Amy Klobuchar announces 2020 presidential campaign, joins growing field of Democrats

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Screenshot

Republicans quickly critiqued Klobuchar during and after her speech.

Her name has been floated in the past as a potential Supreme Court nominee and as a possible vice presidential pick for Clinton in 2016.

Klobuchar, 58, is hoping to belay her success in her home state - she easily won a third-term a year ago and enjoys broad support from voters in urban, suburban and rural areas, including in dozens of counties Trump won in 2016 - and her reputation as a straight-shooting pragmatist who gets legislation passed onto the national stage.

Klobuchar, 58, is known as a straight-shooting, pragmatist willing to work with Republicans, making her one of the Senate's most productive members at passing legislation. "And I thought, I don't care how much snow and how much traffic or how many people, I'm going to come and see her and shake her hand, and I did". But what I do have is this: I have grit.

Klobuchar joins four of her fellow Senators already in the race-Elizabeth Warren, Kamala Harris, Kirsten Gillibrand and Cory Booker-with at least three other colleagues mulling over a run: Bernie Sanders, Sherrod Brown and Jeff Merkley.

She criticized the administration of President Donald Trump, taking aim at government shutdowns and gridlocks. "In fact, he may not even be a free person". She did not just go to every Minnesota county every year. He was elected to the US Senate in 2013, the first African-American senator ever from that state.

Klobuchar's team issued a lengthy statement saying she has been "proud" of her staff.

Some former staffers described Klobuchar as "habitually demeaning and prone to bursts of cruelty", although others said that while working for Klobuchar was challenging, it was also rewarding.

She's remained well-liked in Minnesota in part by laying low during many hot-button partisan fights and siding with the moderate wing of her party when there's an ideological split.

A light but steady snow fell during the event at Boom Island Park, obscuring the Minneapolis skyline behind the stage.

"It made me chuckle, frankly, and roll my eyes", Navarro said.

Cindy York, a retired teacher who attended the rally, said she's always respected Klobuchar for her "ability to get at the hard questions in a polite and respectful way", adding "I think we need a lot more of that in this country".

Ms Klobuchar has become a fashionable pick as a "dark horse" candidate. She said all US homes should be connected to the Internet by 2022, endorsed universal health care, and said all people should need a background check before buying a gun.

In January this year, she proved that this frank interrogation style was not a one-off when she grilled President Trump's attorney general nominee Mr Barr about obstruction of justice allegations.

Media captionKlobuchar asks Barr about obstruction What are her views?

Her emphasis on a being a pragmatist willing to work with the GOP is exactly what voters exhausted of gridlock want to hear. During her first reelection bid in 2012, she won all but two counties. She doesn't have a signature issue, the way Warren does. "Amy has a good sense of humor and she'll come up with stories about events that have happened". Instead, she's been behind bills that cover everything from toy safety to human trafficking.

"Today, on this snowy day on this island, we say 'Enough is enough.' our nation must be governed not from chaos but from opportunity, not by what's wrong, but by marching toward what's right".

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