Rod Sullivan, Supervisor, Johnson County, Iowa

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May 24, 2009

Sullivan’s Salvos 5/26/09

Congratulations to all the graduates! This is always such a very special time of year… granted, I am a big softy, but I get a bit misty every time I hear Pomp and Circumstance.

My son BJ is a 6th grader at Hoover, and since he is our youngest, we are basically through with our neighborhood elementary school. Last Saturday were our final Kickers soccer games after sitting out there through approximately 300 games. Then there are final concerts, final track meets, and all sorts of other “finals”.

It is not traditionally viewed as a big milestone, but I am amazed at the impact that is having on me. I will really miss Hoover! Meanwhile, congrats to all of you that have a family member completing one phase of her or his life.

I am receiving a very nice honor this Thursday… the Heritage Area Agency on Aging (AAA) has selected me as their 2009 Outstanding Elected Public Official.

For those that are unfamiliar, Heritage is one of 667 Area Agencies on Aging nationwide and one of only 13 in Iowa. The agency plans, coordinates and funds a variety of human services programs that serve the 60,000+ older adults who reside in Benton, Cedar, Iowa, Johnson, Jones, Linn, and Washington Counties. Heritage serves people age 60 and above as well as their families and communities.

This is really a tremendous honor. Thank you to the overly kind and generous local folks who placed my name in nomination. I have tried very hard to serve the seniors of Johnson County; it is really neat to have that effort recognized.

Pennsylvania Senator Arlen Specter was in the news recently for switching from the Republic Party to the Democratic Party. While this move is condemned by Republicans and hailed by Democrats, I’m not so sure it is good for anyone except Arlen Specter.

Don’t get me wrong; Specter is a decent man, particularly for a 30-plus-year veteran of DC politics. But he does not measure up on labor, the environment, economic justice, health care, or any number of Democratic Party issues.

Why should Pennsylvania Democrats embrace a man who has served the opposition for over 30 years and make him their standard bearer? Specter is viewed as a moderate now, but he was a typical member of the GOP when he was first elected. Should he be rewarded by Dems because his own party has moved so far to the right?

Specter has only been with Democrats on roughly 30% of his votes. Is that really acceptable to the Democratic Party? Senate Dems do not need 60 members – they need 60 VOTES! Otherwise, they will be as irrelevant as the Iowa House- 56 members, and no results.

Some moderates are truly independent thinkers, but I think there is a tendency to romanticize moderates of either party. Too often these folks are credited with being icons of the American system of government. I would argue that often moderates are gutless, intellectually dishonest, calculating self-preservationists.

The Iowa House of Representatives has been a study in the frustration of working with so-called “moderates”. They have produced very moderate results. Give me the choice between a straight shooting opponent and a false friend, and I’ll take the honest opponent.

US politics have rarely focused upon helping those that need it. I would argue that no administration has really looked out for the little guy since Lyndon Johnson was elected in 1964. Johnson, of course, forgot about the little guy as far as Viet Nam was concerned, and all his good work is largely overshadowed by that fiasco. (Rightfully so.)

Now is no time for more of the same. Now is no time for moderation. The people of this country (including this County) want a new direction. Will someone PLEASE step up and offer progressive change? Who in politics is looking out for the least among us?

DID YOU KNOW? Johnson Co. Board of Supervisors Meetings are on the web!
Local government meetings can be viewed at:
Gavel-to-gavel coverage of the Johnson County Board of Supervisors meetings. Taped for view at 5:30pm every Thursday... also live coverage on the second Thursdays at 5:30... you can also watch taped coverage on Sunday's at 1:30pm and Tuesday's at 9:30am!

Anyone interested in learning more about County government should take a look at the County website- .

"Sullivan’s Salvos" is sent once per week to any interested party. It will give a brief update on issues of interest to Johnson County residents.

These messages come solely from Rod Sullivan, and neither represents the viewpoints of the whole Board of Supervisors nor those of groups or individuals otherwise mentioned.

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As always, feel free to contact me at 354-7199 or I look forward to serving you!



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