Democratic Senator Amy Klobuchar has announced she is running for president in 2020.
Ms Klobuchar made the announcement from her home state of Minnesota, with heavy snow swirling as she spoke to supporters.
“As your president, I will look you in the eye, I will tell you what I think, I will focus on getting things done ... and no matter what, I’ll lead from the heart”, Ms Klobuchar said in Minneapolis, where she became the fifth Democratic senator to join a historically diverse field of candidates seeking to defeat Donald Trump next year.
During her speech, Ms Klobuchar declared as central concerns to her campaign a list of causes often celebrated in the Democratic Party including removing money from politics, addressing climate change, expanding voting rights, and improving healthcare.
“We are tired of the shutdowns and the showdowns, of the gridlock and the grandstanding,” Ms Klobuchar said. ”Our nation must be governed not by chaos but by opportunity”.
“It is time to organise, time to galvanise, time to take back our democracy”, she said as snow packed onto her hair.
Mr Trump responded to Ms Klobuchar’s announcement by remarking on the local weather, apparently confusing it with the global climate.
“Well, it happened again,” he wrote on Twitter. “Amy Klobuchar announced that she is running for President, talking proudly of fighting global warming while standing in a virtual blizzard of snow, ice and freezing temperatures. Bad timing. By the end of her speech she looked like a Snowman(woman)!”
Well, it happened again. Amy Klobuchar announced that she is running for President, talking proudly of fighting global warming while standing in a virtual blizzard of snow, ice and freezing temperatures. Bad timing. By the end of her speech she looked like a Snowman(woman)!— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump)February 10, 2019
Ms Klobuchar became the first woman senator from Minnesota when she was first elected to the office in 2006, and had previously worked for eight years as the attorney for the state’s largest county, Hannepin County.
While she focused on those issues that are likely to come up repeatedly during the Democratic primaries, Ms Klobuchar has taken a notably less progressive than other candidates in the burgeoning field of presidential candidates.
She is publicly undecided on issues like Medicare-for-all for instance, which she has said sould “be considered” but has not supported outright. In general, the senator from Minnesota is considered to be something of a pragmatist in a field that is likely to be defined in part by a tilt to the left since Mr Trump’s election.
But while Ms Klobuchar may not appeal to that portion of the Democratic electorate, she has argued she is capable of appealing to a geographically diverse group of voters. That includes blue collar white voters in the midwest who shocked the nation in 2016 by voting for Mr Trump in several key states including Ms Klobuchar’s own state.
Ms Klobuchar is one of the highest profile candidates to emerge from the American midwest to run for 2020, but may be joined by the likes of other candidates like Ohio Senator Sherrod Brown, who would likely appeal to a similar set of voters.