Sen. Chuck Grassley’s (R) camp “characterized” ‘82 GOV nominee/ex-U.S. Atty Roxanne Conlin (D) 9/30, “as hypocritical for receiving a property tax abatement on her home in a luxury Des Moines development while she also condemns tax breaks for wealthy Americans.”
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Conlin’s camp aides said she and her husband “have paid all of their property taxes.” They “said Grassley is using the abatement… to distract from the issues of the camp.”
“The Conlins applied for and received an abatement that allows them to pay property taxes on only the assessed value of the land, not the building. The five-year abatement expires next year. Without the abatement, the Conlins’ estimated annual tax bill would be more than” $37K. They paid $3.2K as a result of the abatement.
“The property tax abatement is for urban revitalization. Any property owner who builds or adds on to property within Des Moines is eligible.”
Conlin spokesperson Paulee Lipsman: “They’ve paid all the taxes they owe, and this abatement applies to every single newly built home in Des Moines” (Beaumont, Des Moines Register, 10/1).
Getting A Head Start On Education Attacks
Conlin “called” 9/30 “for a greater federal commitment to education to aid” Americans “in meeting the challenges of competing in a global economy.”
Conlin: “After World War II, a better future seemed possible for every child. … Today, the American Dream may not be dead, but it is sure on life support. … We cannot afford for our educational system to be second to China’s, India’s or anybody else’s. This is not just about a better future for our children. It is about the future of our country.”
Conlin “proposed expanding Head Start and other early-childhood learning programs designed to assist children of low-income families.” She said that Grassley “voted at least 14 times against funding the Head Start program.”
Conlin asked that the federal gov’t “reinforce programs that link students’ formal education with the job market to help close the ‘achievement gap’ for minority students.”
Conlin “said she could not provide a price tag for her educational proposals, given the intricacies of how various programs are funded in the federal budget” (Boshart, Quad City Times, 9/30).
Grassley comm. dir. Eric Woolson: “Since 1989, Grassley has voted 23 times for Head Start Funding. For the last 10 years, and most likely back to 1989, there have been no separate votes on whether or not to fund Head Start, so it is not accurate to say that Grassley voted against Head Start funding specifically” (Boshart, Mason City Globe Gazette, 9/30).
Kicking Their Grassleys
Of candidates for statewide office in IA, Grassley has been the “most aggressive” spender on ads at 4 major TV networks in the Des Moines market. “Ad buys for Grassley so far total” $474.4K. Conlin has spent $40.5K (Jacobs, Des Moines Register, 9/30).
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"American spies collected information last summer revealing that senior Russian intelligence and political officials were discussing how to exert influence over Donald J. Trump through his advisers." The conversations centered around Paul Manafort, who was campaign chairman at the time, and Michael Flynn, former national security adviser and then a close campaign surrogate. Both men have been tied heavily with Russia and Flynn is currently at the center of the FBI investigation into possible collusion between the Trump campaign and Russia.
"Former FBI Director Robert Mueller has been cleared by U.S. Department of Justice ethics experts to oversee an investigation into possible collusion between then-candidate Donald Trump's 2016 election campaign and Russia." Some had speculated that the White House would use "an ethics rule limiting government attorneys from investigating people their former law firm represented" to trip up Mueller's appointment. Jared Kushner is a client of Mueller's firm, WilmerHale. "Although Mueller has now been cleared by the Justice Department, the White House may still use his former law firm's connection to Manafort and Kushner to undermine the findings of his investigation, according to two sources close to the White House."
Senate Intelligence Committee chairman Richard Burr (R-NC) and ranking member Mark Warner (D-VA) will subpoena two businesses owned by former National Security Advisor Michael Flynn. Burr said, "We would like to hear from General Flynn. We'd like to see his documents. We'd like him to tell his story because he publicly said he had a story to tell."