Lindsey Graham for Trump 2020
DES MOINES, IA—On Saturday, November 9, Senator Lindsey Graham (R-SC) visited Drake University College Republicans for a conversation on conservatism and what it looks like for young conservatives.
Graham’s visit brought a brief reprieve from the constant stream of Democrats who have been visiting Iowa in anticipation of the Iowa caucuses and later Democratic nomination processes. Unlike Democrats, few Republicans have visited the state because President Donald Trump is assumed to be the Republican nominee for president in 2020.
Graham came to Iowa on Friday to speak at the Lincoln-Reagan Dinner, a formal gathering of Iowa Republicans to fundraise, build support, and meet and greet. At the dinner, he praised Trump, criticized Democrats in Congress, and asked for continued support.
In front of assembled College Republicans and other invited guests on Saturday, however, Graham focused on motivating the young Republicans in the room to stay Republican, stick to their values, and advocate for their Republicans representatives, senators, and president by knocking doors.
Unlike Democrats who are here almost daily advocating for themselves and for the party, Graham belabored the importance of volunteering, knocking doors, and taking action beyond voting to keep Republicans in their offices. He impressed upon guests that Republican seats were at risk of takeover by a radically socialist left that would turn the United States into “a second Soviet Union thirty years after the Berlin Wall fell.”
Graham’s point about the importance of knocking doors and taking action should be noted by Democrats, though their policies are starkly different. Graham is right—Iowa is the frontline of freedom and does hold a good amount of sway in the momentum of the country.
However, organized people on the ground are necessary for candidates—whether it be Democrats or the presidential nominee—to win over Iowa’s swing-state voters. According to the Republican Party of Iowa Chair Jeff Kauffman, Trump’s win in 2016 was due to Republicans’ impressive organizational on-the-ground effort in Iowa that outdid Hillary Clinton’s.
While Republicans won’t come in masse to Iowa before February’s caucus, they will increasingly visit the state in February through November 2020 to ensure that Trump maintains his nearly ten-point lead over the Democratic candidate as he did in November 2016.