DES MOINES – As of today, more than 8,000 Iowa Caucus goers have signed a pledge, sponsored by the Caucus for Priorities campaign, to caucus for a candidate who supports a significant shift in federal spending away from Pentagon waste toward social needs such as education, health care, job training, and energy independence.
With pledges from over 8,000 Caucus goers the Caucus for Priorities is in a unique position to exert great influence over the critical first-in-the-nation Caucus.
Veteran Iowa political operative John Norris, who ran Senator John Kerry’s Caucus campaign in 2004, says the voting bloc of 8,000 should be influential with the candidates.
“Iowa will be a make-or-break state for some of the candidates. The 8,000 votes the Priorities campaign will deliver could make the difference between a poor showing and a better than expected one,” Norris said.
Norris assisted with the development of the Caucus for Priorities 2007 Field Plan which set September 1st as the deadline for securing the 8,000 pledges. The campaign’s 13 staff blew that goal out of the water, reaching the goal far ahead of schedule. Field organizers across the state have been attending community events and presidential candidate events since January, talking to Iowans about the federal budget and Pentagon waste. Persuading Iowans to take the pledge has been challenging because it asks more of them than signing a petition. State Director Peggy Huppert is thrilled with the work organizers have done.
“We set the bar high because we want to get the attention of the presidential candidates. No issue campaign has ever accomplished this in Iowa. It is unprecedented,” Huppert said.
The Priorities campaign plans to send questionnaires about specific wasteful weapons systems and social needs to all the presidential campaigns, both Republican and Democrat. Once the questionnaires are completed, the Priorities campaign will announce to its pledgers which candidates are most committed to cutting waste from the Pentagon and investing it in what matters most to Iowans – health care, education, energy independence, and other social needs. The campaign plans to announce an endorsement by mid-November.
For more information on the campaign please visit: caucus4priorities.org.