Democrat Pritzker gives $15M more for Illinois governor bid
CHICAGO — Billionaire Democrat J.B. Pritzker has donated $15 million more to his campaign for Illinois governor, pushing his self-financing total to $161.5 million.
Both Pritzker and multimillionaire Republican Gov. Bruce Rauner have been largely funding their own campaigns. Pritzker's campaign reported the new donation to state election officials Saturday.
The Hyatt Hotel heir is outpacing Rauner, who has given about $68 million toward his re-election campaign.
Pritzker's new donation extends his national self-financing mark over former eBay executive Meg Whitman, who gave $144 million toward her unsuccessful 2010 Republican campaign for California governor.
Pritzker's campaign said he has also given about $19 million toward helping other Democratic candidates around the state.
Emergency dispatcher coaches man helping wife deliver baby
MUSCATINE — A grateful mother is thanking an emergency services dispatcher in eastern Iowa for calmly guiding her husband as he helped her deliver their baby daughter.
Twenty-seven-year-old Kala Walker gave birth to little Kalee last week at home with her 29-year-old husband, Lee Walker, assisting. Kala Walker said Ben Sharpe at Muscatine County Joint Communications knew what to say to her husband and "knew how to walk him through it, which was wonderful."
The Walkers had been sent home from Trinity Hospital earlier because she was dilating, but not long after they arrived Kala Walker began having contractions. Lee Walker called 911 for help, and after five minutes on the phone with Sharpe, the little girl arrived.
Paramedics soon were on the scene to cut the umbilical cord and take mom and baby to the hospital.
North-central Iowa hospital to stop delivering babies
IOWA FALLS — A hospital in north-central Iowa said it's going to stop delivering babies.
Hansen Family Hospital in Iowa Falls announced last week that the doctor who performs most of the deliveries is leaving the hospital, so the deliveries will stop Nov. 23.
The hospital said prenatal care will be provided by Iowa Falls providers, but late pregnancy appointments and deliveries will occur at partnership hospitals in neighboring communities, such as Mason City.
Hospital CEO Doug Morse said it's difficult to find doctors willing to deliver babies in a rural setting with its attendance malpractice risk and call burdens. He said his hospital is one of eight rural Iowa hospitals stopping deliveries this year.
Restaurant owner refuses to book space for Republican bash
WATERLOO — The owner of a downtown Waterloo brewery and restaurant has refused to reserve space for a Republican election night party, saying it's not "the right fit."
Black Hawk County GOP treasurer LeaAnn Saul said she tried to book space for 75 people the night of Nov. 6 at SingleSpeed.
"It was my first choice," Saul said. "It's a great location, a great venue. Republicans love to go there just like anyone else."
But SingleSpeed owner Dave Morgan refused.
"As our core beliefs rest a bit left of what we feel would be appropriate for such an event, we feel it would be best to guide you in a different direction," Morgan wrote in an email to Saul last week
She wrote back that she was disappointed "that people may not be welcome at your brewery if they are leaning to the right."
In his reply the next day, Moran said, "hosting an official election celebration for a party that currently stands and fights against many of our beliefs, does not ring true to me."
"Simply put," he added, "it just doesn't feel like the right fit."
Saul said SingleSpeed's owner has the right to refuse service but that the decision seemed odd given the venue has hosted events for Republican candidates, including Gov. Kim Reynolds.
Morgan said candidate events have less visibility than election night parties.
"Our thought process on election night is: We don't want our beer hall to be red, we don't want our beer hall to be blue," Morgan said.