DES MOINES, Iowa — The House Democrats elected Charles City attorney Todd Prichard to lead them in 2019. Prichard, an Army veteran, was elected to his seat in 2013.
“Our job as the minority is to keep the majority accountable, it’s to work with them where we can, it’s to offer our own suggestions and ideas and I’m hopeful they’ll be open to that” said Representative Prichard.
The newly elected Prichard doesn’t have the easiest job ahead of him. Republicans control the house, the senate, and the governor’s office, but he believes there are issues on the table they can work on in a bipartisan fashion.
“I think we have a lot of work to do with mental health and Medicaid in Iowa. We are very open to those ideas, we want to solve those ideas, that is a true crisis. I still think there’s work to do on water quality, the budget is always going to be an issue, implementation of the tax changes and adjustments from that” he said.
Newly elected House Minority Whip Jo Oldson says while often times democrats will not have the votes to pass or block legislation, they still have an important job to do.
“Our job is to continue to push forward and tell Iowans what the other side of the coin is, to make sure that they hear the total message and know what the consequences are of any vote that is taken and any piece of legislation, and that’s what we’ll continue to do” said Oldson.
Meanwhile, outside the Capitol, Prichard says he wants his team talking to voters across the state, not just in democratic strongholds.
“This isn’t an urban or rural job, this is an all Iowa job, so we’re looking to connect to people wherever they are” he said.
Prichard ran for governor during the democratic primary, he dropped out of the race to seek re-election in the house.