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Former Commissioner's Retaliation Lawsuit Heading to Trial

Monday, May 13, 2019 | 327 | 1 | 13 min read

A jury will get to decide whether former Iowa Gov. Terry Branstad discriminated against a former work comp commissioner by slashing his salary, according to a report by the Des Moines Register.

Chris Godfrey

Chris Godfrey

The newspaper reports a judge on Thursday denied the state’s request to dismiss a lawsuit filed by former Workers’ Compensation Commissioner Chris Godfrey. The decision allows the case to proceed to trial, which is scheduled to begin June 3.

Branstad, a Republican, wanted Godfrey to vacate his office before the end of his six-year term. The former governor claimed he wanted a commissioner who was more friendly to business.

When Godfrey refused to resign, his salary was cut by 35%. He sued the state alleging his pay was cut in retaliation for his being a Democrat or because he is openly gay.

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