Sen. Amy Klobuchar of Minnesota announced Sunday that she will run for president in 2020, putting a pragmatic Midwesterner into the burgeoning field of Democratic candidates.

Klobuchar entered the race during a rally at Boom Island Park in Minneapolis, where supporters endured falling snow and temperatures barely into the teens on a gray winter day.

“Today, on an island in the middle of the mighty Mississippi, in our nation’s heartland, at a time when we must heal the heart of our democracy and renew our commitment to the common good, I stand before you as the granddaughter of an iron-ore miner, as the daughter of a teacher and a newspaperman, as the first woman elected to the United States Senate from the state of Minnesota, to announce my candidacy for president of the United States,” Klobuchar said.

She said she was running “for every worker, farmer, dreamer and builder.”

“I am running for every American,” she said. “I am running for you. I promise you this as your president: I will look you in the eye. I will tell you what I think. I will focus on getting things done. That’s what I’ve done my whole life. And no matter what, I’ll lead from the heart.”

The announcement, made as snow pelted the bareheaded candidate and obscured views from the Mississippi River island, reinforced Klobuchar’s self-positioning as a hardy Midwesterner accustomed to pushing through obstacles.


Klobuchar took pains to portray herself as someone who, with experience at the local and federal levels, would bring competence to the White House, contrasting that with the current environment of chaos and shutdowns in Washington.

“My friends, that sense of community is fracturing across our nation right now, worn down by the petty and vicious nature of our politics,” she said.

“We are tired of the shutdowns and the showdowns, of the gridlock and the grandstanding. Today, on this snowy day, on this island, we say enough is enough. Our nation must be governed not from chaos, but from opportunity. Not by wallowing over what’s wrong, but by marching inexorably toward what’s right. And it has to start with all of us.”

A 58-year-old two-term senator and former prosecutor, Klobuchar has spent much of her career attempting to be a bipartisan bridge-builder, willing to go on both Fox News and MSNBC.

At a time when the Democratic Party is debating whether to hew further left or maintain some centrist appeal, she is likely to attempt to cast herself as a little bit of both.

Several Democratic Senate colleagues have already joined the race, including Sens. Elizabeth Warren of Massachusetts, Kirsten Gillibrand of New York, Kamala Harris of California and Cory Booker of New Jersey.

Also seeking the Democratic nomination is U.S. Rep. Tulsi Gabbard of Hawaii.

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