Biden On Trump In Iowa: “Easy To Be A Bully” When Others Getting Hit

Around 75 people showed up at Sunset Ridge Farm this afternoon to hear Vice President Joe Biden speak earlier today. Biden framed the 2020 race as “the most important election any of you have ever voted in, regardless of how old, or young, you are.” Biden hit many of his frequent talking points, including the divisiveness of Donald Trump and his rhetoric, increasing racial tension under Trump’s leadership, the energized resurgence of white supremacy, the cost and importance of education, teacher pay and gun violence. “We can overcome four years of Donald Trump, it will be difficult, but if we […]

Amy Klobuchar Plan: Restore “Respect For Rural America”

Sen. Amy Klobuchar released her “Plan from the Heartland” today, kicking off some time in Iowa with a speech at the Griffieon Family Farm in Ankeny, Iowa. Klobuchar refers to the plan as an “optimistic economic agenda” to strengthen and protect the way of life in rural America. “Kids that grow up in rural America should be able to live in rural America,” Klobuchar explained, adding that the goal of her plan is to, “bring back the respect for rural America.” Taking Rural Seriously Klobuchar’s policy plan, the full text of which is available on Medium, has four major pieces: […]

Largest Labor Cattle Call In the Nation Coming To Des Moines

The AFL-CIO in Des Moines has scheduled at least 21 Democratic presidential candidates will speak at the largest labor cattle call in the nation Aug. 21 at Prairie Meadows. The event is open to union members and the media, though not the general public. Charlie Wishman, secretary and treasurer of the Iowa Federation of Labor, said the candidates will each have 10 minutes to speak.  This is the best chance for presidential candidates to address union leadership in the state, many of whom have pull at the national level, he said. “They are the decision makers,” Wishman said, of Iowa’s […]

Gov. Steve Bullock Rolls Out Six More Iowa Endorsements

Montana Gov. Steve Bullock is rolling out his second round of Iowa endorsements today, which includes six Iowa Democrats, just days before the Iowa State Fair. Several of them hail from rural, Republican-leaning counties, and they include former secretary of agriculture candidate Tim Gannon’s parents. Bill and Kathleen Gannon of Mingo, Iowa are both now supporting Bullock for the caucus. Bill Gannon is a former state legislator and past Democratic candidate for governor. They farm in Jasper County. “Simply put: As president, Governor Bullock will get the job done,” said Bill Gannon in a press release. “I believe that with […]

Iowans: Biden Held His Own In Second Debate, But Concerns Linger

Joe Biden was in the cross-hairs on Wednesday night. With the exception of Congresswoman Tulsi Gabbard, who instead directed her fire at Sen. Kamala Harris, candidates who wanted to rip on one another largely aimed their sights at the former Vice President. Vice President Biden got in a handful of heated exchanges throughout the night. Sen. Cory Booker, Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand, Sen. Kamala Harris, Mayor Bill de Blasio and Gov. Jay Inslee all went directly at Biden on his record in the Senate and as Vice President, statements he made in the past and his work on issues like racial […]

Are Divisive Debates Helpful To Iowans?

Last night, the CNN-hosted Democratic debates featured a lengthy, sometimes-heated discussion about health care policy. The heat was purposeful. The moderators paid special attention to having candidates respond to each other’s answers. To mixed results. In Ames, Iowa, gathered caucus-goers reacted positively to some of the incendiary moments like Bernie saying he “wrote the damn plan!” and Warren questioning Delaney’s motivation for running if he wasn’t going to fight for something. On the second night, the moderators didn’t need to work nearly as hard. The candidates addressed each other readily, specifically directing some of their remarks at one of their […]

Iowa Debate-Watchers Unsure On Health Care Differences

Undecided Iowa voters watching this round of Democratic debates aren’t that interested in the finer points of the private option vs. Medicare for All discussion. They want health care for all, they say, but they’re largely unsure how it should be achieved. Voters at Des Moines debate watch parties both Tuesday and Wednesday night weren’t strongly attached to any specific approach the candidates brought up, and some were simply confused as to the differences between the plans. “I don’t understand all the issues with Medicare for All that well,” said Bob Raker of Des Moines. “But they might be wrestling […]

Native American Outreach Rising In Importance For Democrats

The first gathering of presidential candidates to talk specifically about issues important to Native Americans will take place next month in an Iowa city well-versed in the concerns of tribal nations. The Frank LaMere Presidential Candidate Forum is a first-of-its-kind event, “focused entirely on the concerns of Native Americans.” The two-day event will be held Aug. 19 and 20 in Sioux City in Western Iowa. Sioux City’s population is about 2% Native American, according to the U.S. Census Bureau. With 1,373 American Indian and Alaska Natives in Sioux City, it has the largest native population in Iowa, according to the […]

Who Convinced Iowans In The 2nd Democratic Debate (1st Night)

Iowans watched from bars, house parties and restaurants tonight as ten Democratic candidates faced off in the first night of the second debate. Team Starting Line was once again out at neutral debate watch parties organized by Democratic Party groups. Our reporters went to Ames, Des Moines, Keokuk and Winterset to see how caucus-goers reacted to the contentious back-and-forth between the White House hopefuls. Here’s what they thought of the candidates and the policy discussions: Winterset Debate Watch Party Lynette Judd, 52, Winterset Judd was interested in the Medicare for All discussion, and was pleased to hear big ideas being […]

Shaving Heads, Taking Commit Cards: A Cory Booker Day On The Trail

Studies have shown that bald men are perceived as more intelligent, mature and as more dominant leaders than their hair-laden counterparts. If that’s the case, then Cory Booker not only brought three charitable Iowans into his chrome dome club, he enhanced their social standing as well. Such was part of wild, amusing, day-long Iowa Caucus visit made by Booker this past Friday, traveling from Council Bluffs to Des Moines, hosting four events and speaking at a leadership conference along the way. Council Bluffs – The Gathering Room The day started early, with the first event in Council Bluffs kicking off […]