Every now and then, Sen. Amy Klobuchar gets mentioned alongside potential 2016 presidential contenders like Martin O'Malley or Andrew Cuomo. But, given her workload, maybe we should be mentioning her more often.
Klobuchar has been busy fundraising for fellow Democrats, using email pitches and event appearances to boost other candidates and her own political capital, much like New York Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand, another occasionally-mentioned 2016 possibility. If the time does come for Klobuchar to run for president, she'll have plenty of friends in high places who remember her fundraising help.
Late in 2012, she made fundraising stops for Rep. Bruce Braley and Iowa 04 candidate Christie Vilsack in the first-in-the-nation Hawkeye state. Braley is now the frontrunner in the state's open-seat Senate race, and Vilsack, though she lost her House bid, is married to former Gov. Tom Vilsack, a major player in the state party.
Klobuchar has also appeared at fundraisers for Sen. Barbara Mikulski, Reps. Jan Schakowsky and Rick Nolan, and the Democratic Parties of Ohio and Alaska. She's done a joint fundraiser with Sens. Sheldon Whitehouse and Tim Kaine and attended campaign events with Sen. Tammy Baldwin.
Her online fundraising presence has been equally prolific. Since September, Klobuchar has sent out emails seeking money for Sens. Kay Hagan, Chris Coons, Jeanne Shaheen, Mary Landrieu and Claire McCaskill. Other email pitches have included Nolan, Texas state Sen. Wendy Davis, South Carolina House candidate Elizabeth Colbert Busch and former Rep. Shelley Berkley.
At the Democratic National Convention in Charlotte, Klobuchar addressed the Iowa delegation and played up the similarities and proximity of Iowa and Minnesota.
Early speculation, sure, but if the presidential bug has bitten Klobuchar, she'll build off the foundation she's already started to lay.