On the trail: On a roll, Klobuchar storms into N.H.

  • Minnesota Sen. Amy Klobuchar spoke to a jam-packed crowd inside Revelstoke Coffee in downtown Concord on Thursday morning. Paul Steinhauser—For the Monitor

For the Monitor
Published: 10/17/2019 5:52:18 PM

It was pouring outside as Democratic presidential candidate Sen. Amy Klobuchar started speaking to the jam-packed crowd inside Revelstoke Coffee in downtown Concord on Thursday morning.

With the remnants of a potent Nor’easter still leaving their mark, the senator from Minnesota joked that “people are looking more and more wet” as they arrived into the popular coffee spot that’s become a must-stop for Democratic White House hopefuls.

The stop in Concord was part of a busy day-and-a-half swing by Klobuchar through all 10 counties in the first-in-the-nation presidential primary state.

The candidate kicked off the trip hours after a well-received performance at Tuesday’s fourth-round Democratic presidential nomination debate in Ohio.

Klobuchar – giddy over her performance and from a lack of sleep – praised Granite State voters for paying close attention to the candidates.

“It is New Hampshire and a few of the other early states that have been able to really look through candidates and not just go with the one who’s been first from the beginning or the one who’s run before or the one who has the biggest name ID,” she noted before joking that “none of those people are me.”

With under four months to go until the February primary, she showed no sign of slowing down.

“We are in this to win,” Klobuchar said. “We are in this to the end.”

Klobuchar said she decided to visit all of the counties to make sure she didn’t leave anyone behind and meet potential voters at smaller, more intimate venues as opposed to a big rally.

“I know that I’m not as well known as some of the other candidates,” Klobuchar told reporters. “I know that I haven’t been running for president forever. But we are catching on voter by voter, town by town.”

Klobuchar announced that she had raised $1.1 million in the first 24 hours after the debate, and noted that it was up to $1.2 million by late Thursday morning.

She said the fundraising was mostly from small-dollar contributions, and emphasized “that shows something happened, that people were watching and they responded. And that is a very big deal for us.”

Eight of the record 12 candidates on the stage Tuesday night have reached the threshold to qualify for the next presidential primary debate, which will be held next month in Georgia.

The senator from Minnesota’s not one of them. Klobuchar’s hit the donor criteria but has a long way to go to reach the polling threshold.

“I’m very optimistic we’re going to make it,” she told the Monitor. “We have more than enough donors.”

She said that even if she doesn’t qualify, she’s not dropping out.

“I’m going to be in for the end, anyway,” she declared.

Valerie Hall of Concord was in the large crowd that squeezed into the café. She said she’s undecided and wants to see all the candidates in person, adding that “it’s great that in New Hampshire it’s not hard to do.”

Barbara Keshen said that Klobuchar’s debate performance enticed her to see the candidate in person.

“I thought she had an opportunity to shine a little bit and I think she used it well,” she explained.

The Concord resident noted that she remains undecided, saying the large field of Democratic candidates is “an embarrassment of riches.”

Coming to Concord

Jill Biden, the wife of Democratic presidential candidate and former vice president Joe Biden, will be campaigning on her husband’s behalf Saturday in the Capital City.

She’ll headline a Biden canvass kickoff at 10:45 a.m. at the campaign’s Concord field office at 64 N. Main St. In the afternoon, Biden will open a campaign field office in Salem.

Democratic presidential candidate Sen. Cory Booker of New Jersey returns to Concord on Monday. Booker will join Rep. Annie Kuster at an opioid crisis roundtable discussion at 9 a.m. at the offices of the nonpartisan and nonprofit organization New Futures, at 100 N. Main St.

From former first lady to frontrunner?

Former first lady Michelle Obama has repeatedly stated there’s “zero chance” she would run for president in 2020 — but a new poll in New Hampshire suggests that if Obama changed her mind, she would enter the race as the frontrunner.

The Boston Herald-Franklin Pierce University survey, released Monday, indicated a three-way tie for the top spot in New Hampshire — with Sen. Elizabeth Warren at 25% support, former vice president Joe Biden at 24%, and Sen. Bernie Sanders of Vermont at 22%.

But, if Obama hypothetically jumped into the race, the poll suggested she would grab 26% support of likely Democratic primary voters in the Granite State, with Warren and Biden at 20% and Sanders at 15%.

The former first lady has resisted a flood of calls for her to declare her candidacy.

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