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An organization called “Switching Places Foundation” put together an Oct. 22 event at Comiskey Park in Dubuque. The event featured voting and provided transportation to vote among other activities.

“The Switching Places Foundation invites you to our family-friendly event featuring food vendors, product vendors, candy, games, activities, face painting and more,” the group said on Facebook. “Oh! And there will also be an opportunity to vote!”

The foundation said it doesn’t endorse or support any candidates and all parties are invited to attend.

But the speakers who participated would seem to suggest otherwise. For instance, listen to this guy:

“I can’t put enough emphasis on voting this cycle,” he said. “If you worry about reproductive rights, you’d better be voting for Deidre (DeJear). You’d better be voting for Lindsay (James). You’d better be voting for Chuck (Isenhart). Because we need changes at the legislature, and it needs to happen now. If you want our education system to start going in the right direction, because it’s been dropping every year for the last two decades, we need to get Democrats back in power at the state level. At the federal level, we need to get Liz Mathis elected. You need to be going top to bottom and Democrats are the team that you need to be voting for this cycle. It’s plain and simple.”

Deidre DeJear is the Democrat candidate for governor. Lindsay James and Chuck Isenhart are Democrat candidates for state legislative races.

James also spoke at the rally.

“Make sure to find Lindsay James on the ballot when you go vote today and make sure that you’re dragging your friends, your family there,” she said. “We all know that our education is on the line. Women’s reproductive rights are on the linen. Racial equity is on the line. We have so much work to do in this state that we all dearly love and I’m excited to do that work alongside of you. So thank you for being a part of democracy today and using your voice.”

DeJear spoke as well. She touched on education, health care and housing.

“It’s not enough to have access to jobs, we also need access to housing. We also need access to transportation,” she said.

Ironically, the pro-abortion Democrat said she was going to champion all of these things that provide a “pathway to life, liberty and happiness.”

“When you all cast your ballot today, I want you to go home with your heads up high because you just decided that you’re going to use your voice to fight for freedom on this day,” she said.

If that wasn’t enough, the group also gave away food in exchange for votes.

“Show your ‘I voted’ sticker when you get back and get one menu option from #VERSUS free!”

James posted this video of herself on a trolly preparing to go to the courthouse to go vote. She also plugged the event:

James said the group invited all candidates who are on the ballot to go and speak to constituents.

“If you go vote, there’s free food,” said State Rep. James. “All paid for by the Switching Places Foundation.”

For what it is worth, Iowa Code prohibits people from paying, offering to pay or causing money to be paid or any other thing of value to be given to a person to influence the person’s vote.

The Iowa Standard asked the Secretary of State’s office if it is OK for a group to offer free food for people who vote.

The Secretary of State’s office responded:

“For a federal election (like the upcoming general election) no one can offer any kind of benefit, reward or incentive before or after voting. The easiest way to avoid an issue is to open up the event to everyone, including nonvoters.”


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