DES MOINES, Iowa – Gov. Kim Reynolds addressed 1200 conservative Christians and social conservatives at The FAMiLY Leader’s 10th Annual Family Leadership Summit.
She commended Iowa’s churches for their work during COVID-19.
“Iowans know how to turn obstacles into opportunities, something that Iowa’s faith community put on full display during COVID-19,” Reynolds said.
“Unlike other states, Iowa never closed its churches or religious gatherings. Churches had increased responsibilities to keep their congregations safe from streaming worship services to creating drive-in services to responsibly keeping churches open every single one of them found new ways to give glory to God,” she added.
Reynolds pointed out the public-private partnerships created during the pandemic to meet the practical needs of Iowans and Iowa’s frontline workers. The FAMiLY Leader’s Church Ambassador Network took part in some of those initiatives.
“So one of the pandemic’s silver linings is it actually strengthened, I believe, these faith-based partnerships in Iowa, and Iowa is stronger for it. I believe without hesitation that it is going to pay dividends,” she stated.
Reynolds turned her attention to Washington, D.C.
She said the Biden Administration speaks about unity but “promotes a radical social agenda backed by liberal activists and corporations.”
“It includes an assault on our First and Second Amendment rights, the federal takeover of our elections, taxpayer funding of abortion, or the demotion of religious liberty to a secondary right,” Reynolds said.
She highlighted the importance of states in the face of a growing federal bureaucracy.
“We’re grateful that the framers of our Constitution saw the wisdom of federalism, ensuring that the national government isn’t the only game in town, their foresight enables states like Iowa, with the support of groups like this one, to act as a counterweight. And that is exactly what we’re doing in Iowa; we’re taking a stand,” Reynolds argued.
She highlighted steps she took as Governor to elevate parental choice in education from requiring in-person instruction in public schools as a growing number of parents opposed online-only and hybrid education during the pandemic to expanding open enrollment, expanding charter schools, and increasing the school tuition organization tax credit.
Reynolds received her loudest applause when she discussed the new law that requires schools to recite the Pledge of Allegiance and the ban on Critical Race Theory in K-12 schools.
“While this (Biden) administration hedged lip service to school reopenings, even as it placated the teachers unions, Iowa acted and other states followed our lead. Our actions gave families choice and control,” she said.
Reynolds encouraged the audience not to become discouraged.
“It’s easy to get lost in the noise or the online rage machine, don’t get discouraged, and don’t lose sight of what’s at stake. We know the administration’s ideas are broken, and they’re breaking this country. They’re about mandates and not personal responsibility. We know that Republican principles work, we know that freedom works, and we know that because that is what we are doing in Iowa and the contrast is stark,” she explained.
Reynolds touted Iowa’s election integrity bill while the Biden administration opposed voter ID laws and wants to federalize elections. She said she was proud to sign the “Back the Blue Act.”
“(It) gives our law enforcement the tools that they need to keep our citizens and our communities safe. And that bill says that if you riot, if you loot, if you attack our officers, then you will be punished to the full extent of the law. Don’t break the law. If local governments refuse to stop the rioting by not allowing law enforcement to do their job they also will be held accountable,” she said.
Reynolds provided a contrast on economic policy.
“When it comes to fiscal responsibility, what the administration is doing and can only be described as radical, reckless, and irresponsible. In the first six months, or first four months actually, as President, President Biden has proposed over a trillion dollars in new spending. We’re seeing inflation on the rise, the price of gas, groceries vehicles. All of that is increasing; they’re now talking about a reconciliation bill. In Iowa, we countered that with property and income tax relief for Iowans, we eliminated the inheritance tax. We increased funding for mental health and invested $100 million in broadband connectivity for our state,” she said.
“I’m proud of where we’re at, and it’s because we kept our economy open that it made a significant impact on our workers, our businesses in our state. So we just closed fiscal year 21 with a projected over $500 million surplus and over a billion dollars in cash reserves,” Reynolds added.
She said it is striking how out of touch the Biden administration is when it comes to the public at large.
“It’s striking, but it’s not surprising, especially when you look at the incredibly important issues of protecting the unborn. The vast majority of Americans and I want to see abortion on demand, up until the moment of birth as exactly what it is, the termination of a precious human life. Most have absolutely no interest in seeing taxpayer dollars support such a sickening practice. They have no interest in seeing medical professionals forced to participate,” Reynolds said.
She said she doesn’t understand why President Biden and Congressional Democrats would support policies like that under the guise of unity.
Reynolds said it is essential to oppose those policies that are coming out of Washington, D.C.
“The power of informed patriotic Americans, bringing their faith, boldly into the public square, and seeking to influence government at all levels. It cannot be overestimated. Over the years, it has helped sustain and encourage me and legislators, over and over again, which is a big reason why my administration has become one of the most pro-life in the country. We’ve worked every year to defend the unborn and defund Planned Parenthood,” she said.
Listen to the audio of her remarks below: