The Gala: Joaquin Castro's Mother

Kim Weaver | 10/16/16

This past Friday night, the Iowa Democratic Party held their Annual Gala, and the keynote speaker was Texas Representative Joaquin Castro.

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Representative Castro spoke about his childhood, growing up on the west side of San Antonio with a single mother, a community activist working to improve the lives of the poor and oppressed. He spoke of himself and other children getting beaten in school for speaking Spanish. He persevered, though. He studied hard, and through Pell grants and scholarships, was able to attend Stanford. 

For me, there was a ring of familiarity to this story. My eldest son has a single Mom, with a lifetime dedicated to community service and activism, who taught him to work hard and study hard. He also received Pell grants and scholarships, and as a result, was able to attend MIT.

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Iowa Democratic Party Gala: Lessons

Kim Weaver | 10/16/16

Last night was the Iowa Democratic Party Annual Gala. It was one part celebration of the great work we’ve done as a party standing up for working class families and students and seniors, and one part pep rally as we enter the home stretch of this election cycle. I was grateful for the opportunity to address the crowd, and really enjoyed hearing from our three other Congressional candidates, Monica Vernon, Jim Mowrer, Representative Dave Loebsack, and Senate candidate Patty Judge. Congressman Joaquin Castro’s keynote speech was appropriately inspiring...but it was former Governor Tom Vilsack’s speech that really hit home with me and lit a fire.

Governor Vilsack spoke of his 1998 race for Governor, and reminded everyone that he was trailing Jim Ross Lightfoot by 23 points coming out of the summer, with Lightfoot expected to waltz into the Governor's Mansion as Terry Branstad's anointed successor. But through scrappy organizing and a message of greater economic opportunity, he scored a stunning upset to become Iowa's first Democratic governor in thirty years.

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This one will blow your mind. (I promise.)

Kim Weaver | 10/13/16

My opponent and I have been invited by two separate media outlets to debate the issues, giving the voters of Iowa’s 4th Congressional District an opportunity to compare their choices side by side. I accepted both invitations within an hour of receiving them.

My opponent? My opponent has declined. He was quoted in the Sioux City Journal saying, “There’s no upside to it.” No upside? For who?

For him, obviously. But here’s the thing...a debate isn’t for him, and it isn’t for me. It’s for the voters - making his refusal to participate in this time-honored tradition not only an act of supreme cowardice, but of extreme disrespect directed at the very people he’s been elected to serve.

Will you help us send a message that such blatant selfishness and disrespect is unacceptable? You can do so by chipping in to our campaign, helping us spread the word of this gutless display of arrogance and hubris.

In case you’re not quite sure yet whether this is a time to contribute to the fight to retire Steve King, I did promise to blow your mind. 

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Hypocrisy is not an Iowa value

Team Weaver | 10/12/16

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That’s Steve King on the left in the recent photo above, surveying flood damage in eastern Iowa with Governor Branstad, doing his very best to look concerned and compassionate. If only he were in a position to make a real difference in the lives of people effected by disasters like this.

Except, of course, he is.

He’s there for the photo op, but where was Congressman King when these people really needed him?

Voted to Cut Flood Prevention Programs in 2011 Budget. King voted for the House Republicans’ spending bill that cut federal spending by about $60 billion from 2010 levels and zeroed out funding for the Watershed and Flood Prevention Operation, a program administered by the U.S. Department of Agriculture's Natural Resources Conservation Service. [HR 1, Vote #147, 2/19/11; Argus Leader, 3/19/11]

Voted to Cut $661 Million from the Army Corps of Engineers’ Budget. In February 2011, King voted for the fiscal year 2011 Republican budget that cut funding for the Army Corps of Engineers by $661.4 million from the 2010 budget. Cuts included $441 million from the fiscal year 2010 budget for construction, $121.4 million from the Mississippi River and tributaries, $56 million from investigations, $39 million from operation and maintenance and $4 million from the Formerly Utilized Sites Remedial Action Program (FUSRAP). [House Appropriations Committee, HR 1 Cuts; HR 1, Vote #147, 2/19/11]

Voted Against Reauthorizing Insurance Program for Flood Victims. In 2010, King voted against reauthorizing the National Flood Insurance Program through fiscal 2015. The program provides 95 percent of flood insurance policies in the country and was intended to alleviate the financial burden to taxpayers after a natural disaster. The bill increased the coverage limits for the program and allowed flood insurance premiums to increase by up to 20 percent year. King was one of only 90 legislators to oppose the bill. [CQ Today, 7/15/10; HR 5114, Vote #447, 7/15/10]

Voted Against Reauthorizing the National Flood Insurance Program and Opposed “Multiperil” Insurance Coverage for Flood Victims. In 2007, King voted against reauthorizing the National Flood Insurance Program through fiscal year 2013. The bill increased the current limits on coverage that could be purchased by both homeowners and businesses. A key addition to the legislation was to allow the program to provide optional “multiperil” coverage to cover both wind and flood risk in one policy. It also authorized $400 million in each fiscal year through 2013 for FEMA to modernize all flood maps and to map the 500-year floodplain. Despite King’s opposition, the bill passed 263-146. [Congressional Quarterly Weekly, 9/29/07; HR 3121, Vote #921, 9/27/07]

Supported Increasing Interest Rates on Disaster Loans. In 2006, King voted against the Democratic amendment to the emergency appropriations bill, which provided funds for the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan and for hurricane relief, that would have blocked President Bush’s proposal in his FY 2007 budget to increase the interest rates on disaster loans. By opposing the amendment, Republican Members chose to force disaster loan victims to shoulder additional costs at a time when these individuals were struggling to make ends meet.The amendment failed 200-219. [HR4939, Vote #62, 3/16/06; Committee on Small Business Release]

One of 11 House Members who voted against a bill providing relief for Hurricane Katrina victims. In 2005, King voted against the $51.8 billion Hurricane Katrina emergency relief and recovery package. The bill passed the House 410-11 and unanimously in the Senate. In September 2009, King called the vote, “the best vote that I cast.” [Washington Post, 9/09/05; HR 3674, Vote #460, 9/08/05; The Hill, 9/22/09]

Supported Eliminating Preparedness Functions from FEMA. In 2005, King voted against a motion to instruct conferees on a Department of Homeland Security appropriations bill to continue the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) as an agency that both prepares for and responds to man-made and natural disasters. [HR 2360, Sabo motion, Vote #497, 9/28/05]

 

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King is Standing with Trump

Kim Weaver | 10/11016

By now I’m sure you’ve seen and heard the tape of Donald Trump bragging about getting away with sexually assaulting women because he’s a Big Star. It’s been days since it was released, yet it’s still hard to believe - and yet not hard to believe at all. Such is the state of politics in 2016, the year the Republican Party became The Party of Trump.

Over the past four days since the tape was released, dozens of Republicans from all across the country, at all levels of government, have condemned the remarks, and many of them have rescinded their support. Campaign events are being cancelled, statements are being released containing phrases like “enough is enough” and “I can no longer support,” and the RNC has reportedly pulled financial support for the presidential race and redirected that money down ticket. My opponent, though, has cowardly remained silent...until today.

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In an interview with Chris Cuomo on CNN this morning, Steve King said he’s “sticking with” Trump, describing the lewd remarks as “things people said back in college.”

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#TrumpTape: Where does Steve King stand?

Kim Weaver | 10/9/16

On Friday night, while attending an event, a friend and staffer for another campaign asked me if I had read what Donald Trump said about women. When I shook my head and asked what he said, he proceeded to hand his phone to me so I could read it. He said he couldn’t say it out loud because there were children in the room.  

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I am disgusted by what he said. I am sickened. I am repulsed. Sadly, I am not surprised.  Throughout his campaign, Donald Trump has shown contempt for pretty much every segment of society. His vulgar comments about his privilege and the ability to sexually assault women and get away with it because he is a “star” should surprise no one. What he admitted to doing was criminal. It is not, as he called it, locker room banter. It is sexual assault.  Period.

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Endorsement: Alliance for Retired Americans

Press Release | 10/6/16

Kim Weaver, Democratic Nominee for Iowa’s 4th Congressional District, was endorsed Thursday, October 6th, by the Alliance for Retired Americans.

Midge Slater, President of the Iowa Alliance for Retired Americans, said in a statement released Thursday, “We support Kim Weaver because she has shown leadership on the issues that matter to older Iowans. She is committed to protecting Social Security and Medicare from privatization and benefits cuts, ensuring these earned benefits will be there for current and future generations. Weaver will also work to protect pensions and make health care affordable. Iowans would be well-served with her in Congress.”

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Weaver said in her own statement released Thursday, “I am honored to receive the endorsement of the Alliance for Retired Americans. As a Long-Term Care Ombudsman, I work with and support seniors every day, and I’m excited to take that fight to Washington. While my opponent wants to gut Medicare by turning it into a voucher system, and wants to weaken Social Security by privatizing it, I will work to expand Medicare to cover nursing homes and assisted living facilities, and I will fight to protect Social Security.”

The Alliance for Retired Americans is a national organization of over 4 million retirees. The Alliance works to make senior voices heard on laws, policies, politics and institutions that shape their lives.

 

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Letter from a Marine: Steve King Let Us Down

Team Weaver | 10/5016

Today we bring you the third in a series of letters from supporters. First we heard from Rosalind Bundy, a teacher in the UK. Next we shared words from AC Doyle, who wrote to us from Mexico. Today's letter comes from here at home, and it's from a United States Marine.

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My name is Aaron Cruz, and I was honorably discharged from the Marine Corps in 2011, after serving a five-year enlistment as a linguist, earning a Joint Service Achievement Medal for my work in the Intelligence field. I am writing to you today to draw your attention to Rep. Steve King’s actions that affect our military and veterans.

Congressman King has been vocal about his support of the military and veterans; however, he has been absent when we needed him. I remember vividly, in 2011, when the government was in danger of shutting down due to Congress’ failure to pass a budget, I was in danger of losing all pay and benefits for the duration of the shutdown.

My fellow Marines and I would have been putting our lives on the line to defend our nation, but we would not have received the compensations we needed to get by. That’s when we needed Congressman King the most.

 And Steve King let us down.

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From Mexico with Fear: Of Steve King

A.C. Doyle | 10/4016

Hi there. Kim Weaver volunteer, here.

For reasons unrelated to the campaign, I happened to be 8500 feet up in La Sierra Gorda, and I was at the birthday party today for a local school teacher.  There were no rapists and drug dealers in attendance, despite what Steve King might assume. There were doctors and lawyers and small business owners, professors and children and architects and artists.

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And at one point during the party, I mentioned that I was working on Kim Weaver's campaign.  I continued my sentence, "against Steve King." All of a sudden, the whole yard -- and I'm talking about 40 people at a huge banquet table with salsa music playing and great food coming off the grill -- fell to a dead silence.

"Steve King? Steve King? Steve King?" The murmurs arose, 2500 miles south of Iowa. Even in the remote mountains of central Mexico, among artists and intellectuals and simple working families, people knew his name. I was astonished! I won't translate the words that came next.

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From the UK with Fear: Of Steve King

Team Weaver | 10/3/16

The letter below was sent by a teacher in the UK regarding Representative Steve King. 

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To whom it may concern,

I am a teacher of A Level history and government and politics from the UK (A level refers to the qualifications needed to attend University here). I teach US politics to a particularly bright group of 17-18 year olds who are observing this election cycle with a mixture of amusement, bemusement, confusion and very real concern - not just directed at Trump but at many down-ticket Republicans too. One of my students, while we were discussing events from over the summer and more current events, outlined her fears of one Representative Steve King (R-IA 4th district) and, in her words, “his flaming white supremacist views.”

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