Berkley Bedell of Spirit Lake, a six-term United States Representative (1976-1987) stopped by the Chronicle Times office on October 29th, joined by Dave Hubler, the older brother of Rob Hubler, the current Democratic candidate for that House seat. Bedell and Hubler were in the midst of a whirlwind tour through the District when I spoke to them, urging people to get out and vote in the Nov. 4th election.
Bedell, Rob Hubler's Campaign Manager, said he is getting involved in the Congressional campaign this fall for the first time since he left office because he is "heartbroken over our current representation in Congress."
He feels that "we (the people of Northwest Iowa) need help in Congress," and feels that the current congressman "doesn't represent the values of the good people of this District. People who believe we should work together and treat people humanely - even people who are prisoners at Guantanamo or illegal immigrants." These values, Bedell feels, are not shared by the current office holder, based upon statements and actions he has made.
"Thank God," says Bedell, "He was unsuccessful in trying to privatize Social Security - what a mess that would have been."
Bedell said, "I think I know the people of this District very well," and feels that the current Democratic candidate, a Navy veteran and Presbyterian minister, reflects the values of those people. Bedell is saddened over the presence of more partisanship in Congress now than when he served. In those days, he says, "we all - especially those in the Iowa delegation - were close friends and talked about the issues." Bedell, in fact, says he remains good friends with both of Iowa's U.S. Senators, Harkley and Grassley, both of whom, he said, started in politics the same year as he did.
He said that he felt former representative Fred Grandy, a Republican who succeeded him in office, was also a "great guy," despite the differences in their political party affiliations.
Ed. note: Rob Hubler was defeated by incumbent Steve King in the November 4th election.