Governor Tom Vilsack says Democrats and Republicans have reached an impasse at the statehouse, and it’ll be up to Iowans to tip the state budget negotiations toward resolution. Vilsack says Democrats’ offer on teacher pay and a tax cut for seniors has been rejected by Republicans and there’s no resolution in sight.
“We are where we are. It seems to me that it’s important I think now for the people of Iowa to get engaged in this debate and for the people of Iowa to understand precisely what the differences are between the parties,” Vilsack says. “And then the people of Iowa hopefully will encourage legislators to be reasonable in their approach towards ending this stalemate.”
Republicans say they have already offered a compromise that tripled the number of years it would take to implement the tax cut they’ve proposed for seniors, and cut the tax cut by a third, and the Republicans are not willing to stretch it out even longer, as Vilsack and other Democrats propose.
Vilsack says he and legislative leaders have met privately for at least 15 hours so far to try to resolve these disputes, and he accuses Republicans of refusing to budge. “It’s one thing to be tough in negotiations,” Vilsack says. “It’s another thing to be unreasonable.”
Vilsack says the differences between the two parties are very small, and it’s now up to Iowans to persuade Republicans to make this a “do something” session rather than a “do nothing” session.