FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Tues., Oct. 23, 2018
CINDY AXNE RELEASES CAMPAIGN FINANCE REFORM PLAN IN RESPONSE TO PAUL RYAN VISIT
~ Axne highlights influence of Speaker Paul Ryan’s Super PAC on David Young’s voting record as the reason we need to get dark money out of politics ~
Des Moines, IA – On the same day as Speaker Paul Ryan’s campaign stop in Iowa, Cindy Axne, Democratic candidate for Iowa’s 3rd District, released her seven-point campaign finance reform proposal to get dark money out of politics. At an event in Des Moines, Axne highlighted the ability of Paul Ryan’s Super PAC, the Congressional Leadership Fund, to influence Congressman Young’s vote on the Republican health care bill as exactly the kind of pay-to-play politics we need to eliminate from Washington.
The Congressional Leadership Fund, Paul Ryan’s Super PAC, will spend over $2 million in support of Congressman David Young’s re-election campaign, after previously pulling support when David Young refused to support the GOP health care bill.
On Thursday, October 18th at a public forum in Des Moines, Carrie Norris, a lifelong Republican and former Young supporter, called out David Young for lying to her colleagues at the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society hours before voting for the GOP healthcare bill. A tweet about the meeting that David Young claims he doesn’t recall is available here. Alongside Axne, Carrie spoke at the event today, saying that Iowans deserve better and she will no longer support David Young. Video and audio of the press conference is available here.
“The ability of Paul Ryan’s Super PAC to influence David Young’s vote on a bill that would have gutted protections for Iowans with pre-existing conditions, raised health care costs, and stripped away coverage for nearly 150,000 Iowans, is exactly the kind of pay-to-play politics that is hurting Iowa families,” said Cindy Axne.
“We don’t have to wait for Washington to change the rules — we can change things right here by running a campaign consistent with Iowa values. That’s why I’m rejecting corporate PAC money, because I want Iowa voters to know that when I vote on legislation, I’m putting their interests first, not a corporation’s bottom line,” Axne added.
Cindy Axne unveiled a seven-point plan that starts by not accepting corporate PAC money. Additionally, the plan includes proposals to overturn Citizens United and pass the DISCLOSE Act; support automatic voter registration at age 18; hold regular town halls and publicize open meetings; require company boards to disclose political activities; improve government transparency and accountability; and end abuse of congressional perks and information.
“I have been a lifelong Republican. In fact, I have voted for David Young twice. I will not be voting for him again. We deserve someone in Washington who will advocate for us. We deserve better. We deserve someone who will not lie to us. We deserve somebody who will do what’s best for Iowans,” said Carrie Norris, lifelong Republican, small business owner and board member on the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society. “You see, when I explained to Mr. Young that you have any right to vote any way you want. You should, but you shouldn’t tell your constituents you’re voting one way like you did my colleagues, and then hours later vote a different way. That’s unethical, we deserve better, and that’s lying.”
When Republicans in Washington were trying to roll-back health care protections in 2017, David Young said he would oppose the Republican health care bill on March 22. The next day, Paul Ryan’s Super PAC announced it would no longer support David Young’s re-election bid, and then closed its Des Moines operations and pulled all funding for Rep. Young. After the Super PAC pulled its support from David Young, he turned his back on Iowans and voted for the bill that would have gutted protections for those with pre-existing conditions and raised health care costs.
David Young defends his vote by falsely claiming that a last-minute amendment to the American Health Care Act provided protections for people with pre-existing conditions. That amendment was nothing more than a fig leaf to give Republican lawmakers cover for voting for a bill that would have allowed insurance companies to charge unaffordable rates for individuals with pre-existing conditions.
Timeline of David Young’s health care vote:
March 22, 2017: Young says he will oppose the GOP health care bill
March 23, 2017: Paul Ryan’s Super PAC, the Congressional Leadership Fund, says they will pull resources and no longer support David Young because of his opposition to the bill.
May 4, 2017: David Young votes for the American Health Care Act
August 28, 2018: CLF announces they plan to spend over $1 million in the 3rd District help re-elect David Young.
A summary of Cindy’s seven-point plan to get Washington working for Iowans is available below.
Cindy Axne Seven-Point Campaign Finance Reform Proposal:
Refuse money from corporate PACs: Instead of waiting for the rules to change, Cindy Axne is running a campaign consistent with Iowa values. Cindy isn’t taking money from corporate PACs because she wants Iowa voters to know that when she votes on legislation, she is putting their interests first, not a corporation’s bottom line.
Overturn Citizens United and pass the DISCLOSE Act: Unlimited, undisclosed money from corporations and special interests continues to flood into elections, drowning out the voices of hardworking Iowans. Cindy is the only candidate in this race who wants to change the system and overturn Citizens United. She supports legislation that would require any organization that spends in U.S. elections to disclose its donors.
Support automatic voter registration at age 18: It’s time to make it easier for every U.S. citizen to vote, instead of putting up barriers that make it harder to participate in our democracy. By following the lead of several states that have implemented automatic voter registration, Cindy will work to bring fairer access to the voting booth when in Congress.
Hold regular town halls and publicize open meetings: Elected officials must be accountable to the people of Iowa. Cindy pledges to publicize all open meetings and hold regular town halls so that she can report back on what’s happening in Washington and get feedback from Iowans.
Require company boards to disclose political activities: Corporations should not be able to buy off politicians and sway elections while hiding their political activities from the public and their shareholders. Cindy supports a reform proposal that would require corporations to disclose their political activities to their shareholders.
Improve government transparency and accountability: Government agencies are funded by taxpayer dollars and have a mission to serve the public. However, as requests for government information through the Freedom of Information Act have increased, the ability to respond and make government data available and accessible has been limited. Cindy will support legislation that improves funding for information offices, improves online access to data, and improves response time to requests made to federal agencies.
End abuse of congressional perks and information: Members of Congress are in office to serve the public, but right now, too many politicians are in it for themselves. In Congress, Cindy will support measures that end abuse of congressional perks that waste taxpayer money.