Under the Golden Dome: Resignation, Revision and Restriction 3/16/2018

Mar 16, 2018

Typically, Monday mornings at the Capitol aren't the most active day, but nothing was typical about last Monday morning.  Around 10 a.m. a post from a Democratic-leaning blog, Iowa Starting Line, contained pictures and a video of Senate Majority Leader Bill Dix in a Des Moines bar.  He is sitting close to a woman lobbyist and at one point it looks like they briefly kiss.  Hours later, Sen. Dix resigned from the senate.  Jack Whitver was elected as the new minority leader and Charles Schneider as the Senate president.

On this show, our first segment goes through the events of Monday morning as leaders react to resignation of Sen. Dix. We hear Whitver and Schneider's first speeches from the Senate floor in their new roles. 

Bills that passed in the Senate in 2017 are now in the house.  One will place more regulations on traffic enforcement cameras.  This goes against a Senate bill that passed this year that would outlaw these kind of cameras.  Much of the House debate focuses on an amendment that would also eliminate enforcement cameras.

Also in 2017, the Senate passed a bill prohibiting the sale of fetal body parts.  Now an amended version passes a House committee, which includes parts of a bill the Senate passed this year prohibiting abortions after a fetal heartbeat is detected.

It is an unusually long committee meeting where representatives on both sides of the issue emotionally make their case.  Passing abortions restrictions is one of the priorities for Republicans during this general assembly.  Last year, a bill restricting abortion after 20 weeks was signed into law.