Senator Amy Klobuchar (D-MN) may not be a prominent subject of mainstream political conversations, but the gutsy gal from the Upper Midwest may yet become a household name. After the 2022 dust settled on the Senate floor, the hard-charging gentlewoman is now an elite member of the Democrats’ leadership team: Klobuchar is the new chairwoman of the Rules and Administration Committee. But it may be that this is simply a short break before tossing her Minnesota Twins ballcap into the presidential election of 2024.
At 62, Klobuchar does not carry the 50 years of Capitol Hill baggage that President Joe Biden drags around. And until the eve of Super Tuesday in March 2020, when the Senator suspended her campaign, her candidacy was outpacing a slew of other prominent, more name recognizable contenders in the overcrowded Democratic primary field.
Raphael Sonenshein, director of the Pat Brown Institute for Public Affairs at California State University, Los Angeles remarked at the time, “She comes out much stronger than she went in.” Sonenshein continued, “She becomes a more significant senator, and she becomes someone whose opinion will be asked.” Those are the words of the prophet, for sure.
Klobuchar Takes the Mic
Klobuchar, who has always been a busy, involved legislator, is now performing for the masses under a bright light. She even earned a pat on the back from Liberty Nation’s Senior Political Analyst, Tim Donner. Before the senator withdrew from the presidential campaign and endorsed Joe Biden, Donner observed: “Importantly, Klobuchar has presented as the most likable of the contenders; in many ways, the anti-Trump. She is unthreatening, unlike the socialist candidates, and has consistently hewed to conventional liberal (now known as “moderate”) positions on critical issues while spurning radical notions of reform.”
Although not even hinting at a 2024 run, Klobuchar is signaling that it’s her time to shine. Upon introduction to the Washington press last month as the first fresh face in the Senate’s upper ranks in six years, Klobuchar quipped: “Oh, the first time ever at the microphone.” A playful spanking of those who have counted on her but also counted her out of becoming a star. She is also chief of the Democratic Steering Committee, placing her fourth in the hierarchy.
But now, Klobuchar has taken the mic and will use it to her advantage.
Recently, the Senator has joined a bipartisan cast of characters on a mission to hold feet to the fire on medical privacy issues. The demand is that CEOs of telehealth companies, Cerebral, Monument, and Workit Health, protect patients’ sensitive health data. A letter was penned to the respective CEOs, Dr. David Mou, Mike Russell, and Robin Ann McIntosh, that stated in a nutshell:
“This [medical] information is reportedly sent to advertising platforms, along with the information needed to identify users. This data is extremely personal, and it can be used to target advertisements for services that may be unnecessary or potentially harmful physically, psychologically, or emotionally. One-fifth of the U.S. population resides in rural or medically-underserved communities where access to virtual care is vital. This access should not come at the cost of exposing personal and identifiable information to the world’s largest advertising ecosystems.”
Although residing in the Swamp a good bit of her time, the Minnesota Democrat couldn’t reasonably stand accused of abandoning her Midwestern roots and values.
If Klobuchar chooses the path of Democratic leadership in the Senate, all she has to do is wait for Sen. Debbie Stabenow (D-MI) to move up or on and get the nod. Then, there will be more success in staying put for a few years and increasing political capital on her own turf.
Ageism: Will it be a Thing?
Klobuchar, if she runs for president, will be 64 to Joe Biden’s 82 years of now questionable health. Other likely contenders are Secretary of Transportation Pete Buttigieg, who needs a political makeover, Vice President Kamala Harris, who might have sway with “first woman in history” type voters and not much else, and Senator Raphael Warnock of Georgia, to whom there are tied so many rumors and zero actual announcements. The president has not officially revealed his 2024 plans beyond more ice cream and pool time.
So, all will wait and watch the performance of the sarcastically humorous and hard-driving Klobuchar for clues and secret gestures as she bulldozes her way through leadership roles and takes political stands much more publicly. And this go-around, always on a hot mic.
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