Iowa Public Television

 

CAMPAIGN 2002: Candidate For Reelection As Governor

posted on October 29, 2002

Yepsen: GOOD EVENING, ONE WEEK FROM TODAY, IOWA GOES BACK TO THE VOTING BOOTH WHERE VOTERS WILL DECIDE WHO WILL CONTROL THE U.S. CONGRESS, THE IOWA LEGISLATURE, AND THE EXECUTIVE BRANCH OF IOWA GOVERNMENT FOR THE NEXT FOUR YEARS. GOVERNOR TOM VILSACK JOINS US THIS EVENING ON "THE CANDIDATES WITH DAVID YEPSEN." THE GOVERNOR IS SEEKING A SECOND FOUR-YEAR TERM AS IOWA'S CHIEF EXECUTIVE, AND HE'S MATCHED UP AGAINST REPUBLICAN CHALLENGER DOUG GROSS WHO JOINS US TOMORROW. LAST NIGHT YOU MIGHT RECALL WE WELCOMED CONGRESSMAN GREG GANSKE TO THE IOWA PUBLIC TELEVISION STUDIOS, AS WE OPENED UP OUR FOUR-PART SERIES DISCUSSING THE MAJOR CAMPAIGNS THIS YEAR. TONIGHT WE SHIFT GEARS A BIT, FROM THE NATION'S CAPITAL TO IOWA'S CAPITAL. TOM VILSACK PUT HIS NAME IN THE IOWA HISTORY BOOKS IN 1998 WHEN HE CAME FROM BEHIND TO POST AN ELECTORAL VICTORY OVER REPUBLICAN JIM ROSS LIGHTFOOT TO BECOME IOWA'S 39TH GOVERNOR. WITH THAT VICTORY, VILSACK BECAME IOWA'S FIRST DEMOCRATIC GOVERNOR IN THREE DECADES. GOVERNOR VILSACK, A TRIAL LAWYER BY PROFESSION, BEGAN HIS CAREER IN PUBLIC OFFICE A BIT LATER THAN MANY IN THE PUBLIC ARENA. IN 1987, AT THE AGE OF 36, VILSACK WAS ELECTED MAYOR OF MT. PLEASANT. AND IN 1992, AT THE AGE OF 41, HE WAS ELECTED TO THE FIRST OF TWO FOUR-YEAR TERMS IN THE IOWA SENATE. THEN IN 1998, AT THE AGE OF 47, TOM VILSACK WON THE KEYS TO TERRACE HILL. GOVERNOR VILSACK, WELCOME BACK TO IOWA PUBLIC TELEVISION.

Vilsack: DAVID, IT'S GOOD TO BE BACK.

Yepsen: IT'S GOOD TO HAVE YOU BACK TONIGHT. GOVERNOR, I WANT TO OPEN WITH YOUR REACTION TO THE DEATH OF PAUL WELLSTONE. I REMEMBER PAUL WELLSTONE WAS COMING INTO THIS STATE FOR YOU WHEN NOBODY THOUGHT YOU HAD MUCH OF A CHANCE, INCLUDING ME. WE'RE TAPING -- WE WANT TO TELL OUR VIEWERS TOO, WE'RE TAPING THIS INTERVIEW EARLY TO ENABLE YOU TO ATTEND THE MEMORIAL SERVICE IN MINNESOTA TOMORROW NIGHT FOR SENATOR WELLSTONE. BUT GIVE ME YOUR REACTION TO THE DEATH OF PAUL WELLSTONE.

Vilsack: THE NATION REALLY SUFFERED A TERRIFIC LOSS WHEN PAUL WELLSTONE AND HIS WIFE AND DAUGHTER DIED. HE WAS A PASSIONATE POLITICIAN. HE WAS AN EXTRAORDINARILY ENTHUSIASTIC MAN. I'VE NEVER SEEN ANYBODY WITH THAT LEVEL OF ENERGY. I WILL NEVER FORGET THE PARADE THAT HE ATTENDED FOR US; IT WAS THE ANKENY PARADE. IT WAS A 3-MILE PARADE. HIS BACK WAS KILLING HIM BUT HE JUST DOVE INTO THE CROWD, SHAKING HANDS, RELATING TO PEOPLE. YOU KNOW, YOU DON'T FORGET THE FOLKS WHO WERE WITH YOU EARLY IN THE PROCESS WHO THINK YOU HAVE A CHANCE AND WHO DON'T GIVE UP ON YOU. AND AFTER THE ELECTION, HE CALLED AND HE INVITED ME TO HIS HOME IN WASHINGTON, D.C., A VERY MODEST HOME, WHERE WE TALKED PASSIONATELY ABOUT POLITICS AND THE THINGS THAT REALLY MATTERED.

Yepsen: GOVERNOR, DOES THIS ACCIDENT PROMPT YOU TO DO ANYTHING DIFFERENT IN THE WAY YOU TRAVEL? I MEAN YOU'RE IN THOSE LITTLE AIRPLANES ALL OVER THIS STATE ALL THE TIME, AND WE'VE HAD A TRAGEDY WITH THE GOVERNOR OF SOUTH DAKOTA, THE GOVERNOR OF MISSOURI. GOVERNOR RAY WAS IN A PLANE ACCIDENT, GOVERNOR BRANSTAD. ARE YOU DOING ANYTHING DIFFERENT?

Vilsack: WELL, WE MADE THE DECISION THAT CHRISTIE AND I WON'T TRAVEL ON THE SAME PLANE EVER.

Yepsen: AS A RESULT OF THIS?

Vilsack: AS A RESULT OF THIS. I DO NOT WANT TO ORPHAN MY CHILDREN. I JUST DON'T WANT TO RUN THAT RISK. IRONICALLY, THE DAY BEFORE SENATOR WELLSTONE DIED, WE WERE IN A SMALL PLANE LANDING IN AMES AND WE CAME IN OUT OF THE FOG. WE WEREN'T WHERE WE WERE SUPPOSED TO BE ON THE RUNWAY, AND WE HEARD THE PILOT SAY, "YOU KNOW, THIS REALLY ISN'T A VERY GOOD DAY TO FLY." SO WE'LL PROBABLY BE A BIT MORE CAUTIOUS ABOUT WHEN AND HOW WE FLY.

Yepsen: WELL, GOVERNOR, LET'S TURN OUR ATTENTION TO THE TASK AT HAND THIS EVENING. I WANT TO MAKE THIS A LITTLE BIT LIKE A JOB REVIEW FOR YOU, IF I COULD. TELL US WHY YOU DESERVE A SECOND TERM.

Vilsack: WELL, I THINK WE'VE DONE A GOOD JOB UNDER VERY TRYING CIRCUMSTANCES. WE MADE PROMISES TO THE PEOPLE OF THIS STATE THAT WE WOULD IMPROVE THE EDUCATION SYSTEM, WE'D EXPAND ACCESS TO HEALTH CARE, THAT WE WOULD MAKE A COMMITMENT TO CLEANER WATER, AND THAT WE WOULD CREATE ECONOMIC OPPORTUNITY BY EXPANDING CULTURAL AND RECREATIONAL OPPORTUNITIES. AND WE'VE MET EACH OF THOSE PROMISES IN VERY DIFFICULT AND TRYING TIMES. WE'VE KEPT THE BUDGET BALANCED. AND I THINK IF YOU LOOK AT HOW WE ARE FARING COMPARED TO OTHER STATES IN THE MIDWEST, WE'RE DOING BETTER. BUT, YOU KNOW, ELECTIONS AREN'T ABOUT WHAT YOU DID YESTERDAY, THEY'RE ABOUT WHAT YOU'RE GOING TO DO TOMORROW. AND I THINK WE HAVE A VERY SPECIFIC, COMPREHENSIVE PLAN FOR BUILDING ON WHAT WE'VE ALREADY ACCOMPLISHED.

Yepsen: YOU ANTICIPATED MY NEXT QUESTION. WHAT DO YOU WANT TO DO IN A SECOND TERM?

Vilsack: WE WANT TO CONTINUE TO IMPROVE THE EDUCATION SYSTEM, BUT WE WANT TO LOOK AT IT MORE COMPREHENSIVELY. WE WANT TO LOOK AT THE EDUCATION IN THIS STATE AS A P16 SYSTEM, NOT IN SEGMENTS BUT STARTING WITH EARLY CHILDHOOD AND CONTINUING ALL THE WAY THROUGH THE GRADUATION OF COLLEGE. WE WANT TO CHALLENGE THE STATE ON BOTH ENDS OF THAT SPECTRUM. WE WANT TO SAY WE OUGHT TO HAVE 90 PERCENT OF OUR YOUNGSTERS HAVING ACCESS TO QUALITY PRESCHOOL, AND WE'VE GOT TO HAVE 90 PERCENT OF OUR WORK FORCE HAVING AT LEAST TWO YEARS OF COLLEGE. THOSE ARE VERY STRETCHED GOALS, BUT WE NEED THAT IN THIS STATE. WE WANT TO EXPAND ACCESS TO HEALTH CARE. WE WANT TO TALK ABOUT MENTAL HEALTH PARITY. WE WANT TO FIGHT FOR THE STATE OF IOWA IN MEDICARE. THE FACT THAT WE'RE LOSING A BILLION DOLLARS IS ABSOLUTELY, CRITICALLY -- IT'S AFFECTING OUR ABILITY TO ACCESS HEALTH CARE. I WAS IN THE UNIVERSITY OF IOWA HOSPITALS TODAY TALKING TO NURSES. WE'RE GOING TO HAVE A VERY DIFFICULT TIME CONTINUING TO HAVE PROFESSIONALS IN THIS STATE BECAUSE WE CAN'T AFFORD TO PAY THEM. WE WANT TO EXPAND SIGNIFICANTLY ON OUR ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT EFFORTS, BUILDING ON WHAT WE'VE DONE WITH POWER PLANT CONSTRUCTION WITH VISION IOWA, WITH THE VENTURE CAPITAL PROPOSALS THAT HAVE BEEN PASSED. WE THINK THAT THIS IS AN EXTRAORDINARY OPPORTUNITY FOR OUR STATE. WE'VE BEEN TELLING PEOPLE, DAVID, THAT WE'RE AT THE INTERSECTION OF HISTORY AND OPPORTUNITY. VERY RARELY DO WE FIND OURSELVES IN SUCH A POINT. I THINK AS WE TALK ABOUT THE WAR ON TERROR, OUR NATION'S RESPONSE TO THIS HAS BEEN SOLELY MILITARY. I THINK THAT THERE'S A PARALLEL RESPONSE, A HUMANITARIAN RESPONSE. IF YOU LOOK AT TERROR, THE ROOT CAUSE IS OFTEN POVERTY, HUNGER, ILLNESS, AND DISEASE. AND OUR STATE, BECAUSE OF THE ABILITY TO GROW CROPS AND THE USES THAT WE'RE FINDING FOR OUR CROPS, MORE NUTRITIOUS FOOD, CLEANER BURNING FUEL THAT SEVERS OUR RELIANCE ON MIDDLE EASTERN OIL, AND NOW THE ABILITY TO GROW CURES FOR ILLNESSES AND DISEASES, WE ARE UNIQUELY SITUATED TO RESPOND IN A HUMANITARIAN WAY WHICH WILL PARALLEL AND COMPLEMENT WHATEVER MILITARILY WE HAVE TO DO IN THIS COUNTRY TO PROTECT OURSELVES. AT THE SAME TIME, WHEN DOING THIS, WE CAN CREATE A NEW ECONOMY FOR OUR STATE. WE CAN TRANSFORM THE ECONOMY FROM THE TRADITIONAL AGRICULTURE AND MANUFACTURING TO AN ECONOMY THAT IS MUCH MORE ON THE CUTTING EDGE, MUCH MORE HIGH TECH, MUCH MORE EXCITING AND MUCH MORE INSPIRING. THE CASE WE HAVE TO MAKE TO THE YOUNG PEOPLE OF THIS STATE IS THAT NOT ONLY CAN YOU MAKE A BUCK HERE, NOT ONLY DO YOU HAVE QUALITY OF LIFE, BUT YOU CAN CONTRIBUTE TO SOMETHING LARGER THAN YOURSELF. AND I THINK WE ARE AT THIS INTERSECTION, AND WE WILL HAVE A SHORT, SMALL WINDOW OF OPPORTUNITY. OTHER STATES ARE DEALING WITH BUDGET DEFICITS MUCH GREATER THAN OUR CHALLENGES. OTHER STATES DON'T HAVE THE RESOURCES TO MAKE INVESTMENTS NOW, SO WE NEED TO TAKE ADVANTAGE OF THIS.

Yepsen: FLUSH THAT OUT A LITTLE BIT. WHAT DO YOU WANT THIS STATE TO LOOK LIKE AT THE END OF A FOUR-YEAR TERM IF THE VOTERS GIVE YOU ONE?

Vilsack: WELL, I WANT PROSPERITY IN ALL AREAS OF THE STATE. THAT'S JUST NOT A CLICHE. I THINK WE NEED TO EMPOWER PEOPLE IN ALL AREAS OF THE STATE TO CREATE ECONOMIC OPPORTUNITY. I WANT FARMERS AND THOSE IN AGRICULTURE TO HAVE A VARIETY OF OPTIONS, THE ABILITY TO GROW ORGANIC CROPS, THE ABILITY TO GROW CROPS FOR ETHANOL AND SOY DIESEL, THE ABILITY TO GROW CROPS FOR LIVESTOCK, THE ABILITY TO GROW CROPS TO HELP CURE ILLNESS AND DISEASE. I WANT PROCESSING FACILITIES OWNED AND OPERATED BY FARMERS, BY FOLKS IN RURAL COMMUNITIES, LOCATED NEAR WHERE THE CROPS ARE RAISED. I WANT A CONNECTION TO OUR PUBLIC UNIVERSITIES AND THE RESEARCH OPPORTUNITIES THAT ARE TAKING PLACE WITH THIS ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT PLAN. I WANT INTERNET ACCESS SO WE CAN MARKET OUR GOODS AND SERVICES TO ALL PARTS OF THE WORLD. I WANT US TO BE LOOKED UPON AS A RENEWABLE ENERGY LEADER WITH WIND FARMS, SOLAR, BIOMASS, AND EXPANDED ETHANOL AND SOY DIESEL USE. ALL OF THESE THINGS CAN BRING PROSPERITY, NOT ONLY TO RURAL COMMUNITIES BUT ALSO TO URBAN CENTERS AS WELL, AND PROVIDE THE RESOURCES THAT WILL ALLOW US TO MAKE INVESTMENTS IN A BETTER EDUCATION SYSTEM, A MORE EXPANSIVE HEALTH CARE SYSTEM, AND A CLEANER AND SAFER ENVIRONMENT.

Yepsen: IS ALL OF THAT POSSIBLE IN FOUR YEARS?

Vilsack: I THINK YOU COULD SET THE FOUNDATION, ABSOLUTELY. THE INTERNET ACCESS IS ABSOLUTELY POSSIBLE BECAUSE WE'VE ALREADY MADE A GOOD START ON IT. A RENEWABLE ENERGY LEADER IS POSSIBLE BECAUSE FOR THE FIRST TIME IN TWENTY YEARS, WE'RE NOW GOING TO BE ABLE TO MEET OUR OWN ENERGY NEEDS, WE CAN BUILD ON THAT, WE CAN NOW HAVE A SURPLUS. DO YOU REALIZE WHAT WE DO EVERY YEAR IS WE SPEND FOUR BILLION DOLLARS FOR ENERGY... NOT FOUR BILLION DOLLARS IN IOWA, OUTSIDE OF IOWA. WE EXPORT ECONOMIC OPPORTUNITY. FOR TWO DECADES WE'VE BEEN DOING THAT. NOW BECAUSE OF THE POWER PLANTS BEING CONSTRUCTED IN THIS STATE, WE'RE GOING TO MEET OUR OWN ENERGY NEEDS, WHICH GIVES US THE ABILITY TO CREATE SURPLUS. SO IT IS ABSOLUTELY DOABLE. AND THE RESEARCH IS ALREADY TAKING PLACE AT THE PUBLIC UNIVERSITIES, EXTRAORDINARY RESEARCH. WE'RE THE ONLY STATE IN THE COUNTRY THAT I KNOW OF THAT IS PRODUCING PROTEINS IN THREE SEPARATE WAYS. PROTEINS IS THE KEY TO ILLNESS AND DISEASE AND DEVELOPING CURES FOR ILLNESS AND DISEASE. IN IOWA, WE'RE SHORTENING THE TIME FRAME FOR RESEARCH AND DEVELOPMENT OF THESE NEW PRODUCTS. AT IOWA STATE, WE'RE DEVELOPING A GENETIC UNDERSTANDING OF PLANTS SO WE CAN GROW THEM. AND IN NORTHWEST IOWA, WE'VE GOT TRANSGENIC ANIMALS PRODUCING THESE PROTEINS. WE'RE THE ONLY STATE THAT PRODUCES THEM IN ALL THREE WAYS. THAT'S OUR NITCH. THAT'S OUR ABILITY.

Yepsen: GOVERNOR, I TOLD YOU I WANTED TO MAKE THIS A LITTLE BIT LIKE A JOB REVIEW. SO WHAT'S THE BIGGEST MISTAKE YOU THINK YOU'VE MADE IN THE FIRST FOUR-YEAR TERM?

Vilsack: WELL, I MEAN CANDIDLY, IF YOU HAVE THIS JOB, YOU MAKE A LOT OF MISTAKES. ONE MISTAKE THAT I MADE I THINK WAS NOT SETTING A BOLDER AGENDA, A BROADER VISION. I THINK THAT WHAT I'VE LEARNED ABOUT THIS JOB IS THAT THERE ARE TWO COMPONENTS TO IT. THERE'S THE COMPONENT OF BASICALLY PROVIDING THE SERVICES AND DOING THE JOB OF GOVERNMENT AND MAKING SURE THAT THE TRAINS RUN ON TIME. THERE'S ALSO THE JOB OF PROJECTING A BOLDER VISION, A HOPEFUL AND OPTIMISTIC VIEW OF THE FUTURE AND ARTICULATING THAT TO THE PEOPLE AND GETTING THEM INSPIRED BY IT. THAT'S SOMETHING WE'VE TRIED TO DO DURING THE COURSE OF THIS CAMPAIGN, AND I'M FEELING MORE COMFORTABLE DOING IT AS I'VE BECOME MORE EXPERIENCED AND A BIT MORE MATURE IN THIS JOB.

Yepsen: GOVERNOR, IT IS POSSIBLE THAT YOUR PARTY WILL WIN CONTROL OF BOTH THE IOWA HOUSE AND THE IOWA SENATE IN THIS ELECTION. THAT'S SOMETHING THAT'S NOT HAPPENED IN OUR STATE SINCE 1965. HOW WILL YOU OPERATE DIFFERENTLY IF THE VOTERS ELECT YOU AND GIVE YOU A DEMOCRATIC LEGISLATURE?

Vilsack: WELL, FIRST AND FOREMOST, WE HAVE TO ALWAYS MAINTAIN THE NEED TO BE FISCALLY RESPONSIBLE. THERE ARE CERTAIN BOUNDARIES AND LIMITS THAT THE GOVERNMENT HAS. THEY'RE DICTATED IN PART BY THE AMOUNT OF REVENUE THAT COMES IN, AND WE HAVE TO BE CAREFUL ABOUT THAT.

Yepsen: NO TAX INCREASES?

Vilsack: NO TAX INCREASES. NO PLAN AND NO DESIRE TO RAISE TAXES. THIS HAS BEEN A TOUGH FOUR YEARS, AND MANY PEOPLE IN OTHER STATES HAVE NOT RESISTED THE TEMPTATION AND HAVE DONE BUSINESS AS USUAL. WE'VE REDUCED OUR WORK FORCE BY JUST A SHADE UNDER 10 PERCENT NOW. WE'VE REORGANIZED STATE GOVERNMENT DEPARTMENTS IN A NUMBER OF KEY AREAS, AND WE'RE CONTINUING THAT EFFORT AS WE SPEAK. SO THERE'S FISCAL RESPONSIBILITY BASICALLY OVER -- IT SORT OF CREATES THE BOUNDARIES IN WHICH WE OPERATE. BUT WITHIN THOSE BOUNDARIES, I THINK THAT THERE ARE POLICY DECISIONS THAT WE CAN MAKE THAT MIGHT BE SLIGHTLY DIFFERENT. I THINK YOU'D SEE A MUCH EASIER TIME PUTTING RESOURCES INTO HIGHER EDUCATION AND PROMOTING COMMUNITY COLLEGES THAN WE'VE HAD IN THE PAST. I THINK THAT THE MENTAL HEALTH PARITY DEBATE WOULD PROBABLY TAKE A SLIGHTLY DIFFERENT TACT. WE WOULD PROBABLY ACTUALLY HAVE A DEBATE ABOUT THE MINIMUM WAGE INCREASE. SO I THINK FROM A POLICY STANDPOINT THERE WOULD BE DIFFERENCES, AND I THINK THERE WOULD ALSO OBVIOUSLY BE DIFFERENCES IN TERMS OF OUR ABILITY TO REACH CONSENSUS.

Yepsen: REPEAL OF RIGHT TO WORK?

Vilsack: I DON'T SEE THAT ON THE HORIZON, DAVID. I REALLY DON'T. YOU KNOW, I DON'T SUPPORT FORCED UNIONIZATION AND I DON'T KNOW THAT ANYBODY DOES. WE SUPPORT THE COLLECTIVE BARGAINING PROCESS, BUT I HAVE NOT HEARD ANYBODY TALK ABOUT THAT IN THIS CAMPAIGN.

Yepsen: CIVIL RIGHTS FOR GAYS AND LESBIANS?

Vilsack: THAT'S SOMETHING THAT I THINK WE NEED TO TALK ABOUT. I DON'T THINK WE WANT TO BE A STATE THAT DISCRIMINATES. I THINK WE WANT TO BE A STATE THAT ESSENTIALLY SAYS, IN THESE BASIC AREAS OF HOUSING AND JOBS, THAT MOST IOWANS ARE PROBABLY AHEAD OF US IN THIS RESPECT, THAT THEY WANT AN OPEN, TOLERANT STATE.

Yepsen: GOVERNOR, IOWA HAS SOME OF THE LOWEST LEVELS OF PUBLIC DEBT OF ANY STATE IN THE COUNTRY. IT STRIKES ME THAT WE HAVE A WONDERFUL PAY AS YOU GO ETHIC IN THIS STATE THAT HAS SORT OF MEANT THAT WE HAVEN'T GONE. THE VISION IOWA PROGRAM STARTED TO CHANGE THAT BY BORROWING AND LEVERAGING OUR ASSETS. DO YOU SEE AN OPPORTUNITY HERE FOR IOWA TO DO SOME MORE OF THAT NOW TO TRY TO GET OUR ECONOMY GOING?

Vilsack: WELL, WE'VE SUGGESTED AN EXPANSION OR A CONTINUATION OF VISION IOWA ON A LITTLE BIT SMALLER SCALE THAN WHAT WE ORIGINALLY PROPOSED. THE CONCERN THAT I'VE HAD ABOUT THE PROGRAM IS THAT THERE ARE PROJECTS AND OPPORTUNITIES IN ALL AREAS OF THE STATE, YET VISION IOWA HAS NOT REACHED ALL AREAS OF THE STATE. AND THERE ARE SOME USES FOR VISION IOWA THAT WEREN'T ARTICULATED IN THE FIRST PLAN. IT WAS PRIMARILY CULTURE, RECREATION, AND EDUCATION. I THINK THAT THERE'S A -- THE ABILITY TO TALK ABOUT QUALITY OF LIFE IN A NUMBER OF DIFFERENT WAYS, FROM HEALTH CARE CLINICS, TO LAW ENFORCEMENT CENTERS, TO SCHOOLS, TO PARKS, TO TRAILS, AND SO FORTH. ALL OF THIS IS AN OPPORTUNITY THAT VISION IOWA CREATES IN EVERY PART OF THE STATE, SO WE WOULD PROPOSE BEGINNING THE PROCESS OF ESTABLISHING THAT SO THAT RESOURCES CAN BE MADE AVAILABLE TO EVERY COUNTY IN THE STATE. THIS WOULD STIMULATE ABOUT $300- TO $500 MILLION OF ECONOMIC ACTIVITY. IF YOU LOOK AT THE ECONOMIC PICTURE OF IOWA, WHAT YOU'LL FIND IS THAT THE HIGHEST PAYING JOBS ARE IN CONSTRUCTION, FINANCIAL SERVICES, AND IN ENERGY PRODUCTION. AND SO THIS WOULD STIMULATE AND CONTINUE TO STIMULATE CONSTRUCTION JOBS, WHICH ARE AMONG THE BEST PAYING IN OUR STATE.

Yepsen: GOVERNOR, I WANT TO DEAL WITH A COUPLE OF THE CRITICISMS THAT HAVE BEEN MADE OF YOU BY YOUR OPPONENT. ONE OF THEM IS THAT YOU'RE TOO UNFOCUSED. NOW, I HEAR YOU TONIGHT SAY YOU WANT TO BE BOLDER AND STRIKE MORE FOCUS, BUT STILL YOU SEEM TO HAVE A PRETTY AMBITIOUS AGENDA. IS IT TOO MUCH? WILL YOU STILL FEEL LIKE YOU'RE UNFOCUSED?

Vilsack: NO, I DON'T THINK SO. I THINK THAT I SEE BASICALLY THREE AREAS. ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT, AS WE'VE OUTLINED; AND THERE ARE SUBPARTS TO THAT, BUT IT'S ALL ABOUT ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT. AND THE EDUCATION FOCUS IS BASICALLY BUILDING ON WHAT WE'VE DONE WITH CLASS SIZE REDUCTION AND MAYBE REDESIGNING HIGH SCHOOLS THAT WOULD SUPPORT THE ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT PLAN THAT WE'VE PUT FORWARD. AND IN HEALTH CARE, THESE ARE ISSUES THAT I THINK AREN'T JUST NECESSARILY POLICY ISSUES. I MEAN FIGHTING FOR MORE MEDICARE DOLLARS ISN'T A MATTER OF FOCUS, IT'S A MATTER OF CONTINUING THE FIGHT AND MAKING SURE THAT FOLKS IN WASHINGTON, D.C., KNOW YOU'RE AROUND. PRESIDENT BUSH HAS BEEN TO OUR STATE EIGHT TIMES, AND I WANT TO MAKE SURE THAT WHEN HE COMES BACK, HE UNDERSTANDS THAT THIS IS AN ISSUE OF IMPORTANCE TO IOWANS.

Yepsen: ANOTHER THING MR. GROSS HAS SUGGESTED IS THAT YOU CAN'T MANAGE THE BOOKS, THAT WE'VE HAD ALL OF THIS FINANCIAL TURMOIL IN THE STATE. WHAT DO YOU SAY TO THAT CRITICISM?

Vilsack: LOOK AT MOODY'S; LOOK AT STANDARD AND POOR'S. THIS IS AN INDEPENDENT THIRD PARTY COMING IN AND TAKING A LOOK AT THE BOOKS, TAKING A LOOK AT HOW WE'VE MANAGED THIS ECONOMY AND THIS BUDGET. THE DOUBLE A+, THE DOUBLE A1, THERE ARE A LOT OF CORPORATIONS IN THE STATE OF IOWA THAT WOULD LIKE TO HAVE THAT CREDIT RATING. THAT'S AN INDICATION, I THINK, OF GOOD, SOLID MANAGEMENT. SEVENTEEN STATES HAD THEIR CREDIT RATING DOWNGRADED BECAUSE THEY DIDN'T DO THE RIGHT THING. WE MADE SOME TOUGH, TOUGH CHOICES. IF YOU COMPARE WHAT WE DID TODAY, IN THE LAST EIGHTEEN MONTHS, WITH WHAT WAS DONE IN THE '80S WHEN WE WENT THROUGH ECONOMIC DIFFICULTIES, WE DIDN'T COOK THE BOOKS, WE MADE SOME TOUGH DECISIONS, WE REDUCED WORK FORCE, WE REALLY REORGANIZED GOVERNMENT, WE DIDN'T RAISE TAXES, WE ACTUALLY CUT TAXES, AND WE'RE CONTINUING TO CUT TAXES, A DRAMATIC CONTRAST TO HOW THIS STATE HAS ALWAYS MANAGED DIFFICULTIES IN THE PAST. AND HERE'S WHAT'S IMPORTANT ABOUT THIS. THIS CREATES AN ENORMOUS OPPORTUNITY FOR US BECAUSE WE HAVE CREATED A GENERAL FUND BUDGET THAT IS NOW 60 MILLION BELOW WHAT IT WAS WHEN I TOOK OFFICE. AS THE ECONOMY CONTINUES TO PROSPER AND AS RESOURCES AND REVENUES BECOME AVAILABLE TO THE STATE, IT GIVES US A LOT OF FLEXIBILITY TO DO THINGS WE'VE TALKED ABOUT FOR A LONG TIME, WHETHER IT'S IN ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT, RESTRUCTURING THE TAX SYSTEM, PUTTING RESOURCES INTO HUMAN SERVICES. IT GIVES US THIS FLEXIBILITY AND OPPORTUNITY. WE'VE SACRIFICED AND WE'VE WORKED HARD FOR THIS, AND WE SHOULD TAKE ADVANTAGE OF IT.

Yepsen: GOVERNOR, YOU KNOW, A LOT OF PEOPLE IN IOWA TODAY ARE JUST KIND OF DOWN. YOU LOOK AT THE RIGHT-TRACK/WRONG-TRACK NUMBERS, ABOUT HALF THE VOTERS IN THIS STATE THINK THE STATE IS HEADED IN THE WRONG DIRECTION, YET YOU SEEM TO BE PRETTY OPTIMISTIC. WHY ARE YOU OPTIMISTIC? WHERE DO YOU SEE CAUSE FOR HOPE IN IOWA?

Vilsack: IN THE EYES OF THE PEOPLE I'VE BEEN CAMPAIGNING WITH AND SEEING IT IN ALL PARTS OF THE STATE, IN 99-YEAR-OLD LUCILLE WHO WAS IN A RESTAURANT IN OTTUMWA WHO EXPLAINED TO ME THAT SHE STOPPED DRIVING AT 95 BECAUSE SHE THOUGHT SHE'D BEEN DRIVING FOR LONG ENOUGH. BUT SHE TALKED ABOUT HER GRANDCHILDREN AND HER GREAT-GRANDCHILDREN, AND SHE TALKED ABOUT PRIDE OF THE FACT THAT ONE OF THEM WAS A TEACHER AND ONE OF THEM WAS A LAWYER. DAVID, THE STRENGTH OF THIS STATE IS NOT IN ITS GOVERNMENT. THE STRENGTH OF THIS STATE IS IN ITS PEOPLE. AND I THINK IOWANS ARE POISED -- IF INSPIRED, THEY'RE POISED AT THIS INTERSECTION I SPOKE OF EARLIER TO DO GREAT THINGS. WE HAVE THE MOST PRODUCTIVE FARMLAND IN THE WORLD. WE HAVE THE BEST FARMERS IN THE WORLD. WE HAVE VERY GOOD BUSINESSPEOPLE. WE HAVE A VERY PRODUCTIVE, HARD WORKING WORK FORCE. WE HAVE A SENSE OF COMMUNITY. WE HAVE A STRONG SENSE OF FAMILY. ALL OF THESE CREATE A HUGE, STRONG FOUNDATION TO MOVE THIS STATE FORWARD. NOW WHAT WE NEED IS THAT REASON BEYOND OURSELVES, AND I THINK THAT THE WORLD SITUATION HAS PRESENTED US WITH THAT.

Yepsen: GOVERNOR RAY TOLD ME ONE TIME, AS HE WAS GETTING READY TO LEAVE OFFICE, HE SAID THAT -- I ASKED HIM WHAT HIS BIGGEST ACCOMPLISHMENT WAS, AND HE SAID THAT HE MADE IOWANS FEEL BETTER ABOUT THEMSELVES. THAT STRUCK ME AS KIND OF AN ODD THING, BUT AS I LOOK BACK, HAVING A LEADER WHO MAKES PEOPLE FEEL OPTIMISTIC AND HOPEFUL IS PRETTY IMPORTANT. HOW DO YOU DO THAT, GOVERNOR?

Vilsack: WELL, IT'S A LITTLE EASIER TO DO IT AS GOVERNOR RAY HAD THE ADVANTAGE OF PRETTY GOOD FINANCIAL AND ECONOMIC TIMES, BUT I THINK YOU DO IT BY POINTING OUT THE STRENGTHS OF CHARACTER IN THIS STATE AND SUGGESTING THAT, BECAUSE OF THE BENEFITS THAT WE'VE BEEN GIVEN, WE HAVE A RESPONSIBILITY, WE HAVE A DUTY, WE HAVE A CALLING. THE ABILITY TO PRODUCE FOOD AND FUEL AND CURES FOR ILLNESS AND DISEASE, CREATING A MUCH MORE PRODUCTIVE, HIGHLY TRAINED, HIGHLY EDUCATED WORK FORCE, TO TAKE PRIDE IN THAT FACT. I WAS IN A HOME THE OTHER DAY OF TWO SMALL CHILDREN. I DON'T THINK WE HAVE A SENSE, AS WE EAT AROUND OUR DINNER TABLES AND SUPPER TABLES NOW, WHERE THIS FOOD COMES FROM. I DON'T THINK WE HAVE AN UNDERSTANDING OF THE POWER THAT WE HAVE IN OUR HANDS: THE ABILITY TO CREATE A FUEL THAT WILL SEVER THE TIE THAT WE'VE HAD FOR DECADES OF MIDDLE EASTERN OIL; THE ABILITY TO PRODUCE IT IN UNLIMITED QUANTITIES AND PRODUCE ECONOMIC OPPORTUNITY AT THE SAME TIME; THE ABILITY NOW TO TAKE A KERNEL OF CORN, TAKE A PROTEIN OUT OF IT, AND GIVE IT TO SOMEONE WITH CYSTIC FIBROSIS AND ALL OF A SUDDEN YOU'RE TREATING AN ILLNESS AND DISEASE. EXTRAORDINARILY POSSIBILITIES. AND I THINK IF IOWANS UNDERSTAND THESE POSSIBILITIES AND UNDERSTAND THAT THEY'RE RIGHT SMACK DAB IN THE MIDDLE OF ALL OF THEM, THE BEST IS YET TO COME.

Yepsen: YOU KNOW, GOVERNOR, A LOT OF PEOPLE ARE AFRAID RIGHT NOW. WE'VE HAD TERRORISM AND WE'VE HAD ANTHRAX. WE HAVE SNIPERS, SHOOTINGS IN ARIZONA. WHAT CAN YOU DO AS A LEADER TO MAKE PEOPLE FEEL SAFER?

Vilsack: TO REMIND THEM OF WHAT WE HAVE. THE INSECURITY COMES FROM WHAT WE FEAR. BUT IF WE UNDERSTAND THE STRONG RELIGIOUS FAITHS THAT WE HAVE, THE SENSE OF FAMILY AND COMMUNITY THAT WE HAVE, OUR ABILITY TO WORK HARD AND NOT BE AFRAID OF HARD WORK, THE DISCIPLINE, THE RELATIVELY SAFE ENVIRONMENT THAT WE LIVE IN IN THIS STATE, AN EDUCATION SYSTEM THAT INSTILLS IN MOST YOUNGSTERS A REAL UNDERSTANDING OF THE IMPORTANCE OF LEARNING, WE HAVE THE FOUNDATION THAT ALLOWS US TO OVERCOME FEAR. AND THEN IF WE REALIZE THAT WE HAVE, IN ADDITION TO THAT, EXTRAORDINARY OPPORTUNITY AND THE ABILITY TO MAKE HISTORY AND THE ABILITY TO RESHAPE A NATIONAL AGENDA, IT'S A CALLING. IT'S A DUTY. IT'S A RESPONSIBILITY THAT WE ARE UNIQUELY SUITED TO RESPOND TO. AND, YOU KNOW, THE MIDWEST FOR SO MANY YEARS -- HAVEN'T BEEN IGNORED, BUT ALL OF THE ACTIVITY APPEARS, AT LEAST FROM A MEDIA STANDPOINT, TO BE ON THE COAST, BUT THE HEART AND SOUL OF THIS COUNTRY IS RIGHT HERE IN THE MIDWEST. AND I THINK AS WE DEAL WITH THESE INSECURITIES AND AS WE DEAL WITH THESE FEARS, PEOPLE ARE GOING TO UNDERSTAND THAT THE ANSWER IS HERE. THE ANSWER IS IN FAMILY AND COMMUNITY AND OPPORTUNITY, AND WE HAVE IT. IT'S A QUESTION OF WHETHER WE TAKE ADVANTAGE OF IT. AND BECAUSE WE HAVE SACRIFICED, BECAUSE WE HAVE RESOURCES AVAILABLE TO US THAT OTHER STATES DON'T NECESSARILY HAVE, WE HAVE AN OPPORTUNITY TO INVEST IN THAT RIGHT NOW AND TO MAKE A STATEMENT ABOUT THE STATE OF IOWA AND THEN MARKET THE STATE, MARKET THE MIDWEST.

Yepsen: LET'S FOCUS ON YOUR AGENDA AND SOME OF THE ISSUES IN THIS CAMPAIGN. WHAT'S THE SINGLE, MOST IMPORTANT ISSUE FACING IOWA, AND WHAT WILL YOU DO ABOUT IT?

Vilsack: WELL, SHORT TERM, ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT IS THE SINGLE, MOST IMPORTANT ISSUE, BECAUSE THERE ARE PEOPLE OUT THERE LOOKING FOR OPPORTUNITY. AND AS LONG AS THERE'S A SINGLE IOWAN LOOKING FOR OPPORTUNITY, WE NEED TO BE ABOUT THE JOB OF CREATING OPPORTUNITY. AND WHAT WE'RE GOING TO DO ABOUT IT IS EMPOWER PEOPLE AT THE LOCAL LEVEL BY GIVING THEM RESOURCES, BLOCK GRANTING THE ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT RESOURCES THAT HAVE BEEN CONTROLLED IN DES MOINES, AND GIVING FOLKS OUT ALL OVER THE STATE THE ABILITY TO MAKE INVESTMENTS PURSUANT TO STRATEGIC PLANS, CREATING INTERNET ACCESS, CREATING INCENTIVES TO CREATE RENEWABLE FUELS AND INCENTIVES TO LINK THE BIOECONOMY TO OUR UNIVERSITIES, TO OUR FARMS. LONG TERM, THE EDUCATION SYSTEM HAS GOT TO BE A PRIORITY, AND THE REASON IS BECAUSE ANYTHING YOU DO IN ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT STARTS WITH A HIGHLY TRAINED PRODUCTIVE WORK FORCE. WHAT ABOUT THIS GOAL? WHAT ABOUT US SAYING TO OURSELVES, WE WANT THE BEST EDUCATED WORK FORCE IN THE NATION, BAR NONE. THAT WOULD REQUIRE US TO PUT A LOT MORE COLLEGE EDUCATED INDIVIDUALS, A LOT OF PEOPLE WITH TWO-YEAR COLLEGE ASSOCIATE DEGREES IN THE WORK FORCE. THAT WOULD REQUIRE US TO CREATE INCENTIVES TO ENCOURAGE YOUNG PEOPLE TO STAY, TO CREATE THE KIND OF BUSINESSES AND INDUSTRIES THAT WOULD ATTRACT THEM, TO CREATE THE MESSAGE, THE IMAGE OF THE STATE THAT WOULD INSPIRE THEM. AND THAT'S OUR WORK IN THE NEXT FOUR YEARS. AND, FRANKLY, I THINK THAT'S OUR WORK FOR FOUR YEARS AND BEYOND. BUT FOR THIS NEXT FOUR YEARS, I THINK THAT'S THE MOST IMPORTANT THING WE CAN DO.

Yepsen: YOU'VE ALWAYS SAID TWO TERMS. NOW YOU'VE USED THE PHRASE "AND BEYOND." MIGHT YOU RUN FOR A THIRD TERM IN YOU WIN THIS ONE?

Vilsack: I'M HAVING A HARD ENOUGH TIME WINNING THIS ONE. YOU KNOW, I REALIZE THAT YOU AND I HAVE A DISAGREEMENT ABOUT THIS IN TERMS OF --

Yepsen: WELL, YOU MAKE YOURSELF A LAME DUCK.

Vilsack: YEAH, BUT SEE, I DON'T SEE IT THAT WAY. I SEE IT AS EMPOWERING, AS LIBERATING, AND AS GIVING YOU THE ABILITY TO GO OUT AND SPEAK THE TRUTH TO FOLKS AND TO ENCOURAGE THEM AND INSPIRE THEM. IT ISN'T ABOUT THE GOVERNOR. THE POWER OF THIS STATE COMES FROM THE PEOPLE. SO WHAT I SAW WITH ONE PARTY CONTROL, A SINGLE PERSON IN CHARGE FOR A EXTENDED PERIOD OF TIME, IS THE BELIEF THAT THERE'S ONLY ONE WAY TO DO SOMETHING. IT STIFLES CREATIVITY AND INNOVATION. IF THERE'S ONE THING THAT GOVERNMENT NEEDS AND NEEDS A LOT OF IS CREATIVITY AND STIMULATION AND INNOVATION. IT NEEDS A LOT OF THAT. SO IF YOU HAVE ONE PERSON IN CHARGE FOR AN EXTENDED PERIOD OF TIME, IT REALLY DOES STIFLE THAT. AND I'M NOT BEING CRITICAL OF THE PEOPLE THAT HAVE BEEN IN POWER FOR LONG PERIODS OF TIME; IT'S JUST AN OBSERVATION BASED UPON WHAT I SAW WHEN I CAME INTO OFFICE.

Yepsen: ONE THING YOU'VE TALKED ABOUT IN YOUR CAMPAIGN IS RAISING THE STATE MINIMUM WAGE FROM $5.15 AN HOUR TO $6.15 OVER TWO YEARS. CRITICS OF THAT IDEA SAY IT'S A JOB KILLER, THAT IN FACT YOU WILL WIPE OUT JOBS, IT WILL NOT CREATE JOBS. WHAT DO YOU SAY TO THAT?

Vilsack: I SAY THERE'S STUDIES TO REFUTE THAT. I SAY THAT IN THE '80S THE STATE OF IOWA HAD A HIGHER MINIMUM WAGE THAN THE NATIONAL AVERAGE AND THAT WAS NOT THE CASE. I ALSO SAY THAT IF WE'RE GOING TO MAKE A STATEMENT ABOUT THE VALUE OF WORK, THEN WE NEED TO PUT OUR MONEY WHERE OUR MOUTH IS. IF WE WANT TO SAY THAT WE WANT PEOPLE TO TRANSITION FROM WELFARE TO WORK AND WE WANT THEM TO BE SELF-SUFFICIENT AND WE WANT THEM TO BE INDEPENDENT AND WE WANT THEM TO BE ABLE TO SUPPORT THEIR FAMILIES, $5.15 AN HOUR FOR A FAMILY WITH A COUPLE OF KIDS DOES NOT CUT IT. YOU'RE GOING TO HAVE TO GO TO THE HUMAN SERVICE'S OFFICE AND GET FOOD STAMPS. YOU'RE GOING TO STAND IN THAT GROCERY LINE, AND YOU'RE GOING TO SUFFER THE INDIGNATION OF PEOPLE LOOKING AT YOU THINKING THAT YOU'RE NOT WORKING, EVEN THOUGH YOU MAY HAVE WORKED FORTY BACK-BREAKING HOURS. IT IS A SIGNIFICANT THING FOR THE 100,000 IOWANS WHO ARE WORKING AT OR NEAR THE MINIMUM WAGE, AND IT WILL LITERALLY TRANSITION TENS OF THOUSANDS OF IOWANS FROM A LIFE OF SOME DEPENDENCY ON THE GOVERNMENT TO A LIFE OF INDEPENDENCE. WITH THAT COMES DIGNITY. WITH THAT COMES THE ABILITY TO LOOK YOUR CHILDREN IN THE EYE AND SAY, "I'M TAKING CARE OF YOU." I THINK THAT'S REALLY IMPORTANT.

Yepsen: WON'T YOU DRIVE JOBS OUT OF THE STATE? THERE'S SOME RANKINGS THAT SHOW US WE RANK FIFTIETH IN THE BEST PLACE TO START A NEW BUSINESS.

Vilsack: THAT'S GOT NOTHING TO DO WITH THE MINIMUM WAGE. THAT'S GOT TO DO WITH THE FACT THAT FOR YEARS AND YEARS AND YEARS WE TALKED ABOUT VENTURE CAPITAL, BUT WE FINALLY GOT IT DONE. FOUR SEPARATE PIECES OF LEGISLATION CREATING THE OPPORTUNITY FOR OVER $100 MILLION OF VENTURE CAPITAL IN THIS STATE. AND THEN MY WORK WITH THE INSURANCE INDUSTRY TO ENCOURAGE THEM TO PUT MONEY ON THE TABLE TO CREATE JOBS. JUST THINK OF FIVE MILLION DOLLARS THAT WELLMARK HAS SET ASIDE WITH JOHN PAPPAJOHN AND HIS ENTREPRENEURIAL CENTERS, THAT FIVE MILLION DOLLARS GUARANTEES 200 NEW BUSINESSES, JUST 5 MILLION OF 60 MILLION OF $160-PLUS MILLION. EVERY OTHER STATE IS BACKING AWAY FROM THIS. WHAT ARE WE DOING? WE'RE MOVING INTO THE VACUUM.

Yepsen: GOVERNOR, WE'VE ONLY GOT A COUPLE MINUTES LEFT. I WANT YOU TO SPEND SOME OF YOUR POLITICAL CAPITAL. I WANT YOU TO TELL IOWANS SOMETHING WE MIGHT NOT WANT TO HEAR. YOU'VE TRAVELED THE STATE. YOU'VE TALKED TO PEOPLE. YOU KNOW OUR PEOPLE. WHAT SHOULD WE BE DOING AS PEOPLE -- AS A PEOPLE THAT WE'RE NOT DOING? WHAT DO YOU WANT IOWANS TO DO?

Vilsack: I THINK IOWANS NEED TO UNDERSTAND, I THINK, TWO THINGS. FIRST OF ALL, I THINK THAT WE ALLUDED EARLIER TO THE OPENNESS AND INTOLERANCE ISSUE WITH REFERENCE TO GAYS AND LESBIANS, AND I THINK THAT'S AN ISSUE THAT WE HAVE TO CONFRONT. I ALSO THINK THAT THERE ARE ISSUES RELATIVE TO THE LEVELS OF GOVERNMENT AND THE NATURE OF GOVERNMENT AND THE NUMBER OF UNITS OF GOVERNMENT. I THINK WE HAVE TO RECOGNIZE THAT THERE ARE EFFICIENCIES AND OPPORTUNITIES IN REGIONALISM. I'M NOT SUGGESTING THAT WE ELIMINATE COUNTY BORDERS. I'M SUGGESTING THAT WE NEED TO FIGURE OUT BETTER WAYS TO WORK REGIONALLY. THAT'S WHY WE HAVE FOCUSED ON REGIONAL OPPORTUNITIES WITH DHS, THE DEPARTMENT OF TRANSPORTATION, WORK FORCE DEVELOPMENT, AND D.E.D., AS WE'RE PROPOSING NOW.

Yepsen: GOVERNOR, WE'VE GOT ABOUT 45 SECONDS LEFT. I WANT YOU TO TALK TO THE UNDECIDED VOTER HERE. WHY SHOULD THEY VOTE FOR TOM VILSACK? WHAT DO YOU WANT THEM TO REMEMBER AS THEY GO INTO THE POLLING BOOTH?

Vilsack: I WANT THEM TO KNOW THAT I HAVE A CLEAR, COMPREHENSIVE PACKAGE AND PROGRAM. I WANT THEM TO KNOW THAT I AM A CREDIBLE PERSON AND WHEN I MAKE A PROMISE, I KEEP IT. I WANT THEM TO KNOW THAT I LOVE THIS STATE AND I'M INSPIRED BY IT AND I SEE NOTHING BUT OPPORTUNITY FOR THIS STATE. I AM HOPEFUL AND OPTIMISTIC ABOUT THE FUTURE BECAUSE I KNOW THE STRENGTH AND THE CHARACTER OF THE PEOPLE OF THIS STATE, AND I THINK WE CAN DO GREAT THINGS IN THE NEXT FOUR YEARS.

Yepsen: THANK YOU, GOVERNOR.

Vilsack: THANK YOU.

Yepsen: APPRECIATE YOUR TIME TONIGHT. AS INDICATED EARLIER, "THE CANDIDATES WITH DAVID YEPSEN" CONTINUES THROUGH THURSDAY OF THIS WEEK, LIVE AT 6:30 P.M., AS WE SPOTLIGHT THE MAJOR PARTY CANDIDATES FOR THE U.S. SENATE AND FOR GOVERNOR OF IOWA. TOMORROW, LIVE AT 6:30, GOVERNOR VILSACK'S MAJOR PARTY CHALLENGER, REPUBLICAN DOUG GROSS, JOINS ME TO DISCUSS THE ISSUES IN HIS CAMPAIGN. I HOPE YOU'LL BE JOINING US AT THAT TIME. GOVERNOR VILSACK, THANKS AGAIN FOR YOUR TIME. I'M DAVID YEPSEN OF "THE DES MOINES REGISTER." THANKS FOR JOINING US HERE ON STATEWIDE IOWA PUBLIC TELEVISION.

FUNDING FOR THIS PROGRAM WAS PROVIDED BY "FRIENDS," THE IOWA PUBLIC TELEVISION FOUNDATION... GENERATIONS OF FAMILIES AND FRIENDS WHO FEEL PASSIONATELY ABOUT THE PROGRAMS THEY WATCH ON IOWA PUBLIC TELEVISION.


Tags: campaign 2002 Congress Democrats elections governors Iowa Republicans Tom Vilsack