Little known presidential candidate speaks at Great Plains

John Cox wants to be heard. The little-known Republican presidential candidate spoke Tuesday to a small crowd at Great Plains Sauce and Dough Company, 129 Main St.

“I’m a candidate who certainly isn’t a household name,” Cox said.

Cox has never held a political office.

“I’ve been a chief executive for 30 years. I’ve run my own business for 30 years,” Cox said. “Sorry to pick on Mr. Obama again, but he’s never even run a hot dog stand.”

Running his own corporation gave him the skill of managing people, which you need to be president of the United States, he said.

“Being a U.S. senator means you’re great at raising money,” Cox said. “It means you’re great at spending other people’s money.”

He said he wants to eliminate the IRS because he believes taxing income is wrong. He is a strong supporter of the FairTax system, which would just tax new goods and services.

“I don’t like his lack of experience or his ideas about abolishing the IRS,” said Justin Dedecker, senior in psychology. “That’s just not possible right now.”

Cox was the first Republican to declare his bid for the presidency last February. John Utz, John Cox’s state coordinator for Iowa, said it will be an uphill battle for them because Cox is not as well-known, but they’ve been campaigning ever since Cox has announced he’d run.

“Persistence and consistent behavior leads to success,” Utz said.

His persistent campaign trail has Cox visiting every county in Iowa in three weeks. He’s not filling out auditoriums for speeches, but rather fielding questions from Iowa citizens.

“I’ve never heard of him,” said James Brockway, of Ames.

Brockway said he and his wife had seen 14 candidates so far from both parties.

“I’m not very interested in speeches, I’m much more interested in the nuts and bolts of what you plan to do as a leader,” Brockway said.

Cox doesn’t feel it’s a problem that he has never held a position in Congress.

“Congress is at a 14 percent approval rating, and not because they’re considered to be in high regard by the American people,” Cox said. “They’re at a 14 percent approval rating because they’ve done nothing but spend money, expand the size of government, put our children in debt and not address our problems.”