Republican gubernatorial candidate Bob Vander Plaats says Governor Chet Culver, a Democrat, should convene Iowa’s top business minds and ask them to develop a plan to fix Iowa’s economy and stop mounting job losses. Vander Plaats, a business consultant from Sioux City, says there’s a need for urgency.

Vander Plaats points to this week’s announcement that 400 workers in Lake Mills will be laid off — their jobs are being moved to a plant in Mexico. “As a business leader I know we need leadership to open up Iowa for business so our young people have a chance to stay and to develop and grow their families in Iowa,” Vander Plaats said at a recent campaign event in Dallas County.

According to Vander Plaats, “this isn’t something that can wait until the next governor takes office.”  Vander Plaats is calling on Culver to focus on “private sector job creation” rather than adding more employees to the government payroll.

Meanwhile, the chairman of the Iowa Republican Party blasted Vander Plaats for saying, “President Obama has been really, really good for two industries — guns and ammunition.” Democratic Party chairman Michael Kiernan calls those sentiments “outrageous” and “inflammatory.”