Sodders considers run for U.S. House

Sen. Steve Sodders, D-State Center, is considering running in 2014 for the U.S. House seat currently held by U.S. Rep. Bruce Braley, D-Iowa.

Sodders said he is forming an exploratory committee to see if a run is feasible and will make a decision before the summer. Braley is leaving Congress and running for the U.S. Senate next year.

The 1st Congressional District includes Marshall County and east to Dubuque, covering much of northeastern Iowa.

“I think I fit the district very well and I think I would do a good job,” Sodders said.

Sodders is in his second term in the Iowa Senate after narrowly defeating Republican Jane Jech in the 2012 election.

Sodders said when he learned the Braley seat was coming open it sparked his interest in running for Congress.

“In Iowa, openings don’t happen very often,” he said.

His fellow Iowa legislator, Rep. Pat Murphy, D-Dubuque, has already announced his candidacy for the congressional seat.

“I really like Pat and we have probably two different visions,” Sodders said.

Sodders said while Murphy is “all in” for the campaign, Sodders will be a little more deliberate in his decision to run.

“I’ll probably take it a little slower than Pat, but I believe I can win,” he said.

Sodders said among his main issues to address in Washington are cradle to the career education and support for Post Traumatic Stress Disorder for veterans. He said he would also push to get the federal budget under control.

Sodders already has a busy schedule as both a senator and a Marshall County Sheriff’s Deputy, but he feels he would still be able to find time for his congressional campaign.

“This would be a little bit more challenging,” he said.

Sodders feels he can relate to Iowans in the 1st District and that Congress shouldn’t be made up of just “lawyers and rich people.”

“We need more working guys like me,” he said.

Sodders said he has been in touch with Braley about the possibility of running and said the congressman and his staff have given him great advice.

Sodders would not have to give up his Iowa Senate seat during the campaign, and would only resign if elected to the U.S. House, he said.