NEW YORK - The first nominating contest of the Democratic presidential primary is just days away. And with no clear leader there, New Yorkers have been traveling to canvass in hopes of giving their candidate an edge.
In the final stretch before Monday’s first-in-the-nation caucuses, supporters have made the 1,000-mile trek for their candidate, hoping to personally persuade enough Iowans to sway a contest projected to be very close.
Congresswoman Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez is among Bernie Sanders’ highest-profile surrogates on the trail.
And this Elizabeth Warren volunteer – who says he’s knocked on nearly 1,000 doors in early states – just returned from his third trip to Iowa.
"It was filled with energy, hope, anxiety, fear and hand warmers, a lot of hand warmers," Blue Moreno said.
Andrew Yang inspired one New Yorker to become politically active enough to canvass for the first time.
"Most people don’t like to talk about politics in general, even amongst friends, and then, here I am talking politics with total strangers that I’ve never met," Yoon Jae Lee said.
New York officials acting as campaign surrogates also traveled or plan to travel to New Hampshire and Nevada.
"We have Iowa, we have New Hampshire, we have South Carolina and Nevada. These four early states are very much indicative of the momentum that a presidential candidate can pick up and can take on," said State Sen. Alessandra Biaggi, who endorsed Warren.
And first comes Iowa, where a Quinnipiac poll this week shows Joe Biden, Bernie Sanders, Pete Buttigieg, Elizabeth Warren and Amy Klobuchar all with double-digit support. Some door-knockers, including this Buttigieg supporter currently in Iowa, said they’ve met many voters who are still undecided.
"It’s not that they don’t know because they’re not informed on what’s happening," said Sam Ravetz. "It’s more the opposite, where they’re taking their jobs so seriously that they’re really waiting until the last few moments."
Supporters said they feel called to action because they believe their candidate is the one who can beat Donald Trump. Volunteers have been traveling on their own dime to early states. Surrogates like Biaggi say they’ll go wherever they’re needed for their candidate.