John Edwards will officially be nominated as John Kerry’s running mate this evening, and he’ll give a speech some Iowans may find familiar. Edwards is expected to touch on themes from his Iowa Caucus campaign. As you may recall, Edwards finished a surprising second in Iowa’s Caucuses, getting about one-third of the vote. In late December, before the Caucuses, Edwards debuted a speech in Des Moines that focused on what he called the “Two Americas” – and this is what he had to say back then: “In George Bush’s two Americas, workers don’t matter; owners matter. The President’s got a new name for this. He calls it the ownership society. Well, after four years of George Bush, we know what the ownership society means, don’t we? It means an America where those who own the most get the most, while those who work the hardest get less and less. We cannot go on as two nations, one favored, the other forgotten.” Rob Tully, a Des Moines attorney and former Iowa Democratic party chairman, flew to Boston yesterday so he can be in the hall tonight for Edwards’ big speech. Tully jumped on the Edwards campaign bandwagon about two-and-a-half years ago. Tully, who met Edwards years ago at a Trial Lawyers meeting, encouraged Edwards to campaign on behalf of Governor Tom Vilsack and Senator Tom Harkin in 2002 when the two Toms were seeking re-election. Back then, Tully says few Iowans knew Edwards, and few who had met him could remember if he was from South or North Carolina. (Edwards was born in South Carolina, but grew up in North Carolina and is a U.S. Senator representing the Tarheel State.) “He’s come a long way and this will be a crowning achievement for what is really a meteoric rise in a political career,” Tully says. “He’s earned every bit of it.” Tully says he’ll enjoy the moment tonight, and then return to Des Moines tomorrow. Tully once ran for a northeast Iowa Congressional seat, but now Tully says he has no interest in moving to D-C to work for Edwards if the Kerry/Edwards ticket wins in November.
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