DES MOINES, Iowa — It’s not an endorsement, but one of the most revered Iowa Democrats in the modern era, retired Senator Tom Harkin, will take part in an event Sunday with Senator Kirsten Gillibrand, one of the two dozen Democrats running for president.
Nearly every candidate is scheduled to appear at the Iowa State Fair in Des Moines, which begins Thursday, runs eleven days and traditionally attracts nearly a million visitors. Sunday’s event, away from the state fairgrounds, is the only one –at least so far– where a candidate will appear with Harkin.
Harkin, who served 30 years in the U.S. Senate after 10 years in the U.S. House, is scheduled to join Gillibrand for a panel on disability rights. The event, set to start at 10:30 a.m. at the Holiday Inn & Suites Jordan Creek in West Des Moines, will also include disability rights advocates and State Senator Pam Jochum, a Dubuque Democrat whose late daughter had physical challenges.
The Iowa Democratic Party has made changes to the upcoming 2020 caucuses, which should make them more accessible to some people with physical and developmental disabilities. For the first time, participants can take part by phone in one of six virtual caucuses that the party is holding across the state.