Kansas Senator Bob Dole won the Iowa Caucuses in 1988 and 1996, but the Kansan who took Dole’s place in the U.S. Senate apparently is ready to end his own bid for the White House. No one is answering the phone at Sam Brownback’s Iowa campaign headquarters and a campaign spokesman based out of state told Radio Iowa he is “not at liberty to comment.”
But a few Brownback insiders have told reporters that Brownback will drop out of the race for the 2008 Republican presidential nomination on Friday. Brownback put on a big press to finish second in the Iowa GOP’s Straw Poll this past August, but he wound up finishing third.
In 2000, the most recent year for a Republican Party Straw Poll, third-place finisher Elizabeth Dole ended her own presidential bid shortly afterwards. Brownback’s most recent campaign swing through Iowa was last Friday when he appeared at a forum with Democratic presidential candidate Joe Biden to tout their plan for Iraq.
“I like these little, short three-letter names — Joe, Sam,” Brownback joked as he began his remarks. “I think they sound very presidential.” Brownback was speaking at a luncheon sponsored by the Greater Des Moines Committee on Foreign Relations.
“One of the things that I’ve been seeing as much as anything in this presidential cycle and I heard it yesterday on a call-in show I was doing, it was a lady just saying, ‘You know, I’ve never been so hopeless as I am right now. It just doesn’t seem like we can come together on anything…She hit a chord of what I’ve heard from a lot of people,” Brownback said. “…I told her, well, stay tuned.”
Brownback has told Kansans he would serve no more than two terms in the U.S. Senate and he is rumored to be considering a run in 2010 to be governor of Kansas.