2020 Iowa Caucuses

Kate Payne/IPR

Likely Democratic caucusgoers say climate change is increasingly among their top issues. In response, presidential candidates are rolling out ambitious policy goals to drastically cut emissions and retool the economy. But there are real questions about if the country can transition as quickly as Democrats are proposing.

Kate Payne/IPR

Former Massachusetts governor and presidential candidate Deval Patrick says he will be competing in the Iowa caucuses. His late entrance to the race puts him at a distinct disadvantage in the state, where many of his competitors have been building grassroots organizations for months, and some of them for years.

The scientific community says the world must zero out greenhouse gas emissions by 2050 to avoid the worst impacts of climate change. In response, Democratic presidential candidates are rolling out aggressive climate plans. On the thirteenth episode of Caucus Land, we'll talk about what it would take to meet those goals. And later, a conversation with Vermont Senator Bernie Sanders.


Ben Kieffer / IPR

Late last month, freshman congresswoman Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez officially endorsed Vermont Senator Bernie Sanders for president. In his latest swing through Iowa, Ocasio-Cortez joined Sanders on the campaign trail, marking her first trip to the state. 

How much does her endorsement mean to likely caucusgoers in Iowa? 

Kate Payne / IPR

New York U.S. Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez rallied voters in Iowa this weekend with Vermont senator and presidential hopeful Bernie Sanders, hoping to win over supporters for their Green New Deal.

Sen. Lindsay Graham of South Carolina speaks to Iowa Republicans at the 2019 Lincoln Reagan Dinner in downtown Des Moines.
Grant Gerlock / IPR

Sen. Lindsey Graham, R-South Carolina, was in Des Moines Friday night to push conservatives in Iowa to get behind President Donald Trump’s reelection.

Wayne For America

River to River's "Home State View" series helps us understand how the presidential candidates are viewed as leaders in the state they call home. Host Ben Kieffer interviews journalists who have spent years covering the candidates. We get the little-known detail about each hopeful's history. Click the "play" button to listen.

John Pemble / IPR

 

 

With Caucus Day less than three months away, River to River has kicked off a series of interviews with 2020 presidential candidates. In this segment, host Ben Kieffer talks with New Jersey Senator Cory Booker. Booker discusses his plans to expand gun regulations, how he hopes to tackle climate change, health care, a new plan aimed at revitalizing rural communities, and how he stays sharp on the campaign trail with meditation.  

Clay Masters / Iowa Public Radio

With less than three months until the Iowa caucuses, Democrats running for president are spending a lot more time campaigning in the state that leads the nominating process. That includes South Bend, Indiana Mayor Pete Buttigieg who just finished an Iowa campaign tour on Monday. He drew sharp contrasts to Massachusetts Senator Elizabeth Warren who has been rising in the state’s polls.

Clay Masters/IPR

This weekend saw one of the largest events on the state’s political calendar: the Iowa Democratic Party’s Liberty and Justice Celebration. Thirteen presidential candidates took the stage in Des Moines Friday, but the campaigning didn’t end there: two dozen more events followed as candidates criss-crossed the state.

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Katarina Sostaric / IPR

As the Democrats running for president travel through Iowa ahead of the first-in-the-nation caucuses, they’re talking about what they would do to reduce gun violence in the U.S.

In early August, campaign trail conversations about gun control intensified. Back-to-back mass shootings in El Paso and Dayton reignited calls for lawmakers to act.

John Pemble / IPR

Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders nearly defeated Hillary Clinton in the 2016 Iowa caucuses. He’s running again in a much more crowded field in 2020. Sen. Sanders talks about his health, his Medicare For All healthcare plan and climate change with IPR Caucus Land co-hosts Clay Masters and Kate Payne before his first event back on the Iowa trail since his heart attack in early October.

Katie Peikes / IPR

Three Democratic presidential candidates courted Latino voters during a town hall Thursday in Des Moines, while a fourth spoke via prerecorded video.

Gage Skidmore / Creative Commons

River to River's "Home State View" series helps us understand how the presidential candidates are viewed as leaders in the states they call home. Host Ben Kieffer interviews journalists who have spent years covering the candidates. We get the little-known details about each hopeful's history. Click the "play" button to listen.

John Pemble/IPR file

Vermont senator and presidential hopeful Bernie Sanders says he would direct his Justice Department to investigate fossil fuel companies for corruption stemming from their role in exacerbating climate change. 

John Pemble/IPR file photo

Iowa’s voter identification law is creating confusion for some Des Moines college students who have out-of-state IDs. Registered voters without an Iowa ID are supposed to receive a voting card in the mail automatically, but some Drake University students say they have waited weeks without getting theirs.

Running a presidential campaign isn’t cheap and one of the first places candidates spend their money is Iowa. On the eleventh episode of Caucus Land, we’ll talk about recent fundraising numbers and what they tell us about the state of the race. Plus, a conversation with New Jersey Sen. Cory Booker.


John Pemble / IPR

Minnesota Sen. Amy Klobuchar is running for the Democratic presidential nomination and regularly stresses the importance of working in a bipartisan fashion. Sen. Klobuchar talks about the importance of working across party lines and her background as a prosecutor with IPR Caucus Land co-hosts Clay Masters and Kate Payne on her campaign bus in Davenport.

John Pemble/IPR

River to River's "Home State View" series helps us understand how the presidential candidates are viewed as leaders in the states they call home. Host Ben Kieffer interviews journalists who have spent years covering the candidates. We get the little-known details about each hopeful's history. Click the "play" button to listen.

Clay Masters / IPR

Democratic presidential candidate Elizabeth Warren says in the coming weeks she will start unveiling her plan for paying for Medicare for All. Critics have said she has been avoiding saying whether or not her healthcare plan would raise taxes on the middle class. 

Matt Alvarez / IPR

With just over 100 days left until the Iowa caucuses, River to River  is kicking off a series of conversations with presidential candidates. Julián Castro joined host Ben Kieffer in IPR's Iowa City studio to discuss the House of Representatives impeachment inquiry into President Donald Trump and the Newton Maytag plant that went from manufacturing washing machines to wind turbines. Castro also answers questions from listeners.

Healthcare commonly polls as one of voters' top issues and political candidates have been running campaigns on it for years. This cycle, Democrats are having a very different conversation about how to fundamentally transform the way Americans get care. On the tenth episode of Caucus Land we talk about where candidates stand on healthcare and what their plans could mean for patients and providers.


Thomas Hawk via flickr creative commons / https://www.flickr.com/photos/thomashawk/14471621099/

Democratic presidential candidates debated for the fourth time Tuesday night, this time in suburban Columbus, Ohio. The debate comes at a time when Sen. Elizabeth Warren, D-Mass., is ascending in Iowa and national polls. But for some Iowans, Warren’s new status as a frontrunner is refreshing some underlining concerns, particularly when it comes to healthcare policy.

John Pemble / IPR

New Jersey Sen. Cory Booker is running for the Democratic presidential nomination and regularly points out on the trail that he still lives in inner city Newark where he was once mayor. Sen. Booker talks about how that perspective would influence his presidency with IPR Caucus Land co-hosts Clay Masters and Kate Payne on his RV as he traveled between campaign stops in Boone and West Des Moines. He also discusses healthcare and gun policy.

Amy Mayer / IPR

Travel back just two short months to a quintessential scene: it’s a farm so close to suburban sprawl you can practically see the retail developments from the gravel road. A large American flag hangs from the door of a big, white barn. Classic red tractors surround an area filled with folding chairs as music is piped in and volunteers in Amy for America T-shirts work the crowd with clipboards in hand.

This is LaVon and Craig Griffieon’s family farm in Ankeny and on this day it’s the site of Minnesota Sen. Amy Klobuchar’s campaign event announcing her proposals for agriculture.


Iowa farmers are finding themselves caught between the White House and China in the president's disputes over trade and agriculture policy. Some say their support for him is wearing thin. On the ninth episode of Caucus Land, we'll look at how Democratic presidential candidates are trying to win them over.


John Pemble / IPR

Some of the presidential candidates who have been organizing for months in Iowa are starting to see their work pay off in the latest Des Moines Register/CNN/Mediacom Poll that came out Saturday. Especially Massachusetts Senator Elizabeth Warren.

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Clay Masters/IPR file

The Democratic National Committee gave conditional approval Friday to the Iowa Democratic Party’s plan to hold satellite caucuses in addition to traditional precinct caucuses on Feb. 3, 2020.

John Pemble / Iowa Public Radio

More than 11,000 tickets have been sold for the Polk County Democratic Party’s Steak Fry Saturday in Des Moines. Seventeen presidential candidates will take the stage and address the crowd. The county party rebooted the Steak Fry in 2017 which for years was hosted by Democratic Sen. Tom Harkin who retired from office in 2014 and was replaced by Republican Sen. Joni Ernst.

Tuition at Iowa's public universities has been on a steady climb. Since 2009, the average cost of tuition and fees is up 40 percent. State funding has not recovered from cuts made during the Great Recession.
Rachel Radkowski / Flickr

At a welcome back event at Iowa State University in August, students filled the Great Hall in the Memorial Union. They walked past tables sponsored by campus clubs and local organizations offering every kind of free swag from can cozies to Frisbees to pizza. Many of the students were also aware of another offer that has been proposed by some Democratic candidates for president: free college tuition.

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