The Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee will put its weight behind Rita Hart this year as she works to keep Iowa’s 2nd Congressional District blue.
DCCC chairwoman Cheri Bustos announced today Hart was selected for its “highly competitive” Red to Blue program. Though the 2nd District is currently Democratic, it will be an open swing district in 2020.
Hart, a former state senator, retired teacher and farmer from Wheatland, is running to replace outgoing Democratic Rep. Dave Loebsack in the Eastern Iowa district.
According to a DCCC press release, Hart landed a spot among the program’s first round of candidates “by surpassing aggressive goals for grassroots engagement, local support, campaign organization and fundraising.”
In the fourth fundraising quarter (Oct. 1-Dec. 31), Hart raised more than $330,000 — her largest haul to date.
“Representing a swing district in the Iowa State Senate, Rita has proven that she is a strong voice who will never stop advocating for rural communities and small towns,” said Bustos, in a statement. “With her deep ties to the state and its history of delivering for her community, Rita is the right candidate to win this seat and continue delivering results for hardworking Iowans.”
Hart likely will cruise to the Democratic nomination in June, but the general election will be competitive.
State Sen. Mariannette Miller-Meeks of Ottumwa was named last week to the National Republican Congressional Committee’s 2020 Young Guns program, signaling its support for the fourth-time congressional candidate.
In a statement, Miller-Meeks said she was included in the NRCC’s Young Guns program in 2014, but this was the first time she had been selected during a primary. Former Illinois congressman Bobby Schilling also is campaigning to win the 2nd District seat.
“With the added attention and momentum that come through the Young Guns program, our campaign will continue to have the resources we need to win what is likely to be the most competitive House race in the country,” Miller-Meeks said.
Backing from their parties’ national campaign committee gives Hart and Miller-Meeks added organizational and fundraising support.
“Because of the strength of Democratic candidates running in 2020 we are on a path to protect and expand the most diverse House Majority in American history,” Bustos said.
By Elizabeth Meyer