I'm looking forward this fall to voting for Patty Judge, a neighbor just east down the road in Monroe County and the Democratic nominee working to unseat U.S. Sen. Charles E. Grassley.
It's notoriously hard to unseat an incumbent Iowa senator, but Grassley, 83, a 35-year veteran of the Senate and chair of the Judiciary Committee, has left himself as vulnerable as he ever has been by stalling the work of that committee this year for purely political reasons.
So it was rewarding Saturday afternoon to join other Lucas County Judge supporters for a meet-and-greet session and to listen to her vision.
Judge is bright, articulate and informed --- a powerful candidate. She also has a good deal of experience as former state senator, Iowa secretary of agriculture and Iowa lieutenant governor.
It was interesting, too, to meet Ruth Smith of Lamoni, who is running against GOP incumbent Amy Sinclair in the race for Iowa Senate in the district that includes Lucas County. She'll certainly have my vote, too.
I'm always amazed at how much stamina these candidates have. Judge had begun the day in Shenandoah, then worked her way across Iowa for the early afternoon stop in Chariton before heading to another in Knoxville before heading home to Albia to spend the night. She'll be off again on the campaign trail today.
Her husband, John, had been dispatched to the Watermelon Day parade in Humeston --- so politics is a family affair among the Judges.