Iowa will enjoy two bursts of the political spotlight on Tuesday when both President Obama and potential Republican presidential contender Sarah Palin visit the state.
White House spokesman Jay Carney told reporters on Air Force One last week, “The President will visit Alcoa Davenport Works Factory in Bettendorf, Iowa, to tour the facility and discuss the critical role that the manufacturing sector plays in the American economy.”
Mr. Obama is taking frequent road trips lately to talk up manufacturing’s role in an economic recovery that has been lackluster and politically damaging. The president has warm memories of Iowa since his victory in the 2008 caucuses over Hillary Clinton and John Edwards put him on the path to the White House.
Former Alaska Governor Sarah Palin and her husband, Todd, will travel to the opera house in Pella, Iowa, about an hour’s drive southeast of Des Moines, to attend the premier of “The Undefeated,” which the filmmakers say “chronicles Sarah Palin’s rise from obscurity to national prominence.”
In a statement distributed by the film’s producer and distributor, Ms. Palin said, “We are very excited to visit historic Pella and its opera house and look forward to seeing the finished film for the first time with fellow Americans from the heartland.”
This is the second time former Governor Palin has arrived in a key state soon after another Republican has visited to announce a presidential candidacy. A bus tour in early June took Governor Palin to New Hampshire after Mitt Romney formally launched his campaign there. And her trip to Iowa will follow by one day Rep. Michele Bachmann’s expected announcement of her candidacy in Waterloo, Iowa. Rep. Bachmann was born in Iowa.
While Gov. Palin has not announced whether she will run for president in 2012, “The Undefeated” argues for her to do so.
“The film is a call to action for a campaign like 1976: Reagan versus the establishment,” filmmaker Stephen K. Bannon told RealClearPolitics reporter Scott Conroy. “Let’s have a good old-fashioned brouhaha.”
Iowa will remain in the political spotlight as the summer continues. The Ames straw poll for Republican candidates will take place on the campus of Iowa State University on August 13. The state also will be the scene of at least four televised debates or forums – in August, November, December, and January – leading up to the February 6, 2012 tentative date for the influential Iowa caucus.
The film about Gov. Palin will be in limited distribution the week of July 15th. The distributor, ARC Entertainment, says it will move into national distribution thereafter.