Mark Jacobs, Republican candidate for the Senator Tom Harkin's to-be-vacated set, met with constituents in Estherville Tuesday.
If he wins in the June primary, Jacobs will most likely face off with current Dist. 1 Rep. Bruce Braley, Harkin's heir apparent, in the November general election.
Jacobs, former CEO or Reliant Energy, told those who turned out to meet him at Bud's Cafe that he's never before held office - something he turned into a positive.
US Senate candidate Mark Jacobs made his case known Tuesday in Estherville. In the background are Dr. Richard and Marilyn Bose.
Photo by Michael Tidemann
"I think this country is headed down the wrong track," said Jacobs, touting his humble, hardworking beginnings in which his first job was as a newspaper carrier before he worked nights at Hy-Vee.
Jacobs and his wife have been married for 25 years and for the past five have gone to South America to help build homes for needy families.
As CEO for Reliant Energy, he took a company $6 billion in debt to financial solvency.
"I wasn't interested in a short-term solution and I wasn't going to hand the company over to the banks," Jacobs said, adding that for his entire career he's focused "on working with people and getting things done."
When Marilyn Bose told Jacobs she had been contacted about his position on cap and trade, he said he was against it. He said as Reliant CEO, cap and trade was the least-damaging of several alternatives with which he was once presented.
"As far as from a personal standpoint, I've been against any kind of carbon legislation," said Jacobs.
Bose next asked Jacobs whether he defended the Constitution and was willing to help keep the President from overstepping his authority.
"Yes," Jacobs said unequivocally. "Congress has not done its job in the checks and balances," Jacobs said. "That's something I take very, very seriously."
When Bose asked Jacobs about religious liberty, Jacobs said he had seen an erosion of that right.
Bose then commented that she didn't see how the American Civil Liberties Union has so much power.
"I think it's ridiculous what they have done to our country - taking rights away from Christians and giving them to Moslems," Bose said.
When Jim Tholkes asked about a balanced budget, Jacobs said, "We need a balanced budget amendment so we have the discipline in the system."
Jacobs railed at extending unemployment benefits long after the depth of the recession.
"Those were extraordinary measures put in place when we were in the heart of the recession," Jacobs said. "I think if we can get a lot of people back into good-paying jobs a lot of problems in this country would be solved."