Knoxville — Two days before President Barack Obama's scheduled visit to Central Iowa, Obama For America Communications Director Erin Siedler said the campaign is confident that the President will be able to carry Iowa in November.
Siedler believes the keys to Obama's victory in 2008 are still here, such as a large volunteer base and a continued presence in the state since 2007. Nevertheless, Obama is hosting a campaign event at the Paul R. Knapp Animal Learning Center at the Iowa State Fairgrounds in Des Moines.
"Iowa plays an important role in this election," Siedler said.
Confirmed remarks Obama intends to make were unavailable at the time of our interview. Siedler believes the President will focus on the economy and job growth. She said she believes his remarks will take approximately half an hour. Entertainment will be provided and the building is air conditioned. It is open to the public.
Prior to the Des Moines event, Obama is making an official visit to TPI Composites in Newton. He is scheduled to deliver a speech on the economy there, but it is closed to the public.
The fact that the President will come into the state on taxpayer-funded Air Force One for the official visit, then travel a relatively short distance to Des Moines for the campaign event, has already drawn the ire of the Republican Party.
“While President Obama saddles Iowans with the cost of another taxpayer- funded campaign trip, folks across the state continue to struggle with higher costs on gasoline, groceries, health care, and tuition. Instead of blaming everyone but himself, President Obama should take a look at his own list of broken promises to cut the deficit in half, lower healthcare costs, solve our energy crisis, change how Washington works, and help 9 million families from foreclosure," RNC Spokesman Ryan Mahoney said in an official statement.
Siedler said that "Mitt Romney surrogate" Gov. Terry Branstad is touting Iowa's unemployment rate, currently at 5.1 percent, while at the same time criticizing the President's economic policies.
"We are coming back in Iowa," Siedler said. When asked if the reelection campaign will focus more on the President's record or attacks, Siedler believes the President will respond to attacks. She believes Romney is letting SuperPACs and other such organizations do his bidding by attacking Obama.
"We think the President has a great story to tell," Siedler said.
The Iowa State Fairgrounds are located at 3000 Grand Avenue, Des Moines. Doors open at 4:30 p.m., on Thursday, May 24.