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John Hickenlooper: ‘We must be progressive, but also pragmatic’

When John Hickenlooper took the stage at the Iowa Democratic Party Hall of Fame celebration in Cedar Rapids on June 9, it’s likely that members of the audience only knew a few things about him. All were aware he’d been governor of Colorado (2011-2019). Most also probably knew he’d been mayor of Denver (2003-2011). Many likely knew he was the co-founder of a Denver brewpub (he frequently mentions this). […]

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Eric Swalwell becomes the first Democrat to drop out of the 2020 presidential race

After struggling to get attention in a field of two dozen candidates for the Democratic presidential nomination, Rep. Eric Swalwell of California dominated the 2020 election new cycle for a moment on Monday, by dropping out of the race. […]

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Beto O’Rourke: ‘We must first fix this badly broken democracy’

Beto O’Rourke started his speech at the Iowa Democratic Party Hall of Fame celebration by discussing that he is grateful for “this moment of truth for our country,” as he called it. “The power and joy with which we meet this moment is something I’m grateful for, because we are all focused on the same goal for this country: defeating Donald Trump […]

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Amy Klobuchar: ‘My background is a little different from Donald Trump’

“Thank you Iowa Democrats,” Sen. Amy Klobuchar said as she took the stage at the Iowa Democratic Hall of Fame celebration. “I am your senator next door. And I can see Iowa from my porch.” The Minnesota senator was touching on two aspects of her campaign with that opening. […]

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Elizabeth Warren: ‘Who does this government work for?’

Sen. Elizabeth Warren took the stage at the Iowa Democratic Party Hall of Fame celebration to the same music she’s used ever since announcing her run for president in February: “9 to 5.” The song is upbeat — just the thing to get a crowd pumped up — but Dolly Parton’s lyrics are about unfair treatment most Americans would find familiar. […]

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Cory Booker: ‘Our party does not need a savior, we need each other’

Sen. Cory Booker of New Jersey was the first 2020 candidate to speak at the Iowa Democratic Party Hall of Fame celebration, and at the beginning of his speech, he acknowledged the obvious. “We have a lot—a lot—of presidential candidates here this afternoon,” Booker said. He then pivoted to a theme he includes in all his speeches. […]

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Kirsten Gillibrand: ‘Now is the time to fight like hell’

Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand started her speech at the Iowa Democratic Party Hall of Fame celebration by recounting how a Fox News anchor described her: “Not very polite.” “I proudly count myself among the ‘formerly well-behaved women’ fighting back, the women in this room, the men who love us,” the New York Democrat said […]

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Jay Inslee: ‘I will make defeating climate change the first, paramount and overwhelming duty of the United States’

There were two things most people attending the Iowa Democratic Hall of Fame celebration knew about Jay Inslee before he took the stage on June 9. First, he’s the governor of Washington state (fewer people were likely aware that he’s in his second term, or that he spent 15 years in Congress before becoming governor). Second, he’s pledged to make fighting climate change the central focus of all his actions, if he’s elected president. […]

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John Delaney: ‘We need to become the party of ideas’

John Delaney took the stage at the Iowa Democratic Party Hall of Fame celebration to sound of Johnny Cash singing “I’ve been everywhere.” “I have been everywhere,” the former Maryland congressman said. It wasn’t an idle boast. Delaney has visited all 99 counties in Iowa, since he started his run for president almost two years ago. […]

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Kamala Harris: ‘I am prepared to make the case for America, and to prosecute the case against Donald Trump’

In her speech at the Iowa Democratic Party Hall of Fame celebration, Sen. Kamala Harris repeatedly called out Donald Trump by name, delivering a metaphorical bill of indictment against the president. “And Iowa, I’m going to tell you, there’s a rap sheet full of evidence to make the case,” the California senator said. […]

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Pete Buttigieg: ‘God does not belong to any political party’

During his first campaign appearance in Iowa City at The Airliner in March, Pete Buttigieg felt the need to address “the question of why a 37-year-old mayor thinks he has any business being in a discussion about the highest office in the land,” as he phrased it. But the time the mayor of South Bend, Indiana, spoke at the Iowa Democratic Hall of Fame celebration on June 9, no one was asking if Buttigieg had any business being there. […]

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