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Letter to the Editor

BY DI READERS | JUNE 21, 2011 7:20 AM

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Hamerlinck ignored Iowa, U.S. Constitutions

During public hearings involving the state’s budget and its effect on education, Sen. Shawn Hamerlinck, R-Dixon, told some college students that he did not want them coming to Des Moines to petition his committee. In dismissing these young people and their concerns, Hamerlinck ended his lecture by saying, “Leave the circus to us, OK?”

No, it is not OK. Hamerlinck does not appear to understand the implications of his having taken an oath of office to uphold the Constitution. These students and all citizens of the United States of American and the state of Iowa have a Constitutionally ensured right to petition their government.

The Iowa Constitution Bill of Rights guarantees that “The people have the right freely to assemble together to counsel for the common good; to make known their opinions to their representatives and to petition for a redress of grievances."

This is in accord with the law of the land, the Constitution of the United States of America, which states, “… the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances.”

Hamerlinck might want to take note of the motto expressed upon the flag of the state of Iowa: “Our Liberties We Prize, and Our Rights We Will Maintain.”

Sam Osborne
West Branch


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