Addressing the crowd at the grand opening of the Iowa Democratic Party’s Coordinated Campaign office in Davenport, candidate for governor Jack Hatch paused from his speech to compliment Davenport.
That compliment was about Davenport Mayor Bill Gluba’s plan to temporarily bring kids–mostly from Central American countries who are unaccompanied at the U.S. southern border–to Davenport.
“I commend him for doing that,” said Hatch.
Hatch announced his own plan, “Iowa Coalition of Mercy,” Wednesday, July 16, 2014.
“What we’re suggesting is, is that the governor and I, pull together a coalition of stake holders that will start looking at the resources that Iowa has and determine how we can martial those resources the best possible way to help the kids down in the borders of this country,” said Hatch.
“This shouldn’t be about party, politics, or dividing up voters. This is a moment in which all Iowans should come together, driven by the best in our faith traditions to do the right thing for children who desperately need our help,” added Hatch in a statement.
“Because we’re an empathetic and supportive country doesn’t mean that we can take everybody. People need to know that they’re is a legal way to come to this country and they need to follow the rules,” said Governor Branstad during his weekly news conference Monday, July 14, 2014.
In response to Hatch’s plan, “Governor Branstad has sympathy for the terrible situation that these children have been put in as they have been sent across dangerous territory to attempt to enter into the United States illegally, some through no fault of their own. This is not about politics as Hatch suggests. Gov. Branstad believes, along with even Democratic governors, that the country needs to first secure the border, the rule of the law needs to be respected, and a resolution to the influx of children needs to happen carefully, quickly and with compassion,” said Tommy Schultz, Communications Director for the Branstad-Reynolds campaign in an email Wednesday, July 16, 2014.
The border crisis, now a debated issue on the Iowa campaign trail as well as in the Davenport City Council chambers.
The Davenport City Council addressing Mayor Bill Gluba’s plans to help bring unaccompanied kids on the U.S. southern to Davenport at the Committee of the Whole meeting Wednesday, July 16, 2014. The Finance Committee presenting a motion directing staff “not to initiate or process the expenditure of City taxpayer dollars and staff resources on the Mayor’s private initiative to assist in alleviating the immigration crises along the country’s southern border and directing the City Administrator to ensure the same.”