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Three weeks on the campaign trail

Three weeks ago, I launched my campaign in Waterloo, Iowa. Since then, I’ve shaken over 22,000 hands across the state. I’ve gone running in parades. I’ve
spoken to local Democratic Party groups. I’ve met veterans. I’ve had countless conversations with great people – Democrats, Republicans and Independents – who believe we need change. 

Politics 20

I’ve really enjoyed these last three weeks: Iowans have been welcoming and receptive to my message that we need accountable leadership in Washington, DC, and that restoring America’s place in the world is essential if we are to face monumental challenges like climate change.



Some of my most recent events:

  • I ran in the Sioux City Rivercade, Muscatine County and Delaware County Parades, shaking thousands of hands. 
  • I met vets at the American Legion pancake breakfast in Lake Mills, Iowa, and the Veterans for Peace picnic in Cedar Rapids.
  • I spoke at local Democratic Party groups in 12 counties across Iowa. 
  • I spoke at the 1st Congressional District Passport to Victory event alongside fellow Democratic presidential, candidates.

My policies

This week, I announced my agriculture policy platform – which I believe is truly transformative. You can find it in full on my website (here).My key priorities are:

  • Stop the reckless use of scattershot tariffs that hurt American farmers.
  • Strengthen antitrust laws and enforce them in the agricultural industry.
  • End subsidies for industrial farming corporations, and dramatically increase subsidies for farmers practicing or transitioning to sustainable methods.
  • Protect US farmers by instituting a “Buy American” policy for all federal procurement programs.
  • Reinstate mandatory country-of-origin labeling for beef and pork.
  • Prevent foreign countries and corporations from buying up US farmland.
  • Stand up for the “Right to Repair” farm equipment and other high technology.
  • Improve and expand programs that help farmers of color and prospective farmers from historically underrepresented communities to access farmland and credit.
  • Create a National Land Bank as part of a 21st Century Sustainable Homestead Act, to put unutilized farmland into production and expand access to organic food.
  • Strengthen protections for migrant farmworkers, and expand vital guest worker programs in agricultural industries.
  • Increase nutrition assistance for needy families.
  • Institute mandatory on-package labeling of genetically engineered foods (GMOs) in clear, visible language, because consumers have a right to know what they are eating.
  • Launch a thorough scientific survey of the safety and efficacy of GMOs and common chemicals used in agriculture, with particular attention paid to known hazardous compounds like glyphosate, dicamba, atrazine, chlorpyrifos, malathion & neonicotinoids.
  • Restore accountability and oversight to the USDA and FDA by removing corporate lobbyists from positions of power, and begin basing agricultural policy on sound science.
  • Fund research into climate stabilizing agriculture, and incentivize farmers to use regenerative, carbon-sequestering methods.
  • Expand funding for the USDA’s Agricultural Research Service and the National Plant Germplasm System, which are critical to our future food security.

What they’re saying about us

We’re getting some great feedback and coverage about the campaign and our message. Some recent pieces include:

Where we’re going next

You can check out all of our events on our events page. Some of our upcoming campaign stops include:

  • Come join Joe for the Hamilton County Democrats’ Pints & Politics event (link) – at the Malibu Pizza and Grill, 707 Main St, Jewell, Iowa 50130 from 6pm to 9pm on July 19th.
  • Come march with Joe in the Polk City Four Seasons Festival Parade at 10am on Saturday, July 20th.
  • Joe will be speaking to West Des Moines Democrats at their monthly meeting at the Tavern Pizza Restaurant (1755 50th Street, West Des Moines, Iowa 50266) at 12.15pm on Saturday, July 20th.
  • Joe will be speaking at the annual Pottawattamie County Democrats fundraiser at Council Bluffs Country Club (4500 Piutt Street, Council Bluffs, Iowa 51501) on Sunday, July 21st, at 5pm.
  • Joe will be speaking to Clarke County Democrats at the Clarke County Courthouse in Osceola, Iowa, at 8pm on Monday, July 22nd.
  • Join us at the Classic Deli (120 Jackson St, Brooklyn, Iowa) at 8pm on Tuesday, July 23rd, for a talk with the Poweshiek County Democrats.
  • Come meet Joe at 7pm on July 26th in Vinton, Iowa, for a meet and greet (link) organized by Rosemary Schwartz and the Benton County Democrats!

Where we’ve been

We’ve done events across Iowa. Here’s just a sample of what we’ve been doing:

  • Congregational services: Antioch Baptist Church
  • Parades, picnics and events: Des Moines Parade, Urbandale Parade, Windsor Heights Parade, Delaware County Fair Parade, Sioux City Rivercade Parade, Raccoon River Park Fireworks, Yankee Doodle Pops, Lake Mills July Jubilee American Legion Pancake Breakfast, Cedar Rapids Veterans for Peace Picnic, Boone County Picnic, Sullivans Museum Waterloo; Stuart Chamber of Commerce Community Coffee
  • Policy discussions: 1stCongressional District Passport to Victory in Waterloo, Climate Conversation with Senator Rob Hogg and Joe Sestak in Cedar Rapids; Disability Caucus
  • Local Democratic Party groups: Black Hawk County Democrats; Warren County Democrats; Boone County Democrats; South Side Democrats; Windsor Heights Democrats; Linn County Democrats; Iowa Congressional District 1 Committee meeting; West Des Moines Democrats; East Polk Democrats and Clive Democrats; Downtown Des Moines Democrats; Scott County Democrats, Louisa County Democrats; Polk City Democrats; Grimes Area Democrats; Chickasaw County Democrats

Joe Sestak

2020 Democratic Candidate for President