Come on, Nebraska!

Hello everyone,

Some of you may know that I have been in the process of legally changing my gender. In this battle, I have had a recent victory. I went to the Social Security Administration to work on my disability case and while there I was able to provide a doctor’s note to update my gender to female. The administration took the note and now for federal proposes, I am a female. Additionally, this week I filed my paperwork for a passport so I can use it as an I.D. with the correct gender.

However, to get the State of Iowa to update my gender to female, they want an updated birth certificate with the updated gender. But, I was born in Nebraska where the state requires surgery before you can update the gender. I am not in a place in my life where I can have the surgery.

Therefore, I need to get a District Court in Iowa to issue an order to Nebraska to update my gender on my birth certificate.

Unfortunately, being one of the thousands of transgender people who live in poverty, I do not have the resources to cover the legal fees associated with obtaining such a Court order.

thus, I am raising funds to cover those legal expenses. Anything you can contribute is greatly appreciated.

Go here to donate: GoFundMe

Thank you for helping me fight this battle and thank you for being with me while I fought many others.

Thank you again,

Mika Jayne Covington

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I support HF 65, the Iowa Death with Dignity Act

10418868_898594466834939_2793299234189931894_nIn many states, including Iowa a person with a terminal disease does not have the right to decide their own death. I believe it is immoral and wrong that these people do not have this right. This is important to me because I have an incurable fatal disease called nephropathic cystinosis, there is only one treatment, and eventually I will progress to a state where my body cannot take any more and I die.

This is why I support the Iowa Death with Dignity Act, House File 65.

Nephropathic cystinosis is the most common form of cystinosis. Although all forms of the disease affect the body similarly, the disease causes the amino acid cystine to accumulate in the cells. As the cystine accumulates in the cells, it slowly damages organs including the kidneys, liver, thyroid, eyes, muscles, and brain. Those of us with this disease appear normal at birth, however before one year of age we have excessive thirst and urination, and failure to thrive. We are smaller than others our same age and often tend to be in the lowest percentile or even off the pediatric growth chart. In addition, we have delays with walking and bearing weight.

1424547_955425467818505_3206668591736846428_nUnfortunately, cystinosis has only one treatment, cysteamine. Cysteamine slows the progression of the disease by removing the cystine from the cells. There are only two forms of cysteamine, Cystagon and Procysbi. Cystagon was approved by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) in 1994 and must be taken every six hours every day with many side effects. Procysbi, on the other hand, was approved by the FDA in 2013 for the treatment of only nephropathic cystinosis in adults and children six years and older. Procysbi is a delayed-release form of cysteamine that must be taken every 12 hours every day with many of the similar side effects as Cystagon. For our eyes, we have only one choice, Cystaran, which was approved by the FDA in 2012. The medication must be put in the eyes, one drop in each eye every hour while awake.

1461542_843304242363962_5143102290265247608_nNevertheless, this is not a cure. Therefore, our organs fail, with the kidneys going first. Thus, another kind of treatment is indicated, kidney transplantation, which as become a standard in the treatment of cystinosis because cysteamine only slows the progression of the disease. If not treated with cysteamine, kidney failure occurs around 12 years old or younger. With cysteamine, the damage of the disease commonly leads to kidney failure by the late teens into the early twenties. Most of us will need to be placed on dialysis to keep us alive while we wait for a kidney, which causes us more pain, and suffering; sometimes death occurs while waiting for the kidney. 

Opponents claim that this bill is in violation of their moral and religious values because it is taking away life instead of supporting life. They claim that suicide is never the right or moral answer. This belief does not pertain to the bill, the bill is giving a terminally ill person who already is suffering and near death to have a choice in the manner in which that person dies. They wish to die with some dignity. This could be their religious way of ending their very intense physical suffering.

I believe forcing them down a path of pain and suffering to where they have no control is immoral.

My disease, nephropathic cystinosis is fatal. It causes pain and suffering.

We fight, I have fought, and I am fighting.

10710987_933353376692381_3075517113658853186_nHowever, when that year arrives and my family and I know that enough is enough, I would like to be secure in knowing that I will have the right to choose death with dignity instead of the current alternative. A painful death, where I have no control over my own body and its functions, where I will have tubes going in and out of my body everywhere. I have hope that there will be new discoveries in treatment and a cure, however anyone who is terminally ill should have the right to die with dignity. 

Please contact your legislator and ask them to support House File 65, the Iowa Death with Dignity Act. You can find them here: Iowa Legislature

Vote Blue in 2014! Vote for Change!

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This election coming up in the fall is important. There is a lot at stake! The election is all about giving America a chance to move forward or backwards. We as Americans have a choice. Do we want to continue on the path where our nation continues to do nothing and go from brink of shutdown to brink of shutdown because the Republican controlled U.S. House refuses to work? Do we want to continue to let the radical Tea Party Republicans block common sense immigration reform, increasing the minimum wage, and universal background checks? If yes, then vote for the Regressive Party (Republicans). If no, stand with me and vote for the Progressive Party (Democrats) who want to move our nation forward for our children and future generations.

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Bruce Braley for U.S. Senate

I will be supporting Bruce Braley for United States Senate because we cannot let our nation fall back, we cannot let down our military and veterans, and we cannot let down the hardworking middle class. In addition, we cannot let radical Republicans tear our nation apart and destroy civil rights. I know Bruce Braley will be a leader in the U.S. Senate to stop the radical Republican agenda.

Bruce has represented Iowa in the U.S. House since 2007, where he worked to promote policies that strengthen and expand the middle class and help create the environment for job creation. Bruce wrote a tax cut for businesses that hire unemployed workers; helping an estimated, 100,000 Iowans get back to work. He worked to create a job-training program for Iowans who wanted to get a new job in the field of renewable energy.

  • Bruce supports raising the federal minimum wage to $10.10 per hour and tying it to the rate of inflation.
  • Bruce is a cosponsor of the Paycheck Fairness Act, which will strengthen protections against wage discrimination.
  • Bruce is a huge supporter of LGBTQIA (lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, queer, intersex, and asexual) equality. He supports ENDA (Employment Non-Discrimination Act) along with many other equality bills and is a member of the Congressional LGBT Equality Caucus. 
  • While in Congress, he voted to repeal the discriminatory policy, “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell.”
  • While in Congress, he voted for an amendment that would ban the federal government from preventing states from legalizing the use of medical marijuana.
  • While in Congress, he voted to ban the National Security Agency (NSA) from collecting records under the PATRIOT Act. 

Staci Appel for U.S. House

I will be supporting Staci Appel this fall for United States House of Representatives for Iowa Third Congressional District. If Staci wins, she will make history as being the first woman to represent Iowa in Congress. Staci’s opponent is a radical Republican who is against all things progressive, which is complete opposite of Staci.

Staci Appel has fought for the middle class in the Iowa State Senate. She had a steadfast commitment to the people she served and Senate Majority Leader Mike Gronstal (my current State Senator) took notice,”I have never seen a freshman legislator come to the capitol and work as hard as Staci Appel.” Staci worked on legislation that included Iowa’s statewide smoking ban, preschool for every 4 year old and she even championed the bill making Iowa the first state in the nation to require equal pay for equal work. Staci even has the endorsements of EMILY’s List, Women’s Campaign Fund, and the Planned Parenthood Action Fund. 

Staci Appel voted to pass many progressive bills in the Iowa State Senate:

  • (HF 2539) Health Care Expansion Plan – Allows people under the age of 25 or enrolled as full-time students to be covered by their parents insurance and requires every child 12 years or under who receives medical assistance to receive dental assistance. (Before Obamacare)
  • (HF 653) Election Day Voter Registration – Allows Iowans to register to vote on the same day as the election using identification including driver’s licenses.
  • HPV Vaccination Coverage Bill  – Requires health insurance to cover vaccination or immunization for the human papilloma virus (HPV)
  • (SF 427) Full State EqualityBans discrimination based on sexual orientation and gender identity in public accommodations, education, employment, and housing, and includes creditors and insurance companies.


It is important for progressives to take back the U.S. House from the radical Republican Party and keep the U.S. Senate. If we don’t our great nation will head down a dangerous path where the wealthiest Americans and corporations will continue to buy America and control where our nation goes. They believe in exclusion and elitism. They believe in speaking and working for the interests of the corporations and the wealthiest Americans and not as the nation as a whole. They stand for cuts to programs that help the middle class  and working poor. They especially stand for cuts to social security, medicare, and food stamps. They also want to further cut funding to live-saving research like stem cell research. they believe in amending our nation’s constitution to ban equal human rights for LGBTQIA people. They want to take women’s reproductive rights away and give those rights and choices to the politicians. This what you are letting happen if you don’t vote for progressives like Bruce Braley and Staci Appel. 

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Jack Hatch for Iowa Governor

This fall I will support Jack Hatch for Iowa Governor because I believe Iowa needs a fresh start and I believe Jack Hatch will bring that to the Governor’s office. Jack served five terms in the Iowa State House, served as U.S. Senator Tom Harkin’s State Director, and this year completed his third term in the Iowa State Senate.

Jack Hatch has been a leading progressive voice in Iowa from health care reform to environmental protection and has written some of the most significant legislation of the past three decades in Iowa, including the following:

  • Writing Iowa’s first and toughest environmental protection legislation (underground storage tank cleanup)
  • Leading statewide health care reform
  • Improving Iowa’s mental health system
  • Fighting to expand access to Medicaid
  • Creating the country’s largest minority scholarship program

Jack Hatch supports raising the Iowa minimum wage to $10.10, because he believes no one who works full-time should live in poverty. Jack also recognizes that most Iowans who are in minimum-wage households are women and children. Jack wants to give Iowa’s hardworking middle class families a tax break.  Jack also feels strongly about reducing college debt and creating vocational training in skilled occupations. His plans would allow students to cut debt by finishing school in three years and would provide a low-interest loan to the neediest families. 

Brad Anderson for Iowa Secretary of State

I will support Brad Anderson this fall for Iowa Secretary of State. I support Brad Anderson because Iowa needs a change in the office. Iowa needs someone who will do the job instead of focusing on partisan politics. 

“Iowa has a proud reputation for civic participation, but there is always room to improve when it comes to voter turnout. I believe the time has come for Iowa to take the reins as number one in the nation in voter turnout, and I have a plan to get us there within the next decade.” – Brad Anderson

  1. Simplify the Vote by Mail Process: Anderson supports allowing voters to sign up to vote-by-mail and check a box to automatically receive a ballot in the mail every election.
  2. Online Voter Registration: Online voter registration has proven to be secure and save local auditors’ time and taxpayers money.
  3. Create and Promote an Election Info Hub: Work with local auditors to provide a one-stop Election Information Hub for voters to check on accurate dates, times and polling locations for local and statewide election.
  4. Reduce Number of Elections: Reduce voter fatigue and apathy by reducing the number of elections. Combining many small elections into larger elections.
  5. Do No Harm: “Rather than chipping away at our voting laws and passing expensive, unnecessary bills that would make it more difficult for Iowans to vote, as Secretary of State I will devote our time and resources to finding ways to strengthen the integrity of our elections and get more Iowans to turnout for our elections.” – Brad Anderson

“New Businesses created in Iowa will help us grow our economy and bring jobs to our state, so it is incredibly important that we have a business filing system that is welcoming, affordable and efficient. My goal is simple – a new business should be able to log into the Secretary of State’s website and easily file their paperwork and pay the filing fee in under ten minutes.” – Brad Anderson

  1. Create an Online Checklist to help New Business Owner Determine which Filing is Needed for their Business
  2. Create an Online Filing Template for New Business Owners
  3. Pay Online

Sherrie Taha for Iowa Secretary of Agriculture

52c75f753e546.preview-620I am supporting Sherrie Taha for Iowa Secretary of Agriculture this fall. Sherrie was elected and currently serves as a Commissioner for the Polk County Soil and Water Conservation District (SWCD). She has served as the Recording Secretary/Treasurer for ATU Local 441 and on the Board of the League of Women Voters Metropolitan Des Moines.

Sherrie Taha believes as I do that it is Iowa’s responsibility to manage and care for our natural resources for future generations and ourselves. She recognizes that soil and water are fundamental to our lives and we cannot live without them. This is why Sherrie believes that it is vital we protect our water and soil from polluters.

Sherrie Taha also recognizes that Iowa agriculture is heavily focused on feed and fuel, which is why she believes we need to include food production in Iowa instead of importing our food.

Jon Neiderbach for Iowa State Auditor

DSC_9117I am supporting Jon Neiderbach this fall for Iowa State Auditor because Iowa needs an Auditor that actually does the job.  The current Auditor for some reason did not see any of the corruption in the Governor’s offices.

Jon Neiderbach graduated from Grinnell College with a B.A.  in Political Science in 1978 and went to the University of Oregon. Jon worked for 15 years at the non-partisan Legislative Fiscal Bureau, which provides fiscal, and policy information and analysis for legislators. He also worked for 15 years as a Management Analyst for the Iowa Department of Human Services.

Jon Neiderbach plans do to do thorough audits, complete audits, fight for transparent government, and listen to Iowans.

“Iowa law requires that every audit address not just finances but also assess a government entity’s efficiency, effectiveness, and whether it operates in a business-like manner, yet the current State Auditor rarely does this. As your State Auditor, I will ask tough questions about spending and efficiency, and will require every unit of Iowa government to develop and report on real measures of program effectiveness.” – Jon Neiderbach

Michael Fitzgerald for Iowa State Treasurer

I am supporting Michael Fitzgerald for Iowa State Treasurer. Michael is the current State Treasurer. He is active on several national organizations including the College Savings Plans Network, National Association of State Auditors, Comptrollers, and Treasurers, National Association of Unclaimed Property Administrators, and State Debt Management Network.

Michael Fitzgerald was born in Marshalltown, Iowa. He went to the University of Iowa where he received a Bachelor’s degree in Business Administration. Prior to being elected State Treasurer in 1982, he worked as a marketing analyst for Massey Ferguson Company in Des Moines for eight years.

Tom Miller for Iowa State Attorney General

Tom.MillerI am supporting Tom Miller for Iowa Attorney General. Tom is Iowa’s current Attorney General and has done a great job! He has a reputation for integrity, high quality legal work and strong work on behalf of ordinary Iowans. 

Tom Miller was born in Dubuque, Iowa. He went to Loras College in 1966 and received his law degree from Harvard Law School in 1969. After law school, Tom served as legislative assistant to U.S. REpresentative John C. Culver (D-IA). He has served as legal education director with Baltimore Legal Aid, and taught part-time at the Maryland School of Law. In 1973, he returned to Iowa, opened a Law practice and served as city attorney of McGregor and Marquette, Iowa, and first ran for Attorney General in 1974.

Tom Miller is serving his eighth four-year term as Iowa State Attorney General. He has a long record of achieving results through cooperation with other State Attorneys General and with Attorneys General (NAAG) committees and led major multi-state working groups working on tobacco issues, antitrust enforcement, agriculture, and consumer protection. He is well known for his work to prevent crime and assist crime victims to protect consumers, and to be an advocate for people. 

Marti Nerenstone for Iowa State House

531fc7a20dbe1.imageI am supporting Marti Nerenstone for Iowa State Representative House District 16. Marti is a Veteran and she is an attorney who emphasizes on the rights of children and adults who may not otherwise have access to legal representation. Marti has served as the president of the Iowa Organization of Women Attorneys, and in 2011, she became president of the Pottawattamie county Bar Association.

Marti Nerenstone will promote economic opportunities for every Iowan. She supports education at all levels. She is an advocate for access to affordable quality health care, especially mental health services. She will promote and protect Iowa’s natural resources and environment. She is an advocate and defender of equal rights for every Iowan.

 

 

 

 

 

[All messaging in this post is not authorized by any political party, candidate, or candidates committee.]

*All pictures were not taken by www.mikacovington.com*

God’s Plan for My Life, My Politics, and My Health

tagline1Yes, I am a Christian and soon I will be joining the United Methodist Church (UMC) and will be joining the congregation at Broadway United Methodist Church in Council Bluffs, Iowa. With that said, I believe that God has a plan for my life, my politics, and my health. I believe that he put me on this journey for a reason. I better understand why I am going on this path and that it is with his guidance. I believe that his reason for putting me on this journey because he wants me to encourage others to stand up, speak out, and take care of each other who has less then us.

I believe that it was God’s plan for me to go through so many challenges to make me stronger. I believe that it was him who gave me the power to be able to speak out for myself. Which, lead to me speaking out against the discrimination, harassment, and bullying I faced in high school over my gender identity, and that led to me re-starting the Gay Straight Alliance at my high school which is still thriving. I believe it was him who gave me the strength to start Forward Equality back in 2010.

US-News-rankings-2013I believe that it was God’s plan for me not to get my kidney transplant at the University of Nebraska Medical Center (UNMC) Nebraska Medical Center so that I would go to the University of Iowa Hospital and Clinics (UIHC) and meet the great people of Council Bluffs, Iowa. In doing this, I got the wonderful opportunity to work (non-paid) on the Barack Obama re-election campaign, which taught me a lot in political campaigning. This created the opportunity for me to meet some truly amazing people in Council Bluffs, including Michele Lendt, Nancy Flores, Diane, Bob, Tom Dean, Connie Lairmore, Sue Hendricks, Linda Nelson, Chad Hannan, Melissa Head, Mike Gronstal, Leonard Boswell and many more. Living in Council Bluffs, gave me many great opportunities to learn and expand my knowledge to better work for my political goals of workers’ rights, healthcare for all, civil rights, adoption for all families, and safe schools. 

cystinosis_research_foundation_partnerI believe he gave me the courage to continue to fight for my life and to keep my head up while dealing with my illness, Cystinosis and all the crap it throws at me. I believe he is the reason my family had me participate in the clinical trial at the National Institutes of Health (NIH) in Bethesda, Maryland with Dr. William A. Gahl. That trial has lead to better understanding of the effects of Cystinosis and the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) approving the Cysteaminie eye drops which help reduce the formation of crystals on the corneas of my eyes. He gave me strength to keep fighting when I went into kidney failure and when things were quite difficult. He gave me the strength to not give up when it seemed hopeless. He continues to give me the strength to stay in the clinical trial at the NIH and help make lives better for future generations of kids with Cystinosis.

Pre-op with family
Pre-op with family

I believe it was God’s plan that Jon von Kampen donate his kidney to me. I believe this because how close of a match he was and because of how great my body has accepted his kidney. Here are my most recent lab results: Platelet Count 184, WBC (White Blood Cell) 7.2, Hemoglobin 13.7, Creatinine 0.8, BUN (Blood Urea Nitrogen) 10, CO2 23, Potassium 3.8. I am doing so well that the U of Iowa transplant team has lowed my dose of anti-rejection medications and has even cut one of my medications out of my regime.

I believe it was God’s plan to have me work to end oppression and stand up for those who have less then others. I believe it is his hand that leads me down the road into my field of politics, and my passion for medicine and wishing to help others with illnesses find the greatest healthcare professionals to help them.

With that said, I feel grateful to the Pottawatomie County Democratic Chair Linda Nelson for inviting me to speak at the Pott. County Women’s Dem lunch on December 2nd to speak about my story, my illness, and Forward Equality. 

Jon and me after our surgeries!
Jon and me after our surgeries!

Obama and Gronstal Won!! Equality Won!! Victory!!

President Barack H. Obama won his re-election!!! So did Iowa State Senator Mike Gronstal and Iowa Supreme Court Justice Wiggins was retained!! A pro-equality majority was re-elected to the Iowa State Senate which will protect Iowa’s Marriage Equality ruling!! The haters lost!!

Election 2012 was a major victory for the United States of America and the world! This was a major victory for the Queer community!

President Barack H. Obama’s win was celebrated around the world! He is loved in Europe and in many other nations! He has done so much for the global community and will continue to fight for what is right int he world and hopefully restore balance to the world.

Queers won in many states on many different issues.  The Queers elected more openly queers to Congress. Such as Mark Takano to California’s 41st Congressional District (first openly gay person of color elected to Congress) and Tammy Baldwin U.S. Senate Wisconsin (first openly lesbian elected to the U.S. Senate).

Queers won ballot initiatives in four states, Maryland, Maine, Minnesota  and Washington!! In Maryland, the people voted to approve the State’s Marriage Equality law. In Maine, the people voted to pass a constitutional amendment reversing the previous vote banning marriage equality. In Minnesota, the people voted down a constitutional amendment that would ban marriage equality in the state. In Washington, the people voted to approve the State’s marriage equality law. This makes a total of  nine states and the District of Columbia, as well as, 11 nations!

So, I have a few words to all those dumbasses who keep posting on facebook that your vote does not count and that we should not vote because the system is corrupt. Well, parts of the system may as well be corrupt but it still works just fine to re-elect the first black President and to elect the first gay person of color and the first lesbian to the United States Senate and in addition to that three states by popular vote upheld marriage equality laws and in one state voted down a constitutional amendment that would ban the states recognition of marriage equality. These votes were all close and if even more people did not vote because they listened to your dumbasses then we would not have won and we would have Romney instead and I know you all dumbfucks would not be happy under a Romney administration so shut the fuck up and start voting! And to all those socialists and green partiers who were pissed that I voted Obama and Democrats shut up! Seriously if you want me to take you seriously then stop trying to get me to not vote because you say my vote is a waste or that I am voting for the lesser of two evils. I am sick of hearing that shit! Also my suggestion to you people is that you should work at getting your parties more seats on local levels and build the party until it is strong enough to move up to federal offices. Thank you very much! In the comments please feel free to bitch at me all you want!! Have a wonderful day!!