Branstad has been in office too long

Terry Branstad and I have a lot in common. We’re 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 reelection, Terry Branstad said that he “never looks back.” 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!

I’ve been married to the same woman for 40 years. Governor Branstad says my marriage is threatened by gays and activist judges. Funny, I don’t feel threatened by any of that. I’m willing to grant everyone the same rights and privileges I enjoy.

I think Terry Branstad has been in office too long. I don’t think he can see his own part in the problems of this state. This year, I’m voting for Jack Hatch for governor.