No school like the old school

LETTER TO THE EDITOR

You nailed it when you called out Gov. Reynolds and the Iowa Republicans for their cynically political decision to pass the nation’s most draconian restrictions on a women’s right to choose. While I would never presume to know what lies in the heart of another, it certainly appears that they have reached deep into the playbook for a tried and true wedge issue before the midyear elections.

But why should we be surprised? Iowa was the proving ground back in 1978 when one of the founders of the New Right, the National Conservative Political Action Committee, made their first foray into major election politics. With just three weeks to go before Election Day, they succeeded in erasing then Iowa Democratic incumbent senator Dick Clark’s 30-point lead in the polls over Roger Jepsen, unexpectedly stealing the seat for the Republicans. They did it with a massive leaflet and mailing campaign with abortion as the key issue.

When you’ve consistently voted and acted against the interests of your constituents, you have to find a way to distract them from voting their pocket books and well being. When you’ve sold your state and your votes to the few at the expense of the many, you need to drive the voters’ attention elsewhere. Unfortunately, attacking a woman’s right to choose is a proven method in my home state and we can certainly expect it to be used extensively as the election season unfolds.

M. ANTHONY PHIPPS

South Glastonbury, Conn.

(Formally of Iowa but guilty of youth flight)