Opening Day Remarks of Senate President Jake Chapman

Below are the opening day remarks of Senate President Jake Chapman, R-Adel, as prepared for delivery:

Friends, family, colleagues, and to our newly-elected Senator, it is my honor to welcome you to the 2022 legislative session. I have always enjoyed the first day of session.  It’s a time in which friends and colleagues are reunited, hope and excitement flourishes, and optimism for the future resonates. 

Colleagues, the time has come for us to take a stand. It has become increasingly evident that we live in a world in which many, including our media, wish to confuse, misguide, and deceive us, calling good evil and evil good. One doesn’t have to look far to see the sinister agenda occurring right before our eyes. The attack on our children is no longer hidden.  Those who wish to normalize sexually deviant behavior against our children, including pedophilia and incest, are pushing this movement more than ever before.  Our children should be safe and free from this atrocious assault. Our students should be learning about science, and mathematics; they should be learning about engineering and innovation. Instead, some teachers are disguising sexually obscene material as desired subject matter and profess it has artistic and literary value. The literature being pushed on our students should disturb all of us and if you aren’t disturbed, I can only hope it is because you have not actually heard or seen the content.  Nobody, regardless of their race, religion, ethnicity, gender, sexual orientation, or occupation has the right to expose children to obscene material. It is for that reason that this body should use this session to address this very issue. 

When students are subjected to this violating content, we need to ensure parents have the ability to protect their children by removing them from the district.  We can and must tear down the financial barriers that prevent parents from making this decision.  We must hold those who distribute this repulsive and criminal content to minors accountable. Let us not forget the quote on the first floor of this capitol which reads “nothing is politically right that is morally wrong.” In other words, we can’t be right by doing the wrong thing, and doing the right thing can never be wrong. 

Since 1973 nearly 70 million Americans have had their voices silenced. Their lives were taken in the so-called name of “choice.” We have courageously stood for and defended those who could not defend themselves. I am proud of the work done by this body to give a voice to the voiceless. As the United States Supreme Court takes up this important issue, we will stand ready to take whatever steps necessary to defend the dignity of life. 

Colleagues, because of your dedication to being fiscally responsible, we come into this legislative session with our economic reserves totally full.  Our revenues are at a historic all time high, and our ending fund balances are flourishing. This economic prosperity has come from sound fiscal policies and reducing taxes on Iowans.  When individual economic freedoms abound, economic prosperity follows. Yet, let’s not forget that there will be some who wish to spend this money on expanding government; our focus must be to return these dollars to the rightful owners – the taxpayers. Now is the time to take a bold stand. We have come a long way in reducing taxes on Iowans but it’s not enough. Let’s keep our eyes set on the total elimination of income taxes. Now is the time for action, now is the time to be bold! We cannot allow another year to go by sitting on the sidelines, while other states are aggressively reducing taxes.  This is the year to take action!

Lastly, may we always remember that the work we do here in this building will impact the lives of millions of Iowans and future generations to come. Let’s make 2022 a year to look back on with humility and thanksgiving for the bold stand we took to give greater freedom and liberty to Iowans, where we stood for parental choice in education, where we lifted the crushing weight of tax burdens on Iowans, and where we stood for what is right, even among those who call it wrong. Right is right, all of the time, and wrong is wrong, all of the time.  May this body choose to do what is right.  God has so richly blessed and prospered our state, may we recognize Him and His hand in all we do! May He continue to bless our great state and may He bless each of you throughout this session!