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Winning the Unwinnable

I heard stories of my father being a feisty pitcher back in the day. He went on to become an Iowa High School Athletic Association Hall of Fame baseball coach for his time leading Mason City Newman and Nevada High Schools. In 1983, he was hired to be the head baseball coach at Morningside College (a small liberal arts school here in Sioux City, Iowa) where he went on to coach for almost thirty years. There are many things he has passed on to me throughout the years, but the two that helped me play professional baseball and are relevant to beating Steve King are fiery competitiveness and a strategic mind.

Being around sports my entire life, I understand what it takes to pull off an upset. It’s about preparation. It’s about using your strengths and exploiting your opponent’s weaknesses. It’s about how you react when you get punched in the face. It’s about having the heart and the mentality that you’re going to win regardless of what other people think. And it’s about luck. Not blind luck, but the type of luck Thomas Jefferson was describing in the paraphrased, “The harder I work, the luckier I get.”

That’s what we saw in Doug Jones and his campaign in Alabama. The last time that seat was up for election, the Democrats didn’t even field a candidate, and Jeff Sessions won with 97% of the vote. This year, the Democratic Party had a good candidate who ran a great campaign. He suffered a couple of blows but persevered, and put himself in a position to get lucky.

That’s also what we saw in the Iowa State Senate special election in my district last night. We had a great candidate in Todd Wendt. We witnessed the power of fired up Woodbury and Plymouth County Democrats. We saw what happens when you combine that passion with a well executed game plan. Although we ultimately didn’t win, it resulted in a 30 point shift from the 2016 presidential election. 

So where do we go from last night? In baseball, there’s an expression that “momentum is tomorrow’s starting pitcher.” Our campaign is putting itself in the position to defeat Steve King. A great example of that is Friday when Steve King tweeted that “Diversity is not our strength.” we seized that opportunity and gained 3,000 new followers on Twitter.

As I’ve said before, tell me this race is unwinnable, tell me Steve King is unbeatable, and that only adds fuel to my fire. And I will tell you that I have felt the energy and the buzz in this district and together we can make the seemingly impossible happen.

This campaign is about beating Steve King, but our movement is about much more than that. It’s about re-establishing the Democratic Party in Iowa’s 4th Congressional District by having a vision for this district and invoking the voice of the working class.

Join our movement, and together we’ll be celebrating once again in November!

Standing Tall for All,

J.D. Scholten