On Wednesday, May 27 at 12:45 p.m. CDT on the south side of the Polk County Courthouse at 500 Mulberry Street in Des Moines, former Iowa lawmaker Ed Fallon and his attorney Joseph Glazebrook will announce how they intend to respond to the charge of trespass against Fallon for his refusal to leave Governor Branstad’s office last Monday while protesting the Bakken pipeline. Following the press conference, Fallon will appear with Glazebrook before a judge at 1:00 p.m. in Room 201 of the Courthouse.
My arrest at Governor Branstad’s office last Monday (Fallon sits-in at Governor’s office to stop pipeline) has landed me an appearance at the Polk County Courthouse this coming Wednesday at 1:00 p.m. Prior to that, attorney Joseph Glazebrook and I will hold a brief press conference on the south side of the Courthouse at 12:45 to announce how we plan to proceed. I’d love to have friends and fellow pipeline fighters join me for that. Please come if you are able.
I also want to tell you about my jail experience, which was both instructive and disturbing. There was a bit of humor, too, in that one of this pipeline fighter’s cell mates was . . . a pipe fitter! He and I actually hit it off quite well. I’ll save that conversation for today’s program (see below).
Contact: Ed Fallon, 515.238.6404, email@example.com
Iowans Deserve Answers From Branstad on Pipeline Legislation, Fallon Says
A day after being arrested for sit-in protest, former Iowa lawmaker encourages Iowans to engage in their own principled acts of conscience to protect air, land, water and people
Des Moines, Iowa —
Ed Fallon is out of jail after he was arrested last night during a sit-in protest at Governor Branstad’s office, and the former state representative says the Governor still owes Iowans an explanation about his position on pending eminent domain legislation at the Statehouse.
“By continuing to remain silent, Governor Branstad gives the perception that he approves of an out-of-state Big Oil corporation using his administration to condemn private farmland,” Fallon said.
At the beginning of this year’s legislative session, Branstad warned lawmakers not to interfere with the Iowa Utilities Board permitting process. But grassroots pressure from farmers, environmentalists and others have forced some lawmakers on both sides of the aisle to buck Big Oil and Big Labor interests to draft and debate legislation that could place additional restrictions on eminent domain powers for the project.
Fallon’s first public remarks after his civil disobedience arrest yesterday also included a call to action for all Iowans to take principled acts of conscience and vigil, rally, demonstrate, sit-in, lobby and speak-out to stop the Bakken oil pipeline.
Fallon is due to appear in court on Wednesday, May 27 at 1pm.
“I’m exploring my options and haven’t made a decision about what legal route to take yet,” Fallon said. Iowa trespass law contains a necessity exemption, and the looming climate-change crisis and pending eminent domain legislation in the waning days of the 2015 legislative session could form the basis for a necessity defense.
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
1:30 p.m. Monday, May 18, 2015 — Governor’s Office, Des Moines, Iowa
Fallon Sits-in at Governor’s Office to Stop Bakken Pipeline
Former lawmaker will stay at the Governor’s office until
Governor meets with him, agrees to support eminent domain bill
Today at 1:30 p.m. CDT, former Iowa lawmaker Ed Fallon entered Governor Branstad’s office at the Iowa State Capitol and asked to speak with the Governor regarding the eminent domain legislation that would help landowners along the path of the Bakken Oil Pipeline. Fallon informed the Governor’s staff that he would refuse to leave the office until Governor Branstad met with him in person or on the phone and agreed to help pass the bill.
“Historically, the Governor and I have supported strengthening Iowa’s eminent domain law to protect private property from private, for-profit development,” said Fallon as he sat waiting to speak with Branstad in the Governor’s office. “We also have both been critical of Big Oil, who the Governor has rightfully criticized for trying to weaken Iowa’s pioneering efforts in ethanol and biodiesel.”
There’s nothing like courage to inspire principled acts of conscience. Perhaps the gutsy actions last week of two landowners fighting to stop the pipeline has inspired you to step forward, speak out, take action. I can assure you that Hughie Tweedy and Vern Johnson have further deepened my own commitment to stopping the Bakken Oil Pipeline. (Stay tuned for news about that later today.)
It took a lot of guts for Hughie Tweedy to go public about the conversations he recorded with a representative of the pipeline company. In interviews that have been published in media across the country and in Canada on CBC Radio, Hughie recounts how in exchange for his land, the rep “offered me women . . . not once, not twice, but three times. In the third time, a $1,200 teenage prostitute.”
This weekend, I received an astounding news tip relevant to the proposed Bakken crude oil pipeline. It was shared with me in confidence, but I can tell you that it literally made my jaw drop!
This breaking story has the potential to completely change the conversation about the pipeline. I’m sorry I can’t tell you more (if a source requests confidentiality, I respect that), but I’ll be able to share full details with you later this morning (Monday, May 11th) on my talk show at 11:00 a.m. on KDLF 1260 AM in Des Moines and online. The actual person breaking the news will join me in the studio. Please tune-in if you are able.
Even as Maryland was calling out the National Guard to deal with havoc in the streets of Baltimore, Iowa was calling out the Guard to deal with havoc in poultry confinements. Perhaps that’s a meaningless coincidence, but it did catch my attention. Regardless, there’s lots to discuss about both these issues on my talk show today (see below).
Before I tell you about that, please set aside some time today or tomorrow to encourage lawmakers to support bills toughening Iowa’s eminent domain law (SSB 1276 and HSB 249). Last week, both bills passed out of sub-committees of the House and Senate Government Oversight Committees.
Call or write members of both the House and Senate Government Oversight Committees. Go to the two links below, then click on the individual lawmaker’s name and you’ll see a phone number and email address:
It’s important to keep your call or email message short and to the point. Share your own personal story and perspective, and tell lawmakers to stand up for farmers and landowners in the path of the proposed Bakken Oil Pipeline. Tell them to vote to protect our environment. Tell them to support the strongest possible eminent domain law and move the bill forward for the full House and Senate to debate.