I Am Running for the Iowa House

This is Nate Willems.  I was a regional director for Howard Dean's Iowa campaign, am an attorney in Cedar Rapids, and reside in Lisbon, Iowa.

On Thursday, I submitted my filing papers and signatures to the Iowa Secretary of State and am now a Democratic candidate for the Iowa House of Representatives, District 29.  I spent yesterday attending both the Linn and Johnson County Democratic Conventions distributing literature, meeting with activists, and giving a couple of very short speeches.  It looks like there will be a competitive Democratic Primary on June 3rd.  I am copying in the extended entry a press release that I sent to area newspapers announcing my candidacy.

I am running for a legislative seat being vacated by Ro Foege.  I have known Ro since I was in elementary school; he has been, and will continue to be, a mentor of mine in politics.  Numerous people I met last week in Des Moines told me, "You have big shoes to fill." I know that and fully appreciate it.

District 29 encompasses much of the rural corridor between Cedar Rapids and Iowa City.  It includes Lisbon, Mount Vernon, Solon, Swisher, Shueyville, Springville, Ely, Oxford and a number of other small towns.  I am looking forward to knocking on doors and getting to know more and more people across the District.

What I am not looking forward to, though, is having to raise the money it takes to run a successful campaign.  Raising money is, I guess, a necessary evil.  If you are willing to contribute to my campaign, I will be very grateful.  I have set up an Act Blue account and am accepting donations here.  Alternatively, I do have a traditional mailbox at: Citizens for Willems, P.O. Box 213, Lisbon, IA 52253.

I would like to thank you in advance for any type of support that you can lend to my campaign, and once I can put together a decent website I will look forward to seeing you on the internet.

There's more...

NJ-39: Bergen Record calls out Cardinale, GOP cohorts

By Stephen Yellin


"Rep. Scott Garrett, R-Wantage, hates poor people. Bogota Mayor Steve Lonegan hates immigrants. And state Sen. Gerry Cardinale, R-Demarest, loves bankers."
Alfred Doblin began his Friday political column in the Bergen Record with those words. Doblin is an equal-opportunity critic of politics, who calls out politicians on both sides of the New Jersey aisle for corruption. As you may know, Garrett was one of just three Congressional Republicans in New Jersey to vote against the S-CHIP override. Lonegan is an anti-immigrant crusader who was recently caught employing illegal immigrants. So it's good to see that Doblin is "playing fair" and telling the truth about Gerry Cardinale and his Republican cohorts - that they are hypocritical ideologues.

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The NJ-39 Series: When it comes to ethics, Cardinale is "Gerry" -atric

In my last article on New Jersey's 39th Legislative District, I discussed how Republican State Senator Gerald "Gerry" Cardinale has become entangled in the "culture of corruption" (to borrow a national term) that plagues New Jersey. To recap, in 2000 Cardinale introduced four pieces of legislation to improve profits for the banking industry; over the next two months, he received nearly $6,000 in vacation money from the same industries he was proposing to streamline. Coincidence? I don't think so, Gerry. Luckily, Democrat Joe Ariyan, his opponent has been taking it to Gerry on the stump and in their debates. You can learn more about him at Voice for the 39th - Ariyan, Fletcher and Manna

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The NJ-39 series: Cardinale caught red-handed on ethics

I suppose one could call this a "breaking" news story, but in a way it's not: the story goes back several years, and revolves around a Republican State Senator in New Jersey who's been around for 28 years - Gerald Cardinale. "Gerry" (as he's more commonly known) is an out-of-touch conservative obstructionist in a progressive state, and he's in the fight of his life this November against Democratic challenger Joe Ariyan (Here's his website) . But Cardinale's fight just got a bit tougher, as he's now being accused of violating the state's legislative ethics laws. Which, in fact he has repeatedly done over the years, to his advantage and to the disadvantage of his constituents.

Read on to see what I mean...

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The NJ-39 Series: Cardinale = Silence for Public Meetings

By Stephen Yellin

On his new campaign website, Republican State Senator Gerald "Gerry" Cardinale explains in a video clip why he's established the site: "So that you can know the truth about my record." I'll be happy to take Mr. Cardinale up on his offer, as I have been doing for the last month, and bit by bit reveal to you, the reader his extraordinarily extreme record in 28 years as a New Jersey legislator. For example, Cardinale talks a good game when it comes to government transparency, but did you know that he prefers cutting off newspaper advertisements of public meetings? I didn't either at first. But if you get to know the real Gerry Cardinale as I have, you'll understand as well as I do why he needs to be defeated on November 6th.

Read on if you want to know the dirty details...

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