Tag Archives: iowa

From Indiana to Iowa: Buttigieg’s Message Resonates With Midwestern Dems

by Chris Davis – Feb. 02, 2020 (WIBC.com, abridged)

At a crowded middle school auditorium in Coralville, Iowa, former Mayor Pete made his case to a room full of people who had mostly made up their minds.

I am really committed and passionate about the platform that he’s put out,” said Erin Hazen, of Solon, Iowa. “ I think he’s the best candidate to attract the most voters. He’s got the widest lane of support.”

Hazen said she believes Buttigieg’s message resonates with Iowans because, she believes, he is less extreme than his fellow candidates.

His plans are realistic. We can get them done. Now is not the time to go for a fringe candidate who may not be able to pull anyone in from outside their lane.”

“He said that we were facing tectonic changes in the world,” said Wilson Hart, of Iowa City, who first heard Buttigieg speak in March. Almost a year later and after considering the messages of other candidates, Hart is solely supporting Buttigieg.

“He’s got a calm demeanor, a big brain, kind of the opposite of what we have in the White House right now.”

Hart has a son in the military and believes Buttigieg’s experience in the Navy Reserve, indicates that he would be a good commander-in-chief.

I don’t think there was ever a point where a candidate’s message resonated with me as much as Pete’s,” said Hart, adding that he has heard numerous candidates speak as they have passed through Iowa City.

He said that he is going for the candidate who he feels has the most leadership potential.

”He’s logical and he’s low-key and I think he’s one of the smartest ones running,” said one man at the rally who did not want to be identified. 

Mayor of Waterloo, IA Quentin Hart backs Pete Buttigieg for president

by Thomas Beaumont – Jan 14, 2020 (APNews.com, abridged)

Quentin Hart, the black mayor of Iowa’s most racially diverse city, is backing Pete Buttigieg for president.

Hart told The Associated Press he was supporting Buttigieg in part for what he called the Democrat’s effort to address racial economic disparity in South Bend. Like Waterloo, which Hart represents, South Bend is a once-thriving Midwestern city with a higher-than-average unemployment rate and a history of racial discord.

The Buttigieg campaign hopes Hart’s endorsement will help not only inoculate the 37-year-old Buttigieg from the stubborn notion that he cannot win black support but also potentially resonate beyond majority-white Iowa, as Buttigieg winds his way through the Democratic primary campaign.

“He’s taken an industrial place like South Bend, Indiana, which is kind of similar to the story of Waterloo, Iowa, where a lot of people had given up on that community, and made great strides to turning it around,” Hart said of Buttigieg.

Maryland Rep. Anthony Brown endorsed Buttigieg last week, becoming the first member of the Congressional Black Caucus to do so. Ten members have endorsed Biden, who has the most support from the group.

“Just like in South Bend and Waterloo, we’re placed in situations where it seems like we’re responsible to fix generations of decline, to fix generational and systemic racism or problems that we’ve had,” said Hart, who is the first black mayor of Waterloo and is in his third term.

The campaign hopes that Hart, who has also dealt with racial unrest involving policing in his city, can inspire others to follow him, especially in subsequent nominating contests with greater racial diversity, such as the Feb. 29 South Carolina primary.

“I think I can play a role moving forward with the campaign,” said Hart, who plans to publicly endorse on Wednesday. “That’s the hope of Mayor Pete as well.”


U.S. Rep. Dave Loebsack endorses Pete Buttigieg for president

by Barbara Rodriguez – Jan 12, 2020 (DesMoinesRegister.com)

U.S. Rep. Dave Loebsack, a long-time Iowa congressman, has endorsed Democrat Pete Buttigieg for president.

One of three Democrats in Iowa’s congressional delegation, Loebsack’s backing is a high-profile boost for Buttigieg a few weeks before the caucuses on Feb. 3.

Loebsack is scheduled to introduce Buttigieg at a town hall Sunday night in Des Moines.

In an interview with the Des Moines Register ahead of the campaign’s announcement, Loebsack praised the former South Bend, Indiana, mayor for having “a grasp of the issues” facing America. He also said the 37-year-old Buttigieg can best unite the nation. It’s a message Buttigieg himself has highlighted in the final months of the crowded race.

“I think he has the capability to bring us together,” the 67-year-old Loebsack said of Buttigieg. “And I think he has the capability to turn this country around, get it back on the right track, and provide the hope that we need.”

Loebsack, a seven-term congressman, represents the Second Congressional District in southeast Iowa. In presidential races, it’s a purple district where President Donald Trump garnered 49% of the vote in 2016, more than Democrat Hillary Clinton. Several counties in the district voted for Trump after voting for former President Barack Obama in 2008 and 2012. Loebsack endorsed Obama in 2007, before Obama won the 2008 caucuses.

Buttigieg said in a statement Loebsack “has never let the partisan fighting in Washington get in the way of delivering on the priorities of his constituents.”

Loebsack, who will not seek reelection in 2020, said he is “willing to devote as much time” as needed to help Buttigieg win the Iowa caucuses. He previously introduced Buttigieg at a town hall in Mount Vernon in December.

U.S. Rep. Cindy Axne, a Democrat in Iowa’s Third Congressional District, has not endorsed a presidential candidate. U.S. Rep. Abby Finkenauer, a Democrat in Iowa’s First Congressional District, announced earlier this month that she endorsed former Vice President Joe Biden. Finkenauer has since campaigned alongside Biden at several events.

Biden has emphasized his experience as vice president and in Congress as part of his message to Iowans. Loebsack said he considered experience in selecting Buttigieg.

“I have every confidence that should he become president … he will have the judgment to be able to get the people he needs around him,” Loebsack said of Buttigieg.

Loebsack’s endorsement comes on the same weekend that a new Des Moines Register/CNN/Mediacom Iowa Poll shows support for Buttigieg has fallen 9 percentage points since November. He rejoins a cluster of candidates behind the poll’s new leader, U.S. Sen. Bernie Sanders of Vermont, though the race remains fluid with a lot of undecideds.

In the Iowa Poll, Buttigieg has the largest share of people who say they are considering him as a first or second choice or are actively considering him at 60%, though that’s down from 68% in November. (U.S. Sen. Elizabeth Warren of Massachusetts is just behind him on that score, with 59% considering her in some fashion.)

Loebsack said in such a tight race, Buttigieg has inspired Iowans.

“There are a lot of people who want to have hope,” Loebsack said. “They want more civility in our politics.”

Buttigieg Should Be Our Next Commander In Chief

by Steve Warnstadt, former state senator and brigadier general – Jan 10, 2020 (IowaStartingLine.com)

Recent events in the Middle East have one thing crystal clear: our country desperately needs a steady hand as the commander in chief. That’s the main reason I decided to support Pete Buttigieg.

In addition to the foreign policy he has articulated, Buttigieg’s response to recent events has demonstrated the most essential characteristic in a commander in chief: judgment. He knows that a president must have clear objectives, act in ways that meet those objectives, and anticipate consequences before acting.

He has also made clear that the primary responsibility of any commander in chief is to keep Americans safe. As a veteran, he intimately understands that those who wear the uniform bear the consequences of decisions made in comfort from time zones away. He knows what it’s like to trust people with your life, and he won’t send troops into conflict without exhausting other alternatives, or without a clearly defined mission.

I served in the Army (active and National Guard) for 30 years, with assignments ranging from an infantry battalion intelligence officer in Operation Desert Storm to being a senior NATO advisor in Kosovo, before retiring as a brigadier general.

I believe that Pete Buttigieg’s critical thinking, steady demeanor, and judgment all matter. I can also attest that, as he said in a foreign policy address in May, “The world needs the best of America right now.” Whether it is building international action to address the climate crisis, supporting those who seek freedom while credibly deterring the forces of authoritarianism, or overcoming the violent elements of ethnic nationalism and religious extremism, the world needs an America that lives its values.

This is why I didn’t hesitate when I was invited to join more than 200 foreign policy and national security professionals from across the country to publicly endorse Pete Buttigieg for president. They include people like former Secretary of the Army Eric Fanning, former National Security Advisor Anthony Lake, former deputy CIA director David Cohen, former National Security Council deputy legal advisor Tess Bridgeman and former Pentagon spokesman Doug Wilson, among others.

They are experienced men and women from all walks of life and from all parts of the country who have served around the globe, in conflict zones and high risk environments. Men and women who have dedicated their lives to making America and the world better. We have all concluded that Pete Buttigieg best understands the impact of global change, and how to involve us all in shaping strategies that make will make that change work for us and not against us.

We face a situation filled with risk, danger, and uncertainty, but also one of opportunity.

In his commitment to do whatever it takes to keep America safe and secure, in his understanding the importance of long term planning and building coalitions, in his calls to end endless war, and in his response to the call to serve his country in uniform, it’s clear to me and to many others who have also responded to that call that Pete Buttigieg is ready to serve as our commander in chief.

Pete Buttigieg Endorsed By Suburban Rep., Women’s Rights Leader, Mayors

by Pat Rynard – Jan 9, 2020 (IowaStartingLine.com, abridged)

Pete Buttigieg is headed into the Democratic debate in Des Moines next week with a new group of prominent Iowa endorsers.

State Rep. Kristen Sunde, a first-term legislator who flipped a Republican district in 2018, announced her backing of the former South Bend mayor today, as did Iowa women’s rights advocate Kirsten Anderson and 23 more local elected officials and activists from a broad cross-section of Iowa.

The addition of Sunde brings Buttigieg’s number of Polk County legislative endorsements to three (Sen. Tony Bisignano and Rep. Brian Meyer previously endorsed), and adds a well-known leader in an important Des Moines metro suburb.

“Our next president needs to be someone who can unite Americans and heal our deep divide,” said Sunde. “I believe Mayor Pete can do that. He’s intelligent, even-tempered and committed to representing a broad constituency … As someone who campaigned myself on bringing a more civil tone to politics, I am drawn to his sincere desire to elevate problem-solving over partisanship.”

If Buttigieg is to win Iowa on Feb. 3, an important part of his winning coalition will likely come through the suburbs, where his support among college-educated voters seems to run high. His event on the edge of Sunde’s district in West Des Moines just after Christmas brought out around 1,200 people.

Also helpful to Buttigieg’s efforts among women in Central Iowa will be Anderson’s backing.

She’s become a leading voice on women’s rights issues after she spoke out against sexual harassment she endured while working for Iowa Senate Republicans at the Statehouse. Anderson was an early endorser for Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand last year.

“Mayor Pete is a uniter with a fresh, positive perspective,” said Anderson. “He has a keen worldview, thanks to his time in the military, and a fresh perspective on the local government issues that affect us daily. He understands the need to unite Americans around the urgent challenges facing our communities, and he recognizes the importance we play in international politics.”

Buttigieg is also being endorsed by Loree Miles, a prominent supporter of Planned Parenthood in Central Iowa, and David Miles, a former member of the Iowa Board of Regents.

Mayor Matt Bemrich of Fort Dodge and Mayor Pro-Tem Paul Adams of Mason City are adding their name to Buttigieg’s list of supporters.

“I am supporting Pete Buttigieg because he has the unique ability to unite our country,” said Adams. “His executive experience, education, and military background give him all the tools to be an outstanding President of the United States.”

Buttigieg is also rolling out a large number of backers in Northeast Iowa, a corner of the state that saw some of the biggest swings toward Trump. It’s also home to Decorah, an area with lots of progressive activist support and high turnout.

From that area endorsing Buttigieg are Steve Weipert, the mayor of Marquette; Brian Bruening, Chair of Clayton County Democrats; Larry Popenhagen, former Fayette County Auditor; Edward Josten, Elkader City Councilmember; Curt Snitker, Lansing City Councilmember; and Andy Carlson, Decorah City Council Member.

Here is the full list of new Buttigieg endorsers:

  • State Representative Kristin Sunde, West Des Moines
  • Mike Moreland, former Iowa State Representative, Ottumwa
  • Nick Maybanks, Assistant Linn County Attorney
  • Paul Adams, Mayor Pro-Tem of Mason City
  • Matt Bemrich, Mayor of Fort Dodge
  • Steve Weipert, Mayor of Marquette
  • Brian Bruening, Chair of Clayton County Democrats
  • Larry Popenhagen, former Fayette County Auditor
  • Edward Josten, Elkader City Council
  • Curt Snitker, Lansing City Council
  • Rob Archibald, Hiawatha City Council
  • Dean Genth, former Obama Cerro Gordo County leader
  • Andy Carlson, Decorah City Council Member
  • Jim Hussey, Mid-Prairie School Board Member
  • Erica Barker, Maquoketa City Council
  • Nathan Woodward, Maquoketa City Council
  • Sean Thompson, former Ogden City Council Member
  • Andy Dudler, former University Heights City Council Member
  • Heidi Thompson, former Ogden School Board Member
  • Bob Thomas, Centerville School Board Member and former Chair of Appanoose County Democrats
  • David Miles, former member of the Iowa Board of Regents
  • Loree Miles, Planned Parenthood Board member and volunteer
  • Cody Howell, community activist
  • Adam Wright, mental health activist
  • Kirsten Anderson, women’s rights advocate