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Bennet Campaign Press Release - Bennet for America Builds Iowa Momentum, Unveils Eastern Iowa Steering Committee

November 05, 2019

Former Johnson County Attorney Patrick White to Serve as Committee Chair

Cedar Rapids, IA — Bennet for America announced its Eastern Iowa Steering Committee today, building on the campaign's momentum as Iowans begin to consider their choices before the February caucus. The committee, which will include Democrats who have endorsed Bennet from seven eastern Iowa counties, will support the campaign's efforts to reach caucusgoers in the Hawkeye State.

Former Johnson County Attorney Patrick White will serve as committee chair. White, an Air Force veteran, became the youngest-ever member of the Iowa City Council when elected in 1974. He later served as the Johnson County Attorney from 1982 to 2006.

"We find ourselves with the most immoral, incompetent, even dangerous President in our history," said White. "From a deep, talented list of choices to replace him, Michael Bennet's combination of executive experience, bold and achievable policy priorities, and commitment to the challenges at home and abroad put him at the top of that list."

The committee also includes Brett Haddy, Linn County Chair; Henry Marquard, Muscatine County Chair; Fred Peeters, Scott County Chair; Margaret Schmitz, Dubuque County Chair; Carol Bartles, Des Moines County Chair; and Ed Brown, Clinton County Chair. Bennet for America is unveiling regional steering committees across the state.

Bennet spent more time in Iowa in September than any other candidate. He returned to eastern Iowa in late October, stopping in Elkader, Maquoketa, and Cedar Rapids, and again last weekend, speaking at the Turn Iowa Blues Festival in Waterloo.

Brett Haddy has worked for Alliant Energy for 39 years. His son, Thomas, is a senior at Iowa State University.

"I'm supporting Michael Bennet because he has what it takes to beat Donald Trump," said Haddy. "His policies take into account the needs of workers and rural communities and he says the same thing in rural areas that he does in urban areas. As a union member for nearly 40 years, I like that Michael's health care plan would allow me to keep my insurance."

Henry Marquard is a luminary in Iowa politics. He was appointed by Governor Vilsack to chair the Iowa Environmental Protection Commission, served on the Iowa Supreme Civil Justice Reform Task Force, and has been a member of the Muscatine County Democrats Central Committee since 1996. Marquard served as state co-chair for Senator John Edwards' caucus campaigns in 2004 and 2008.

"I'm supporting Michael Bennet because he's progressive and pragmatic, his ideas have a chance of actually being implemented. In this way, and many others, he reminds of Secretary Vilsack," said Marquard. "I like the idea of supporting someone who's hardworking, honest, competent, and an all around nice guy—the complete opposite of Donald Trump!"

Fred Peeters is from Davenport, IA, and has lived there his whole life. He is currently a realtor and, prior to that, a truck driver and construction worker. He lives with his wife, Sally, and has two children.

"Michael shares my values," said Peeters. "I'm confident that he'll do the best job in this field of supporting me and my family."

Margaret Schmitz is a lifelong Iowan who now lives in Dubuque. Now retired, Margaret served as an elderly caretaker for 13 years after working as a proofreader for a publishing company.

"I think Michael's ideas can be paid for," said Schmitz. "A lot of candidates are for Medicare for All, and I don't think we can afford it. His public option healthcare plan makes more sense."

Carol Bartles is a retired soil scientist who worked for the Natural Resource Conservation Service of the United States Department of Agriculture. Carol's family has been in Iowa since the 1860s. She's active in her community as a master gardener and a trained volunteer with the Alternative to Violence Project (AVP).

"I support Michael Bennet because I want a president who can build a future for our children and grandchildren," Bartles said. "He appreciates the diverse community that is the United States of America and will work to restore the faith of the American people in our government."

Ed Brown began his career working for the city government in his hometown of Clinton, IA, for the Department of Parks and Recreation. From there he began working for the state at the Iowa Conservation Commission and then for the federal government for the National Parks Service. He is now retired and does volunteer work for the American Disabilities Act (ADA) Commission in Clinton. He received his bachelor's degree from Iowa State University and a master's degree from the University of Wisconsin-Madison.

"I support Michael because he is a realist," said Brown. "We need someone who is familiar with government and able to put things back on track. I think his ideas resonate with people and that's going to go a long way."

"Our path to victory runs right through eastern Iowa. Our committee members are leaders in their communities, and we are so excited to have them with us," said Iowa State Director Brian Peters. "Together, they'll play an important role in delivering Michael's message to caucusgoers across the area — and especially to some of the nine million Americans who voted for Barack Obama twice and then Donald Trump."

Bennet represents Colorado in the Senate, but he has not spent a lifetime in politics. He turned around failing businesses in the private sector and improved outcomes for kids as superintendent of the Denver Public Schools. Bennet is the only candidate in this race who has won two national elections in a swing state. He has released comprehensive, field-leading proposals to provide high-quality, affordable health care with a public option, reward hard work, fix our broken political system , and tackle climate change by working with our farmers and ranchers.

Michael Bennet, Bennet Campaign Press Release - Bennet for America Builds Iowa Momentum, Unveils Eastern Iowa Steering Committee Online by Gerhard Peters and John T. Woolley, The American Presidency Project

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