Gillibrand: I've Campaigned in Places 'No One Bothers to Go to,' Like Iowa and New Hampshire

'I do believe our Constitution is rooted in the notion it's one person, one vote'

April 2, 2019

Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand (D., N.Y.) referred to parts of Iowa and New Hampshire as places she's campaigned that "no one else bothers to go to" on Tuesday, although they are two of the most frequently visited states by presidential primary candidates.

As the nation's first caucus and primary state, Iowa and New Hampshire respectively carry outsized importance in the nomination process by establishing momentum for candidates who win or finish strongly there.

Gillibrand has joined other 2020 Democratic candidates like Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D., Mass.) in calling for the abolition of the Electoral College. Gillibrand told MSNBC's Stephanie Ruhle she would "campaign everywhere," potentially addressing criticisms that eliminating the Electoral College would result in candidates focusing on heavily urban places.

"The rural areas, the suburban areas, and the cities," she said. "I will go to the places that no one else bothers to go to, and that's what I've already done. I've been in the North Country in New Hampshire. I've been in the rural areas in Iowa."

Gillibrand campaign communications director Meredith Kelly tweeted Gillibrand meant she was the first Democrat to campaign in the North Country region in New Hampshire. Her then-exploratory campaign noted that fact to reporters in February.

"I've been to Michigan already and Nevada already, and I will continue to do that, because the truth is you are going to be the president of the entire United States. You must represent everyone," Gillibrand said.

She went on to say she believed the Constitution "is rooted in the notion it's one person, one vote," although as it's currently written, it's not.

"And for the outcomes of our election not to reflect actually the number of votes received by candidates, it seems really misplaced," she said. "I really believe it should be one person, one vote."

Gillibrand officially launched her candidacy last month. She drew criticism from New York newspapers for saying she would complete a full, six-year term if re-elected to the Senate in November, but she almost immediately changed course and launched her exploratory committee in January.

Since then, she's struggled to make headway in the polls, both nationally and in early-primary states. An advocate for victims of sexual harassment in the workplace, she also drew criticism for her office's handling of a sexual harassment complaint made by one of her junior staffers against a top aide.