Questions Linger about 2016 as Republicans Filter into Eastern Iowa

By Jill Kasparie, KCRG-TV9

IOWA CITY, Iowa — It has been a busy summer for some big-name Republicans.

They've made several appearances in Eastern Iowa.

Last month New Jersey Governor Chris Christie visited a Marion restaurant.

Earlier this week Kentucky Senator Rand Paul was in several Iowa towns, including Hiawatha.

On Friday, former Arkansas Governor Mike Huckabee spoke at a faith conference in Cedar Rapids. Louisiana Governor Bobby Jindal was also in town Friday.

Sunday evening, Rick Perry spent time in Iowa City stumping for Republican Mike Moore, who is running for State Senate District 39.

“I'm so excited about being in Iowa and campaigning for him,” Perry said.

Texas Governor Rick Perry is no stranger to Iowans.

Many are speculating whether he'll take another run at the White House. Perry said he won't make up his mind this year.

“I don't know what that date is in 2015, but obviously sometime next year,” Perry said.

Still, he's not afraid to share his thoughts on issues impacting the country.

“Washington needs to get back to doing the few things that the constitution actually enumerates for them to do, like securing our border,” Perry said.

Coe College Political Science Professor Bruce Nesmith said it's typical to see the big-name candidates in Iowa at this point in the political season. He said it's their way of making connections.

“A part of it may be for the candidate, ‘do I catch fire? Do people get excited about me?'” Nesmith said.

Many visitors have been high-profile Republicans.

Nesmith said that's because the Democrats already have a clear potential front-runner in former First Lady and Secretary of State Hillary Clinton.

“They know they are going to have to raise an enormous amount of money to be in the same camp as Hillary Clinton, because she is going to have raised an enormous amount of money. There's not really any republican at this point who is in the same position,” Nesmith said.

Nesmith said these visits aren't a guarantee that these politicians will return, asking for your vote in the 2016 caucuses.

With visits from so many potential candidates, however, it leaves something for voters to think about.

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