A Bluer State Senate

A message from newly elected Senate Democratic Leader, Janet Petersen.

Thank you for supporting the Iowa Senate Democrats!

Recently, I was elected the new Senate Democratic Leader. I am proud to serve our state in this new role. I joined the Iowa Senate in 2012 after serving in the Iowa House for 12 years. I represent the northwest side of Des Moines, including the neighborhood where I grew up and have spent most of my life.

My husband Brian (an Ames native) and I have three kids at home – two teenagers and a 10-year-old. With three kids in public schools and parents who started their careers as teachers, I am a big advocate for education. Iowans of all ages deserve great schools and educational opportunities so they can chase their dreams.

Outside of the Legislature, I have worked in the communications field. Nearly 10 years ago, I helped found a nonprofit called Healthy Birth Day with four other Iowa moms. Each of us had lost baby girls to stillbirth or infant death. We showed up for each other in the darkest time of grief in our lives and eventually channeled that grief into advocacy to help prevent other families from enduring the same heartache. Our organization is best known for its Count the Kicks campaign, which has helped reduce Iowa’s stillbirth rate by 26% since it began.

I love our state. Iowans have heart, and I believe our state government should too. Unfortunately, the last session was ugly. When Republicans took control…

  • They gutted Iowa’s Family Planning Network, causing our state to lose four Planned Parenthood clinics which served thousands of Iowa families.
  • They failed to invest enough resources to provide the job training necessary to build the skilled workforce that Iowa employers need, especially those in rural areas and small towns.
  • They dismantled Iowa’s bipartisan collective bargaining law that was put in place to protect public servants who work hard for Iowans every day.

Sometimes good things can come from bad. I have seen it happen in my life. In my 17 years working at the Statehouse, I’ve never seen so many Iowans showing up for each other and standing up against legislation designed to hurt people instead of help people.

Iowans deserve leaders with heart. I’m so proud of the 20 Iowa Democratic Senators who lead with their heart every day at the Statehouse. Thank you for supporting us with your emails, cards, voices, and donations.

With the support of Iowans in rural areas, small towns and big cities, we will continue the fight next session. And with your financial help, we’ll add more Democrats to our ranks to take back the majority in 2018.

Bluer skies and a bluer State Senate are ahead for Iowa! With your donation and help, we can make it happen! >>

Thank you,

Janet Petersen
Senate Democratic Leader

P.S. With your support over the next 12 months, we can create a better future for our children and a better life for all Iowans.