Theresa Greenfield: A Voice of Experience for Iowa

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6 mins read

Locked in a critical race with Joni Ernst to be Iowa’s senator, Theresa Greenfield is the reason voters are turning to a Democratic candidate. She has plans to “to get jobs done.” 

One of five siblings, Greenfield was raised on a small hog farm with a crop-dusting business. She came of age in the 1980s farm crisis and knows just how important it is to have a social safety net. In her mid-twenties and pregnant with her second child, her husband Rod Wirtjes, a union electrician, was accidentally killed on the job. Social Security and the local electrical union survivors’ benefits helped her build back her life. Greenfield subsequently remarried and now has four grown children. She knows firsthand the critical importance of shoring up Social Security, Medicare and benefits from the Affordable Care Act.  

A small business owner herself, Greenfield has laid out plans to grow small businesses throughout Iowa, particularly targeting those in underserved and rural communities as well as Black, Brown, and Indigenous Iowans. As Covid-19 has continued to ravage the country, she’s advocated for expanded financial support for business but expects greater accountability and transparency as the funds are distributed. 

The majority of Iowans are concerned about the economy, particularly as it concerns the pandemic and Trump’s trade war with China. 

Iowa is the country’s largest hog producer and second-largest producer of soybeans. The trade war caused agricultural prices to plummet and family farmers to declare bankruptcy. Even before the pandemic, 56% of Iowans thought Ernst had not done enough for Iowa and that she too often stood with her party over their needs.

Then, in October, a moment from the third and final debate between Greenfield and Ernst went viral.

Greenfield, meanwhile, had accurately answered a question about the price of corn: “Well, a bushel of corn is going for about $3.68, today, $3.69, and break-even really just depends on the amount of debt someone has.” For Iowa voters, knowing about agricultural has always been important.

Greenfield supports science and fact-based solutions to take on the virus and its economic and societal fallout. 

Koch-funded Ernst has followed the GOP lead and downplayed Covid-19, even echoing a QAnon conspiracy that questions the pandemic’s actual scope. 

On the other hand, Greenfield faults the GOP-led federal and state response for close to 1,500 Iowa Covid-related deaths, slaughterhouse shutdowns, and loss of jobs across the state. She’s called for a mask mandate and created a “Back on Our Feet” plan to help Iowans get through health and financial struggles, safely return to school, and shore up supply lines. This plan calls for investments in debt-free community college and skills training, investments in rural broadband, and jobs that pay living wages. Greenfield also has called for boosting Community Development Financial institutions, low-interest loans for minority-owned businesses, and increasing Black, Brown, and Indigenous business ownership.  

When it comes to climate change, Greenfield trusts science. 

Until recently, many Iowan farmers resisted acknowledging climate change as caused by humans, or even as an important issue. But reality has finally set in. In the last decade, the state has suffered through longer and more severe droughts, heatwaves, flooding, and this summer’s multiple hurricane-force “derecho” storms. Those storms alone wiped out 10 million acres of crops and approximately 40 percent of the state’s agricultural output. 

In lockstep with her party, Ernst has consistently denied that humans are responsible for changes in climate. Greenfield says, “We can’t afford to have Senators who question and deny the science.” She has committed to good-paying clean and renewable energy jobs, as well as to strengthening environmental laws that protect Iowa’s clean water, groundwater, topsoil, and natural environments. And importantly, she’s promised to secure funding to build infrastructure that can help Iowa deal with the floods to come. 

Greenfield believes money in politics has led to corporate and special interests dominating the needs and desires of ordinary Iowans. Running a fully grassroots-funded campaign, she’s received donations from every one of Iowa’s 99 counties. Greenfield has been endorsed by End Citizens United and supports legislation that creates lobbying reforms, bans corporate PAC money, overturns Citizens United, and ends unlimited dark money that demonizes individuals and pushes misleading messages that favor the powerful over everyday people. 

As Greenfield has visited with Iowans, people consistently tell her they are sick of the constant partisanship that has led to inaction on critical matters. As a community planner and business owner, she endorses the sentiment that “[T]here are no Republican potholes or Democratic potholes, just potholes that need to be fixed. The same should go in Washington.” She promises to work with anyone to end partisan gridlock and deliver for Iowans. 

EARLY VOTING HAS STARTED IN IOWA! 
Vote Theresa Greenfield for Senate

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