Culver stumps in Ames for 2010 campaign

James Heggen

Gov. Chet Culver wants to build on what he’s done.

Culver, along with his wife Mari and their two children Clare and John, made a stop at the American Country Home Store, 327 Main St. Monday.

The furniture store played host to Culver’s second stop on his week-long, 42-stop, “Choosing a Better Iowa, Choosing a Brighter Future” tour.

Space was tight in the store as Culver spoke to 80 citizens, public officials, political candidates and members of the Story County Democratic party.

Culver highlighted several goals he has planned, if re-elected governor.

First, he said he wants Iowa to be the “best connected state” in the United States and build employment opportunities in the state. He cited Google’s and IBM’s decision to open sites in Iowa as examples.

Culver also said he has supported investment in early childhood education and wants to continue such programs.

“There’s also a choice when it comes to our kids,” he said.

He said he wants Iowa to lead in renewable energy.

The state currently meets 20 percent of its energy needs from renewable sources, he said, and he hopes to increase that figure to 30 percent in the next five years.

Culver touched on the Regents universities and said he wants to continue research and development at Iowa State and the University of Iowa, such as stem cell research and cures for different diseases.

Most of Culver’s speech focused on his future goals and what he would do if re-elected. Culver gave credit to many of the officials in the audience for helping him accomplish what he has done while in office.

“We’re proud of our record,” Culver said, referring to himself and Lt. Gov. Patty Judge.

Culver’s time in office has included making some hard and unpopular decisions, he said.

“I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again, governing is hard,” he said.

After his speech, Culver made several stops to different small businesses on Main Street.