• September 29, 2020

As Biden Makes Push in Iowa, His Ground Game May Have Some Gaps

As Biden Makes Push in Iowa, His Ground Game May Have Some Gaps

But as he walked between single-story houses on the city’s west side, he confided his worry that candidates promising a revolution, like Mr. Sanders, are more likely to turn people out than a mainstream politician like Mr. Biden.

“The Biden supporters are like me,” he said. “They believe we should turn the ship around, not scuttle the ship. Make the government work. Reach out to the Republicans.”

At many doors, Democrats told him they were undecided, or didn’t plan to caucus, or that they supported Mr. Trump. Bonnie Beacher, 62, was undecided.

“Is Biden a possibility?” Mr. Corken asked.

“Could be,” Ms. Beacher said.

“May I just say, I think he can govern the country,” Mr. Corken told her. “This is no time for amateurs. He’d walk in the first day and make the government work.”

“All righty, thank you,” said Ms. Beacher, who appeared eager to close the door.

Mr. Corken, who has canvassed Dubuque almost daily since the spring, said most Biden volunteers preferred to make phone calls, not trudge the city’s hills. “I know we don’t have as many door knockers as the other campaigns,” he said. “Whatever the caucus results are, they’re not going to be reflective of what the support for Biden is in this town.”

Near the end of his route, he hit pay dirt. Tom Lange, who answered the door with his toddler son, said he was “pretty firmly entrenched with Biden” and would certainly attend his caucus.

Another Iowan, Sue Smith, a retiree, also said she was likely to support Mr. Biden. “He’s been there, done some of it,” she said.

Asked if she would caucus, Ms. Smith said, “Oh I don’t know. When is it?”

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