Linda Jacobsen has an uphill battle to fight against Kenny Hulshof, who has represented Missouri’s 9th District in the U.S. House for the last eight years.
Hulshof, a Republican who opposes gay marriage and supports President Bush’s tax-relief plan, will be fighting for a fifth term this November.
Jacobsen, a Democrat with a background in global marketing, supports postsecondary-education funding and women’s business rights.
She is running unopposed for the Democratic nomination for the 9th District.
Jacobsen will have to get across the message that she will bring back representative government to the people, said David Rosman, Jacobsen’s local campaign contact.
He said that he knows people who have made appointments to speak with representatives who later skipped the appointments.
“Time is very precious and is in high demand, but when a constituent makes time to visit with you, you take time,” Rosman said. “That doesn’t appear to be happening.”
Hulshof said his key issues for the campaign will be the highway bill and an energy bill. He recently introduced a bill that would make the president’s tax cuts permanent rather than allowing them to expire. “I applaud the president — his tax cuts have spurred economic growth,” Hulshof said. “If Congress doesn’t act, taxes will go up.”
Jacobsen spent last weekend in Columbia to build campaign support. She spent most of her time speaking at informal meetings about getting people active and working on her campaign, said Lysa Montwill, a Jacobsen supporter.
“I’m pretty impressed with her — she seems to have an incredible store of knowledge,” Montwill said. “She knows how things work and what is not working.”
Jacobsen held a meet-and-greet session at a supporter’s house Friday night and an informal meeting at the Cherry Street Artisan on Saturday morning. Montwill said the purpose of Jacobsen’s visit was to start building grass-roots campaign support.
“I was bringing hope to a lot of people who had given up,” Jacobsen said. “It was wonderful — everyone was very gracious and supportive.”
Jacobsen is the founder and president of Global Vision Strategies, a company that negotiates, among other things, global marketing. She was recognized by the Working Woman Network as a recipient of the Entrepreneurial Excellence Award for Social Responsibility.
Hulshof has degrees in law and agriculture from MU, and he served as a special prosecutor for the Missouri Attorney General’s office. He has also worked regularly on his family farm.
Scott Baker, a spokesman for Hulshof, said the representative understands that the 9th District is a swing district. “He’s confident — he’s done extremely well every time he has run for re-election,” Baker said, “but he doesn’t take it for granted.”
Hulshof will be working with $479,455, according to his Federal Election Commission disclosure. Jacobsen has not reported her campaign contributions to the commission, FEC, but she has until the end of the March to do so.
“It is not a matter of winning over Kenny,” Jacobsen said. “It is a matter of winning over the people.”