News Article

Mauro: Fair Board Inaction is Siding with White Supremacy

Contradicting its clear policies and vendor guidelines, Fair Board claims it is not responsible for regulating vendor behavior, supports sales of explosives and Nazi items.

(October 18, 2019) Eddie Mauro (D-IA) is calling on the State Fair Board to follow their own policies, and take responsibility for ensuring dangerous materials and white nationalist propaganda are not sold at the fairgrounds.

Specifically, Mauro is calling on the State Fair Board to require that all firearms and explosive materials purchased on State Fair property be subject to federal background checks and that vendors selling white nationalist, SS or Nazi propaganda not be allowed to sell these materials on state property.

The board responded to these revelations by insisting they are not responsible for what is for sale at events held by vendors.

However, according to Iowa Administrative Code, the Fair Board is explicitly charged with establishing the policies governing all aspects of the fairgrounds, and those vendors must not conduct any exhibition, of any character, that does not meet the approval of the fair board.

“Either the sale of explosives, illegal ammunition, and white nationalist propaganda without background checks meet the standards of the Fair Board under the leadership of Gov. Reynolds, Secretary Naig, Gary Slater and ISU President Wintersteen, or they are willfully ignoring their responsibilities here,” said Mauro. “The fair explicitly reserves the right to prohibit these materials. It is time that we take a stand, and say our fairgrounds cannot be a haven for hate.”

The Fair Board has still not responded to the Mauro Campaign’s letter requesting they take action to prevent these materials from being sold at future shows.

“This is a public safety issue, ” Mauro continued. “We need leadership that is willing to take action, even if it goes against the gun lobby. We remain hopeful that the Fair Board will commit to the basic reforms needed to protect our community.”

Interviews with Eddie Mauro are available upon request.