[ {"id":"da90105f-3d5d-52c6-ada6-fda4e06a3c51","type":"article","starttime":"1484726400","starttime_iso8601":"2017-01-18T02:00:00-06:00","lastupdated":"1484853365","sections":[{"editorial":"news/opinion/editorial"}],"application":"editorial","title":"Editorial: Police don't share citizens' world view","url":"http://qctimes.com/news/opinion/editorial/article_da90105f-3d5d-52c6-ada6-fda4e06a3c51.html","permalink":"http://qctimes.com/news/opinion/editorial/editorial-police-don-t-share-citizens-world-view/article_da90105f-3d5d-52c6-ada6-fda4e06a3c51.html","canonical":"http://qctimes.com/news/opinion/editorial/editorial-police-don-t-share-citizens-world-view/article_da90105f-3d5d-52c6-ada6-fda4e06a3c51.html","relatedAssetCounts":{"article":0,"audio":0,"image":1,"link":0,"vmix":0,"youtube":0,"gallery":0},"byline":"Quad-City Times editorial board","prologue":"Police and the policed: They live in two different realities.\u00a0 That's the take away from a hugely important report released last week by Pew Research Center. The survey of 8,000 officers in cities throughout the country offers a telling, yet troubling glimpse into the minds of rank-and-file cops in the age of Black Lives Matter. It also suggests racial divisions \u2014\u00a0festering throughout the country \u2014\u00a0also are deeply seated within police ranks, too.","supportsComments":false,"commentCount":0,"keywords":["officer","politics","police","assessment","protester","civilian","majority","perception"],"internalKeywords":[],"customProperties":{},"presentation":"","images":[{"id":"ff0fbfd8-6b67-5d86-9939-0b0eae5693ab","description":"FILE - In this Sept. 21, 2016, file photo, Chicago Police Superintendent Eddie Johnson speaks during a news conference in Chicago. The Department of Justice is poised to release its report detailing the extent of civil rights violations committed by the Chicago Police Department. The next stage after the Friday Jan. 13, 2017 release will be negotiations between the DOJ and the city. (AP Photo/Tae-Gyun Kim, File)","byline":"The Associated Press","hireswidth":null,"hiresheight":null,"hiresurl":null,"presentation":"","versions":{"full":{"type":"image/jpeg","width":"512","height":"459","url":"http://bloximages.chicago2.vip.townnews.com/qctimes.com/content/tncms/assets/v3/editorial/f/f0/ff0fbfd8-6b67-5d86-9939-0b0eae5693ab/587e648c42b4e.image.jpg?resize=512%2C459"},"100": {"type":"image/jpeg","width":"100","height":"90","url":"http://bloximages.chicago2.vip.townnews.com/qctimes.com/content/tncms/assets/v3/editorial/f/f0/ff0fbfd8-6b67-5d86-9939-0b0eae5693ab/587e648c42b4e.image.jpg?resize=100%2C90"},"300": {"type":"image/jpeg","width":"300","height":"269","url":"http://bloximages.chicago2.vip.townnews.com/qctimes.com/content/tncms/assets/v3/editorial/f/f0/ff0fbfd8-6b67-5d86-9939-0b0eae5693ab/587e648c42b4e.image.jpg?resize=300%2C269"},"1024":{"type":"image/jpeg","width":"1024","height":"918","url":"http://bloximages.chicago2.vip.townnews.com/qctimes.com/content/tncms/assets/v3/editorial/f/f0/ff0fbfd8-6b67-5d86-9939-0b0eae5693ab/587e648c42b4e.image.jpg"}}}],"revision":5,"commentID":"da90105f-3d5d-52c6-ada6-fda4e06a3c51","body":"

Police and the policed: They live in two different realities.\u00a0

That's the take away from a hugely important report released last week by Pew Research Center. The survey of 8,000 officers in cities throughout the country offers a telling, yet troubling glimpse into the minds of rank-and-file cops in the age of Black Lives Matter. It also suggests racial divisions \u2014\u00a0festering throughout the country \u2014\u00a0also are deeply seated within police ranks, too.

Take, for example, perceptions of deadly police encounters with young black men. Just 39 percent of the population think these encounters are merely isolated instances and reject the argument that they're symptomatic of systematic racial bias. Seventy-two percent of officers included in the survey hold that opinion. Yet a solid majority of black officers agree with public perception that the highly publicized deaths are, in fact, rooted in systemic prejudice.

That internal racial division, too, carries through with police perceptions of the protests sparked by the killings. Only 27 percent of respondents believe Black Lives Matter protesters have a genuine interest in holding officers accountable. But 69 percent of black cops think accountability is the main thrust for BLM protesters. At a global scale, 92 percent of officers surveyed believe that the U.S. has made ample changes to address racial inequality. That number dwindles to just 29 percent among black officers alone.

Only about a quarter of officers agreed that their department does an adequate job rooting out bad cops. Yet a massive majority support internal use-of-force guidelines. And a whopping 86 percent say the public doesn't appreciate what they do.\u00a0

Police are also substantially less likely to support gun control efforts, especially bans on assault-style weapons, than Americans at large.

Overall, Pew's survey paints of a picture of a nation full of cops who feel misunderstood and isolated. But it also includes hints of a fraternity that rejects the concerns of the very civilians who pay them. That's dangerous.

We've said it before: Police can be respected while also scrutinized. It's a red herring to argue that expectations of transparency and accountability are, somehow, out of whack with general appreciation.

Police are, after all, public employees who wield substantial power. Cops have long been the sharp edge of the spear when government targeted certain groups. Civilian oversight is the only barrier against abuse and the bulwark of mutual trust.

Yet, time after time, police unions howl at even the most justified criticism. They rally against right-minded reforms. And they do it in the face of mounting evidence of a broken system. Just last week, the U.S. Justice Department issued its damning report of Chicago Police Department. The scathing assessment detailed widespread abuse of power and use-of-force practices that, on the ground, targeted racial minorities.

The vast majority of rank-and-file officers deserve utmost respect. They do a tough, necessary job. But it's also true that cops are most effective when they have the full confidence of their communities. And that's only possible if police and residents alike share a common interest.\u00a0

At present, the police and the policed aren't even experiencing the same universe.\u00a0

"}, {"id":"070b1168-30e2-5bf5-9ecd-46cb152b4ea9","type":"article","starttime":"1484467200","starttime_iso8601":"2017-01-15T02:00:00-06:00","lastupdated":"1484853365","sections":[{"editorial":"news/opinion/editorial"}],"flags":{"editors_pick":"true"},"application":"editorial","title":"Editorial: Devil's in the details for Branstad's Planned Parenthood pitch","url":"http://qctimes.com/news/opinion/editorial/article_070b1168-30e2-5bf5-9ecd-46cb152b4ea9.html","permalink":"http://qctimes.com/news/opinion/editorial/editorial-devil-s-in-the-details-for-branstad-s-planned/article_070b1168-30e2-5bf5-9ecd-46cb152b4ea9.html","canonical":"http://qctimes.com/news/opinion/editorial/editorial-devil-s-in-the-details-for-branstad-s-planned/article_070b1168-30e2-5bf5-9ecd-46cb152b4ea9.html","relatedAssetCounts":{"article":0,"audio":0,"image":1,"link":0,"vmix":0,"youtube":0,"gallery":0},"byline":"Quad-City Times editorial board","prologue":"Show us the list, Gov. Branstad. Terry Branstad reiterated his goal to defund Planned Parenthood in last week's Condition of the State address. Send the money to other clinics that don't perform a constitutionally protected procedure, he argues. It's not a new position for the long-time, outgoing governor. But, this time, Democrats lack the power to stop it.","supportsComments":false,"commentCount":0,"keywords":["planned parenthood","medicine","politics","terry branstad","contraception","clinic","abortion","administration","indiana"],"internalKeywords":[],"customProperties":{},"presentation":"","images":[{"id":"baa50eab-4f4f-5c57-8e26-abe4559c6f0a","description":"Iowa Gov. Terry Branstad, center, leaves the House chambers after delivering his annual Condition of the State address Tuesday before a joint session of the Iowa Legislature at the Statehouse in Des Moines.","byline":"AP","hireswidth":1841,"hiresheight":1125,"hiresurl":"http://bloximages.chicago2.vip.townnews.com/qctimes.com/content/tncms/assets/v3/editorial/b/aa/baa50eab-4f4f-5c57-8e26-abe4559c6f0a/587576fac70b8.hires.jpg","presentation":"","versions":{"full":{"type":"image/jpeg","width":"1841","height":"1125","url":"http://bloximages.chicago2.vip.townnews.com/qctimes.com/content/tncms/assets/v3/editorial/b/aa/baa50eab-4f4f-5c57-8e26-abe4559c6f0a/587576fac614d.image.jpg?resize=1841%2C1125"},"100": {"type":"image/jpeg","width":"100","height":"61","url":"http://bloximages.chicago2.vip.townnews.com/qctimes.com/content/tncms/assets/v3/editorial/b/aa/baa50eab-4f4f-5c57-8e26-abe4559c6f0a/587576fac614d.image.jpg?resize=100%2C61"},"300": {"type":"image/jpeg","width":"300","height":"183","url":"http://bloximages.chicago2.vip.townnews.com/qctimes.com/content/tncms/assets/v3/editorial/b/aa/baa50eab-4f4f-5c57-8e26-abe4559c6f0a/587576fac614d.image.jpg?resize=300%2C183"},"1024":{"type":"image/jpeg","width":"1024","height":"626","url":"http://bloximages.chicago2.vip.townnews.com/qctimes.com/content/tncms/assets/v3/editorial/b/aa/baa50eab-4f4f-5c57-8e26-abe4559c6f0a/587576fac614d.image.jpg?resize=1024%2C626"}}}],"revision":11,"commentID":"070b1168-30e2-5bf5-9ecd-46cb152b4ea9","body":"

Show us the list, Gov. Branstad.

Terry Branstad reiterated his goal to defund Planned Parenthood in last week's Condition of the State address. Send the money to other clinics that don't perform a constitutionally protected procedure, he argues. It's not a new position for the long-time, outgoing governor. But, this time, Democrats lack the power to stop it.

Not a penny of federal or state cash is spent on abortions and hasn't been for years. In fact, abortions are just 3 percent of the organization's total national caseload. Testing and treatment for sexually transmitted diseases, cervical cancer screenings and contraception make up the bulk of Planned Parenthood's services, according to the organization's annual report. Planned Parenthood operates 12 clinics in Iowa, including one in Bettendorf.

Branstad's ideologically driven pitch isn't novel, mind you. He's following a well-warn trail blazed one way or another from Texas to Indiana, where crackdowns shuttered clinics and left thousands of poor women without reproductive care. They, too, drafted lists of \"alternative\" clinics where treatment is supposedly available for women. The results aren't particularly reassuring.

Florida tried this exact same approach last year. It's so-called list, including dental offices and school nurses,\u00a0made it an overnight laughingstock. Things got worse when the Zika virus spread through Miami. Gov. Rick Scott, a proponent of the anti-Planned Parenthood movement, had no choice but to seek out the organization's help in spreading the word and doling out condoms. No other medical network had the means or the expertise. Scott learned the hard way.\u00a0

Indiana's draconian no-funding policy shuttered clinics and weakened Planned Parenthood throughout the state, which was the point. And, within a year, an HIV outbreak \u2014\u00a0centered in poor, rural towns with a heroin problem \u2014\u00a0only made the sudden dearth of STD and contraception services more obvious.

Yet Branstad's administration was unable to provide details when pressed. It's a shocking lack of preparation for a such a sweeping policy shift.\u00a0

Look, we get it. Science doesn't consider a life viable until it functions on its own. Hence the legal definition of a fetus. But there's no doubt some highly subjective gray area in when a life begins. This issue segregates this editorial board just like the rest of society. And the rape and incest situations only further confuse an already complicated debate between the head and the heart.

Research has shown contraception to be best method at reducing the number of abortions. And it's a realm where Planned Parenthood shines.\u00a0

It's also an incontrovertible fact that, at present, abortion access is a constitutional right. Laws like what's now circulating Iowa are, in a very real sense, little more than obvious attempts to limit access. Texas' attempts to kill clinics resulted in women having to drive hundreds of miles for care, essentially locking out the poorest.

But the fact remains that similar recent experiments have exposed the important role Planned Parenthood uniquely fills in society, a lesson Florida and Indiana officials learned the hard way. Through its network of clinics and army of volunteers, it's positioned to respond to STD outbreaks in a way that no other organization can. It offers reproductive care to women who are isolated, either by geography or economics. Planned Parenthood is more than abortions, regardless of what the misinformation campaign says. Right now, it's best positioned to reduce the number of unwanted pregnancies.

And Branstad and his administration still can't explain how that gap would be filled.\u00a0

Branstad's proposal could take all that away from thousands of Iowans. That's unless his list can accomplish what previous attempts have failed to do.\u00a0

"}, {"id":"d2ea9f21-3345-5788-aa69-0d527de7cf98","type":"article","starttime":"1484380800","starttime_iso8601":"2017-01-14T02:00:00-06:00","sections":[{"editorial":"news/opinion/editorial"}],"application":"editorial","title":"Editorial: Thumbs up, thumbs down","url":"http://qctimes.com/news/opinion/editorial/article_d2ea9f21-3345-5788-aa69-0d527de7cf98.html","permalink":"http://qctimes.com/news/opinion/editorial/editorial-thumbs-up-thumbs-down/article_d2ea9f21-3345-5788-aa69-0d527de7cf98.html","canonical":"http://qctimes.com/news/opinion/editorial/editorial-thumbs-up-thumbs-down/article_d2ea9f21-3345-5788-aa69-0d527de7cf98.html","relatedAssetCounts":{"article":0,"audio":0,"image":1,"link":0,"vmix":0,"youtube":0,"gallery":0},"byline":"Quad-City Times editorial board","prologue":"Thumbs up to Thumbs up to the striking bipartisan local support for school funding equity in Davenport.\u00a0 Liberals and conservatives alike joined the chorus backing Superintendent Art Tate's crusade to balance the state's disparate funding formula. Business groups, such as Quad-Cities Chamber of Commerce are leading the unofficial lobbying charge. They're joined by parents of all political stripes, the school board and even students themselves.","supportsComments":false,"commentCount":0,"keywords":["quad-cities chamber of commerce","politics","michael madigan","organizer","thumbs up","mike halpin","liberal","conservative"],"internalKeywords":[],"customProperties":{},"presentation":"","images":[{"id":"279562a0-ca52-5605-b56f-0ee67b6dbec2","description":"A woman wears a pin with a caricature of Davenport schools Superintendent Art Tate during a meeting of community leaders supporting parity in education funding.","byline":"John Schultz, QUAD-CITY TIMES","hireswidth":1511,"hiresheight":1370,"hiresurl":"http://bloximages.chicago2.vip.townnews.com/qctimes.com/content/tncms/assets/v3/editorial/2/79/279562a0-ca52-5605-b56f-0ee67b6dbec2/58757cd08a387.hires.jpg","presentation":"","versions":{"full":{"type":"image/jpeg","width":"1511","height":"1370","url":"http://bloximages.chicago2.vip.townnews.com/qctimes.com/content/tncms/assets/v3/editorial/2/79/279562a0-ca52-5605-b56f-0ee67b6dbec2/58757cd089648.image.jpg?resize=1511%2C1370"},"100": {"type":"image/jpeg","width":"100","height":"91","url":"http://bloximages.chicago2.vip.townnews.com/qctimes.com/content/tncms/assets/v3/editorial/2/79/279562a0-ca52-5605-b56f-0ee67b6dbec2/58757cd089648.image.jpg?resize=100%2C91"},"300": {"type":"image/jpeg","width":"300","height":"272","url":"http://bloximages.chicago2.vip.townnews.com/qctimes.com/content/tncms/assets/v3/editorial/2/79/279562a0-ca52-5605-b56f-0ee67b6dbec2/58757cd089648.image.jpg?resize=300%2C272"},"1024":{"type":"image/jpeg","width":"1024","height":"928","url":"http://bloximages.chicago2.vip.townnews.com/qctimes.com/content/tncms/assets/v3/editorial/2/79/279562a0-ca52-5605-b56f-0ee67b6dbec2/58757cd089648.image.jpg?resize=1024%2C928"}}}],"revision":3,"commentID":"d2ea9f21-3345-5788-aa69-0d527de7cf98","body":"

Thumbs up to Thumbs up to the striking bipartisan local support for school funding equity in Davenport.\u00a0

Liberals and conservatives alike joined the chorus backing Superintendent Art Tate's crusade to balance the state's disparate funding formula. Business groups, such as Quad-Cities Chamber of Commerce are leading the unofficial lobbying charge. They're joined by parents of all political stripes, the school board and even students themselves.

There's substantial opposition to the shift among some Iowa's most powerful entrenched interest groups. Only a totally unified front has a shot at success.\u00a0

Thumbs down to Illinois Rep. Mike Halpin for a straining attempt to explain his vote for Michael Madigan's continued speakership without saying Madigan's name.

You would think Madigan was out of a Harry Potter novel by the way Halpin's lengthy statement ducked and dodged, while never once actually saying \"Michael Madigan.\"

It's Halpin's prerogative to think that Madigan's platform is the best for Illinoisans. It's also true that Halpin's options were limited when the vote went to the floor.

But let's not act as if Halpin's support of Madigan was something other than what it was.\u00a0

Thumbs up to\u00a0Winter Iowa Senior Games for realizing the Mississippi\u00a0River isn't a partition that divides the Quad-Cities.

The Quad-Cities event planned for Feb. 24-26 will hold events on both sides of the river. Up to 250 athletes are expected to compete in the inaugural event.

Too often, the geographic and state boundaries\u00a0weaken the Quad-Cities as a whole, politically and economically.

Senior Games organizers didn't succumb to the historic boundaries.\u00a0

"}, {"id":"eca9f5d2-23b8-5258-be48-ba1a877873dc","type":"article","starttime":"1484294400","starttime_iso8601":"2017-01-13T02:00:00-06:00","lastupdated":"1484678284","sections":[{"editorial":"news/opinion/editorial"}],"application":"editorial","title":"Editorial: A legislature unbound","url":"http://qctimes.com/news/opinion/editorial/article_eca9f5d2-23b8-5258-be48-ba1a877873dc.html","permalink":"http://qctimes.com/news/opinion/editorial/editorial-a-legislature-unbound/article_eca9f5d2-23b8-5258-be48-ba1a877873dc.html","canonical":"http://qctimes.com/news/opinion/editorial/editorial-a-legislature-unbound/article_eca9f5d2-23b8-5258-be48-ba1a877873dc.html","relatedAssetCounts":{"article":0,"audio":0,"image":1,"link":0,"vmix":0,"youtube":0,"gallery":0},"byline":"Quad-City Times editorial board","prologue":"Iowa Legislature, unbound. Unbound of politically problematic questions. Unbound of campaign-season criticism. Unbound of rules that, while essential to good governance, stand in the way of political aspirations. Last week, Iowa House's GOP leadership announced its intention to repeal rules that require early adoption of education funding. For years, the Legislature has ignored its own laws and refused to set base school funding levels two years ahead of time. Members annually flout its required mandate to grapple with the state budget's most weighty component early in the session.","supportsComments":false,"commentCount":0,"keywords":["law","legislature","parliament","ministries","institutes","politics","school","gop","mandate","terry branstad","funding","lawmaker"],"internalKeywords":[],"customProperties":{},"presentation":"","images":[{"id":"766d4efb-6eef-5284-81c2-f035f643ea34","description":"Legislators assemble in the Iowa House in 2014.","byline":"Charlie Neibergall, AP","hireswidth":2000,"hiresheight":1343,"hiresurl":"http://bloximages.chicago2.vip.townnews.com/qctimes.com/content/tncms/assets/v3/editorial/7/66/766d4efb-6eef-5284-81c2-f035f643ea34/52d43bf78ec72.hires.jpg","presentation":"","versions":{"full":{"type":"image/jpeg","width":"620","height":"416","url":"http://bloximages.chicago2.vip.townnews.com/qctimes.com/content/tncms/assets/v3/editorial/7/66/766d4efb-6eef-5284-81c2-f035f643ea34/57f7f83bc8137.image.jpg?resize=620%2C416"},"100": {"type":"image/jpeg","width":"100","height":"67","url":"http://bloximages.chicago2.vip.townnews.com/qctimes.com/content/tncms/assets/v3/editorial/7/66/766d4efb-6eef-5284-81c2-f035f643ea34/52d43bf849104.preview-100.jpg"},"300": {"type":"image/jpeg","width":"300","height":"201","url":"http://bloximages.chicago2.vip.townnews.com/qctimes.com/content/tncms/assets/v3/editorial/7/66/766d4efb-6eef-5284-81c2-f035f643ea34/52d43bf84a428.preview-300.jpg"},"1024":{"type":"image/jpeg","width":"1024","height":"687","url":"http://bloximages.chicago2.vip.townnews.com/qctimes.com/content/tncms/assets/v3/editorial/7/66/766d4efb-6eef-5284-81c2-f035f643ea34/52d43bf800b78.preview-1024.jpg"}}}],"revision":6,"commentID":"eca9f5d2-23b8-5258-be48-ba1a877873dc","body":"

Iowa Legislature, unbound.

Unbound of politically problematic questions. Unbound of campaign-season criticism. Unbound of rules that, while essential to good governance, stand in the way of political aspirations.

Last week, Iowa House's GOP leadership announced its intention to repeal rules that require early adoption of education funding. For years, the Legislature has ignored its own laws and refused to set base school funding levels two years ahead of time. Members annually flout its required mandate to grapple with the state budget's most weighty component early in the session.

No, they would rather kick the can for a month or two. All along, schools are left in the lurch.

Clearly, out-year school budgeting is possible, offering districts much-needed stability. Some states pass entire budgets in two-year cycles. But, suddenly, Iowa's House leadership isn't comfortable with working from revenue estimates that far out. Or so it says.

To be clear, the law's death would mean little to local school districts, because lawmakers were in constant violation. The law's power is in its symbolism. It's an incessant example of the Legislature's dysfunction.\u00a0

Politics is the real reason for the sudden push to kill the out-year budgeting mandate. Public school funding is an annual slug-fest, at least it was when Democrats owned the Senate. The two sides would dig in, blow through the legal mandate and, come re-election, have to answer for it.

The budgeting process is broken in Des Moines. But political convenience dictates killing the right-minded laws instead of grappling with the system's shortcomings.

If only Art Tate, superintendent of Davenport Community Schools, had it so easy, eh?

Tate is charged with violating budget laws, too. He rejected out-of-whack limitations on per-pupil spending and is right now spending cash that had done little but collect dust to level inequity among Iowa's school districts.

Tate's act is illegal, and the state Education Department is investigating his alleged \"ethics violation.\" But most justified acts of civil disobedience are concurrently illegal and wholly moral. Ethics and legality are not necessarily mutually inclusive.\u00a0

But Tate doesn't enjoy the Legislature's cover. It's an institution, not a man. It's up to the voters to hold the entire Legislature in contempt for repeated violations.

And that's the angle here. Any lawmaker interested in this repeal is driven not by good government. They're just sick of the yoke the funding laws hang around their necks every year.

The House GOP's proposal is a crash-course in self-service over duty. And criticism of the proposal shouldn't be brushed aside as standard partisanship. Even Gov. Terry Branstad, the figurehead of Iowa GOP, has long supported early and forward-looking school funding levels.\u00a0

But, as usual, good governance would take a back seat to partisan aims, should the Legislature kill the right-minded mandate.

It's just another example that laws apply only to those who can't write themselves out of them.\u00a0

"}, {"id":"43624c76-fe17-555d-ad9b-f7ae0690a76f","type":"article","starttime":"1484121600","starttime_iso8601":"2017-01-11T02:00:00-06:00","lastupdated":"1484678284","sections":[{"editorial":"news/opinion/editorial"}],"application":"editorial","title":"Editorial: Halpin's pledge will be tested","url":"http://qctimes.com/news/opinion/editorial/article_43624c76-fe17-555d-ad9b-f7ae0690a76f.html","permalink":"http://qctimes.com/news/opinion/editorial/editorial-halpin-s-pledge-will-be-tested/article_43624c76-fe17-555d-ad9b-f7ae0690a76f.html","canonical":"http://qctimes.com/news/opinion/editorial/editorial-halpin-s-pledge-will-be-tested/article_43624c76-fe17-555d-ad9b-f7ae0690a76f.html","relatedAssetCounts":{"article":0,"audio":0,"image":1,"link":0,"vmix":0,"youtube":0,"gallery":0},"byline":"Quad-City Times editorial board","prologue":"Illinois Rep. Mike Halpin could lose Wednesday no matter how he votes when Mike Madigan is again put up for House speaker. But, at the very least, standing up to Madigan's iron grip on the state would signal Halpin isn't the lapdog his opponents claim.\u00a0 Halpin, D-Rock Island, championed his \"independence\" throughout last year's campaign. Even many Rock Island County Democrats don't buy it, particularly allies of Pat Verschoore, whom the labor attorney replaced. They point to the hefty support for his campaign from long-time Madigan backers. They still highlight his staffing decisions, which bear Boss Madigan's fingerprints.","supportsComments":false,"commentCount":0,"keywords":["ministries","institutes","mike madigan","republicans","mike halpin","democrats","politics","bruce rauner","state","campaign"],"internalKeywords":[],"customProperties":{},"presentation":"","images":[{"id":"72a42c4c-6df9-5386-b5f8-87204c3a10b8","description":"Mike Halpin","byline":"","hireswidth":1175,"hiresheight":1763,"hiresurl":"http://bloximages.chicago2.vip.townnews.com/qctimes.com/content/tncms/assets/v3/editorial/7/2a/72a42c4c-6df9-5386-b5f8-87204c3a10b8/580945e788fee.hires.jpg","presentation":"mugshot","versions":{"full":{"type":"image/jpeg","width":"1175","height":"1763","url":"http://bloximages.chicago2.vip.townnews.com/qctimes.com/content/tncms/assets/v3/editorial/7/2a/72a42c4c-6df9-5386-b5f8-87204c3a10b8/580945e78835e.image.jpg?resize=1175%2C1763"},"100": {"type":"image/jpeg","width":"100","height":"63","url":"http://bloximages.chicago2.vip.townnews.com/qctimes.com/content/tncms/assets/v3/editorial/7/2a/72a42c4c-6df9-5386-b5f8-87204c3a10b8/580945e78835e.image.jpg?crop=1151%2C730%2C0%2C264&resize=100%2C63&order=crop%2Cresize"},"300": {"type":"image/jpeg","width":"300","height":"190","url":"http://bloximages.chicago2.vip.townnews.com/qctimes.com/content/tncms/assets/v3/editorial/7/2a/72a42c4c-6df9-5386-b5f8-87204c3a10b8/580945e78835e.image.jpg?crop=1151%2C730%2C0%2C264&resize=300%2C190&order=crop%2Cresize"},"1024":{"type":"image/jpeg","width":"1024","height":"649","url":"http://bloximages.chicago2.vip.townnews.com/qctimes.com/content/tncms/assets/v3/editorial/7/2a/72a42c4c-6df9-5386-b5f8-87204c3a10b8/580945e78835e.image.jpg?crop=1151%2C730%2C0%2C264&resize=1024%2C649&order=crop%2Cresize"}}}],"revision":11,"commentID":"43624c76-fe17-555d-ad9b-f7ae0690a76f","body":"

Illinois Rep. Mike Halpin could lose Wednesday no matter how he votes when Mike Madigan is again put up for House speaker. But, at the very least, standing up to Madigan's iron grip on the state would signal Halpin isn't the lapdog his opponents claim.\u00a0

Halpin, D-Rock Island, championed his \"independence\" throughout last year's campaign. Even many Rock Island County Democrats don't buy it, particularly allies of Pat Verschoore, whom the labor attorney replaced. They point to the hefty support for his campaign from long-time Madigan backers. They still highlight his staffing decisions, which bear Boss Madigan's fingerprints.

Halpin ducked the question when asked in September by the Quad-City Times editorial board if he would back Madigan's speakership. Gov. Bruce Rauner's Republicans last week pounced when Halpin again waffled when asked during a television interview.

The freshman Democrat finds himself wedged between his rhetoric and reality. He's wrapped up in a state GOP flush with Rauner's millions and suddenly relevant in the House.\u00a0

Madigan, who also runs the state Democratic Party, is the problem in Illinois. The Republican campaign against him leading up to Wednesday's vote is incredibly shrill. But it isn't just hollow politics. Loving Rauner isn't a requirement for determining Madigan is the problem. For its part, Senate Democrats have been willing to haggle with the Republican governor. It's Madigan's House where change goes to die.\u00a0

Skyrocketing budgets. Spiking taxes. Spiraling deficits. Governors have come and gone since 1983, when Madigan assumed the speakership. Boss Madigan is the constant here. In effect, Madigan's district \u2014\u00a0a few blocks in southwestern Chicago \u2014\u00a0has run Illinois for 34 years, and run it into the ground.

Madigan's got to go. A majority of Illinoisans agree, polls show.\u00a0

But Halpin and his Democratic peers are likely to fall in line, just like they always do.

Chances are Mike Halpin will today support Mike Madigan. In so doing, he will delegitimize any previous claim of autonomy.

Make no mistake, even ceremonial opposition to Madigan could damage Halpin's constituents. Suddenly, the 72nd District finds itself written out of budget lines. Suddenly, Halpin has no power within his caucus. Suddenly, Halpin is isolated and feckless.

But, at the very least, a protest vote for any Democrat willing to challenge Madigan would prove that Halpin meant what he said. Even a simple abstention, should no challenger rise, would send a powerful message.

Madigan won't release his grip on Illinois voluntarily. Only a rank-and-file rebellion will do.\u00a0

Illinois House Democrats lost the super-majority in November. Throughout the state, Republicans armed with Rauner's cash, tied incumbent Democrats to the speaker who serves only entrenched special interests. Even Democrats themselves returned to their districts and criticized the \"status quo\" that's driving Illinois into failed-state status. They've done it for years.

And yet, they go back to Springfield and bow to their paymaster. It's a vicious cycle that assures Illinois' continual decline.

Mike Halpin toured the 72nd District promising something different. That pledge will be tested Wednesday.\u00a0

"}, {"id":"d7944c17-d3c8-5239-97e2-e450d15580ee","type":"article","starttime":"1483862400","starttime_iso8601":"2017-01-08T02:00:00-06:00","lastupdated":"1484328243","sections":[{"editorial":"news/opinion/editorial"}],"application":"editorial","title":"Editorial: Pate's voter ID law is downright indefensible","url":"http://qctimes.com/news/opinion/editorial/article_d7944c17-d3c8-5239-97e2-e450d15580ee.html","permalink":"http://qctimes.com/news/opinion/editorial/editorial-pate-s-voter-id-law-is-downright-indefensible/article_d7944c17-d3c8-5239-97e2-e450d15580ee.html","canonical":"http://qctimes.com/news/opinion/editorial/editorial-pate-s-voter-id-law-is-downright-indefensible/article_d7944c17-d3c8-5239-97e2-e450d15580ee.html","relatedAssetCounts":{"article":0,"audio":0,"image":1,"link":0,"vmix":0,"youtube":0,"gallery":0},"byline":"Quad-City Times editorial board","prologue":"Iowa Secretary of State Paul Pate is either willfully ignorant or dishonest. Pate rolled out his proposed voter ID laws Thursday, a so-called move toward stifling nonexistent election fraud. It's a curious move given that, just two months ago on these very pages, he lauded the \"security\" of Iowa's elections. Pate defended the cognitive dissonance Thursday by arguing that the move would pre-empt any future election fraud, according to Iowa Public Radio.","supportsComments":false,"commentCount":0,"keywords":["paul pate","politics","election fraud","id","voter","law","republicans","iowa"],"internalKeywords":[],"customProperties":{},"presentation":"","images":[{"id":"101856ca-6108-5a86-a8bf-ab679a730d34","description":"","byline":"","hireswidth":2400,"hiresheight":1669,"hiresurl":"http://bloximages.chicago2.vip.townnews.com/qctimes.com/content/tncms/assets/v3/editorial/1/01/101856ca-6108-5a86-a8bf-ab679a730d34/586fec04a0408.hires.jpg","presentation":"","versions":{"full":{"type":"image/jpeg","width":"1726","height":"1200","url":"http://bloximages.chicago2.vip.townnews.com/qctimes.com/content/tncms/assets/v3/editorial/1/01/101856ca-6108-5a86-a8bf-ab679a730d34/586fec046cfd0.image.jpg?resize=1726%2C1200"},"100": {"type":"image/jpeg","width":"100","height":"70","url":"http://bloximages.chicago2.vip.townnews.com/qctimes.com/content/tncms/assets/v3/editorial/1/01/101856ca-6108-5a86-a8bf-ab679a730d34/586fec046cfd0.image.jpg?resize=100%2C70"},"300": {"type":"image/jpeg","width":"300","height":"209","url":"http://bloximages.chicago2.vip.townnews.com/qctimes.com/content/tncms/assets/v3/editorial/1/01/101856ca-6108-5a86-a8bf-ab679a730d34/586fec046cfd0.image.jpg?resize=300%2C209"},"1024":{"type":"image/jpeg","width":"1024","height":"712","url":"http://bloximages.chicago2.vip.townnews.com/qctimes.com/content/tncms/assets/v3/editorial/1/01/101856ca-6108-5a86-a8bf-ab679a730d34/586fec046cfd0.image.jpg?resize=1024%2C712"}}}],"revision":8,"commentID":"d7944c17-d3c8-5239-97e2-e450d15580ee","body":"

Iowa Secretary of State Paul Pate is either willfully ignorant or dishonest.

Pate rolled out his proposed voter ID laws Thursday, a so-called move toward stifling nonexistent election fraud. It's a curious move given that, just two months ago on these very pages, he lauded the \"security\" of Iowa's elections. Pate defended the cognitive dissonance Thursday by arguing that the move would pre-empt any future election fraud, according to Iowa Public Radio.

And Pate's statement announcing the crackdown on voters really flew in the face of established fact.

\"We are one of the top states in the nation for voter registration and voter participation.\u00a0This legislation will not have any negative impact on either of those,\" he said. \"Instead, it will help instill confidence in our voting system and let every Iowan know that their vote counts.\"

Yeah. That's demonstrably false.\u00a0

Republican-run states throughout the country have employed fear of some nonexistent fraudulent voter to erect barriers to poll access. Court after court has called the various iterations little but racially targeted suppression, direct attacks on the Voting Rights Act. It's hard to believe that Pate isn't aware of this.

But the federal jurists are only as good as the facts before them. The research about the devastating effect on racial minorities is not only undeniable, according to peer-reviewed research. It's downright sinister.

Minority voters are incredibly less likely to vote in states with voter ID laws, says a 2016 landmark study by researcher at University California, San Diego. Blacks are especially hard hit, the first-of-its-kind study says. But Hispanics, Asians and mixed-race voters, too, are exponentially less likely to cast ballots.

The result \u2014\u00a0already known by the masterminds of these ridiculous laws \u2014\u00a0is a pronounced benefit for Republican candidates.

It's a strategy that opts to keep opposition voters from the polls instead of working for their votes. It's nothing more than Jim Crow's well-dressed grandson.

Pate looks to have known all this. That's why he chose a more watered-down approach, as opposed to the disgusting, blatant and unconstitutional measures passed in Texas and North Carolina only to die in the courtroom.

Any registered voter without an ID will be issued an ID card, Pate said. No worries, he proclaimed.

Pate's dodging the real issue, and he knows it.

Public services are harder to access for those living in poor neighborhoods. Public transportation is somewhere between lackluster and nonexistent in most of Iowa. Access to motor vehicle offices and county clerks is a nationwide problem that, in part, explains the suppressive effect these voter ID laws have on targeted communities.\u00a0

In Des Moines, like in Washington, D.C., freshly empowered Republicans are climbing over each other to plant their flag in some ideological hill. They're proposing defunding women's health clinics for alleged violations that don't exist. They're eyeing tax cuts while schools and highways rot on the vine. They're yearning to set up gonadal checkpoints outside public restrooms. They're hoping to hold on long enough to redistrict Democrats out of existence in some parts of the country, yet another attack on voters who don't back the GOP.

Then there's Pate. He's a man who, in one moment, lauds the above-board nature of Iowa's election when it best suits him. In the next moment, he's stoking paranoia and fear of some fraudulent voter that he himself admits doesn't exist. And he has the gall to claim that his pitch won't disenfranchise a soul.

All Pate's proven is his utter contempt for a significant portion of Iowa's voting public and his burning desire to keep them from the polls.\u00a0

"}, {"id":"91b70f20-bd2a-5b1d-a2ee-feb88d043d71","type":"article","starttime":"1483776000","starttime_iso8601":"2017-01-07T02:00:00-06:00","lastupdated":"1483979223","sections":[{"editorial":"news/opinion/editorial"}],"application":"editorial","title":"Editorial: Thumbs up, thumbs down","url":"http://qctimes.com/news/opinion/editorial/article_91b70f20-bd2a-5b1d-a2ee-feb88d043d71.html","permalink":"http://qctimes.com/news/opinion/editorial/editorial-thumbs-up-thumbs-down/article_91b70f20-bd2a-5b1d-a2ee-feb88d043d71.html","canonical":"http://qctimes.com/news/opinion/editorial/editorial-thumbs-up-thumbs-down/article_91b70f20-bd2a-5b1d-a2ee-feb88d043d71.html","relatedAssetCounts":{"article":0,"audio":0,"image":1,"link":0,"vmix":0,"youtube":0,"gallery":0},"byline":"Quad-City Times editorial board","prologue":"Thumbs up to plastic container-maker Sterilite and its $73 million facility planned for Davenport. Company executives and city officials announced the project this week. It's anticipated to bring 500 jobs to the Quad-Cities within its first five years of operation, officials said. The details are still being hammered out, including a city-subsidized incentive package, likely in the form of a TIF district.","supportsComments":false,"commentCount":0,"keywords":["dana waterman","commerce","politics","executive","republican","law firm","davenport","bob","official"],"internalKeywords":[],"customProperties":{},"presentation":"","images":[{"id":"c332c7f5-697b-5063-9648-444cc72f7404","description":"The Sterilite Corp. of Townsend, Massachusetts, is the largest plastics housewares company in North America and has been in operation for more than 75 years.","byline":"Kevin E. Schmidt, QUAD-CITY TIMES","hireswidth":1175,"hiresheight":1762,"hiresurl":"http://bloximages.chicago2.vip.townnews.com/qctimes.com/content/tncms/assets/v3/editorial/c/33/c332c7f5-697b-5063-9648-444cc72f7404/586c2f938cc80.hires.jpg","presentation":"","versions":{"full":{"type":"image/jpeg","width":"1175","height":"1762","url":"http://bloximages.chicago2.vip.townnews.com/qctimes.com/content/tncms/assets/v3/editorial/c/33/c332c7f5-697b-5063-9648-444cc72f7404/586c2f938bff9.image.jpg?resize=1175%2C1762"},"100": {"type":"image/jpeg","width":"100","height":"150","url":"http://bloximages.chicago2.vip.townnews.com/qctimes.com/content/tncms/assets/v3/editorial/c/33/c332c7f5-697b-5063-9648-444cc72f7404/586c2f938bff9.image.jpg?resize=100%2C150"},"300": {"type":"image/jpeg","width":"300","height":"450","url":"http://bloximages.chicago2.vip.townnews.com/qctimes.com/content/tncms/assets/v3/editorial/c/33/c332c7f5-697b-5063-9648-444cc72f7404/586c2f938bff9.image.jpg?resize=300%2C450"},"1024":{"type":"image/jpeg","width":"1024","height":"1536","url":"http://bloximages.chicago2.vip.townnews.com/qctimes.com/content/tncms/assets/v3/editorial/c/33/c332c7f5-697b-5063-9648-444cc72f7404/586c2f938bff9.image.jpg?resize=1024%2C1536"}}}],"revision":5,"commentID":"91b70f20-bd2a-5b1d-a2ee-feb88d043d71","body":"

Thumbs up to plastic container-maker Sterilite and its $73 million facility planned for Davenport.

Company executives and city officials announced the project this week. It's anticipated to bring 500 jobs to the Quad-Cities within its first five years of operation, officials said.

The details are still being hammered out, including a city-subsidized incentive package, likely in the form of a TIF district.

Love incentives or hate them, the private investment, and the jobs it could create, are certainly welcome.\u00a0

Thumbs down to a sudden spike in traffic fatalities in Iowa.

At least 400 people died on Iowa highways in 2016. That's a 27 percent increase over the previous year, says data released by Iowa Department of Transportation. The final tally for the year will probably be even higher, as the state's information didn't include the final days of 2016.

It ends a four-year decline in traffic deaths. But it also poses serious questions as state lawmakers prepare to gavel in next week faced with a $100 million budget shortfall.\u00a0

At least one ranking Republican has called for more state troopers, which could assist on drunken driving enforcement, accounting for about 30 percent of the total number of traffic deaths. Further, state and federal officials have for years eyed improvements to Interstate 80. A recent report detailed a spate of improvements that would make the corridor safer for motorists. But funding for transportation always seems to get the short shrift.

Thumbs up to Dana Waterman for decades of community involvement and leadership.

Davenport-based law firm of\u00a0Lane & Waterman announced this week that Waterman's cousin, Bob, will succeed him as managing partner. Waterman has earned the downtime.

Waterman is a secretary and counsel for the corporate board of Lee Enterprises, which owns the Quad-City Times.\u00a0

"}, {"id":"72a803c0-19a8-5590-bcd6-4a868a8d5ead","type":"article","starttime":"1483689600","starttime_iso8601":"2017-01-06T02:00:00-06:00","lastupdated":"1484450132","sections":[{"editorial":"news/opinion/editorial"}],"application":"editorial","title":"Editorial: House GOP struggles with power","url":"http://qctimes.com/news/opinion/editorial/article_72a803c0-19a8-5590-bcd6-4a868a8d5ead.html","permalink":"http://qctimes.com/news/opinion/editorial/editorial-house-gop-struggles-with-power/article_72a803c0-19a8-5590-bcd6-4a868a8d5ead.html","canonical":"http://qctimes.com/news/opinion/editorial/editorial-house-gop-struggles-with-power/article_72a803c0-19a8-5590-bcd6-4a868a8d5ead.html","relatedAssetCounts":{"article":0,"audio":0,"image":0,"link":0,"vmix":0,"youtube":0,"gallery":0},"byline":"Quad-City Times editorial board","prologue":"House Republicans just can't remember what leadership looks like. They had better ditch the petty partisan posturing and morph into a caucus of ideas, quickly.\u00a0 Calling the first days of GOP dominance in Washington inauspicious would be an understatement. The party of no just won't shake the bitter disdain that fueled it throughout President Barack Obama's tenure.","supportsComments":false,"commentCount":0,"keywords":["republicans","politics","caucus","barack obama","paul ryan","democrats","obamacare","house gop"],"internalKeywords":[],"customProperties":{},"presentation":"","revision":9,"commentID":"72a803c0-19a8-5590-bcd6-4a868a8d5ead","body":"

House Republicans just can't remember what leadership looks like. They had better ditch the petty partisan posturing and morph into a caucus of ideas, quickly.\u00a0

Calling the first days of GOP dominance in Washington inauspicious would be an understatement. The party of no just won't shake the bitter disdain that fueled it throughout President Barack Obama's tenure.

Crushing dissent was the first order of business, essentially walking on the ability of minority Democrats to protest with punitive fines and sanctions. The vindictive assault on opposition survived this week's rule-making process.

But another pitch -- crafted in secret by Republican backbenchers -- went too far for even president-elect Donald Trump. The House GOP, over the objections of Speaker Paul Ryan, looked Monday to behead the Office of Congressional Ethics and return to self-policing.\u00a0

So much for draining the swamp. Settling scores for perceived slights -- in this case, public investigations into alleged corruption -- have, so far, taken a front seat to any semblance of policy.

Speaker Ryan attempted Wednesday to regain momentum after his caucus took a pistol, aimed at its own feet and squeezed the trigger. Along with Vice President-elect Mike Pence, Ryan outlined the GOP's plan to gut Obamacare. Even here, though, the GOP's new-found unilateral power railroaded the made-for-television event.

Dozens of times, the GOP has voted for Obamacare's repeal. But each instance was little more than base pandering. The president's veto was a sure bet.

Come Jan. 20, the promised votes to kill Obamacare will have real weight. And, after six years of griping and dozens of votes, Republicans aren't capable of offering a real alternative. Instead, they're bickering among themselves about what comes next.

Years of griping. Years of complaining. Not a single cogent idea that would take the controversial program's place, even as the health of 20 million now-insured Americans hang in the balance.\u00a0

The rush is on to kill Obamacare. But, obviously, that whole \"replace\" bit -- the actual measure of a ruling party -- is only disparate ideas and nonsensical talking points.\u00a0

This is not the face of leadership.

For years, Republicans successfully weaponized Obamacare and took down dozens of purple-district House Democrats. They tapped hyperbolic rhetoric knowing that, with Obama in the White House, it amounted to little but theater.

That reality ends on Jan. 20.\u00a0

Republicans will probably realize their fever dream and end Obamacare under President Trump. They can take a harder line against radical Islam. They can slash taxes for those \"job creators\" that comprise the top 1 percent. They can weaken public education with vouchers and waivers. They can effectively render public unions a relic of history.\u00a0

Making all this happen, in a real way, extends far beyond the fantasies spewed from a podium, though.

After endless complaints, the House GOP caucus is listless. It's void of ideas. It's struggling to come to terms with its own power.

So far, Americans have seen only a caucus structured for opposition. That won't work for long when there's no one else to blame.\u00a0

"} ]