Revenue Estimating Committee
It comes as no surprise that the Revenue Estimating Committee for the State of Iowa forecast only "modest" growth in state revenues. The three-member panel said revenue for the fiscal year 2020 will increase by a meager 1.4%; well off former revenue numbers.
There are multiple reasons and they all point to the Republican Party and their failed leadership. Let's tick them off:
The Trump Trade War
This has decimated the Iowa economy. From exports to manufacturing this mess, which is apparently supported by the governor and my 2020 Iowa State Senate opponent, continues to impact the working families of our state. We've seen higher prices and a number of layoffs due to slower demand for manufactured goods. Yet do we hear a peep out of our "brave" legislative leaders? Not likely because they are complicit.
Corporate Tax Cuts
My opponent continues to bow down to the failed idea of "trickle-down" and with his help, the Iowa Legislature passed a massive tax cut for corporations. They and the folks from the Greater Des Moines Partnership, the Iowa Business Council and the Iowa Association of Business and Industry pushed through these tax breaks because (hold on...) "The Iowa tax rate doesn't look good on paper." No, really, that is exactly what they told me. Never mind that not one Iowa corporation paid that rate and that dozens of corporations here pay no tax at all and, instead, get a check for their research and development refund.
The Low Wage State
Iowa needs employees. The State Revenue Board blamed the lack of growth on the difficulty in attracting and retaining talent. Want to know why we lag in recruitment and retention? Because Iowa is a low wage state. While corporations here have huge profits those profits are not shared with workers but instead go to the top earners...the Oligarchs of Iowa. This is what you get when workers have little to no power over the powerful. Not only that but we see educators fleeing the state for better pay elsewhere.
Horrific Health Care
Once again the state fails its citizens by refusing to properly fund health care and turning over the care and treatment of over 500,000 Iowans to private for-profit companies who have a stated mission of profit over people. There are "health care deserts" out there where sick Iowans must travel hours to receive care. If you can't take care of your people it's pretty damn hard to entice others to try their luck and come here.
Lack of Childcare
And, if you think our health care situation is bad...hold on...the lack of affordable childcare in Iowa is a major disaster. Working families can't qualify for state assistance because this legislature and my opponent blocks efforts to raise the eligibility level saying it costs too much.
Here's What Costs Too Much
When we turn our backs on the hard-working men and women of Iowa and fawn over the corporations with tax breaks, incentives and tax credits it does nothing for growth. The failed policies of "trickle-down" have not worked and will never work.
And, beware the Iowa GOP and my opponent will use these numbers to further their mission to cut back on everything from education to mental health... just watch!