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Crawford County farmer, Democrat, challenges Grassley for US Senate seat

In a campaign video released Monday, Dave Muhlbauer says many Iowa voters “just feel like Democrats are leaving rural areas high and dry.”

MANILLA, Iowa — An Iowa farmer and former Crawford County supervisor has become the first Democrat to announce he is running for Republican Sen. Chuck Grassley's seat. 

In a campaign video released Monday, Dave Muhlbauer of Manilla says many Iowa voters “just feel like Democrats are leaving rural areas high and dry.” 

He portrays himself as vested in the future of struggling rural America as a fifth-generation farmer. Muhlbauer’s candidacy marks a shift in strategy for Democrats, who haven’t won a statewide race in Iowa in almost two decades. 

At 37, Muhlbauer is also a half-century younger than the 87-year-old Grassley, who has said he will announce his reelection plans in the fall.

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