DES MOINES, Iowa — We are over a year away from the Iowa caucuses, but that didn’t stop voters in the Des Moines area from showing up in the hundreds to an event for a 2020 Democratic presidential hopeful.
The line was out the door and around the corner. Curate in the East Village was filled to the brim with over 700 people Saturday night to see Massachusetts Senator Elizabeth Warren on her first full day campaigning in Iowa for the Democratic presidential nomination in 2020.
The place was so packed, Iowans had to be turned away, but Warren still took a moment to address those who were stuck in overflow and couldn’t make it inside.
She was sounding a little hoarse. “So the bad news is I’ve got a cold,” Warren explained. A cold didn’t stop her from speaking to voters in Des Moines. “Nevertheless, I persist,” she added.
She talked about her main concern: minimum wage.
“When I was a kid, a minimum wage job would support a family of three,” Warren said. “Today a minimum wage job in America will not keep a mama and a baby out of poverty. That is wrong and that’s why I’m in this fight.”
She also spoke about supporting working families.
“What is happening to working families in this country? Why is it getting harder and harder for young people to be able to build some security? Why is the path getting rockier and particularly rockier for people of color?” Warren said.
The 2020 hopeful spent the last hour and a half next to Iowa Democratic strategist Matt Paul, who helped mediate questions from the crowd. People who waited in line over an hour for this event had a lot to ask.
“I am here to ask Senator Warren about the current child care crisis that’s happening in Iowa and across the country,” Jill Applegate said.
“I think the things that are most important for me right now are definitely equality and LGBT rights,” Alex Hutchins added.
Questions from the crowd ranged from affordable housing, corporate power and preparing for the 2020 debates.
“How do you debate someone who isn’t interested in civility or facts?” a crowd member asked. “Did you have someone specific in mind?” Warren responded.
Despite her cold, Warren stuck around to shake hands and take pictures with attendees.
“10,000 rich families have so much more power in Washington than millions of American families that are struggling to pay. So what I say to them is ‘you just wait until 2020,’” Warren said.
Warren is staying around the Des Moines metro Sunday holding a conversation with women leaders in Ankeny for a more intimate discussion with Iowans.