April 24, 2024

Letter to the Editor: Dunwell and Family Leader

Thanks to Christopher Braunschweig for his enlightening article regarding Jon Dunwell working for The Family Leader.

Dunwell states he is working with The Family Leader’s advancement team, which works to advance the Family Leaders Mission. The Family Leaders’ website states the mission is to strengthen families by inspiring Christ-like leadership in the home, the church and the government. Since Dunwell is being paid to advance this mission, is it not fair to assume that he is only listening to those who fit his description of Christ-like leadership? Might there not be leaders who are not of the Christian faith or Christians who have a different perspective who, also, provide input and expertise? People who do not see things through the same lens that he does? Therein lays the problem. As a paid person of The Family Leader he does not need to listen to them. As an elected representative for the people of Iowa House District 38 he does need to listen. In the article, Dunwell goes on to say the policies he votes on as a representative in the Iowa Legislature “have nothing to do with The Family Leader”. However, a different story evolves if you look at the policies The Family Leader states as goals on their website, the bills they have registered as supporting as lobbyists at the legislature, and Dunwell’s vote on those same bills it is revealed they are in lockstep. Does The Family Leader lobby him during the legislative session? You can be assured they do, and you can be assured he is giving them the vote they are seeking. The question voters in his district should be asking is who does Jon Dunwell work for? The people of Iowa House District 38 or The Family Leader?

Leadership comes in many forms, as was demonstrated by a Republican legislator on the floor of the Iowa House during debate on a bill limiting gender-affirming care. He spoke as the father of two children with disabilities, who saw his children through a different lens than other people. He spoke in support of those families with children who have gender dysphoria. He spoke because of real-life experiences. This is leadership. This is not the kind of leadership Dunwell and The Family Leader promote.

Dunwell finds it offensive to ask what he is being paid. If Dunwell is confident there is no conflict of interest with him being a legislator and in his role with The Family Leader, he should be comfortable in disclosing to the voters in his district how much he is being paid. I doubt that I am the only one asking.

Fran Henderson

Newton