Determined to not be out-organized in the Iowa Caucus again, Hillary Clinton’s Iowa campaign has been hard at work for months, constructing an impressive statewide grass-roots organization in every county. Those efforts are showing results as the Clinton campaign has brought on board a solid roster of well-known Iowa Democrats to help out.
Interestingly, the Clinton campaign hasn’t loudly trumpeted each new endorser’s decision as many caucus campaigns have in the past, instead rolling them out as part of local organizing house parties. Rather than big press releases showing campaign momentum to national press, they seem to be content in using their big-name backers’ local connections to win over individual caucus-goers. Still, when you piece together the various endorsements, it’s clear Clinton has a good crew of Iowa leaders backing their caucus effort.
The list of endorsers includes seven State Senators and six State Representatives, along with high-profile Democrats like Sue Dvorsky, Sally Pederson and Jill June. Dvorsky, in fact, has been hired on to the campaign to help with outreach to county chairs, elected officials and assist field efforts. Often referred to as Iowa Democrats’ chief cheerleader, Dvorsky’s addition to the team alone could make up major ground for Clinton in Johnson County, the liberal bastion where Clinton fared poorly in 2008.
Some are old Clinton loyalists, like Bonnie Campbell and Jerry Crawford. But a number are also important pick-ups from 2008. Phyllis Thede, Tyler Olson and the Dvorskys were backers of Barack Obama’s successful Iowa Caucus campaign.
“Clinton was the clear choice for me in this caucus decision because of her long track record of being an advocate for women and working families,” State Representative Abby Finkenauer of Dubuque tells Starting Line. “She doesn’t just talk the talk, she follows through and I specifically connected with her policies on paid family leave and her willingness to tackle student loan debt and higher education cost.”
Finkenauer’s backing of Clinton was first highlighted in a profile of the 26-year-old Representative in Elle Magazine.
“My early support for Hillary was based on her advocacy for children and other vulnerable people,” explains State Representative Marti Anderson, who represents some of Des Moines’ most politically active liberal neighborhoods. “She has earned my respect as a leader in the Senate and as Secretary of State. I can think of no person more qualified to be President of the United States.”
“It’s time to break the biggest glass ceiling in the USA, POTUS!” says State Senator Jeff Danielson of Cedar Falls about his support. “Hillary is the right person at the right time. She’s the most qualified presidential candidate we’ve ever had and she’s stood up for working families her whole life.”
“Hillary will be a great President,” former State Representative and past IDP chair Tyler Olson says. “She’ll take the voices of Iowa families to the White House and fight on our behalf.”
Here is the full list of the current major publicly announced Clinton endorsers in Iowa:
Tom Courtney, Burlington
Jeff Danielson, Cedar Falls
Dick Dearden, Des Moines
Bill Dotzler, Waterloo
Bob Dvorsky, Coralville
Wally Horn, Cedar Rapids
Liz Mathis, Robins/Marion
Marti Anderson, Des Moines
Timi Brown-Powers, Waterloo
Abby Finkenauer, Dubuque
Vicki Lensing, Iowa City
Mary Mascher, Iowa City
Phyllis Thede, Davenport
Notable Iowa Leaders
Sally Pederson, Former Lt. Governor
Elaine Baxter, Former Iowa Secretary of State
Jill June, Former President of Planned Parenthood of the Heartland
Sue Dvorsky, Former IDP Chair
Tyler Olson, Former State Representative/IDP Chair
Staci Appel, Former State Senator/Congressional Candidate
Wes Whitead, Former Sioux City State Representative
Lee Clancey, Former Cedar Rapids Mayor
Cedar Rapids Councilor Justin Shields
Clinton also has the backing of a number of well-known and important local Iowa activists like Cindy Pollard of Newton, Sean Bagniewski and Julie Stauch of Des Moines.
by Pat Rynard