The two-term senior senator from Minnesota is hardly a household name outside, well, Minnesota – but Sen. Amy Klobuchar has long been on politicos’ radar as an up-and-coming Democrat.
She solidified her spot on this list by heading to Iowa, the first nominating state, in August 2013 to speak at the Democrats’10th annual North Iowa Wing Ding fundraiser. She was the first potential Democratic 2016-er to appear in Iowa since the 2012 election.
“I think a lot of work I’m doing in the Senate obviously has national implications,” Senator Klobuchar told reporters.
Last year, Klobuchar also spoke to the Iowa delegation at the Democratic convention. And during Obama’s second inaugural, she dropped in on the Iowa ball. But she insists she’s not seriously considering a run, noting that the Wing Ding is only a two-hour drive from her house in Minnesota.
This 50-something graduate of Yale University and the University of Chicago Law School wins kudos for being both affable – “Call me Amy,” she tells people – and politically shrewd. She’s also a former prosecutor.
“Amy Klobuchar has got ‘Minnesota nice’ down to a T – she’s ready for Garrison Keillor’s ‘A Prairie Home Companion,’ ” Minnesota political analyst Larry Jacobs tells Real Clear Politics. “But don’t be fooled. This is a very ambitious, very skilled, very successful politician who has her sights set very high, and she’s been thinking about the next step for some time.”