Mid-Term Election Results + the Impact on Iowa Businesses
The DSM USA Policy HQ podcast is a monthly conversation between experts on public policy topics impacting business and the relationship between government and the private sector.
In this installment of the DSM USA Policy HQ podcast, Nicole Crain, Executive Vice President for the Iowa Association of Business and Industry (ABI), and Jenny Klein, Director of Advocacy and Legal Counsel at Iowa Hospital Association (IHA), discuss the 2022 mid-term election and its impact on businesses in the short- and long-term.
When it comes to watching election results, it can be difficult to separate work and personal feelings. When it comes to hospital issues, Klein said that voters in different districts can have different responses based on their own experiences. As county numbers come in and voter turnout is captured, the narrative surrounding the election builds and establishes itself throughout the day and night, oftentimes continuing as races are recounted in the following weeks.
In Iowa, nearly one-third of state legislators are new this year. This is an opportunity for businesses to educate those elected officials on the issues that matter to them. Crain said that ABI supports whichever candidates support business issues. It’s not as simple as red or blue. While results show Iowa as a red state, every elected official has a different position on issues. There is crossover on policies, which is why it’s important for organizations and businesses to educate their members and member employees on the issues that are important to them. This year, she said Iowans voted with their pocketbooks due to concern over economic issues.
For IHA, having a political action committee (PAC) offers an opportunity or incentive to get out and get to know candidates and learn where they stand on the issues so they can educate their members. This helps them form strategies ahead of the next legislative session. Elections are expensive. When ABI supporters write a check to the PAC, their investment goes directly to candidates that support their issues. Their donations lead to relationship-building and a greater understanding of specific issues that matter to them.
Having conversations about how to address issues, whether through legislative means or policy solutions and funding, will impact the 2023 session. In the new year, ABI will focus on the following issues: tort reform, property tax reform and workforce. The Senate has a 34-16 majority, and the outcome of this new Iowa Senate will influence how these issues move forward. Tort reform and workforce will continue to be issues that IHA focuses on as well. Klein said a lot of candidates that support tort reform won their races so it will be interesting to see what comes out of those results. Creative strategies such as targeted loan repayment programs could incentivize providers to move to Iowa and get them to stay and offer services in smaller communities around the state or OB services could be codified at the state level through programs and funding to improve workforce across Iowa.
Listen to the entire podcast above.
The DSM USA Policy HQ podcast focuses on public policy topics impacting business and the relationship between government and the private sector. Join us each month to hear from local Greater Des Moines (DSM) experts. To listen to more Partnership podcasts, click here.