch With Iowans, Reality and Common Sense’ in Federal Deductibility Uproar

April 2, 2009

DES MOINES – Gov. Chet Culver’s statement that vocal opposition to Democratic plans to raise taxes on half of all Iowans is “over the top” is the trademark of a politician who is out of step with the needs and concerns of voters, Sioux City Republican Bob Vander Plaats said today.

“Chet Culver is out of touch of working Iowans. He’s out of touch with reality and, frankly, he’s out of touch with common sense. Tax increases always stifle productivity and growth but that’s especially true in a slow economy,” Vander Plaats said in a statement released by his campaign committee. “This tax plan is especially onerous because the Democrats claimed to be aiming a rifle at the people who produce jobs, wealth and growth and instead they’ve taken a shotgun approach that is hitting Iowans in virtually all tax brackets.”

Vander Plaats noted that a Democratic analysis of their own plan shows 40 percent of Iowans who make less than $40,000 will receive a tax increase under the proposal legislative Democrats intend to pass on Friday. Sixty-nine percent of Iowans making less than $70,000 will see their taxes increase. Speaker Pat Murphy, D-Dubuque ordered state troopers to remove ordinary Iowans from a public hearing when they loudly expressed opposition to the plan to eliminate Iowans’ right and ability to deduct their federal taxes from state returns. Culver said Murphy’s actions were “absolutely justified.”

“Chet Culver has chosen to stand with Pat Murphy instead of working Iowans. This is the same Pat Murphy who claimed last week that 75 to 80 percent Iowans would get a tax cut under this plan. A few days later, the Democrats were saying about 65 percent of Iowans would get a tax cut. Then when their plan finally sees the light of day, it turns out 49 percent are getting tax increases not tax cuts,” Vander Plaats said. “It’s no wonder why working Iowans are saying, ‘Chet Culver can’t add and it’s time for him to go.’”

Citing an interview in which Culver said Iowans want elected leaders to “find common ground,” Vander Plaats noted that Culver does not seem to understand the common ground that Iowans really want.

“Chet Culver says Iowans who want tax relief are on the fringe when, in fact, he and legislative Democrats are the ones out of the mainstream,” Vander Plaats said. “Iowans want a governor who doesn’t approve a 17-percent increase in state spending over just two years. They want a tax system that treats them fairly. And the last thing they want is a bait-and-switch tax plan that promises cuts and throws more taxes on their backs when times are tough. If Chet Culver can’t understand that he needs to go back to his old job as a history teacher and reread the lessons about how this country was founded.”

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Grassley Says the Darned Things; Woolson Quoted in Politico.com Story

April 1, 2009

Iowa’s senior senator, Charles Grassley, has been in the national spotlight recently with his blunt statements about the executives at troubled financial giant AIG. Today, Politico staff writer Anne Schroeder Mullins asks, “Is Grassley on a roll?”
To read the full story, click here