Tom Steyer to kick-off bus tour in Ames


Presidential candidate and businessman Tom Steyer speaks to potential voters Aug. 10 at Cafe Diem in downtown Ames.

Jake Webster

Amid a flurry of presidential candidates crisscrossing the state ahead of caucus night, Tom Steyer is returning to Iowa State for an event on Monday.

The event is scheduled for 5:30 p.m. Monday in the Scheman Building, just one week ahead of the first-in-the-nation caucuses.

Steyer’s visit follows campaign stops in Ames in the past week by former Vice President Joe Biden, Sen. Bernie Sanders and Sen. Amy Klobuchar. 

The candidate’s closing pitch to voters focuses on his support for combating climate change. A new ad for his campaign touts his support for climate activism.

“I worked with the activists in Oxnard, [Calif.] to stop the last fossil fuel plant I hope is ever proposed for California,” Steyer said in the ad. “And the reason we won is because environmental justice was at the heart.”

Steyer founded the advocacy group “NextGen America” in 2013 to mobilize young voters on issues including climate change. He has said he sees the fight against anthropogenic climate change as a possibility for positive economic redevelopment.

“[Combating climate change] is our best opportunity to reinvent this country in the most positive way by winning in the [race towards clean energy],” Steyer said to the Daily in December.

The billionaire businessman has opened his wallet to fund his presidential campaign, spending nearly $48 million on his presidential campaign by the end of September 2019 — the most recent contribution data from the FEC that is publicly available, according to Federal Elections Commission (FEC) documents.

The candidate’s Ames event will kick-off a nearly week-long “Final Sprint” bus tour that will take him to all four congressional districts in Iowa.

“[Steyer] will be on a bus tour through Iowa to energize supporters, build on his continued momentum, and take the case to all Iowans that he’s the best candidate to expose Donald Trump on the economy,” the Steyer campaign said in a press release.

While Steyer’s ad spending has accompanied him vaulting into second place in recent polling of South Carolina, the last of the four states in the Democratic primary to vote in February, he has not seen significant dividends in Iowa.

In a Siena College poll released Saturday of likely Iowa Democratic caucusgoers, Steyer has three percent support and is tied for sixth place alongside businessman Andrew Yang, 22 percent behind Sanders, the Iowa frontrunner.

Steyer will remain in Iowa campaigning ahead of the caucuses until caucus night on Feb. 3, according to a press release.