Former President Bill Clinton rallied with about 600 Democrats in Des Moines this afternoon, calling U.S. Senate candidate Bruce Braley the “grow together, work together” candidate in the race.
“I can’t tell you everything that will come up in the next six years, but I can tell you this: You need to vote for progress, not protest,” Clinton said. “You need to think about what you want for the next six years.”
Clinton told the crowd Republican challenger Joni Ernst is offering “grow apart” ideas.
“She has said she would have voted against the Farm Bill,” Clinton said. “That’s not a ‘work together’ and it’s not even a Republican position. It may be in Tea Party heaven, but it’s not in the world that you live in in Washington.”
Clinton said he “kinda liked” Ernst’s first campaign ad, when she talked about castrating pigs while growing up on a southwest Iowa farm.
“I was thinking about when his opponent ran that ad at the beginning of the campaign and then she said she wanted to take her pork-cutting skills to Washington and make ’em squeal,” Clinton said. “Now, that sounds good, but in order for it to work, you’ve got to know the difference between pork and people.”
Musician James Taylor performed briefly for the crowd, playing a couple of tunes, spreading a “get out the vote” message and railing against the outside groups which have spent millions running ads against Braley.
“Our future is at stake,” Taylor said. “Good government is at stake…and it’s important that we say, ‘No,’ that our vote is not for sale, our election is not for sale.”
Braley, who spoke right after Taylor, borrowed one of the lines from some of the singer’s greatest hits to make his points with the crowd.
“When you’re down a troubled and you need a helping hand and nothing is going right, all you have to do is call and, as your senator, I’ll be there,” Braley said, to cheers from the crowd.
AUDIO of Des Moines rally, 40:00
Braley and the former president are heading to Waterloo this evening for a Braley campaign fundraiser. Ernst is campaigning today (Saturday) with Governor Terry Branstad and other Republican candidates on the statewide ticket.