DES MOINES — On the same day that Iowa reported another single-day high number of deaths related to COVID-19, Governor Reynolds touted the early re-opening in parts of the state — including 5 counties that just reported their first case. Instead of giving Iowans the opportunity to hear from public officials or medical experts, Reynolds chose to promote a political ally at the daily briefing.

“It’s clear Reynolds isn’t listening to working Iowans who are most impacted by these muddled decisions,” said IDP Chair Mark Smith. “Iowans want to return to work and do our part to fight this virus together. But we need complete facts about the virus’ spread in our state, and assurances that workers will have the workplace protections to safely do their jobs. Workers continue to be at greater risk as workplace hotspots expand across the state. They need Governor Reynolds to pay attention to their needs, not corporate donors.”

Iowans don’t have all of the facts about the spread of the virus as parts of the state ease social distancing measures.

  • Des Moines Register: “But on Friday — five business days later and nearly one week after being swabbed — both said they are still waiting for their COVID-19 test results from the state. Neither has been given more information about any delay.”

Ignoring reports from top health officials about the increasing spread of the virus, the Governor’s team is now backtracking previous estimates about the virus’ peak in our state. 

  • Des Moines Register: “University of Iowa researchers warn ‘a second wave of infections is likely’ if COVID-19 prevention efforts are lifted”
  • KCCI News 8: “Sarah Reisetter, with the Iowa Department of Public Health, said she is not ready to say Iowa has reached its peak in COVID-19 cases. Reisetter and Reynolds said to expect case counts to continue to rise as the backlog of tests is processed over the weekend.”

Local leaders, public officials, first responders and concerned business owners are asking for resources to responsibly and safely re-open their communities. 

  • Black Hawk County Sheriff Tony Thompson: “We know that [the spread] is attributable to inept reactionary and dysfunctional responses to what was happening in their plants.”
  • Des Moines Register: “The Iowa Professional Fire Fighters union is calling on Gov. Kim Reynolds to issue guidance requiring cities to cover medical costs for emergency first responders who contract the coronavirus.”

Instead of action, their pleas have been met with incomplete rhetoric that puts corporate interests before working Iowans.

  • Todd Dorman: “Why does the governor believe meatpacking plant owners who claim to be protecting workers even as their plants become COVID hot spots, and despite reports to the contrary? The state is moving fast to protect hog production but are doing precious little to safeguard the health of packing plant workers.”
  • Todd Dorman: “Advisors? Not exactly. But throughout her time in office, when the governor picks the wants of large business and agricultural interests over the common good and the broader needs of Iowans, campaign contributions offer a window into her decision-making. They’re the receipts for dirty water, injured workers no longer getting compensation and piles of business tax breaks we can no longer afford.”