Loebsack, Miller-Meeks on Leach Endorsement
Congressman Dave Loebsack praised his predecessor, Jim Leach, for crossing party lines to endorse Democrat Barack Obama for president today.
“I believe that Jim Leach sees Barack Obama as a candidate who is following in his footsteps, one that is working to change the way business is done in Washington by putting aside party affiliations and ending the era of negative partisan attacks in order to finally address the needs and priorities of hardworking Americans,” said Loebsack. “I know this is what inspired me to support Barack Obama for President.”
Loebsack’s Republican opponent, Mariannette Miller-Meeks, said she had great respect for Leach despite their differences on the presidential race.
“I have tremendous respect and admiration for Jim Leach,” Miller-Meeks told Iowa Independent. “He’s about the most honest and insightful person I know in politics.”
Miller-Meeks restated her support for Republican nominee-to-be John McCain. “You can have a difference of opinion and be allowed to voice that,” she said of Leach’s Obama endorsement. “It doesn’t change the way I feel about (Leach).”
“It’s difficult to know” how Leach’s Obama endorsement will affect her own race, said Miller-Meeks. “It depends on how people percieve Obama and Loebsack.” She said in a down-ballot contest like a congressional race, more voters get to know the candidates as individuals. “There are many of us who vote for people based on their own credentials.”
Loebsack was the first member of Iowa’s congressional delegation to back Obama, and the only one to endorse Obama before the Jan. 3 caucuses.
“Jim Leach has a remarkable career in public service; he has always made it a priority to stay away from divisive party politics,” said Loebsack, who defeated Leach in 2006