Gov. Terry Branstad and I have a lot in common. Weíre both 67-year-old white males, native Iowans, raised on family farms and registered Republicans. We both attended the University of Iowa. Branstad went on to become a lawyer and career politician. I went into farming.
After his 2010 re-election, Branstad said that he ďnever looks back.Ē As an older Iowan, I look back all the time.
I remember an Iowa without state-sponsored gambling. A state with family farms instead of factory farms. Vital small towns everywhere with diverse manufacturing industries.
I remember streams, rivers and lakes in which people could swim and fish. A pheasant season that actually had pheasants. I remember when Iowa students led the nation in test scores. I remember roads and bridges that were well maintained and even passenger trains that went 100 mph.
Iíve been married to the same woman for 40 years. Branstad says my marriage is threatened by gays and activist judges. Funny, I donít feel threatened by any of that. Iím willing to grant everyone the same rights and privileges I enjoy.
I think Branstad has been in office too long. I donít think he can see his own part in the problems of this state. This year, Iím voting for Jack Hatch for governor.
Jim WaltersIowa City