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Week Ten brought the second legislative deadline when a bill must pass on the floor of one chamber to remain “live” for the session. It was a generally slower week for me with the exception of Wednesday.

Early Wednesday morning, the Senate unanimously approved a resolution supporting the people and nation of Ukraine. Iowa and Ukraine have a prosperous relationship, we commend Ukraine for a free and independent nation since 1991. We condemn the horrendous acts committed by Russia against the nation of Ukraine and send our prayers and encouragement to their people.

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We also passed out of committee a bill that would move Iowa to permanent daylight savings time. That would mean we would not need to adjust our clocks each spring and fall. This bill goes into effect when all of the states surrounding Iowa pass the same law. Several states have done so already, so it is possible this will happen in the next 5 years.

In the same committee, we passed a bill expanding Iowa’s Safe Haven Act from 30 days to 90 days. What this bill does is allow a woman to relinquish custody of her child at a hospital with no legal repercussions up to 90 days after birth. It is our hope this will result in better homes and a brighter future for these children.

As we slow down and dig deeper into fewer issues, it is hard to see certain bills I have worked on not move forward. These are bills that for the most part took hours of research—including many networks and relationship building. It is still possible we may see a bill on limits to vaccine mandates and passports make it through.

One of my favorite things to do as legislator is to meet people. Each year, hundreds of people, young and old, in and out of state, and of various nationalities, come to the Capitol. Many come to tour the building and to visit with legislators. United States citizens have a great privilege to ask legislators questions and to express their views on issues. I encourage you all to visit the Capitol and take time to get to know your legislator.

Here is a fun fact about traveling abroad as a U.S. citizen: Did you know that a U.S. passport is one of the most powerful passports in the world? With a U.S. passport, you can go to 180 destinations for short-term trips without a visa. You can take trips abroad for as long as you want and as often as you want. And if there is trouble, you can get assistance in any U.S. Embassy.

This fact reminds us that we have a great and exceptional country. As citizens, let’s do our best to protect and defend the Constitution — the laws of the United States. Our government works best when people get involved at the grassroots level. More than ever, we need all boots on the ground. I am grateful for all who are involved now and continue to persevere. It makes a big difference to all of us in the legislature.

Author: Dennis Guth

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