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Does Tyler Olson’s Rhetoric Match Reality?

Tyler Olson

Last weekend, State Representative Tyler Olson (D-Cedar Rapids) put up a web ad for his gubernatorial campaign launched earlier this month.  He is one of two Democrats, State Senator Jack Hatch (D-Des Moines) is the other, who will take on the seemingly impossible task of defeating incumbent Governor Terry Branstad.  Two prominent Democrats, Senate Majority Leader Mike Gronstal (D-Council Bluffs) and Iowa Senate President Pam Jochum (D-Dubuque) decided against it.

In Olson’s web ad he paints himself as a leader who is concerned about small businesses and the entrepreneurial spirit in Iowa.  It’s a good ad, a bit long, but you get to hear from his parents, his wife, his high school swimming coach, and some of his friends.  Take some time and watch here.

If one didn’t know better it would seem like he was a Republican.  Reality however doesn’t match up with rhetoric.  Olson who has served in the Iowa House has taken some key votes that contradict the message that he tries to convey in this video.

  • 4/17/13 – He voted against reducing commercial property taxes (SF 295)
  • 4/16/13 – He voted against the economic development budget (SF 430)
  • 3/13/13 – He voted against the optional flat income tax (HF 478)
  • 5/7/12 – He voted against business property tax relief (HF 2475)
  • 2/14/12 – He voted against a commercial and industrial property tax exemption (HF 2274).
  • 5/10/11 – He voted against establishing a property tax credit (SF 522)
  • 3/28/11 – He voted against establishing the Iowa Partnership for Economic Progress and the Economic Development Authority as a collaboration between government and the private sector.  (HF 590)
  • 2/2/11 – He voted against giving individuals the ability to choose whether or not they would purchase health insurance.  (HF 111)
  • 4/24/09 – Voted in favor of the I-Jobs program which was a colossal waste of money which did very little to aid job creation (SF 376).
  • 4/16/08 – He voted to increase vehicle registration fees (SF 2420).
  • 1/23/07 – He was a cosponsor and voted in favor of Iowa’s last minimum wage increase (HF 1).

How can one consistently vote against property tax relief and simplifying our income tax law and then say he he’ll be good for small businesses and entrepreneurs?  I know his web ad paints a picture of what he says he believes, but if you really want to know what he believes look at his voting record.  His rhetoric doesn’t match his voting reality.

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