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Noon News 1.13.20: IA Legislature, Booker Ends Race, MercyOne Nurses Vote

The Iowa Senate and House of Representatives gaveled in this morning.  Republican Pat Grassley of New Hartford is the new speaker of the house.

Tomorrow,  Republican Governor Kim Reynolds will deliver her third condition of the state address.

She’ll set out her agenda for the year and unveil her budget proposal. They’re expected to include workforce and rural Iowa initiatives, and restoring felon voting rights.

Listen for live coverage on Siouxland Public Media starting at 10 a.m.

There are just three weeks left before the first in the nation Iowa Caucuses and there’s one less candidate.  New Jersey Senator Cory Booker dropped out of the race today.

Six of the Democratic contenders will take the stage in Des Moines tomorrow night for a debate hosted by CNN.

And, Iowa Attorney General Tom Miller endorsed Joe Biden for president.

The announcement came this morning.  Miller says “Joe is a man of integrity and character and he has been guided by his profound empathy.”

Miller is the longest-serving state attorney general in the United States.  His currently serving his 10th term in the post.

And, today is the final day for nurses at MercyOne to decide if they plan to go on strike.  

Because of the weather, an extra voting session was added for tonight.  A post on the local union’s Facebook page says the results of two votes could be released later this evening.

Union members are voting whether to accept a proposed contract from the hospital or to authorize a strike.  Voting also took place over the weekend.

The committee working on the contract is recommending a “no” vote on the hospital contract and “yes” for the strike.

Nurses have worked without a contract since September and haven’t reached an agreement after several months of negotiations.