Grow Iowa! Campaign...
Iowa should be a magnet for people, business, capital and culture. Iowa should be a leader in economic development, education, civil liberties, social justice and quality of life. We should be a high-growth state for families, business, culture and community. But our state politicians are mired in partisanship and politicking, they are the noose that holds Iowa back. We need principled leadership that will transform our political culture to serve Iowans over special interests. We need visionary leadership that will guide Iowa to unimaginable prosperity and quality of life. We need proven leadership that will turn vision to reality. I am that leader.
The Grow Iowa! campaign is focused on politics and policy that will make Iowa a magnet state for people and business enhancing our quality of life and standard of living. But, you can't change politics unless you change the people. We need leadership renewal at every level.
Grow Iowa Platform
- Grow Iowa's Economy, Create Jobs
- Make Iowa #1 in Education (again)
- Restore Principled Government
Grow Iowa's Economy, Create Jobs - click for more detail
Iowa boasts one of the most productive, hardworking, can-do, educated and ethical work forces in the country. We have some the greatest resources in the world including land, water, commodities, and location. But our economic growth is anemic. Businesses choose to locate and grow in states with low taxes, low regulatory burdens, abundant workforce, and those with ecosystems that attract the creators and makers. Iowa's slow growth is a direct reflection of a business climate created by Des Moines politicians who favor crony capitalism to free and fair markets. According to the Tax Foundation, Iowa ranks 40th in the nation in business tax climate (49th in corporate tax alone!, Tax Foundation). Iowa ranks 42nd in new business start-ups. The only way we attract (or retain) business is through a complex, pick-the-winner incentive structure which rewards any major corporations with a team of lawyers and bureaucratic influence.
Iowa must modernize its tax code. From personal income tax to property tax, we have a convoluted mix of rollbacks, deductions, and a super aggressive progressive tax causing us to lose people and business. Our marginal income tax rate (8.89%) is the 4th highest in the nation. Our corporate tax is the 49th highest. Our tax climate is detrimental to resident attraction/retention and business attraction and growth. I have done my own income taxes since I could file. The only satisfaction I get from this sadistic effort is understanding the drudgery of this statutory act.
As a business development executive (Taiber - Leader in Business profile), I have helped grow our Waterloo-based business 4-fold in all regions of the world without the manipulative hand of government. I know business, economics and culture and want to put it to use for the benefit of all Iowans. Government is tasked to create an environment in which all businesses, of any size, have a chance to prosper. To grow, we must:
Simplify and reduce tax and regulatory burdens. I endorse the EngageIowa plan for an equal and lower effective rate for all tax payers.
Build public infrastructure to support the logistics of goods, capital and ideas
Lower the cost of doing business to maximize return on risk and capital
Reform our incentive approach to support entrepreneurs, middle market and large enterprises, end corporate welfare and preference.
Make Iowa #1 in Education (again) - click for more detail
Iowa education has slipped. My Iowa education prepared me for a world (literally) of opportunity. Now, Iowa ranks 24th in education (31st in NEAP ranking). Spending more than $12,000 per student ($6,000+ coming from state coffers), we need to demand more for our public education investment. We must do more than throw money at the problem or ask for top-down Washington or Des Moines solutions. We need to re-invent Iowa education embracing tailored learning, choice and institutional accountability and reward. To grow, we must:
Stop the allowable growth debate, index it to inflation and move on to big policy ideas
Return to local curriculum and programming control, reduce higher level mandates, regulation. Put teachers back in control of their classrooms, not bureaucrats. Redirect resources into classrooms.
Re-balance funding for Regent institutions and commit to making UNI the preeminent PK-12 institution for teacher training and education research in United States.
Fund the student, embrace accredited, school choice.
Restore Principled Government - click for more detail
There is a severe leadership deficit in Iowa politics. The duopoly's (Republican and Democrats) ambition for power trumped the will of people. I will restore Constitutional fidelity, protecting all rights of the people from speech, arms, religion, association, due process and more. Rights apply equally to every man and woman of the United States of America. I will uphold, defend and advance all principles of the Constitution of the United States and State of Iowa. This can only be done with a limited and purposeful government. To grow, we must:
Instill confidence in every spent dollar
End special interest influence and crony government
Propose sensible health care/Medicare, mental health, and social service solutions
Preserve, expand and celebrate individual liberty and rights, defend the Constitution
End the war on drugs, reform forfeiture practices and reform criminal justice
Embrace inclusiveness, choice and social tolerance
Develop sustainable environmental solutions addressing Iowa Water Quality first (Click for my Plan)
Reform public pension and benefit programs to defined contribution and state-pooled, employee-directed health care
We must promise...
- to stay true to principles of classical liberalism - personal, economic and social freedom supported by a purposeful government that protects rights (personal and property), ensures free markets, effective social programs, and prudent justice.
- to run a clean, positive campaign focused on a new brand of political leadership
- to bridge partisan divides, sponsor bills of significance to improve the economic, political and social climate of Iowa
- to eliminate the influence of money and special interest by representing people, principle and philosophy
- to term-limit myself to 8 years of service to end career politician precedent
I invite you to learn more About Me. I encourage you to reach out to me and experience a new brand of political service.