He’s been campaigning for governor for the past one-hundred-10 days, but Democrat Mike Blouin made his candidacy official today (Tuesday).
“I’m Mike Blouin and I’m proud today to stand before you as a candidate for governor,” Blouin said during an early morning news conference in Des Moines.
Blouin resigned from his job as Governor Tom Vilsack’s economic development director in July, and Blouin promises a continuation of Vilsack’s policies if he’s elected. “I’m very comfortable with where the Vilsack/Pederson Administration has led us. They’ve gone through some of the toughest economic times that the state has seen since the Depression and kept us focused…and moved us into the ‘New Iowa,'” Blouin says. “I’d like to take the greatness of Iowa that they’ve recognized and identified and build on that greatness.” Blouin says he has “no problem” with voters who cast ballots for Tom Vilsack in 1998 and 2002 casting a ballot for him in 2006.
Blouin is opposed to abortion, a position at odds with the views of many Democratic voters. Blouin says voters need to “look at the whole picture” when evaluating him as a candidate. “My position is not intended to polarize. It’s intended to help us understand that life is a long time and we’ve got to care about people at all phases of life,” Blouin says. According to Blouin, the state must care about “women and children” before and after the maternity ward. “That’s clearly an area we have work to do,” Blouin says.
But Blouin says he’s not advocating anti-abortion laws that might not be constitutional. “I’m not inclined to promote changes that are just going to be court tests,” Blouin says. “I want to concentrate on doing things that will make life better.”
Blouin who was a grade school teacher before he entered politics and ran for the state legislature in the late ’60s, then congress in the 1970s. He staged his campaign kick-off announcement in a day care center for inner city children, and over a dozen kids were standing on a stage behind him as he delivered his announcement speech. “This race for governor is not about the past. It’s about their future, a future that can offer promise and security so long as the leaders of today remain focused on the issues of tomorrow,” Blouin said.
Blouin promised to reveal detailed proposals on education, health care and economic development in the coming months.