Jan 18, 2022 - Politics

Deidre DeJear explains decision to sit while officers recognized

Deidre DeJear, a Democrat running for governor

Deidre DeJear speaks during an interview with Clear Lake Area Chamber of Commerce President & CEO Tim Coffey in Clear Lake, Iowa in 2018. (AP Photo/Charlie Neibergall)

Deidre DeJear, a prominent Democrat running for governor, is speaking out about why she didn't join a standing ovation acknowledging Iowa's law enforcement during Gov. Kim Reynolds' state address last week.

Driving the news: Iowa Field Report, a conservative news outlet, tweeted a picture of DeJear sitting during the governor's speech.

  • She was attending as a guest of Iowa Rep. Chris Hall of Sioux City.

State of play: DeJear said she applauded law enforcement during the governor's speech and said officers "have my utmost respect," in a statement to Axios.

  • Yes, but: While the majority of the Legislature stood to honor law enforcement during the governor's speech, DeJear said she chose to sit because she doesn't support the governor's policies — saying she hasn't addressed the challenges officers face on the job.

What she's saying: "To be clear, our officers deserve more than a pat on the back and a one-time $1,000 bonus," DeJear said in a statement.

The other side: Reynolds and Republican lawmakers passed the "Back the Blue Act" last year, while Democrats tried to "defund" the police, said Republican Party of Iowa communications director Kollin Crompton in a statement.

  • "Iowans have had enough of the demonization of our brave law enforcement officers and they called DeJear out for sitting, making a political statement, rather than standing to recognize these heroes," Crompton said.

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