State of Iowa Archives: on Principles & Values


Rich Leopold: I'm a person of faith; I volunteer with faith-based groups

Everyone who runs for office should tell you their beliefs. I am a person who is sustained by the daily practice of faith. I grew up in the Lutheran church, and over the years we have raised our family in Iowa Lutheran congregations.

Being involved in my community and state are important also. There is never enough time, but I have served on boards and volunteered doing "grunt work" for dozens of non-profit, faith-based, youth-centered, and/or conservation organizations.

Source: 2018 Iowa Gubernatorial campaign website RichLeopold.com Mar 15, 2017

Jay Williams Iowa: Truth, Life and Love--my values & American values

The values that I honor and believe are most important are Truth, Life and Love--God if you wish--but I know some people struggle with religious or spiritual language, so I'll try to be more generic.

I honor Truth (with a capital "T") because, It just is--regardless of what we may think, say or do about it--it is. That's what makes it Truth.

I honor Life by living it fully and joyfully; by trying to share and preserve it in ways that allow good will and ease pain and suffering.

I honor Love by trying to follow what all great wisdom traditions teach: that we must at all times love Truth, ourselves and each other with everything we have.

I believe these values--my values--are both American and spiritual values that, in the public's best interest, should be placed above the love of money, special interests, intentional ignorance, willful denial, and guile for personal gain--and sooner rather than later.

Source: 2016 Iowa Senate campaign website PoliticsYourWay.org Mar 1, 2016

Jay Williams Iowa: Ordained ULC minister and United Methodist Lay Servant

I serve as an ordained ULC minister with a very rewarding weddings and studies ministry. I am also an Elder in the Presbyterian Church, USA, and a certified Lay Servant in the United Methodist Church. My wife and I are on the Living Faith! worship team at St John's UMC's Living Faith service in Davenport; she sings, and I play lead guitar--and sing, too--when they let me.
Source: 2016 Iowa Senate campaign website PoliticsYourWay.org Mar 1, 2016

Carly Fiorina: We need a president NOT from professional political class

Q: You've said that you can get the tax code down to 3 short simple pages. What do you do about opposing lobbyists?

FIORINA: You know, we have a professional, political class of both parties. We have been talking about the same issues for election cycle after election cycle. Yeah, government is big and out of control, and the only way to get it under control is to ask the federal government to budget the way you do, to examine every dollar. The fancy word for that is zero-base budgeting. I call it common sense. That 3-page tax code I talk about all the time? It's been around for 20 years. But nobody wants to vote on a three-page tax code or zero-base budgeting, because if you get those two things done, you are goring everybody's ox.

Gov. Jim GILMORE: I disagree with Carly when she says that it's just a political class in Washington. The truth is that the country has changed. And there are powerful forces at this point that are really controlling our lives. And that's why people are so angry.

Source: 2016 Fox News Republican Undercard debate in Iowa Jan 28, 2016

Carly Fiorina: People care about issues, not GOP internal affairs

Q: Is your party in crisis?

A: I have done over 150 events in Iowa. Now, by the way, Someone asked me, what's the biggest surprise to you on the campaign trail? I will tell you what the biggest surprise is: the chasm between what the national media talks about and what the people of Iowa talk about. The people of Iowa never ask me about a crisis in the GOP, they never ask me about the polls. They never ask me about the other candidates.

Source: 2016 Fox News Republican Undercard debate in Iowa Jan 28, 2016

Carly Fiorina: Hillary should be prosecuted; not be president

Hillary Clinton will do anything to gain and hang on to power. If my husband did what Bill Clinton did, I would have left him long ago. Hillary Clinton has been climbing the ladder to try and get power and here now she is trying for the White House. She is probably more qualified for the big house. She has escaped prosecution more times than El Chapo. The woman should be prosecuted.
Source: 2016 Fox News Republican Undercard debate in Iowa Jan 28, 2016

Carly Fiorina: Come help me take our country back

The people of Iowa know this ain't working anymore. The government no longer works for those who pay for it. The professional political class says and does whatever they need to do to win. We need to return to a citizen government. That is why I am running for President. The media, the establishment, they want to tell you they know who's going to win it, except that you haven't cast a single vote yet. Iowa, stand with me, fight with me. Caucus for me. It is time to take our country back.
Source: 2016 Fox News Republican Undercard debate in Iowa Jan 28, 2016

Jim Gilmore: Establishment media wrong to shape the presidential campaign

Carly FIORINA: You know, we have a professional, political class of both parties [who do nothing beyond] talking about the same issues for election cycle after election cycle.

GILMORE: I disagree with Carly when she says that it's just a political class in Washington. The truth is that the country has changed. And there are powerful forces at this point that are really controlling our lives. And that's why people are so angry. One of those is government, which is regulating everything through the Environmental Protection Agency, through other places. But the biggest one is the organized establishment media. This media across the country is manipulating and shaping and framing this campaign and has been for at least a year now in order to get the kind of choices that people are going to have an opportunity to see. This is wrong. It has to change. And when I'm president, it's going to change.

Source: 2016 Fox News Republican Undercard debate in Iowa Jan 28, 2016

Jim Gilmore: Son of meat cutter who was not rich but gave me values

I'm the son of a meat cutter. My father worked for Safeway for 45 years. I didn't have a father that could give me a million dollar loan. But, my father did talk character, and he provided for his family, and he was a wonderful example. I intend to run for President of the United States to speak to issues.
Source: 2016 Fox News Republican Undercard debate in Iowa Jan 28, 2016

John Kasich: Establishment lane, anti-establishment lane & Kasich lane

Q: You call yourself an "inside-outside guy, a reformer who knows how to get things done," but you reject the establishment label. Why do you reject it?

KASICH: I had a national reporter say, "There's three lanes. There's the establishment lane, the anti-establishment lane, and then there's the Kasich lane."

Q: What do you say to Republican voters this year who view practical government experience as a liability and not an asset?

KASICH: I've been a reformer all of my career, fighting to reform welfare, fighting to reform the Pentagon, also being in a position to balance the budget, because that is very, very hard to do. And then in Ohio, of course, I had to bring about big reform, again, because we were so far in the hole and now we just found out we are up over 400,000 jobs since I took over as governor.

Source: 2016 Fox News Republican two-tiered debate in Iowa Jan 28, 2016

Mike Huckabee: A President should care about regular folk, not just elites

I was in Newton, Iowa. It used to be a vibrant place where Maytag washers and dryers were built. Went out of business in 2007, all those shops went to Mexico. All those people lost their jobs. How many people do you think living around the Beltway know a guy like that? Not many. That's because they're six of the ten richest counties in America that surround Washington D.C. People who live in bubbles don't have a clue about how hard people in Iowa are working.
Source: 2016 Fox News Republican Undercard debate in Iowa Jan 28, 2016

Mike Huckabee: Motto as governor and now, "Come, let us reason together"

You gave me the largest number of votes in the history of the Iowa caucus eight years ago, and I think you did it because you believed I had your best interest at heart. When I was governor, I had a plaque in my office, and it said: "Come, let us reason together." The next President needs to put that plaque in the oval office, and needs to lead this country by saying, "Come, let us reason together."
Source: 2016 Fox News Republican Undercard debate in Iowa Jan 28, 2016

Rick Santorum: Vote for leader of free world; not for who entertains you

This debate was called the "Undercard Debate". What Iowans deserve is to hear from every candidate. Had they applied the same rules four years ago, I would have been in the undercard debate. The guy who won the Iowa Caucuses would have been in the undercard debate, not talked about. We would have been talking about an entertainer that may have been trying to run. Ladies and gentlemen, you have a chance to put the record straight about who you want, not who will entertain you.
Source: 2016 Fox News Republican Undercard debate in Iowa Jan 28, 2016

Rick Santorum: Obama is divisive & untrustworthy; I am respectful

This president has been the most divisive in my lifetime. He personally attacks people. He ascribes motives to them that aren't true and he tears them down. How are you going to work with someone if you don't treat them? I was a tough fighter in Washington. We took a Congress that had been controlled by Democrats for 40 years, and brought in a Republican majority. But then, I was able to then work with those same people we fought with, not because I was mean, but because I was respectful.
Source: 2016 Fox News Republican Undercard debate in Iowa Jan 28, 2016

Rick Santorum: Trust Iowans to pick best leader rather than follow polls

I want to thank the people of Iowa. You're good people. You know good leaders. Lead. Pick the right person, not what the polls say. Not who the money people support. Pick the leader you know is best for this country.
Source: 2016 Fox News Republican Undercard debate in Iowa Jan 28, 2016

Tom Fiegen: Progressive battling for the soul of the Democratic party

In addition to his race, Fiegen has announced his candidate in the Democratic presidential primary as well: "I'm supporting Bernie Sanders. I've decided I'm endorsing him. Democrats need to walk the walk, not just talk the talk."

He continued, "This is a real battle for the soul of the Democratic party. Are we really with the people? Who are the people who are really with you, and who are the people who are only with you until push comes to shove?"

Describing himself as a progressive Democrat, Fiegen is the oldest of 11 children who was raised on a diversified family farm. Previously, Fiegen served in the Iowa State Senate and has spent 27 years providing bankruptcy services to family farmers and small businesses.

Source: Spencer Daily Reporter on 2016 Iowa Senate race Sep 23, 2015

Scott Walker: My relationship with God drives every major decision

It is Walker's biography that could make him especially attractive to Christian conservatives. A life story that began in the Baptist churches his father led in Colorado, Iowa and Wisconsin continues today at the nondenominational evangelical church he attends in his hometown. "My relationship with God drives every major decision in my life," Walker said in an emailed statement. While that relationship does not direct his daily decisions, he said, "our walk of faith helps us prepare for those decisions and provides us comfort as we seek to do God's will."

During his political rise in Wisconsin, Walker did not often emphasize his faith. But evangelicals make up nearly 60% of Republican caucusgoers in Iowa. They are an important factor in Southern primaries. And they continue to have an outsize influence on the Republican nominating process.

Source: N.Y. Times on 2015 Iowa Faith & Freedom Coalition summit Apr 1, 2015

Scott Walker: Raised as a "P.K.", Pastor's Kid, by his father Pastor Llew

Walker was raised a dutiful "P.K.," or pastor's kid. Walker's father, the Rev. Llewellyn S. Walker, was a minister in the American Baptist Churches USA, a more pluralistic denomination than the conservative and better-known Southern Baptist Convention. Pastor Llew, as he was known, is a Republican, but politics and the social causes of the day did not animate his First Baptist Church in Delavan, Wis., where Walker lived from age 10 until he left for college. His father was foremost "a caregiver to the congregation," said the church's current pastor. He would spend half a day sitting in the hospital room of an ailing church member, praying and shooting the breeze.

Before the elder Walker retired in 1995, at the age of 56, he struggled with depression. His wife, Pat, and the teenage Scott Walker shouldered some of his pastoral duties. "There were Sundays when Scott would preach the sermon," the current pastor said.

Source: N.Y. Times on 2015 Iowa Faith & Freedom Coalition summit Apr 1, 2015

David Young: Optimism is at the center of America's continued greatness

AMERICAN OPTIMISM: Optimism is at the center of America's continued greatness, and it is the defining character of David's public service and of his campaign to represent Iowa's Third Congressional District. David spent the last 7 years working for the people of Iowa shoulder-to-shoulder with Senator Chuck Grassley as his Chief of Staff. David knows how to tackle tough issues and get results for Iowa.
Source: 2014 Iowa House campaign website, YoungForIowa.com Nov 4, 2014

Joni Ernst: Judeo-Christian values established our government framework

Question topic: Efforts to bring Islamic law (shariah) to America do not pose a threat to our country and its Constitution.

Ernst: Strongly Disagree.

Question topic: Judeo-Christian values established a framework of morality which permitted our system of limited government.

Ernst: Strongly Agree.

Question topic: Briefly describe your spiritual beliefs and values.

Ernst: I am a Christian. I have grown up in the Lutheran faith, worship in the church I grew up in, and continue to teach Sunday school in that very church. My faith and beliefs continue to define who I am today as a mother, wife, soldier, state senator and community leader.

Source: Faith2Action iVoterGuide on 2014 Iowa Senate race Sep 30, 2014

Doug Butzier: Oppose limits on prayer in public places

Q: Do you support or oppose the statement, "Keep God in the public sphere"?

A: Not sure what you mean by keeping God in the public sphere, but I would oppose any limits to freedom of speech, including prayer in public places.

Source: E-mail interview: 2014 Iowa Senate race with OnTheIssues.org Sep 17, 2014

Sam Clovis: Judeo-Christian values established our government framework

Question topic: Efforts to bring Islamic law (shariah) to America do not pose a threat to our country and its Constitution.

Clovis: Strongly Disagree.

Question topic: Judeo-Christian values established a framework of morality which permitted our system of limited government.

Clovis: Strongly Agree.

Question topic: Briefly describe your spiritual beliefs and values.

Clovis: I was raised evangelical and converted to Catholicism while in college. Thus, I am a conservative Catholic with a very wide evangelical streak. I drifted away from my faith until I had a "road to Damascus" moment in 1990. I had to pick young men to go off to war and found that I could not do that without getting back on my knees to ask for strength and wisdom. I have been on a spiritual journey back ever since. I live my faith, have accepted Christ as my Savior, witness for Him and hold strongly to the Word of God. I have been endorsed by [several] Pastors--all established evangelical faith leaders in Iowa.

Source: Faith2Action iVoterGuide on 2014 Iowa Senate race Jul 2, 2014

Jack Hatch: Iowans are ready for a fresh start

Gubernatorial candidate Jack Hatch played up the viability of the challenge to incumbent Republican Terry Branstad, arguing that his economic record withers under scrutiny and that Iowans are ready for a "fresh start."

Hatch hit the phrase repeatedly, punctuating a litany of controversies involving Branstad's administration by calling out "We need a fresh start!"

Iowa has lagged in job creation during Branstad's term, he said, and the governor has mishandled the now-closed Democratic governors," Hatch said of Branstad. "Well, let me tell you he has a created a mess that this Democratic governor is going to clean up for you."

Source: Des Moines Register on 2014 Iowa gubernatorial race Jun 21, 2014

Joni Ernst: FactCheck: Missed half of state Senate votes for campaigning

Ernst has cited her National Guard duty to rebuff criticism for missing more than half of the votes in the Iowa Senate this year. However, a review shows very little overlap between Iowa Senate votes and her National Guard service.

[When asked about the missed votes, Ernst said], "They've included in those votes time I've been serving on orders with Iowa Army National Guard." The interviewer asked whether some of the missed votes were due to campaigning. "Yes, there were," Ernst said. "They were for other scheduled activities, and not knowing what the debate calendar is before they come up."

According to the Iowa National Guard, Ernst was on orders for training or other duty on [12 days this session, but] only two of those days--March 10-11-- overlapped with days the Iowa Senate held votes, accounting for 12 votes (or about 10%) of the 117 missed votes. Excluding the days that overlapped with Ernst's guard duty, she's missed 105 votes, or 57% of the Iowa Senate votes this session.

Source: The Gazette FactCheck on 2014 Iowa Senate race Apr 14, 2014

Bruce Braley: Apologizes for denigrating Senator as farmer & not lawyer

Last week, video was published in which Iowa Democratic Rep. Bruce Braley denigrated Iowa Sen. Chuck Grassley as "a farmer from Iowa who never went to law school." Braley suggested that made Grassley unqualified to be chairman of the Senate Judiciary Committee, a position he is in line for if Republicans regain control of the Senate in November.

The speech was made to a group of lawyers; Braley himself is a trial lawyer. But the backlash was severe, and Braley apologized.

In an opinion piece published in The Iowa Republican, Senator Ted Cruz (R,TX), a lawyer himself, touted Grassley and his accomplishments in the Senate. "Washington would be a lot better off if we had more farmers in Congress and a lot fewer trial lawyers," Cruz writes. "I served on the Senate Judiciary Committee, and in my opinion Chuck Grassley--that Iowa farmer whom Braley was denigrating--would make an outstanding chairman of that committee," he went on.

Source: The Daily Caller on 2014 Iowa Senate race Apr 3, 2014

Joni Ernst: AdWatch: "Let's make 'em squeal" in Washington

There is so little left in national politics to delight us. The candidates, for the most part, are scripted, strident and narrow people who betray their actual humanity at their own peril. But the last five years have brought one big bright spot to the political circus: Because of the viral nature of the Internet, the ads are just getting better. The latest case in point is a new 30-second jewel by Joni Ernst. Her pitch: I can castrate pigs so I am the perfect conservative for Iowa to send to the Senate.

Not only does she remove pig testicles, she smiles talking about it. The gender politics behind the spot--Ernst would join only four other female Republicans in the Senate if she wins--are both bold and hilarious. In a city of broken down men, she tells voters, it will take a woman with a knife to fix things. "Let's make 'em squeal," she announces. And at that point she is no longer talking about pigs, at least not of the livestock type.

Source: Time magazine AdWatch of 2014 Iowa Senate race Mar 25, 2014

Tom Hoefling: Straight up the middle Reagan conservative

A Calhoun County man who describes himself as a "straight up the middle Reagan conservative" is challenging Gov. Terry Branstad in this year's Republican primary election. If you're tired of the Republican status quo, let's look at doing something different," said Tom Hoefling. "A lot of people are angry with what's happening to the country and they blame establishment Republicans."

Hoefling has never held elected office. He ran unsuccessfully for the Republican nomination in state House District 14 in 1998. In 2012, he ran for president as the nominee of America's Party, but was not on the ballot in Iowa. He was a member of the state Republican Central Committee from 1994 to 1996.

Hoefling, a consultant and publisher, briefly led an organization called the Iowa Conservative Coalition. He worked on the 2000 Iowa caucus campaign of Alan Keyes. But he said he left the Republican Party for awhile after it nominated U.S. Sen. John McCain, of Arizona, for president in 2004.

Source: Fort Dodge Messenger on 2014 Iowa gubernatorial race Feb 12, 2014

Terry Branstad: The Iowa Dream: working hard; working together

A sense of community and collaboration defines us as Iowans. As we've demonstrated before, we should again attack our problems with the same common sense and seriousness as Iowans across our state:To me, this is the Iowa Dream. That dream of opportunity and prosperity which can become a reality for every Iowan willing to work for it. The seeds of that dream have been planted with our work over the past three years. But now we must cultivate that dream of opportunity--of a great job and a great place to raise a family--so that it can grow and flourish. The simple truth is we Iowans are a people of faith, of tenacity who each year plant the seeds of our livelihood with the devout belief that with hard work and the grace of God we will reap a bountiful harvest.
Source: 2014 Iowa State of the State address Jan 14, 2014

Matthew Whitaker: OpEd: disagrees with entire liberal laundry list

The former U.S. attorney provided the best closing statement with a veritable smackdown of Bruce Braley and the laundry list of liberal policies Braley supports.
Source: Kevin Hall in Iowa Republican on 2014 Iowa Senate debate Oct 24, 2013

Joni Ernst: Values we grew up with are being threatened now

A common theme of the night [among Republican candidates] was the belief that the generations of today and tomorrow won't have the opportunities that have been afforded them.

Joni Ernst remarked that what drives her is a desire to protect Iowa values from federal overreach. "The values that I hold dear, that I grew up with and that I have fought for, for over 20 years are being threatened by the failed policies of this president," Ernst said.

Source: Waterloo-Cedar Falls Courier on 2014 Iowa Senate race Sep 23, 2013

Ron Paul: Freedom is based on tolerance and non-violence

PERRY: Congressman Paul got me really intrigued with the whole federal reserve. Paul got me most interested in a subject that is at the root of a lot of the problems that we have.

PAUL: I have learned that you should never give up on your opposition. Because if you're persistent, and you present your case, they will come your way. So Rick, I appreciate it. You're open to the federal reserve. That's wonderful. But I work from the assumption that freedom brings people together. And if you understand freedom, it's based on tolerance and nonviolence. So if it's tolerance, it should be bringing all kinds of people together and that's following our Constitution. And we shouldn't be fighting among ourselves. Where does the fight come from? Somebody is messing up somewhere. So I say that with persistence, I think that we can all prevail and come up with the right answers.

Source: Yahoo's "Your Voice Your Vote" debate in Iowa Dec 10, 2011

Jon Huntsman: If you love your country, you serve her

Q: You supported a stimulus package in 2009. In fact, you said the Obama stimulus package was not big enough. As governor, you signed onto a regional cap-and-trade market. You endorsed civil unions for same-sex couples. And you served as President Obama's ambassador to China. Some people have suggested that maybe you're running for president in the wrong party.

A: Chris, let me just say, I'm proud of my service to this country. If you love your country, you serve her. During a time of war, during a time of economic hardship, when asked to serve your country in a sensitive position where you can actually bring a background to help your nation, I'm the kind of person who's going to stand up and do it, and I'll take that philosophy to my grave. In terms of the stimulus you talked about, it was failed. And let me tell you what I talked about with respect to the stimulus. I talked about the need for more tax cuts in the stimulus. We didn't have enough of it.

Source: Iowa Straw Poll 2011 GOP debate in Ames Iowa Aug 11, 2011

Michele Bachmann: Make Obama a one-term president

Q: You say you can turn the economy around within one quarter by cutting taxes, reducing spending, and repealing ObamaCare. In fact, this week you said, "It isn't that difficult," and, "Solutions aren't that tough to figure out." Isn't that unrealistic, in just three months?

A: We can start to see recovery within three months, not the whole recovery, but we can begin to see it, if we put into place what we know to be true. We should not have increased the debt ceiling. I was leading on the issue of no increasing the debt ceiling. That turned out to be the right answer. And this is part of the movement that we're seeing all across the country. I've been leading that movement. I've been giving it voice. And it's not just Republicans. It's disaffected Democrats. It's independents. It's libertarians all coming together, apolitical people, because [in the Iowa Straw Poll], we get to send a message to Barack Obama. And the message is this: You are finished in 2012, and you will be a one-term president.

Source: Iowa Straw Poll 2011 GOP debate in Ames Iowa Aug 11, 2011

Chuck Grassley: My re-election ensures Iowa is not denied Senate seniority

Conlin repeatedly returned to her theme that voters don't trust Washington, saying the Republican senator offers only "more of the same."

"Senator Grassley's plans are simply more of the same plans that plunged our economy into this crisis, that punished the middle class and exploded the deficit," Conlin said. "I have new plans and fresh ideas," Conlin said. "I'm not attacking him personally; I'm asking him to defend his record."

Grassley countered by touting his experience, saying he has a powerful role in the Senate that benefits the state. "I don't think Iowa should be denied seniority in the United States Senate," said Grassley. "I don't think a person from Iowa should be asked to leave when people from other states aren't leaving."

Source: Chicago Tribune coverage of 2010 Iowa Senate debate Oct 26, 2010

Roxanne Conlin: Republicans only offer more of the same

Conlin repeatedly returned to her theme that voters don't trust Washington, saying the Republican senator offers only "more of the same."

"Senator Grassley's plans are simply more of the same plans that plunged our economy into this crisis, that punished the middle class and exploded the deficit," Conlin said. "I have new plans and fresh ideas," Conlin said. "I'm not attacking him personally; I'm asking him to defend his record."

Grassley countered by touting his experience, saying he has a powerful role in the Senate that benefits the state. "I don't think Iowa should be denied seniority in the United States Senate," said Grassley. "I don't think a person from Iowa should be asked to leave when people from other states aren't leaving."

Source: Chicago Tribune coverage of 2010 Iowa Senate debate Oct 26, 2010

Barack Obama: We are choosing hope over fear

We are choosing hope over fear. You said the time has come to tell the lobbyists, who think their money and their influence speak louder than our voices, that they donít own this government. We do. And we are here to take it back.

The time has come for a president who will be honest about the choices and the challenges we face, who will listen to you and learn from you even when we disagree, who wonít just tell you what you want to hear but what you need to know.

Source: Speech after Iowa caucus, in Change We Can Believe In, p.204 Jan 3, 2008

Barack Obama: If you join me I promise you we can change America

I am running for president because of what Dr. King called ďthe fierce urgency of now.Ē We have urgent problems but weíve seen an administration that is adrift. The American people understand this urgency but they havenít had the leadership to bring people together, overcome the special interests, and speak honestly about how we are going to solve these problems. I donít want to wake up four years from now and find out that we got millions more young African American & Latino youth who are in prison as opposed to going to college. I donít want to wake up & find out that weíve got millions more Americans without health insurance. I donít want to find out that we have not made more progress on jobs that pays a living wage. I am standing here because somebody somewhere at some point in time stood up when it was risky, stood up when it was hard, stood up when it wasnít popular. We have to stand up on behalf of future generations. And if you join me I promise you we can change America.
Source: 2007 Iowa Brown & Black Presidential Forum Dec 1, 2007

Hillary Clinton: Running to continue work Iíve done for 35 years

Iím running for president to continue the work that Iíve done for 35 years. Work that is incredibly important to me; that Iíve seen literally transform lives; from my work with the Childrenís Defense Fund; to chairing the Legal Services Corporation; to fighting for change in Arkansas for better education and health care; to helping to create the State Childrenís Health Insurance Program to insure 6 million children in our country; to working in a bipartisan manner in the Senate to really solve what should be nonpartisan American problems.

We have a lot of work to do. And whoever holds up his or her hand to take the oath of office on January 20th 2009 will have to begin immediately to repair the damage that has been done by the Bush/Cheney administration, but more importantly to restore pride in our country again.

Iím running for president to make it clear that we will make progress together and I hope that I can earn your support.

Source: 2007 Iowa Brown & Black Presidential Forum Dec 1, 2007

Duncan Hunter: Restore economic patriotism: America is arsenal of democracy

Q: What will you restore to the Oval Office?

A: I think restoring what I call economic patriotism. You know, in World War I, World War II and the Cold War, we rode to victory on the arsenal of democracy. Thatís our great industrial base, our ability to make things in this country, this magnificent manufacturing capability, which right now weíre pushing offshore, pushing to China, pushing to India, pushing to Japan. I would stop China from cheating on trade. I would level the playing field. I would bring back that arsenal of democracy that we need, not only for high-paying jobs in this country but also to defend the country. When my kid came back from Iraq, he wrote a great letter. And the last part of that letter said, ďFamilies lift this country up. They provide us with fidelity, morality, faith in God, and raising the next generation of Americans.Ē Our work: to make sure that we elevate the American family and make a life of opportunity for that next generation of Americans.

Source: 2007 GOP Iowa Straw Poll debate Aug 5, 2007

Mike Huckabee: Defining mistake: neglecting his health for decades

Q: What is the defining mistake of your life and why?

A: I think probably the greatest mistake I made was not taking good care of my own personal health for the first half of my life. And thatís been one of the most transformational things Iíve done, and I just wish Iíd started much earlier.

Source: 2007 GOP Iowa Straw Poll debate Aug 5, 2007

Mike Huckabee: Never forget that ordinary citizens are the Presidentís boss

Q: What will you restore to the Oval Office?

A: I would put the very same frame on my wall in the White House I did as governor for 10 and a half years. Itís a frame that has a photo, and underneath the photo it says, ďOur boss.Ē My picture was never in that frame in 10 and a half years. Every week or so, weíd put the picture of some ordinary Arkansas citizen. And I told our staff, letís never forget who the real boss is. I hope every day Iíd never forget I work for those people; they donít work for me. Iíd like to be the kind of president thatís more concerned about the people on Main Street, not just the folks on Wall Street. And we need that kind of Republican running, that kind of Republican winning. Iíd never forget who the boss really, really is.

Source: 2007 GOP Iowa Straw Poll debate Aug 5, 2007

Mitt Romney: Bush & Cheney have made mistakes, but have kept us safe

Q: What authority would you delegate to the office of vice president?

A: You let the president decide what the responsibilities of the V.P. would be in his administration.

Q: What would you decide?

A: Depends on the person, depends on the needs, depends on their capabilities. But I like a person that gives wide viewpoints on a wide array of issues. Itís been very popular lately to be critical of the president and the V.P. I know they make mistakes. But they have kept us safe these last 6 years.

Source: 2007 GOP Iowa Straw Poll debate Aug 5, 2007

Mitt Romney: Strong families, a strong economy and a strong military

Q: What will you restore to the Oval Office?

A: Iíve thought a lot about this question. And I take my inspiration from my dad, from Ronald Reagan, Teddy Roosevelt, the Declaration of Independence. My view is that America is going to be strengthened by virtue of the presidency, if Iím able to have that opportunity. I would strengthen Americaís military, make sure that we could be safe here at home. I want to strengthen our economy, keep our taxes down, become free of oil from foreign places, strengthen our economy so we have great jobs and a great future for our people. And finally, I want to strengthen the American family. In my view, strong families, a strong economy and a strong military--that combination of features is what makes this party so strong and accounts for our great success in the elections over the prior several decades and also is so critical to our future as a nation--a strong economy, a strong military, and strong families. And Iíll fight for those things.

Source: 2007 GOP Iowa Straw Poll debate Aug 5, 2007

Rudy Giuliani: I have executive experience; I can restore hope to America

As president, I would do the same thing that I did as mayor of New York City, and that is, I would restore hope, but for the people of the entire country: hope that this country can do great things, grand things, that we can build our future on optimism, not this kind of defeatism that I hear from the Democratic candidates. I look at the three leading Democratic candidates. They havenít held an executive office in their lives. They havenít run a city, a state, a business. I think maybe theyíve run a club somewhere. But the reality is, youíve got to have some kind of experience for this job. You have to be able to show that you can accomplish things and you can get things done. And Iíve done that, and I would do that for this country.
Source: 2007 GOP Iowa Straw Poll debate Aug 5, 2007

Sam Brownback: Bush has over-relied on Cheneyís experience

Q: What authority would you delegate to the office of vice president?

A: I wouldnít delegate things to the vice president. But I would involve the vice president in a lot of things. But I think thereís a key point here to look at. One is that Dick Cheney came in with a lot of experience. He came in with a lot of experience on defense, foreign policy issues. And I think the president over-relied on that. I think Dick Cheney has done an admirable job. I think the presidentís over-relied upon that. I think you need somebody coming into the presidency thatís had foreign policy experience, thatís worked on these national and global issues, so that they donít have to depend on the vice president as much. I think you should have a highly competent person as vice president that can step in at any time and can provide you high-quality information, reflection, wisdom thatís needed in that job, but not somebody that takes over the job.

Source: 2007 GOP Iowa Straw Poll debate Aug 5, 2007

Tom Tancredo: Defining mistake: waiting 30 years to accept Jesus as savior

Q: What is the defining mistake of your life and why?

A: I have no doubt of what the greatest mistake in my life has been. And that is that it took me probably 30 years before I realized that Jesus Christ is my personal savior.

Source: 2007 GOP Iowa Straw Poll debate Aug 5, 2007

Tom Tancredo: We can no longer afford political correctness

Q: What will you restore to the Oval Office?

A: Hope. Hope in America itself. We made mistakes that have turned our friends against us, have encouraged our enemies. I believe that it is going to take a leader committed to speaking out about the values of Western civilization. We can no longer afford political correctness. We have to tell people that there is something good--not just good, but great--about who we are. That will restore Americaís faith in itself and the worldís faith in America.

Source: 2007 GOP Iowa Straw Poll debate Aug 5, 2007

Tommy Thompson: Bring into administration Dems, Republicans, & independents

Q: What will you restore to the Oval Office?

A: I would open up the East Wing. I would open it up to bring in the best minds--Democrats, Republicans, independents across America--that want to get something done with this great country. Instead of tearing it down, start building, pro-America. And by bringing in the best minds, the best people, we can change the direction and really start building America a stronger and healthier and better tomorrow than ever before.

Source: 2007 GOP Iowa Straw Poll debate Aug 5, 2007

Howard Dean: Constitution says power belongs to the people-not to Bush

Q: You give the perception that youíre more angry with Bush than you are with the enemies of America.

DEAN: The interesting thing about my campaign is itís really based on hope, not anger. People have a right to be angry with Bush. He is a president who appears sometimes to care more about the special interests that his political policies help rather than ordinary Americans. But our campaignís really based on hope. Our campaign empowers ordinary people, many of whom have not been in politics for years, to get involved. The Constitution of this country says that power belongs to the American people, and that is really what we intend to prove next November, as we bring enormous numbers of new Americans back into this process. 1/4 of all the people who gave us money between June and September were under 30 years old. The only way we can beat George Bush is to have a campaign based on addition, not subtraction. We want to add new people to the Democratic Party so that we can beat George Bush.

Source: Democratic 2004 Presidential Primary Debate in Iowa Jan 4, 2004

John Edwards: Two Americas: one does the work, the other reaps the reward

Today, under George W. Bush, there are two Americas, not one: One America that does the work, another America that reaps the reward. One America that pays the taxes, another America that gets the tax breaks. One America that will do anything to leave its children a better life, another America that never has to do a thing because its children are already set for life. One America -- middle-class America - whose needs Washington has long forgotten, another America - narrow-interest America - whose every wish is Washingtonís command. One America that is struggling to get by, another America that can buy anything it wants, even a Congress and a President.

2004 is a make-or-break election because we need to create one America again. And that is the one thing George Bush will never do. Dividing us into two Americas - one privileged, the other burdened - has been his agenda all along.

Source: Speech in Des Moines, Iowa, ďTwo AmericasĒ Dec 29, 2003

John Edwards: Make America an ownership society

    Under my plan, every American will have the chance to be an owner - to buy a home, save for college, or put money aside for a secure retirement. The ownership society should look like American society, not George Bushís secret society.
  1. Weíll give struggling families a chance to realize the American dream, with a $5,000 tax credit toward the down payment on their first home. There is no better way to build a strong, secure nest egg, and get ahead for the long haul than owning a home.
  2. I want to make college affordable with my College for Everyone plan. For those young people who are willing to work 10 hours a week and can get into a university-youíll go tuition free for the first year.
  3. We need to reward family. We can start by offering a family leave newborn child tax credit of up to $2,500.
  4. When the time comes for Americans to retire, I want to help families who canít afford to put money away now by giving them a helping hand, a match of up to $1 for every $1 they save.
Source: Speech in Des Moines, Iowa, ďTwo AmericasĒ Dec 29, 2003

Al Sharpton: I want to privatize only one thing: privatize George Bush

If this president can argue that we can spend billions of dollars to take care of Iraq because we must occupy it, what about the 50 states we already occupy? Iím running for president against a man who believes in privatizing Social Security, privatizing Medicaid, privatizing education. Al Sharpton only wants to privatize one thing. I want to privatize George Bush and make him a private citizen in 2004.
Source: AFSCME union debate in Iowa May 17, 2003

Carol Moseley-Braun: Fight the greedy and help the needy

Twenty years ago when I first ran for the state legislature in Illinois, my father got a beat-up old truck, and on the side of it he had a big sign that said, ďFight the greedy and help the needy.Ē here I am 20 years later and in this world, with this leadership that only George Orwell could have given us, this crowd is into helping the greedy and fighting the needy. My father had it right. George Bush has got it wrong. They are helping the wrong people and hurting the rest of us.
Source: AFSCME union debate in Iowa May 17, 2003

Howard Dean: Democrats are as angry at Dems as at GOP

I talk to Democrats all over this country, and I find the Democrats are almost as angry at the Democratic Party as they are at the Republican Party. We have got to understand that the only way that we can beat this president is to take him on directly.

Source: AFSCME union debate in Iowa May 17, 2003

Howard Dean: Rule by hope instead of rule by fear

This president has ruled us by making us afraid of each other and making us afraid of others. I want an America where weíre going to rule by hope again, where weíre going to have a tough country, but a country where we acknowledge our responsibility for each other.
Source: AFSCME union debate in Iowa May 17, 2003

John Edwards: Fight for values of people and workers over privilege

The president says he wants to have a debate about values. The basic bargain that we make with the American people [is] if you work hard, if you act responsibly, you can build a better life for yourself and for your families. This is the bargain that George Bush is breaking every single day. He comes from a place where wealth is inherited, not earned. He comes from a place where opportunity is hoarded, not shared.

This is going to be a debate about values, Mr. President. Itís going to be a debate about the future of America and the kind of country we want. They, the Republicans and George Bush, they honor wealth. We honor the work that produces wealth. They fight to expand special privileges fore special interests. We fight for opportunity for everybody. We believe in taking responsibility. They believe in passing the buck to somebody else.

This is a fight for the working people of America. It is a fight for our values, and it is a fight we will win.

Source: AFSCME union debate in Iowa May 17, 2003

John Edwards: Fight for values of people and workers over privilege

The president says he wants to have a debate about values. The basic bargain that we make with the American people [is] if you work hard, if you act responsibly, you can build a better life for yourself and for your families. This is the bargain that George Bush is breaking every single day. He comes from a place where wealth is inherited, not earned. He comes from a place where opportunity is hoarded, not shared.

This is going to be a debate about values, Mr. President. Itís going to be a debate about the future of America and the kind of country we want. They, the Republicans and George Bush, they honor wealth. We honor the work that produces wealth. They fight to expand special privileges fore special interests. We fight for opportunity for everybody. We believe in taking responsibility. They believe in passing the buck to somebody else.

This is a fight for the working people of America. It is a fight for our values, and it is a fight we will win.

Source: AFSCME union debate in Iowa May 17, 2003

Alan Keyes: Bring God back into the White House

Q: How specifically would you as president improve the dignity of the Oval Office and restore the moral excellence of our great nation? A: I think we ought to stop kidding ourselves here. That wasnít Bill Clintonís problem. It was our problem. And our problem is that we have turned our back on the fundamental premise of this nationís life, that our rights come from God and must be exercised with respect for the authority of God.
Source: GOP Debate in Johnston, Iowa Jan 16, 2000

Gary Bauer: America needs to return to the ethics of Ronald Reagan

Q: How specifically would you as president improve the dignity of the Oval Office and restore the moral excellence of our great nation? A: I worked for Ronald Reagan for 8 years and Reagan would not go into the Oval Office without his coat and tie on. That office meant something, it was not just his office. It belonged to the American people. Presidents had sat at that desk and had sent our sons off to foreign battlefields. I will bring reliable standards of right and wrong to the White House.
Source: GOP Debate in Johnston, Iowa Jan 16, 2000

Gary Bauer: First priority is to outlaw abortion

The first issue [of values] is the sanctity of innocent human life. Weíve got to make a place at the table for all of our children. I will do that. My judges will be pro-life, my running mate will be pro-life. I will make sure that our children are welcomed into the world and protected by the law. Iíve got a 30-year record on this. Iím serious. I will end abortion on demand in my first presidentís term.
Source: GOP Debate in Johnston, Iowa Jan 16, 2000

John McCain: Foreign policy should not be shaped by photo-ops & polls

Q: How specifically would you as president improve the dignity of the Oval Office and restore the moral excellence of our great nation? A: The first and primary responsibility of the president is to protect its security and conduct foreign policy. This administration has conducted foreign policy in a feckless, photo-op way that will cause us perhaps to have to expend our most precious assets, our American blood and treasure. I will not take a poll as president as to how to conduct foreign policy.
Source: GOP Debate in Johnston, Iowa Jan 16, 2000

Bill Bradley: Should we take risks? If not now, when? If not us, who?

People accuse me of offering big ideas that they say are risky. I say that the real risk is not doing the things that Iíve set out to do in this campaign. The real risk is doing nothing about gun control. about reducing child poverty.. The real risk is ignoring the people who donít have health care.. Thatís the real risk in America. If we canít afford to do these now, when will we ever be able to do them? If not now, when? If not us, who?
Source: Television advertisement in NH & Iowa Jan 13, 2000

Orrin Hatch: President should set a moral example

The first thing the President ought to do in order to try and change things is not expect from the American people something that he himself is not willing to do. The President ought to set a moral tone in this country and ought to do whatís right. He ought to be a person of integrity and decency. And Iíll tell you, Iíd set an example. I think thatís the first thing that the president can do and should do and I think the American people will follow suit.
Source: Des Moines Iowa GOP Debate Dec 13, 1999

George W. Bush: Government can create an environment for prosperity

Our country must be prosperous. But prosperity must have a purpose. The purpose of prosperity is to make sure the American dream touches every willing heart. The purpose of prosperity is to leave no one out. to leave no one behind.

Prosperity is not a given. Governments donít create wealth. Wealth is created by Americans -- by creativity and enterprise and risk-taking. But government can create an environment where businesses and entrepreneurs and families can dream and flourish.

Source: Candidacy Announcement speech, Cedar Rapids, Iowa Jun 12, 1999

George W. Bush: Keys to American prosperity

America must seize this moment. America must lead. Because Americaís greatest export to the world is, and always will be, freedom.
Source: Candidacy Announcement speech, Cedar Rapids, Iowa Jun 12, 1999

George W. Bush: Philosophy of governing

I donít run polls to tell me what to think. I make decisions based on a conservative philosophy that is engrained in my heart. Trust local people to make right choices about their schools and cities. Understand that private property is the backbone of capitalism. Fight for American interests and American workers in the world. Know the importance of family and the need for personal responsibility. These are principles from which I will not vary.
Source: Candidacy Announcement speech, Cedar Rapids, Iowa Jun 12, 1999

  • The above quotations are from State of Iowa Politicians: Archives.
  • Click here for definitions & background information on Principles & Values.
  • Click here for other issues (main summary page).
2016 Presidential contenders on Principles & Values:
  Republicans:
Gov.Jeb Bush(FL)
Dr.Ben Carson(MD)
Gov.Chris Christie(NJ)
Sen.Ted Cruz(TX)
Carly Fiorina(CA)
Gov.Jim Gilmore(VA)
Sen.Lindsey Graham(SC)
Gov.Mike Huckabee(AR)
Gov.Bobby Jindal(LA)
Gov.John Kasich(OH)
Gov.Sarah Palin(AK)
Gov.George Pataki(NY)
Sen.Rand Paul(KY)
Gov.Rick Perry(TX)
Sen.Rob Portman(OH)
Sen.Marco Rubio(FL)
Sen.Rick Santorum(PA)
Donald Trump(NY)
Gov.Scott Walker(WI)
Democrats:
Gov.Lincoln Chafee(RI)
Secy.Hillary Clinton(NY)
V.P.Joe Biden(DE)
Gov.Martin O`Malley(MD)
Sen.Bernie Sanders(VT)
Sen.Elizabeth Warren(MA)
Sen.Jim Webb(VA)

2016 Third Party Candidates:
Gov.Gary Johnson(L-NM)
Roseanne Barr(PF-HI)
Robert Steele(L-NY)
Dr.Jill Stein(G,MA)
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Page last updated: Feb 13, 2018