A report issued by the “National Institute on Money in State Politics” concludes electric de-regulation rose to the top of the Iowa Legislature’s agenda because of campaign contributions. Iowa Citizen Action Network executive director Rick Kozin says businesses and executives seeking deregulation gave Iowa candidates over a half million dollars in 1998.Kozin admits that despite those contributions, the bill faltered and never passed either the House or Senate. He says the money didn’t triumph this time, but other proposals likely did not get attention while deregulation took center stage.Ed Woolsey of the Iowa Renewable Energy Association says campaign contributions are the only way to explain some lawmakers’ votes on the deregulation bill.The report shows pro-deregulation interests hired 84 lobbyists to pursuade Iowa lawmakers to pass the bill — and those lobbyists earned one-point-four million dollars for their work at the statehouse.
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