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Lawsuit: As Workers Got COVID, Manager Started Betting Pool

It was a 'cash-buy-in, winner-take-all' betting pool at Tyson plant, worker's family alleges

(Newser) - Managers at an Iowa pork plant were so cavalier about the COVID-19 risk to employees that they literally made a game out of it, according to an amended lawsuit from the family of Isidro Fernandez, a worker who died from the virus in April. The lawsuit now alleges that Tom... More »

Why Many Midwestern Towns Are Shrugging Off the Virus

"If I get it, I get it. That's just how I feel'

(Newser) - Danny Rice has a good sense of how dangerous the coronavirus can be. What puzzles him are the people who have curtailed so much of their lives to avoid being infected by the virus. "I'm not going out and looking to catch it," he told the AP... More »

Trump Surges in Iowa Poll

President now leads by 7 points, after being tied with Biden a month ago

(Newser) - President Trump has broken the tie in Iowa, a new poll shows, leading former vice president Joe Biden, 48%-41%. They were both at 47% a month ago, the Des Moines Register reports. Conducted last week, the Des Moines Register/Mediacom Iowa Poll of likely voters has a margin of error of... More »

Family Strikes Back Over Meatpacker's Death

Tyson Foods did not provide guidance or protective equipment for COVID, they say

(Newser) - The three children of a meatpacking worker who died from COVID-19 say Tyson Foods lied to the public—and didn't start protecting workers until it was too late. The children of Pedro Cano say he was infected while working "elbow-to-elbow" with other workers at the Columbus Junction, Iowa... More »

Poll Sees a Red-State Problem for Trump

'New York Times' finds that he's losing support among women

(Newser) - A new poll from the New York Times and Sienna College suggests that President Trump might be facing a problem with female voters in three red states in particular. The survey focused on three states won by Trump in 2016: Texas, Georgia, and Iowa. It finds a big gender divide... More »

Teacher Deaths Heighten Worries Over COVID

At least 6 since school year began, but transmission not necessarily related to schools

(Newser) - At least six US teachers have died from coronavirus complications since the start of the school year in what the Daily Beast sees as "an ominous sign of what's to come as students return to classrooms across the country." There is no clear evidence, however, that the... More »

Fauci Issues Warning to 7 States

He says Labor Day could cause the coronavirus to spread

(Newser) - Anthony Fauci has a message for the Midwest: Please be careful. America's top infectious disease expert says seven states with rising COVID-19 rates should take extra care this Labor Day weekend to avoid trouble in the fall, the New York Post reports. "There are several states that are... More »

Rare Storm Causes Heartbreak for Iowa Corn Farmers

Hopes of a record crop have been wrecked

(Newser) - Farmers across a wide swath of Iowa are dealing with the heartbreaking aftermath of a rare wind storm that turned what was looking like a record corn crop into deep losses for many. The storm, known as a derecho, slammed the Midwest with straight line winds of up to 100... More »

Iowa's Controversial Voting Practice Comes to an End

Governor signs executive order restoring rights for felons

(Newser) - Iowa Gov. Kim Reynolds signed an executive order Wednesday granting convicted felons the right to vote after they complete their sentences, ending Iowa’s place as the only remaining state to broadly deny voting rights to felons, the AP reports. Reynolds, a Republican, fulfilled a promise she made in June... More »

Looking for Stellar Health Care? Here's Where to Go

Massachusetts ranks No. 1 in WalletHub state rankings, Georgia brings up the rear

(Newser) - Health care is often at the top of many Americans' minds, but never has it been so critical as now, as we struggle through the coronavirus pandemic. To see which states have the best handle on health care, WalletHub looked at all 50 of them, plus the District of Columbia,... More »

Protester Hit by Iowa Governor's SUV: It Was '100%' Intentional

But Iowa State Patrol says it was the demonstrator's fault

(Newser) - An SUV carrying Iowa Gov. Kim Reynolds hit a Black Lives Matter protester who was trying to block the vehicle Tuesday as she was leaving an event in northern Iowa, but the Iowa State Patrol blamed the protester and said there was little contact and the protester did not appear... More »

Iowa's Controversial Voting Practice Coming to an End

Iowa Gov. Kim Reynolds says she will restore voting rights of paroled felons

(Newser) - Iowa is currently the only remaining state in which former felons are permanently banned from voting. But Gov. Kim Reynolds will put an end to that when she issues an executive order granting paroled felons the right to vote, the New York Times reports. The timing is not yet clear... More »

Poll Shows Biden With Big Lead in a Big State

Survey has him up by 16 points in Michigan

(Newser) - Two new polls in the 2020 election were drawing attention Tuesday, and both were good news for Joe Biden:
  • Michigan: An EPIC-MRA poll shows Biden up by 16 points in Michigan, reports the Detroit Free Press . The survey ran from May 31 to June 4 and captured public sentiment after
... More »

In 'Major Upset,' Steve King Is Out

Iowa voters oust 9-term congressman

(Newser) - In what CNN calls a "major upset," Republicans in northwest Iowa ousted Rep. Steve King in Tuesday’s primary, deciding they’ve had enough of the conservative lightning rod known for making incendiary comments about immigrants and white supremacy throughout his nearly two decades in Congress. The nine-term... More »

One Pig Farmer Warns: 'There Will Be Suicides'

Hundreds of thousands of pigs are being culled amid backlogs at meatpacking plants

(Newser) - Chickens aren't the only animals getting gassed amid the coronavirus pandemic. As the New York Times reports, American pork producers are killing and disposing of hundreds of thousands of pigs "without processing them into food." Closures of meatpacking plants mean there's a backlog of pigs waiting... More »

Tennessee Authorities Think They've Nabbed a Serial Killer

Suspect Clark Perry Baldwin identified through genetic genealogy

(Newser) - Authorities in Tennessee believe they've nabbed a serial killer. Clark Perry Baldwin, a 59-year-old former truck driver, was arrested in Iowa Wednesday and charged in the 1991 death of a 24-weeks-pregnant woman in Tennessee. In March 1991, Pamela McCall was been found strangled in Spring Hill, Tenn., a few... More »

Tip From Ashton Kutcher Led to Iowa's New COVID Tests

He connected governor with company involved in 'Test Utah' program

(Newser) - Iowa Gov. Kim Reynolds says the state's new coronavirus testing initiative has an "Iowa touch." It also has a Hollywood touch. Reynolds said Thursday that the new program, modeled on the "Test Utah" program, is the result of a tip from actor Ashton Kutcher, who grew... More »

Iowa Plant That Is Critical to Our Pork Supply Is Closed

Tyson Foods suspended operations there Wednesday

(Newser) - Tyson Foods suspended operations Wednesday at an Iowa plant that is critical to the nation's pork supply but was blamed for fueling a massive coronavirus outbreak in the region. The Arkansas-based company said the closure of the plant in Waterloo would deny a vital market to hog farmers and... More »

Cops: Driver Deliberately Killed Professor Walking Dog

Des Moines man charged with murder

(Newser) - A college professor in Des Moines, Iowa was walking her dog Sunday morning when she was deliberately killed by a man driving a speeding pickup truck, police say. Lauren Rice, 38, who taught English and literature at Des Moines Area Community College, was pronounced dead at the scene along with... More »

Every House in Town Got an Envelope. Inside: 'Hope'

Anonymous donor spent $82K on gift cards distributed in Earlham, Iowa

(Newser) - It pays to live in Earlham, Iowa. Residents of the town of 1,400, about 30 miles west of Des Moines, discovered a surprise in their mailboxes Thursday in the form of $150 in gift cards to local businesses. An anonymous donor spent more than $82,000 to ensure all... More »

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