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Thumbs up to Doris & Victor Day Foundation and state Rep. Mike Halpin, D-Rock Island, for getting ahead of the 2020 U.S. Census and emphasizing participation. 

The foundation and Halpin this week co-sponsored a "You Count!" meeting. Organizers should keep it up and make events such as this common throughout the region.

The Census is a big deal, though it might seem mundane to most. It determines congressional representation. It factors into federal funding levels. It's used by would-be developers to gauge profit potential. It's a community's official demographic snapshot. 

No wonder the White House is looking to scare off certain minority groups from participating. 

Thumbs down to a pair of local government for years of lackluster oversight that resulted in the taxpayer getting bilked.

Joel McCubbin, who simultaneously ran public works departments in Long Grove and Park View, was overpaid a whopping $427,000 in eight years, according to a recent report released by Iowa Auditor's Office. Much of the work for which McCubbin was paid probably never got done, auditor's said. Instead, he spent significant amount of time at local casinos gambling on the taxpayer dime, auditor's said.

The fact it took eight years to catch on to McCubbin's apparent scam speaks volumes about how closely elected officials were watching. 

Thumbs down to U.S. Rep. Steve King who this week did what he does best and embarrassed Iowa on the national stage.

The Republican from northwest Iowa took to Twitter to espouse white supremacist talking points. Nothing new there, of course. This time, he tapped a favorite of the faux history set, likening the left to Hitler's Nazi Party because, well, socialism or something.

King then got absolutely school by actual historians.

King might on paper only represent a quarter of Iowans. But, every time he opens his mouth, he makes us all look stupid. 

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