Member Spotlight: Brian Meyer

Brian Meyer is an attorney with the Harding Law Firm and is also a state legislator.

Tell us about yourself
I was born in Dubuque, Iowa, graduated from the University of Northern Iowa in 1997, and graduated from Drake Law School in 2002. I am a Democrat in the Iowa Legislature representing House District 33, which is essentially southeast Des Moines.

What are some of your notable achievements?
I served seven years on the Des Moines City Council and served seven years in the Iowa Army National Guard. I graduated from Officer Candidate School in 1996 and graduated from Infantry Officer Basic Course in 1997.

Why did you choose to practice law?
I enjoy logic and analytical thinking and wanted to fully understand the law from a public policy perspective.

What is it like to be a lawyer-legislator?
Being a lawyer in the Legislature allows me to analyze proposed bills in a way that most cannot. Constitutional issues and practical application are sometimes given little consideration – the best example is the abortion ban passed in 2018. Contrary to popular belief, very few legislators have legal background or training. In addition, the Legislature is in session for 100 days from January through April and I am constantly juggling schedules. It is a challenge to fulfill the legislative duties and stay on top of hearings and deadlines. Fun fact: I was once denied a continuance so I could attend my swearing-in ceremony for my second term. I worked it out.

What do you think about the November 2018 election results?
The 2018 elections were a major win for Democrats. But more importantly a warning to Republicans ­– embrace Donald Trump at your own peril.

What issues do you think will be at the forefront for the Iowa Legislature in the next two years?
The budget will be the major issue – revenue will continue to be chronically short and the budgets for mental health care, education, and the Courts will continue to be shorted.

What do you do to get away from work?
I enjoy fishing, playing guitar, and visiting family in Dubuque.

What is the best thing about the Polk County Bar Association?
CLE opportunities and opportunities to network and learn from other attorneys.

Best place to visit in Polk County?
The Capitol.

What did you want to be when you were growing up?
I wanted to be shortstop for the Houston Astros.

What songs would you include on the soundtrack to your life?
Smells Like Teen Spirit

Words to live by?
Do or do not; there is no try. -Yoda