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Footnotes on the 2020 Caucus: Favorite photos of 2019 and a candidate quiz

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Footnotes on the 2020 Caucus is an occasional series observing some of the traditions, rituals and oddities of the Iowa presidential caucuses.

Sen. Cory Booker meets a Boston Terrier on the Ped Mall, June 8, 2019. Zak Neumann/Little Village

It was one of those rare moments when a candidate gets to relax during a long day on the campaign trail. Well after 11 p.m. on June 8, Sen. Cory Booker was leaving The Maker’s Loft on the Ped Mall, following a private tour of the store, when one of his campaign aides asked him a question.

“Hey, Cory,” the aide, who was talking to a woman walking her Boston Terrier, called out. “Do you want to meet a dog?”

“Yes, I do,” Booker said, enthusiastically. He really did, as you can tell from the photo above.

It’s one of my favorite photos of this year.

Throughout 2019, Little Village photographer Zak Neumann has done a remarkable job capturing the endless parade of candidates coming through Iowa City and Cedar Rapids. I’ve gone through his work, and chosen a few favorite photographs to share with readers as the year comes to an end.

The presence or absence of a candidate in the photos below should not be taken as an indication of how Zak or I (or Little Village in general) feel about that candidate. On the other hand, the photos of babies at campaign events should be taken as an indication that both Zak and I (as well as Little Village in general) enjoy seeing babies at campaign events.

In the photos below, you’ll find more dogs, more candidates, a few non-political celebrities and, as you’ve probably already guessed, babies.

But first, a quiz.

Name that candidate

Photo illustration by Zak Neumann/Little Village

Everyone pictured above was running for the 2020 Democratic nomination for president this year. All eight have either held elected office, or do so currently. All eight campaigned in Iowa City and Cedar Rapids. Without resorting to any search engine sorcery, how many can you name?

The names can be found at the bottom of this story.

Other than a sense of accomplishment, there’s no prize for correctly identifying all of the candidates. But that’s only fair, because none of the people in these photos will get the prize they wanted. All eight have dropped out of the race.

Candidates being candidates

Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand of New York answers questions from the overflow crowd during a campaign event at The Airliner. Feb 18, 2019. — Zak Neumann/Little Village
Mayor Pete Buttigieg waiting to be introduced at the Iowa City Public Library, March 4, 2019. — Zak Neumann/Little Village
Joe Biden talking to voters at Indian Creek Nature Center in Cedar Rapids, Sept. 20, 2019. — Zak Neumann/Little Village
Sen. Bernie Sanders with his Iowa State Director Misty Rebik backstage at the Political Party Live recording, Coe College, Cedar Rapids, June 7, 2019. — Zak Neumann/Little Village
Sen. Kamala Harris on stage during a town hall event at the Iowa Memorial Union. Wednesday, April 10, 2018. — Zak Neumann/Little Village
Sen. Elizabeth Warren entering a campaign rally at the IMU River Amphitheater, Sept. 19, 2019. — Zak Neumann/Little Village

Famous people who aren’t candidates at campaign events

Karamo Brown, from Netflix’s “Queer Eye”, speaking at the LGBTQ Presidential Forum in Cedar Rapids, Friday, Sep 20, 2019. — Zak Neumann/Little Village
Karamo Brown, who recently competed on “Dancing with the Stars,” shows off a few dance moves with Angelica Ross, star of “Pose” and “American Horror Story” at the LGBTQ Presidential Forum in Cedar Rapids, Friday, Sep 20, 2019. — Zak Neumann/Little Village
Susan Sarandon with her dog, Penny, in West Branch for Sen. Bernie Sanders’ ice cream social campaign event. Aug. 19, 2019. — Zak Neumann/Little Village
Susan Sarandon with her dog, Penny, in West Branch for Sen. Bernie Sanders’ ice cream social campaign event. Aug. 19, 2019. — Zak Neumann/Little Village
Rosario Dawson promoting the Center for Worker Justice on social media. Saturday, Dec 7, 2019. — Zak Neumann/Little Village
Rosario Dawson at the Center for Workers Justice of Eastern Iowa, after a campaign event for Sen. Cory Booker, Saturday, Dec 7, 2019. — Zak Neumann/Little Village
Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez speaks druing a rally for Sen. Bernie Sanders in Coralville. Saturday, Nov. 9, 2019. — Zak Neumann/Little Village

Politically active babies

Baby with noise-cancelling headphones at Sen. Elizabeth Warren’s IMU rally, Dec. 2, 2019. — Zak Neumann/Little Village
Baby at Mayor Pete Buttigieg’s rally in Coralville, Sunday, Dec 8, 2019. — Zak Neumann/Little Village
Baby at Sen. Cory Booker’s Center for Workers Justice campaign event, Saturday, Dec 7, 2019. — Zak Neumann/Little Village
Joe Biden meets a baby outside his newly opened campaign office on Gilbert Street. Wednesday, Aug 8, 2019. — Zak Neumann/Little Village
Sen. Amy Klobuchar talks with Janice Weiner and her grandaughter Alaska following a campaign event at Iowa City Public Library. Saturday, May 4, 2019. — Zak Neumann/Little Village

One campaign in three photos

When Beto O’Rourke announced his candidacy in March, many national political writers confidently predicted he would instantly become a front-runner for the Democratic nomination. That didn’t happen, but there was a good deal of excitement during his first campaign swing through Iowa.

Early campaign stories about O’Rourke invariably mentioned his interest in skateboarding. I mentioned it in Little Village‘s story on O’Rourke’s first visit to Cedar Rapids, but I had a better reason than most to do so. Zak, LV videographer Jason Smith, intern Theo Prineas and I spotted O’Rourke going into Eduskate Board Shop, prior to his scheduled campaign event. It wasn’t a media stunt — there was no media present except LV, and O’Rourke was already deep in conversation with Eduskate owner Nate Sherwood when we walked into the store.

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When O’Rourke made his first campaign visit to Iowa City in April, he was still attracting large, enthusiastic crowds. But by the time he spoke at the Iowa Democratic Party Hall of Fame celebration in Cedar Rapids on June 9, O’Rourke’s chances of winning were rapidly fading. On Nov. 1, he dropped out of the race.

Three of Zak’s photos capture the arc of O’Rourke’s campaign.

Beto O’Rourke talks with EduSkate owner Nate Sherwood in the store he owns with Lindsey Podzimek. Friday, Mar 15, 2019. — Zak Neumann/Little Village
Beto O’Rourke speaks to a crowd of supporters at the Iowa Memorial Union. Sunday, April 7, 2019. — Zak Neumann/Little Village
Beto O’Rourke at the Iowa Democratic Party Hall of Fame celebration, June 9, 2019. — Zak Neumann/Little Village

And one final photo from the 2019 campaign trail…

At Sen. Bernie Sanders’ campaign rally in Coralville, Saturday, Nov 9, 2019. — Zak Neumann/Little Village

Answers to the candidate quiz

Top row, left to right: Gov. Jay Inslee, Beto O’Rourke, Joe Sestak, Mayor Bill de Blasio.
Bottom row, left to right: Rep. Eric Swalwell, Gov. Steve Bullock, Rep. Tim Ryan, John Hickenlooper.


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Thoughts? Tips? A cute picture of a dog? Share them with LV » editor@littlevillagemag.com

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