Gov. Kim Reynolds joins President Donald Trump on stage at a rally in Council Bluffs.
President Donald Trump was in Council Bluffs Tuesday night to announce a regulatory change that would lift a ban on selling an ethanol-gasoline blend during the summer months. Right now, the Environmental Protection Agency prohibits the sale of gasoline blended with 15 percent ethanol, commonly called E15, during the summer months.
“My administration is protecting ethanol,” Trump told the crowd gathered at the Mid America Center. “Today we are unleashing the power of E15 to power our country all year long.”
The change is to give more Midwestern corn farmers, who have suffered in the president’s trade war, more demand.
“I think you can say that this a storyline that (Trump) hopes will play well within the agricultural audience here,” says Iowa State Agricultural Economist Chad Hart. “Farmers do tend to vote Republican so this is a way to strengthen the base up right before the midterm election.”
Gov. Kim Reynolds joined the president on stage and thanked him for more than the ethanol announcement.
“Thank you for cutting taxes for hard workin’ Iowans, for eliminating senseless regulations that stifled innovation and jobs,” Reynolds said. “And for standing strong with Justice Kavanaugh!”
President Trump also thanked Iowa’s senior U.S. Sen. Chuck Grassley, who chairs the Senate judiciary committee, for his role in confirming Brett Kavanuagh to the U.S. Supreme Court.
Republican Rep. David Young, who in August told fairgoers the president’s tariffs were making him nervous, also took the stage.
“A vote for David is a vote for me,” Trump told the crowd.
Political forecasters have also shown Congressman Young in a close race for Iowa’s 3rd District against Democrat Cindy Axne.
Cokie Roberts answers audience questions as part of the 2018 Levitt Lecture
Thomas Langdon / University of Iowa
Listen to Cokie Roberts' 2018 Levitt Lecture
NPR's Cokie Roberts says instead of draining the "swamp," as politicians describe our nation's capitol, more members of Congress should bring their families when they come to serve. Roberts grew up in Washington D.C., the daughter of democratic Representative Hale Boggs, who served in the U.S. House for 28 years, and Representative Lindy Boggs, who held her husband's seat for 18 years after his death.
Roberts says when members of Congress spent time together outside the capitol, they built friendships that made it easier to compromise. She says wives became friends and children went to school together. One of Roberts' best childhood friends was the daughter of conservative republican Rep. William E. Miller from New York.
"It's very difficult to demonize someone when their child is playing Clue in your basement," says Roberts.
Roberts, who is also an author and commentator for ABC News, delivered the 2018 Levitt Lecture September 12th at the University of Iowa. The event was presented by Hancher Auditorium, and UI College of Law and the UI Lecture Committee. During this hour of River to River, we listen to that lecture as well as questions from the audience, moderated by host Ben Kieffer.
Roberts also discussed the coming midterm elections, pointing out that the Democratic party has nominated a record 180 women to run for a seat in the U.S. House this fall. She says that novelty makes it difficult to predict whether candidates nominated by their political bases during the primary season will fare well with general election voters in November, but that we can look at patterns.
Data shows that suburban women generally like to vote for female candidates and aren't big fans of the President. A recent Marist poll shows Trump's approval rating at 34% among suburban voters, with only 28% approval among suburban women. Even so, Roberts says she's skeptical about a blue wave when most congressional districts are drawn to heavily favor one party over another, and voter suppression efforts are taking hold in many states. http://www.iowapublicradio.org/post/nprs-cokie-roberts-reflects-civ...