During Monday night’s debate, Republican Gov. Kim Reynolds and her Democrat opponent Deidre DeJear were asked specifically about the use of eminent domain for the Carbon Capture Pipeline projects planned across the state of Iowa.
The issue has been a painful one for many landowners who are not happy with elected officials who are seemingly refusing to advocate for their property rights.
Gov. Reynolds said eminent domain should be the “last resort” and ultimately she supports the law as it stands today.
“First of all, eminent domain should only be used as a last resort,” Reynolds said. “But if it is used, they want to make sure that our landowners are being fairly reimbursed for utilizing eminent domain. So, there’s a process in place.”
Reynolds said she has focused on the importance of agriculture to the state as Governor. She highlighted the fact 55 percent of corn grown in Iowa is used for ethanol.
“If we lose the renewable fuel industry that would have a tremendous impact on farmers,” Reynolds said.
DeJear said she would have “championed” a bill that went through the legislative process earlier this year. That bill ultimately did not pass.
“As I travel throughout the state, being a person who has a very great deal of affection to small business owners, I see our farmers in that same light,” she said. “I want to make sure that our agricultural sustainability is well taken care of but more importantly we have to make sure that the farmer is well taken care of.”
DeJear, like Reynolds, was asked point-blank for her position on using eminent domain for the Carbon Capture Pipelines. When asked if she would pass something allowing landowners to say the project doesn’t come through and ensure it doesn’t come through, she said:
“Yes sir. I believe that the land owner should have power in this situation because they put their blood, sweat and tears into their land.”