Iowa City stop may be on Obama itinerary

Sources say he'll visit the University of Iowa

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DES MOINES — A day after first lady Michelle Obama headlines a Des Moines fundraiser, the president is expected to visit Iowa City.

The White House press office would not confirm the president’s visit, but people close to the president’s re-election campaign said he will visit the University of Iowa on Wednesday.

It would be the president’s second trip this year to Iowa, which likely will be a battleground state in the upcoming election. Like his January visit to Conveyor Engineering & Manufacturing in Cedar Rapids, this will be an official White House event, according to a campaign staffer.

Michelle Obama will headline a $250-a-plate Obama Victory Fund fundraiser in Des Moines on Tuesday. The fund is a fundraising committee authorized by Obama for America and the Democratic National Committee.

Vice President Joe Biden has made two trips to Iowa this year, with stops in Ames, Davenport and Sioux City.

Although Obama carried Iowa in 2008, the political landscape has changed. Recent polling shows the president’s popularity has fallen, with just 46 percent of Iowa adults approving his performance.

In 2010, the GOP flipped control of the Iowa House and narrowed the margin of the Democrats’ majority in the Senate, and also defeated an incumbent Democratic governor.

Given the president’s record over the past three years of “broken promises and failed policies,” Republican National Committee Chairman Reince Priebus said, “it’s no wonder Obama’s re-election campaign is in trouble in Iowa today and why Hawkeye state Republicans just surpassed Democrats in voter registration for the first time in six years.”

The April voter registration report showed Iowa Republicans with a 3,000-voter advantage after trailing Democrats by about 4,000 the previous month. That’s the first time in nearly six years the GOP has had more voter registrations than Democrats.

Obama, who will be in Denver on Tuesday, apparently will stop in Iowa City on the way back to Washington.

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