KEOKUK, Ia (WGEM) — After announcing his 2020 Democratic primary bid Thursday morning, former congressman Beto O’Rourke made his first campaign stop in Keokuk, Iowa.
The room was packed with reporters as O’Rourke addressed a crowd at the Lost Canvas coffee shop. O’Rourke talked about healthcare, education, trade and future political change.
O’Rourke said he chose Keokuk because these are the people and areas that are struggling and need the change he wants to bring in office.
He also said Keokuk comes together in times of need.
“If there is a problem at the river, we all go in and we get after it. I want people to have the luxury to be able to contribute to their community,” said O’Rourke. “That kindness that we find that will be so fundamental to our opportunity to meet these challenges, it’s right here in abundance. For whatever reasons we got here, we are in the right place and I am grateful for it. ”
The former congressman talked about what is a crisis and what isn’t, referring to healthcare, economy, border security and education.
O’Rourke also talked about guaranteed universal healthcare, the economy and raising the federal minimum wage to 15 dollars an hour in six years, and issues with broadband internet in rural areas.
He said this was his first trip to Iowa and spoke about his experience in Texas and what he wants to do to make a bigger change and impact in the nation.
Iowa’s Republican Party Chairman Jeff Kaufman responded to O’Rourke’s visit by stating, “… the new poster boy for the Democratic party, pretends to be a moderate while touting radical, trillion dollar government-run programs like the Green New Deal and single-payer health care. What’s more, he recently said he ‘absolutely’ supports tearing down the existing border wall and wants open borders.”