Jim Mowrer has a challenge ahead of him in November, but in front of a room full of Democrats, he has no problem winning over the crowd: the mere mention of his opponent's name draws groans and chuckles.
The end of the fundraising quarter brought Steve King's opponent to Iowa City for a house party fundraiser.
This isn’t just about our district," Mowrer said. "Steve King is bad for the district
and Iowa, but I really think he’s bad for America. He doesn’t believe in
investing in the future.”
“When Steve King says government is broken, he’s bragging. He’s the one that
broke it,” Mowrer said. “He’s a liability for the Republican party. And every Democrat in the country is
interested in beating Steve King.”
At least Democrats from everywhere IN the country: Mowrer received donations from all 50 states in his first quarter of fundraising last year.
Mowrer has outraised King two quarters in a row and he seems confident that, one the numbers for the quarter ending today are reported in two weeks, he can extend that string.
And while critiques of his opponent warm the hearts of Democratic donors, Mowrer is also able to make a solid case for himself, focusing on his military service in Iraq and in the Pentagon.
Mowrer said his relative youth (he's just short of 28) has only been an issue in that it gives him yet another way to contrast himself with his opponent and with Washington dysfunction. “Just like the Greatest Generation, we’re going to keep working to make
our future better," he said of his fellow young veterans, "and our best days
are ahead of us.”
Mower worked with the Army Office Of Business Transformation on reforming military procurement. “Without cutting any essential services, we saved $3.5 billion of taxpayer money. “
In addition to a military background, Mowrer also grew up on a family farm, until his father died in a farm accident. “What kept my family from falling down so far we couldn't get back up was the basic social safety net, specifically Social Security survivor benefits, and that’s why I’m a Democrat.”
But with an opponent whose stock in trade is red meat for the right, issue discussions invariably stray back to King. There's just too much good material.
“There’s a clear contrast in this race. I want to raise the minimum wage, Steve King wants to eliminate it. I want to protect Social Security. He wants to raise the retirement age and says Wal-Mart will hire you until you're 74."
And on King's signature issue, immigration, Mowrer said “I’ll just echo the speaker. It’s hateful and wrong. I’m in favor of comprehensive immigration reform, I’m in favor of the DREAM act.”
King never has solutions. The answer to everything is no. He doesn’t
have another immigration bill. Is his solution picking up 13 million people and moving them to another country? That would be devastating to our
"If you're a moderate in any way, I have a case to make to you," said Mowrer of his plans to target independents and moderate Republicans, a necessity in a district that's red, but not AS red as it was prior to the 2011 redistricting.
“I want this country to be successful no matter who the president is. Steve King says he only wants the county to be successful if we have a Republican president, a Republican House and a Republican Senate. That's only four of the last sixty years."
Mowrer cited polls showing King with 40% approval in the district and 47% disapproval, and a horse race number of 45% for King to 49% for "his Democratic opponent."
"We have a good case. Steve King has a bad case. And Iowans are pretty
good at making judgements, They expect good ideas from their leaders.”
“I would not be running this race if I was not exceedingly confident.”