Meat grinder seems the appropriate term in that important matters that could and ought to have been hammered out by assiduous communication among the legislators before and during the normal four month “season” are left to what amounts to the “leaderships” determination in extended weeks.
Do these guys and gals not pay attention to their responsibilities out of session? Is there no legislative whip structure or effective reticulation with dependable policy groups to get this stuff worked out coherently going into the session?
True, Iowa has a citizen legislature, a good thing, but lackadaisical part-time-career citizen legislature ought not to be the approach either, leaving so much to “leadership” at the end.
At this writing most legislators have been cooling their heels back home waiting to be called back (since their per diems and clerk funding ended) relying on “leadership” to deign to tell them what they say has been worked out.
The legislative process is not pretty during the regular session but in this time period it is essentially sausage grinding by leadership with citizens in the dark not knowing what goes in, producing pretty much a take it or leave it result when the bulk of the legislators are called back in. That results in having to vote on some ineffective impatient compromised crap, leadership’s crap, or otherwise ill-considered but “must do” stuff under pressure from interest groups with their lack of insightful leadership.
Three critically important matters near and dear to us may fall into this critique (we hope not but will see). They are issues revolving around the Iowa Constitution and the ability of the legislature to regulate abortion, the matter of private funding of official election activities, and matters relating to mask and vaccine mandates or passports.
More on these in a latter post(s)