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Sen. Kamala Harris Rallies Iowa Democrats

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Clay Masters/IPR
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Sen. Kamala Harris, D-Calif., is campaigning for several Democratic candidates in Iowa this week. She's also considered a potential contender for the 2020 Democratic presidential nomination.

The Democratic senator who gained national attention during the hearing for now-Supreme Court Justice Brett Kavanaugh is making several stops in the state that kicks off the presidential nominating process. Sen. Kamala Harris of California campaigned for several Democratic candidates in Iowa, including the secretary of state nominee Deidre DeJear. Harris told a rally for Polk County Democrats in Des Moines Monday evening this election requires Americans to look in a mirror and ask “who are we” and part of the answer she says is, “better than this.”

“This is a moment to fight for the best of who we are,” she said. “And fight we will. And y’know here’s how I think about it. Anything worth fighting for is a fight worth having.”

Sen. Harris is among a number of prominent politicians considered to be eyeing the Democratic presidential nomination in 2020 who have made stops here. Sens. Cory Booker and Bernie Sanders have also campaigned for Democrats running this midterm.

Sen. Harris is the first African-American woman California has elected to the U.S. Senate. Several weeks ago, she endorsed DeJear, who would be the first African-American woman elected to statewide office in Iowa.

DeJear told the crowd at Monday’s rally they need to encourage more people to vote this midterm.

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Credit Clay Masters / IPR
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IPR
Democratic Secretary of State candidate Deidre DeJear is the first African-American woman nominated to statewide office by a major political party in Iowa.

“And we know there are folks that are raising a lot of money to oppose the things that we stand for and that’s okay because there is no amount of money that can counter the people power that’s in this room. No amount of money,” she said.

DeJear is running against incumbent Republican Secretary of State Paul Pate.  Libertarian Jules Ofenbakh is also on the ballot. Sen. Harris has more events scheduled today in Cedar Rapids, Iowa City and Cedar Falls.

Clay Masters is Iowa Public Radio’s Morning Edition host and lead political reporter.