Dear Editor,

It seems that every time we have an election imminent, we are advised that this is the most significant decision in modern times — and I think it is true every time. We are approaching an extremely important election and I urge everyone to take their civic responsibility seriously and vote. If you are uncomfortable with the idea of voting in person on Nov. 3, request your mail-in ballot now and send it back as quickly as you can. (The ballots will be sent out on or around Oct. 5, so send in your request now.)

There are plenty of negative ads on air and online these days; Ads against each candidate for President, U.S. Senate, U.S. Representative, state, and local officials. I would urge you not to pay attention to the negative ads on either side of the political spectrum.

I also want to state briefly why I am in support of Theresa Greenfield for the U.S. Senate. Greenfield stands for quality and affordable health care for all and for ensuring that those with pre-existing conditions are not excluded. She supports a living wage, investing in our workforce, and equal pay for equal work. As a product of our public education system, she wants to make sure that public education is strong and funded from the pre-K level to the community college and university level. Greenfield is supportive of racial justice and equality and supports the passage of the John Lewis Voting Rights Advancement Act. She also ardently supports Social Security and Medicare and opposes attempts to privatize or abandon these programs altogether. Theresa Greenfield is the type of Iowan I want to see in the U.S. Senate.

I also will cast my vote for Rita Hart for the U.S. House of Representatives. Again, briefly, I support her goal to ban former members of Congress from ever becoming lobbyists. I think it is high time to do some house cleaning and Hart wants to prevent conflicts of interest by banning members of Congress from owning individual stocks and serving on corporate boards. She also favors voters freely choosing their representatives by putting an end to gerrymandering. Hart is also a proponent of affordable and accessible health care for all, investing in public education, supporting Iowa’s agricultural community, and supporting our veterans and improving access to mental health care and services.

There are many other issues on which I share the stands of both candidates. I urge you to consider them seriously.

Michael Philipsen, Ottumwa

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