David Loebsack

David Loebsack

: Photo from Wikimedia Commons / Author of Photo: United States Congress


* Professor Emeritus of political science at Cornell College in Iowa
* Was a local leader of the Bill Bradley Presidential Campaign in 2000
* Coordinator of Howard Dean‘s White House bid in 2004
* Was elected to the U.S. House of Representatives in 2006
* Served as a member of the Congressional Progressive Caucus
* Resigned from Congress on January 3, 2021

David Wayne Loebsack was born on December 23, 1952 in Sioux City, Iowa. He earned both a BS and an MA in political science from Iowa State University in 1974 and 1976, respectively, and a Ph.D. in that same field from UC Davis in 1985. Prior to launching a career in government, Loebsack became a Professor Emeritus of political science at Cornell College in Iowa.

A longtime committed Democrat, Loebsack was a local leader of the Bill Bradley Presidential Campaign in 2000, and was a Linn County (Iowa) coordinator of Howard Dean‘s White House bid four years later. In 2006 Loebsack was elected to represent Iowa’s 2nd Congressional District in the U.S. House, where he served as a member of the Congressional Progressive Caucus.

In August 2007, Loebsack was one of 90 Members of Congress who signed an open letter to President Bush, stating: “We will only support appropriating funds for U.S. military operations in Iraq during Fiscal Year 2008 and beyond for the protection and safe redeployment of all our troops out of Iraq before you leave office.” At that time, Bush’s “troop surge,” which would ultimately turn the tide of the war and crush the Iraqi resistance, was in high gear. The aforementioned letter was initiated by the Peace Pledge Coalition, an alliance led by such notables as Medea Benjamin, Bill Fletcher, Kevin Zeese, and representatives of the Progressive Democrats of America, Democrats.com, AfterDowningStreet.org, Velvet Revolution, and the Backbone Campaign.

In May 2015 Loebsack endorsed New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio‘s “Progressive Agenda to Combat Income Inequality.” For details of that agenda, click here.

In December 2015 Loebsack co-sponsored legislation (H.Res.569), introduced by Rep. Don Beyer, Jr., which condemned “violence, bigotry, and hateful rhetoric towards Muslims in the United States.” The bill was based on the notion that America was experiencing a “rise of hateful and anti-Muslim speech, violence, and cultural ignorance,” and a “disproportionate targeting” of “Muslim women … because of their religious clothing, articles, or observances.”

On the premise that all women should have an unrestricted right to taxpayer-funded abortion-on-demand, Rep. Loebsack voted: (a) against prohibiting the federal funding of abortion services; (b) against a bill requiring healthcare practitioners who are present when a baby survives an attempted abortion, to do everything in their power to preserve the infant’s life; and (c) against banning abortions on any fetus that has reached the 20th week of its gestation period—except in cases where a pregnancy endangers the mother’s life or is the result of rape or incest.

A member of the American Federation of Teachers, Loebsack opposed voucher programs that enable low-income parents to send their children to private or parochial schools. In 2011, for instance, he voted against reauthorizing the D.C. Opportunity Scholarship Program, one of the nation’s more noteworthy and successful voucher initiatives.

As matters of principle, Loebsack strongly believes that:

  • private employers should be legally required to implement affirmative-action hiring and promotion policies that give preference to nonwhites and women;
  • Obamacare ought to serve as a first step toward the eventual implementation of a single-payer healthcare system administered entirely by the federal government;
  • high earners should pay much higher tax rates than people who earn less;
  • the American immigration system should be reformed in a manner that offers a path-to-citizenship for the millions currently residing in the country illegally;
  • all U.S. residents should have access to publicly funded social services regardless of immigration status;
  • U.S. defense spending should be reduced dramatically;
  • voter ID laws are generally intended to suppress minority voting; and
  • the best strategies for addressing the problem of climate change include: the imposition of carbon taxes on all industries; massive federal spending on the development of wind and solar energy technology; and the raising of CAFE standards for all vehicles manufactured in the U.S.

On April 12, 2019, Loebsack announced that he would retire from political office on January 3, 2021, at the end of the term he was in the midst of serving. Over the years, his political campaigns were supported and endorsed by the Council for a Livable World and J Street.

For a more comprehensive overview of Loebsack’s voting record on a variety of key issues during his years as a legislator, click here.

Further Reading: “Dave Loebsack” (Votesmart.org, Keywiki.org, Ballotpedia.org)

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