Our Plan - Cathy Glasson for Iowa

Our Bold Progressive Plan

This is our people-powered movement to radically change Iowa politics.
We want to give regular people a seat at the table in Des Moines again.
Here is our bold, progressive plan. 

Why I’m Running

“I believe the number one job of the Governor is to improve the standard of living for the people of Iowa. That’s why I’m running.

Our plan centers around three bold ideas:

  • Creating a universal health care system to cover every Iowan.
  • Raising the minimum wage to $15 so no Iowan who works full time has to live in poverty;
  • Making it easier to join a union no matter where you work;

Join our movement for these bold progressive policies so we can dramatically improve the lives of more than a million Iowans.”  —Cathy Glasson

Universal Health Care to Cover Every Iowan

I believe everyone has a fundamental right to high quality health care at every stage of their life. As an intensive care nurse, I’ve seen what happens on the front lines every day— insurance companies put profits first and patients dead last.

That’s why I support the Medicare for All legislation that’s been introduced in Congress. A nationwide plan to expand Medicare to all Americans makes the most sense.

But if the politicians in Washington, D.C. fail to act, Iowa must be ready to lead the way. 

Our movement will fight for a publicly-administered, single-payer, universal health care system right here in our state.

The key principles of our universal, single-payer health plan will be simple:

  • Every Iowan must be covered and nobody will be left out.
  • We’ll cut out the for-profit insurance companies and focus on lowering costs and improving care.
  • Our plan will include preventative care, mental health services, reproductive health care, drug addiction treatment, prescription drug coverage and expand access in rural communities.
  • As Governor, I will also end the disastrous Republican privatization of Iowa’s Medicaid program. Even though this scheme has been exposed as a failure, Kim Reynolds has doubled down on this policy that takes life-saving care away from Iowa’s most vulnerable citizens.

As a nurse and health care union leader, I’ve been fighting to reform our broken health care system for decades. Now, I’m running for Governor to make sure every single Iowan gets high quality health care whenever they need it, regardless of their income.

We believe the time for political excuses and half-measures is over.

Everybody in. Nobody left out. That’s what our movement is fighting for. 

Raising the Wage to $15. Fast.

No Iowan who works full-time should have to live in poverty. But they can’t survive on a minimum wage of $7.25 that hasn’t budged since 2008.

I’ve met too many people who are working two and three jobs and still struggling to pay their bills. A half million underpaid workers need a raise— and they need it fast.

On my first day in office, I’ll push for a law to raise Iowa’s minimum wage to $15 an hour. The increase will kick in over three years and continue to rise with inflation after that.

Governor Kim Reynolds and I couldn’t be more different on this issue. She opposes even a modest increase in the minimum wage. And Reynolds supported rolling back local raises in Iowa’s largest counties—actually taking money out of low-wage workers’ paychecks.

Raising the minimum wage would be a big jumpstart for struggling local economies. Studies show that minimum wage workers who get a raise turn around and spend that money in the communities where they live. This boosts profits of local businesses and increases sales tax revenues for state and local governments. But that’s not all. If employers paid Iowans a $15 wage, tens of thousands of our citizens would no longer be dependent on public assistance.

I believe the number one job of the Governor is to raise the standard of living for Iowans. Underpaid workers can’t wait five or ten years for this to happen. That’s why our movement is making higher wages for Iowa’s underpaid workers our first priority.

The right to join a union no matter where you work 

As an ICU nurse, I risked my job to organize my co-workers and get a union at our hospital. As President of SEIU Local 199, I’ve dedicated the last 20 years of my life to bringing those rights to thousands more workers.

I’m running for Governor to make it easier for all Iowans to join a union or employee association no matter where they work. That’s the best way to raise wages, improve our working conditions and fix the rigged economy in our state. And workers all over Iowa have told us they want it at their job.

As Iowa’s next Governor, I will stand up to these corporate bullies and stop their assault on working people by:

  • Restoring Chapter 20 protections to bring back the union rights that were stripped away from 184,000 public sector workers.
  • Allowing Fair Share to strengthen public workers’ organizations.
  • Helping thousands more working people form a union by supporting the elimination of so-called “right-to-work laws” in Iowa.
  • Developing innovative new policies to allow workers to join together in employee associations and support these organizations through voluntary payroll deductions. 

Republican politicians are afraid of more union members in Iowa. They don’t want to lose their power or have to answer to regular Iowans. They’re not willing to fix the economy they rigged— it works for their wealthy donors and big corporations, but not for us. We need a bold progressive Governor who will fight them tooth and nail.

Proudly Pro-Choice. Ready to Fight for Planned Parenthood.

More than 14,000 Iowans lost access to critical health care services when former Governor Branstad and his successor Kim Reynolds cut off funding for Planned Parenthood and forced clinics to close.

As Governor, I will work to restore funding for Planned Parenthood so we can re-open shuttered clinics around the state and give women the health care they need when they need it and where they need it.

I will also fight to reverse the harsh new restrictions the Republicans have placed on abortion access, like mandatory 72 hour waiting periods.

I am 100% pro-choice. I believe this is a basic health care issue for women and their families. And just like other health care issues, the decision belongs only to women about what will happen with their bodies. Politicians and the government should stay out of making these decisions for women.

I believe all health care plans should be required to cover reproductive care for women and include birth control in their prescription coverage.

As an ICU nurse, I’ve seen the serious medical consequences when women don’t have access to reproductive health care on a regular basis. I’ll fight to make sure no Iowa woman is left without these critical services when I’m Governor.

Making Iowa #1 in Public Education Again

Growing up in the 60s in the small town of Spencer, my dad was a truck driver and my mom worked at Sears. I got a good education in our town’s public schools, and our working-class family was able to afford my nursing degree from the University of Iowa. I’ve heard stories like that over and over again from baby boomers like me around Iowa.

But those days are gone for too many younger Iowans.

  • This Governor and Legislature cut $30 million from the budget for public universities, putting funding for colleges and universities more on the backs of students, leaving many students with tens of thousands of dollars in loans. Two-thirds of Iowa college students graduate with an average debt of almost $30,000.
  • Rural schools are disappearing. Local governments are spending about twice as much on K-12 as our state government to make up the difference. In addition, with our public schools already underfunded, Governor Reynolds wants to siphon off taxpayer money through vouchers for private and home schools.
  • Iowa teachers are underpaid and spend hundreds of dollars a year out-of-pocket on classroom supplies because we don’t provide them with the tools they need to do their job.

It’s no wonder many Iowans I’ve been talking to feel left behind by a rigged economy that hasn’t worked for them for decades. Now, they see their kids and grandkids no longer having a fair shot to get ahead through education.

We’re outlining a progressive vision to make Iowa #1 in public education again.

  • Our movement will fight for a 6% increase in state funding for K-12 public schools to invest in STEM education, relieve classroom overcrowding, upgrade technology and increase teacher pay. As Governor, I will veto any budget with less than a 4% increase. We know this is possible because it used to be the norm, but we’ve been falling behind for decades.
  • Teacher pay in our state is below the national average, and it needs to go up. Our goal shouldn’t be to be average—we need to excel. I will work to raise Iowa teacher pay significantly above the national average so we can attract and keep the best teachers here.
  • I will oppose any attempt to weaken our public schools with vouchers for private schools or home schools or by diverting tax dollars to charter schools.
  • I will rework our state’s funding plan so every student and teacher has the resources they need in the classroom, regardless of zip code.
  • I am committed to guaranteeing all Iowans an affordable option for higher education. As Governor, I will challenge our legislature to pass a plan for free community college within my first year in office.
  • I will work to freeze out-of-control tuition at Iowa’s public universities.
  • We need to work to help Iowa college students who are facing mountains of debt by creating options to refinance and restructure current student loans to give them a decent chance at building a life in our communities after college.

My generation had the opportunity to get ahead with a quality, affordable public education in Iowa. Our kids and college students deserve no less today.

We can make Iowa first in education again if we stand up and fight. Our bold, progressive movement is rising up for a better future for public schools, students and teachers in our state. 

Clean Water is the Birthright of Every Iowan

Iowa has some of the dirtiest water in the country. Runoff from large, industrial-scale farms is dumping a toxic mix of insecticide, manure and chemical fertilizers into our waterways and soil.

With over 750 polluted waterways in our state, we can’t afford to wait any longer. We’re endangering our environment for generations to come.

That’s why our movement is standing up to the factory farms and corporate polluters to demand that they clean up the mess they made.

For years, the Governor’s office and Republicans in the Legislature have been up for sale to corporate agriculture and big polluters. The Des Moines politicians have refused to address the deteriorating quality of our state’s rivers and streams. It’s time for a Governor who is committed to putting our planet, our soil and our water before corporate profits.

Ridding our water of these industrial farm byproducts has become a costly headache for local elected officials and taxpayers. And now the big polluters and the politicians who support them want us to pay a higher sales tax to clean up their mess.

We need a Governor who isn’t bought and paid for by the polluters. That’s why I’ve signed a pledge not to take a penny in campaign contributions from the oil, gas and coal industries. And I won’t take any money from the factory farms either.

It’s time to get serious about protecting our environment in Iowa. As Governor, I’ll force the corporate polluters who are fouling our water to clean it up. I’ll demand a moratorium on new or expanding factory farms until there are fewer than 100 polluted waterways in our state.

Join our bold progressive movement to make sure clean water is the birthright of every Iowan.


Join the Movement