Amy Klobuchar Announces POTUS Run

Amy Klobuchar

In a snowstorm on Boom Island, Senator Amy Klobuchar (D-MN) touted her home state roots while announcing her ambitions for the highest office in the land.



Sen. Klobuchar’s announcement was not a surprise, and followed a week of controversy over allegations of her treatment of staff. Still, there are those touting her “Midwest pragmatism” as a winning formula against the bombast of President Trump. She is the 5th woman to announce as a major candidate, and the 5th sitting US Senator in the ever-expanding 2020 race.


Klobuchar is popular with voters. At 58, she’s on her third term in the Senate — elections she’s won by landslide margins. She won reelection in 2018 by a whopping 26 points over Republican opponent Jim Newberger, including in 43 counties that President Donald Trump won in 2016.

She’s good at retail politics — a skill that’s served many candidates well in early caucus and primary states. She visits all 87 Minnesota counties every year, a fact she is quick to tell reporters. And she can fundraise; she famously once got her ex-boyfriend to donate $17,000 to her campaign.

But she also faces challenges. On the issues that that the Democratic Party’s base are prioritizing — Medicare-for-all, tuition-free college, a $15 minimum wage — Klobuchar is notably quiet. While other 2020 hopefuls like Sens. Kamala Harris (D-CA) and Cory Booker (D-NJ) have made a point to sign on to major progressive legislation around health care and inequality, Klobuchar hasn’t. She’s earned a reputation as a moderate and has made a career of keeping out of the fights that will likely dominate the 2020 Democratic primary.

If there is a more moderate lane to be found in the 2020 Democratic Primary, many point to Sen. Klobuchar as the candidate to find that elusive sweet spot. But if one remains popular by carefully picking their battles, a POTUS run will quickly test many areas a candidate might otherwise wish to avoid. We will see how Sen. Klobuchar handles the voices of criticism from her left, and if she can brave them with a smile as well as she did the Minnesota cold on Boom Island today.

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Born and raised in West Virginia, Andrew has since lived and traveled around the world several times over. Though frequently writing about politics out of a sense of duty and love of country, most of the time he would prefer discussions on history, culture, occasionally nerding on aviation, and his amateur foodie tendencies. He can usually be found misspelling/misusing words on Twitter @four4thefire.

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6 thoughts on “Amy Klobuchar Announces POTUS Run

  1. Back in 2004, my main argument was that Gephardt should have won.

    “Okay, very good. Let’s give the government back to the non-crazy grownups.”

    I still think that that message would have resonated in such a way that would have won Ohio without losing a single state that Kerry also won. (Maybe even picked up a couple more.)

    Alas, Gephardt did even worse than Dean did in Iowa and then we had a crazy-anti-war left vs. the sane establishment player who, it should be pointed out, did *NOT* dodge the draft in Vietnam. Hey! Let’s talk about Vietnam! Vietnam, Vietnam, Vietnam! Did you know that Kerry was in Vietnam! Testified about it before Congress and everything! Even threw his medals over the wall! Wait, those weren’t *HIS* medals. They were the guy next to him’s medals. Why are you talking about Vietnam, anyway? Let’s talk about Iraq and the ec- OOOOH WE FOUND PROOF THAT BUSH DODGED THE DRAFT IN VIETNAM AND DIDN’T SHOW UP FOR NATIONAL GUARD DUTY oh crap those documents were forged?

    So many memories.

    Anyway, I still think that the best play is something like “Okay, very good. Let’s give the government back to the non-crazy grownups.”

    Insofar as Klobuchar’s one of the non-crazy grownups, I’m down, I guess. Hey, what’s this about a Green New Deal that everybody’s excited about? Is there a FAQ I could read to get more information?

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  2. I think the fivethirtyeight analysis of her run is dead on. She has a path, if basically everything goes right for her. From where I sit, I have a hard time seeing her getting past Iowa.

    In fact, she may take Iowa by default: her popularity in neighboring Minnesota may offer enough cover for bigger players like Harris, Warren, Gillibrand, Sanders (blech), and Booker to say “Nope, we’re skipping Iowa,” so their performance there won’t matter.

    In fact, THAT may be good towards defusing the bizarrely disproportional importance the Iowa caucuses have in the process.

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    • I think everybody but Harris, Sanders, Warren, and the yet-to-announce Biden are pretty much banking on an “everything goes right” path to the nomination.

      I also think Warren is probably very unlikely to make it (which is kind of a shame), but she’s got name recognition and popularity within the party to run on.

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  3. I’m a fan and donated to her campaign. I’m a touch bitter that the media’s been so absent on her run but it’s not surprising. Sensible moderate liberal who matches with a lot of the voters in the party but doesn’t fit the right wing media model of a raving leftist nut or the main stream medias fetish for an interesting politician who they can balance off of Trump as some kind of left wing equivalent to him is not someone either of those groups want to highlight.
    She’s gonna have to do it the hard slog way. I hope she can pull it off. Also I hope ol’ Uncle Joe stays out.

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