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OUR OPINION: Feenstra should consider all of the agenda in Iowa's 4th District

OUR OPINION: Feenstra should consider all of the agenda in Iowa's 4th District

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With the Republican primary now behind him, Randy Feenstra might want to revisit his campaign strategy before the fall election.

In his ads, Feenstra said he wanted to go to Washington to build Donald Trump’s wall and support his agenda. 

Now, though, a lot has happened in the country to suggest “business as usual” is not the best approach.

For decades, Northwest Iowa elected congressmen – Republican and Democrat – who didn’t represent the president. They looked out for the interests of all residents of the district. If that meant going against the sitting president, they did.

When Steve King was elected, much of that changed. Rather than represent all of his constituents, he looked to the right and followed suit – even if it wasn’t in Iowa’s best interest.

This week, when we see the president building a wall – around the White House – and posting snarky tweets about everyone who questions his leadership style, we’ve learned just how important an independent thinker really is. Utah Sen. Mitt Romney broke from the pack; others have, too.

To get at the problems we face in policing, health care and immigration, we need to have conversations, not rubber stamps. Hard liners – in both parties – need to remember they represent all of the people in their states and districts, not just the majority who sent them to Washington.

President Trump’s eagerness to blame many of the country’s problems on his opponents suggests he’s not the person Feenstra should emulate.

Instead of compounding those problems, he should solve them and explain to the public what he's doing. As Harry Truman liked to point out, “The buck stops here.”

When protests broke out in Minneapolis calling for the prosecution of those responsible for George Floyd’s death, Trump launched a Twitter attack on the city’s mayor, Jacob Frey, calling him “the very weak Radical Left Mayor” and, later, saying, “when the looting starts, the shooting starts.”

Instead of quelling the storm, he threw another log on the fire.

Twitter stepped in, added a warning about “glorifying violence,” and quickly became a new target for the social media-savvy president.

Diversion, a reality television model, shouldn’t be a political attribute. Digging in and solving problems should.

Now, as Feenstra, the Republican, begins his campaign against J.D. Scholten, the Democrat, he might want to read the room and consider all of the Fourth District’s agenda. We already know Trump’s.

Our Opinion editorials represent the consensus view of The Sioux City Journal editorial board. Members of the board include: Bruce Miller, editor; Michael Gors, editorial page editor; Dave Dreeszen; managing editor; Tim Hynds, chief photographer.

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