Events this past weekend have showcased the closing messages both major political parties have for Iowa voters.
Governor Kim Reynolds spoke Saturday at a fundraiser hosted by fellow Republican Joni Ernst. “We need you showing up. We need you starting at the top of the ticket, going to the bottom of the ticket. What are we going to do? We’re going to flip it over. We’re going to start, we’re going to go to the bottom, ’cause this isn’t about one individual,” Reynolds said. “This is about a team.”
Senator Chuck Grassley, at the same event, emphasized the team concept. “For the first time since 1956 the entire Iowa delegation to the congress can be Republican,” Grassley said. “…You’re going to hear it on November 8th,” Grassley said, “that there’s a vote that’s going to be overwhelmingly red.”
A week ago, a Des Moines Register Iowa Poll suggested Grassley’s in his toughest re-election campaign since 1980.
Mike Franken, his Democratic opponent, campaigned in six cities this weekend.
“My sense is that across the political spectrum that people are ready for something different,” Franken said in Mason City. “…I’m campaigning as if I would be 20 points behind or 20 points ahead. In boxing, be careful, you’re opponent’s still dangerous.”
Deidre DeJear, the Democratic candidate for governor, urged a crowd of Democrats on Sunday to get out of their “comfort zone” and go door-to-door to reach voters.
“Are you going to fight for freedom today? That is what’s at stake,” DeJear said. “…I know that we have an uphill battle that is ahead of, but we have to reminded in these moments what we’re capable of.”
The third-ranking Democrat in the U.S. House campaigned in Des Moines with DeJear and third district Congresswoman Cindy Axne on Sunday in Des Moines. South Carolina Congressman James Clyburn said Democrats and President Biden were able to make some progress in the past two years, but the work isn’t done.
“If we sit this election out,” Clyburn said, “if we lose this election, the clock will once again get turned back.”
Axne urged Democrats to “step up” and push back against Republicans. “We only have two weeks left folks. We need you to put it all on the line, every single bit of it,” Axne said. “This all comes down to the ballot box.”
Zach Nunn, the Republican running in the third district, didn’t mention his opponent Axne by name in remarks to hundreds of Republicans at the Ernst fundraiser on Saturday. Instead, Nunn focused on GOP priorities like tax cuts and renewable fuels.
“Team, we’ve got a great opportunity to do some incredible things in Washington,” Nunn said, “but it starts in Iowa.”
Early voting in Iowa started last Wednesday. Absentee ballot request forms — for voting-by-mail — are due in county auditor’s at the close of business today. You may vote early in person at a county auditor’s office. Some counties have satellite voting centers operating in the lead-up to Election Day.