Sam Clovis

An Iowan who’s serving in the Trump Administration after working on Trump’s 2016 campaign today said Iowans should trust Donald Trump’s negotiating skills. Sam Clovis, a former Morningside College economics profession, is urging farmers to “be calm” amid the angst over falling commodity prices and tariff threats.

“It’s hard. I know it’s hard, but I think they also need to be patient because he’s not going to sell the country down the river,” Clovis says. “He’s not.”

Clovis, a Republican candidate for the US Senate in 2014, joined the Trump campaign in August of 2015 and is now working in the USDA. Clovis suggested some headway already has been made in the trade dispute with China.

“We’ll pull out of this in good shape,” Clovis said. “Now there’s going to be some give and take. There always is, but we’re going to get a good deal because I have confidence in the guy making the deal. I do.”

Clovis spoke to the Westside Conservative Club early this morning.

AUDIO of Clovis’ remarks

“I am so tired of being dragged through a knothole by The Washington Post and The New York Times. In fact, I really feel slighted if I go a week without my name being mentioned prominently in something. In fact, I’m surprised you didn’t play the Russian national anthem when I came up here,” Clovis said and the audience laughed.

Clovis did not use the term “witch hunt” in reference to the investigation into Russian meddling in the last election, but he did offer a strong defense of the president. Clovis, who testified before the grand jury, told Iowans this (Wednesday) morning he “was right in the middle” of recruiting many of the Trump campaign officials who’ve been the focus of attention.

“The surprising aspect of all this is — and I have to be careful what I say — is that when there’s nothing there folks, there’s nothing there,” Clovis said. “…It is stunning how incredibly convoluted that whole narrative has become and how totally inaccurate it has been presented in the press.”

Clovis said he’s not “bitter or resentful” about opposition to his nomination to be an undersecretary in the USDA. Clovis withdrew his name from consideration for the post last fall.

Clovis is spending much of a two-week vacation with his wife at their northwest home in Hinton, Iowa. Clovis joked with the central Iowa crowd this (Wednesday) morning that he’s lived out of a suitcase for four-and-a-half of the last five years.

Clovis answered questions from the audience about the “deep state” and the “bare knuckle fist fight” over the ethanol production mandate.