(WASHINGTON) — Hillary Clinton is going back to Iowa for the first time in six years.
The former secretary of state will headline Sen. Tom Harkin’s annual steak fry in Indianola next month, making her first visit to the state since 2008.
Bill and Hillary Clinton will be on hand for Harkin’s final steak fry, a representative for the couple confirmed. It’s a long-standing tradition that launched a young Barack Obama back in the fall of 2006. This year’s event is scheduled for Sept. 14.
Hillary Clinton’s decision to headline the steak fry, which “might promise to be the best ever,” according to Harkin’s website, could be seen as a swift political move for the former New York senator as she continues to mull a second run for president.
The former presidential candidate has not stepped foot in Iowa since she came in third in the Iowa caucuses on Jan. 4, 2008. And when she skipped the state during her nationwide book tour this summer, some in Iowa started to feel neglected.
The Gazette, an Iowa newspaper, practically begged Mrs. Clinton to visit last month.
“We’ve watched as you have flexed your muscles on the international stage and have been impressed with your ability to connect,” the Gazette editorialized. “But as Iowans, we need to see that connection in action. Our hope, if you are really considering a 2016 run, is that you have learned from your experience and come to Iowa intent on having true conversations about what matters to our state and the fine people in it.”
The Des Moines Register was first to report the news of Hillary Clinton’s upcoming Iowa appearance Monday. It has been confirmed to ABC News by a top Iowa Democrat with long ties to Harkin, who plans to retire next year at the end of his fifth term.
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Eric Bradner, CNN
Jeanne Sahadi, CNN
Ruth Brown and Lis Stewart, Idaho Press-Tribune