The closest she came to Iowa was a June book-signing in Kansas City, Missouri, which is only three hours from Des Moines by car and 52 minutes by plane. There are bookstores in Des Moines.
But Hillary was not interested in going to them. For a simple reason: She hated the place. It is where her dream of being the first woman president was trumped by Obama’s dream of becoming the first black president.
(And considering Iowa is only 2.9 percent black, Obama’s achievement was considerable.) How did she rationalize her loss in Iowa? Iowa hates women.
“I was shocked when I learned Iowa and Mississippi have never elected a woman governor, senator or member of Congress,” Hillary told the Des Moines Register in October 2007. “There has got to be something at work here.” Maybe there is something at work. Maybe there is something in the air or water that causes Iowans to spurn female candidates. But was this a good thing to accuse Iowans of just three months before they voted on your future?
And then there was the whole caucus process, of which Iowa is very proud. Hillary hates that, too.
“You have a limited period of time on one day to have your voices heard,” Hillary said after she lost Iowa. “That is troubling to me.” She didn’t like Obama much, either.
Amid the pageantry of the Harkin Steak Fry, Iowa Democrats still recall her vote for the Iraq War.
Many factors went into Clinton’s loss: she didn’t spend much time campaigning here, she didn’t connect with the activists, and many Democrats disagreed with her vote to support the Iraq War. Iraq is a sensitive topic in Iowa Democratic circles, especially among the passionate grassroots activists of the Hawkeye State. With the threat of ISIS growing, and the possibility of American engagement in yet another conflict in the region, could the newfound talk about another war in Iraq haunt Clinton in Iowa? Iowans still haven’t forgotten her vote supporting the war.
The Iowa caucuses have never been a field of dreams for the Clintons. In their previous campaigns, Bill Clinton skipped the state caucuses in 1992 when favorite son Senator Tom Harkin made a run for the White House, and Hillary Clinton recorded a third-place finish in the 2008 Democratic presidential primary.