Democratic Secretary of State candidate plans listening tour

Deidre DeJear stopping in Iowa City Nov. 17

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CEDAR RAPIDS — Deidre DeJear, a candidate for the Democratic nomination for Iowa Secretary of State, is planning a listening tour to hear Iowans’ concerns on changes in the state election law and administrative rule changes regarding voter ID and signature verification requirements.

“I take seriously the responsibility of increasing voter turnout and making voting accessible,” she said in announcing the tour that will begin Oct. 25 in Dubuque. “In light of these new rules, it is important that we hear the voices of Iowans in order to make informed decisions around voter education. Whether Democrat, Republican, Libertarian or independent, all Iowans not only should be informed, but have an opportunity to weigh in.”

Her listening tour will stop in Cedar Falls Oct. 26 and Iowa City Nov. 17.

More details will soon be online at DeJearForIowa.com.

DeJear, 31, of Des Moines, is a graduate of Drake University who has worked in banking and started her own business, Caleo Enterprises, which says it provides entrepreneurs affordable marketing tools and business strategies. She said she has worked with more than 140 small businesses and non-profits.

While working on President Barack Obama’s 2012 campaign, DeJear developed and implemented a program to educate, motivate, and mobilize low-propensity voters she said resulted in more than 5,000 new registrants statewide and more than doubling African-American turnout.

Since then, she has developed and implemented a collaborative that targets low- to moderate-income individuals and families, giving them access to mainstream financial systems and products and increasing their financial management knowledge and skills. Her program reaches more than 20,000 people annually, she said.

DeJear is publicly endorsed by Sen. Janet Petersen and Rep. Ako Abdul Samad, both of Des Moines; former congressional candidate Kim Weaver; and Iowa Women for Progressive Change.

So far, only one other Democrat — Jim Mowrer, of Des Moines — has filed to run for Secretary of State.

Republican Paul Pate is expected to seek re-election.

l Comments: (319) 398-8375; james.lynch@thegazette.com

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