Iowa senators echo Gov. Reynolds’ condolences, comments on immigration system

Iowa’s congressional delegation react to the news of Mollie Tibbetts’ death.


James Year

Sen. Joni Ernst, R-Iowa, responds to questions from the crowd at a Town Hall meeting in the Iowa Memorial Union on Friday, Sept. 22, 2017.

Sarah Watson, Politics Editor

The Iowa senators released a joint statement on the evening of Aug. 21 after authorities announced that missing UI student Mollie Tibbetts had been killed.

She vanished between the evening of July 18 and July 19 and was reported missing after she did not show up for work the morning of July 19.

Sens. Chuck Grassley and Joni Ernst reaffirmed comments that Iowa Gov. Kim Reynolds made about Tibbetts earlier on Tuesday evening.

“We are deeply saddened that this bright, young woman’s life was cut short,” Grassley and Ernst said. “Our heart goes out to the family and friends of Mollie Tibbetts. No family should ever have to endure such a tragedy, especially one that could have been prevented.”

The pair also thanked Iowa officials for their work in the search to find Tibbetts.

“We are thankful for the hard work of Gov. Reynolds and federal, state and local law enforcement as they continue to find answers for Mollie’s family and the American public and bring the killer to justice.”

Authorities have charged Cristhian Bahena Rivera, 24, with first-degree murder in Tibbetts’ death. Officials said Rivera, an undocumented immigrant, led investigators to the body.

“As Gov. Reynolds said, ‘Our immigration system allowed a predator like this to live in our community.’ Too many Iowans have been lost at the hands of criminals who broke our immigration laws. We cannot allow these tragedies to continue.”


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