Apr 12, 2015 6:13 PM

Clinton making first campaign trip to Iowa on Tuesday

The Associated Press

DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) Hillary Rodham Clinton is taking her newly announced presidential campaign into the heart of small town Iowa this week.

Clinton will tour a community college in Monticello on Tuesday and visit a produce distribution company in Norwalk on Wednesday, according to a schedule provided by her campaign Sunday. She will also hold meetings with Democratic elected officials and activists in the leadoff caucus state.

A news release said the trip is "the first of many conversations with Iowans about how to make the economy work, so everyday Americans and their families can actually get ahead and stay ahead."

Clinton announced Sunday that she'll seek the presidency for a second time. Her team has made clear that she wants to avoid big events as she begins her campaign and instead focus on more personal interactions with voters in early voting states like Iowa.

Clinton's 2008 campaign faltered in Iowa, where she placed third in the caucuses. After that loss, she did not return to the state for seven years.

Last fall, Clinton came to Iowa for former Sen. Tom Harkin's final "Steak Fry" fundraiser and to campaign for Democratic Senate candidate Bruce Braley. So far this year, Iowa Democrats have not seen Clinton though several other hopefuls, including former Maryland Gov. Martin O'Malley and former Virginia Sen. Jim Webb have made visits to the state.

Many Iowa activists say she would be wise not to take the nomination for granted. Even those who like Clinton say they want a competition, not a coronation.

Delpha Middleswart, 60, saw O'Malley speak last week at a fundraiser for a state representative.

"We all know Hillary. We need to hear from some other folks," said Middleswart, of Indianola, after the event. "I think she's got good things. The Democrats need to have choices."

Clinton's announcement video featured several Iowans, including Julie Stauch, of West Des Moines, who talks about growing tomatoes. She said she knew she was filming footage for Clinton, but didn't know she might be in the announcement.

She said she wanted to participate because she's happy to do anything possible to help Clinton win.

Stauch, who supported Clinton in 2008, said: "I think that she's planning to work hard, and she'll do very well here. I think she'll do what it takes."


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