Journal Express, Knoxville, IA

April 24, 2014

Mark Jacobs running for U.S. Senate

By Steve Woodhouse Editor
The Journal Express

---- — Prior to a sitting down for coffee with a group at Pizza Ranch in Pella Monday afternoon, Republican US Senate candidate Mark Jacobs opened up about his ambitions for the office, and why he believes he is the best choice over his competitors.

Jacobs is a businessman, a former CEO of Reliant Energy, a company he worked to bring back from near bankruptcy. He believes that America is facing similar problems that his company faced and by applying similar strategies, he can work to restore the country as well.

The opportunity to tackle tough situations, such as those in Washington, would be welcomed by Jacobs. If America wants to see improvement in Congress and different results, Americans need to elect different people.

“I’m confident we’re going to be successful,” Jacobs said. In the time since he retired from the business world, Jacobs has founded a nonprofit and taught at Iowa State University. In his opinion, serving in elected office would be a continuation of what he has been doing.

When asked how business tactics would find success in Congress, an organization that relies more on teamwork for success, versus top-down orders from a CEO to employees, Jacobs said that part of his business strategy was listening to people. He would often ask questions to learn what was needed and took action from there. Jacobs touts the fact that he has already visited all of Iowa’s 99 counties. He said this was not done to follow in the footsteps of Gov. Terry Branstad or Sen. Chuck Grassley.

“I’m doing that because that’s how I learn,” Jacobs said.

Jacobs believes that the federal government has more influence into the everyday lives of Americans than it should. He sees the role of the government to create an environment for success. The size of government and lagging business environment has harmed the economy and increased the national debt. Balancing a budget and improving the economy cannot be done without good jobs. Jacobs believes that every step President Barack Obama and Congressman Bruce Braley (Democrat seeking the same office as Jacobs) have taken has made things more difficult.

Experience matters to Jacobs, and he believes Obama’s lack of it has hindered America. As for his own experience, Jacobs said he is prepared for any situation in Congress that may find him on the unpopular side of an issue. As a CEO, he faced 23 of the largest bankers in the world simultaneously to work with them to address his company’s debts.

“I know what it’s like to inherit a fiscal mess,” Jacobs said.

Jacobs supports a balanced budget amendment, but has considered other ways to try to improve America’s financial situation. He would begin by rooting out Medicare fraud, which he believes would eliminate $90 billion in waste annually. He would support a 10 percent across-the-board cut in administrative costs for the federal government.

To reduce the national debt, Jacobs would support selling non-core assets. This includes mineral rights to the oil and gas reserves on federal lands. One-time revenue from these sales would be used to pay down the national debt.

In closing, Jacobs believes that he is the best candidate for the job because he knows the challenges facing businesses and families today. He hopes to use his experience to restore balance in government and promote a stronger future for America. For more information, visit