By Senator Mike Gronstal, Senator Pam Jochum and Rep. Mark Smith
It’s time to set the record straight on why Iowa schoolchildren, parents, administrators and teachers deserve a special session of the Iowa Legislature.
At the end of the 2015 legislative session, Democratic legislators were disappointed in the small increase in education funding, but we chose compromise over gridlock.
We vowed to fight again next session for the kind of increase that Iowa schoolchildren deserve. And we promised to keep listening to advocates of public education in our state. We respect the work that teachers, administrators and school board members are doing every day.
When Governor Branstad vetoed the bipartisan compromise on education funding, however, Senate and House Democrats immediately called for a special session to overturn those vetoes. That shouldn’t be a surprise. We meant it when we voted to increase educational opportunities at our public school, community colleges and state universities.
The response by Republican legislators to Governor Branstad’s vetoes was swift and disappointing. Their message to Iowans is simple: Quit whining! Continue reading