Republican U.S. Senate candidate Matt Whitaker stressed fiscal responsibility and support of the Second Amendment during a Greene County GOP dinner.
Republican U.S. Senate candidate Matt Whitaker stressed fiscal responsibility and support of the Second Amendment during a Greene County GOP dinner.
September 26, 2013


Republican U.S. Senate candidate Matt Whitaker says an examination of the economic fortunes of two cities - Detroit and Washington, D.C. - shows Americans that government is becoming too muscular at the expense of the free market.

In the 1960s, Detroit, and its manufacturing base offered some of the best jobs in the United States. Now it's Washington, D.C., and positions tied to the federal government, Whitaker said.

"That should tell you everything you need to know," Whitaker said last week at the Greene County Republican Party's fall fundraiser at the fairgrounds in Jefferson.

The average household in Michigan saw its income drop by 19.1 percent, from $57,963 a year in 2000 to $46,859 a year in 2012, according to The Washington Post.

The Census Bureau reported that the Washington area, which includes suburbs and exurban areas in Maryland, Virginia and West Virginia, had the highest median income of any metropolitan area in the nation, at $88,233, The Post reported.

Whitaker, a former U.S. attorney for the Southern District of Iowa, said he would take a small-government approach to Washington, one intended to rein in spending.

"This is for the future of our republic," Whitaker told a crowd of about 100 people.

Whitaker said the Republican candidate for the U.S. Senate seat in 2014 should be able to link Democratic candidate Bruce Braley, a Waterloo congressman, with policies that have given Washington, D.C., a big edge on places like Detroit.

"He supports the things that have brought us to this moment in our history," Whitaker said.

Whitaker also stressed his credentials as an advocate of the Second Amendment when asked about gun rights by a member of the audience.

"You control your guns, and I'll control my guns," Whitaker said.

Ames Republican Paul Lunde, a Harvard Law School graduate and author of books on the U.S. Constitution, described himself as an "Eisenhower Republican."

Lunde proposed a constitutional amendment to make Social Security permanent.

He also said legislators from his own party should not threaten to shut down the government.

Lunde advocates a constitutional amendment that would prevent deficit spending except in the cases of national emergencies or war.

State Sen. Joni Ernst, a Red Oak Republican seeking the U.S. Senate seat, had been expected to attend the Greene County event but did not show. Local party officials said they were given no notification or reason from her campaign.

In brief remarks, State Sen. Jerry Behn, a Boone Republican who represents Greene County, said voters should pay close attention to county attorney races around Iowa to make certain that people charged with sex offenses are prosecuted to maximum extent of the law. The Legislature will look at issues with early release of such predators, Behn said.

"Very candidly, there are some people concerned about vigilante justice," Behn said.