DAVENPORT — U.S. Rep. Bruce Braley, D-Iowa, returned to Scott County to give the first big speech of his Senate campaign last night, deeply praising the man he wants to replace and recounting the work he has done in Congress for everyday people.
At the Scott County Democratic Party’s Red, White and Blue dinner, Braley spoke of his parents, particularly his father, a World War II veteran who he has often called an inspiration.
“I am a proud, patriotic, progressive Democrat. And I am oftentimes afraid, but I am never intimidated,” he said
In an interview with the Quad-City Times before the event, Braley said he hoped to represent a new generation of senators who would change the nature of the Senate, which often is criticized for moving too slowly.
“I hope to be part of that vanguard of younger senators who are pushing to make the body itself more functional,” he said.
Braley, who was critical of a Republican-controlled Senate when his party controlled the House after he was first elected, said he has a reputation for working with members of the other party.
Braley is the only Democrat to say he’s running for the job now held by U.S. Sen. Tom Harkin. . On the Republican side, U.S. Reps. Tom Latham and Steve King are considering it.
Earlier in the day, Braley did get an endorsement from Rep. Dave Loebsack — the first from an elected official. Loebsack praised his colleague for his work on behalf of the middle class.
“I have served with Bruce for six years now, and I can tell you from seeing his determination and work ethic up close there is no one at this time who is more ready to keep up the fight to strengthen middle-class families and to make life better for Iowans,” Loebsack said.