As if Christian evangelical voters haven't received enough attention in the upcoming presidential election, Redeem the Vote has a plan to hit Iowa before the January 3 caucuses to literally butter them up. A tricked-out political bus with a storied campaign pedigree and a stockpile of southern delicacies will hit Des Moines this week as part of Redeem the Vote's latest effort to sign up new voters—mostly Christian evangelicals—for the caucuses.
"We're going to bring collard greens, some grits, and 'Daisy-made' banana pudding," says Randy Brinson, founder and chairman of Redeem the Vote, which signed up tens of thousands of new voters in 2004. The bus, seen in the picture, is a campaign trail veteran: Owned by Johnny Williams, Brinson's neighbor just outside Montgomery, Ala., it carted George W. Bush around the campaign trail during his 2000 presidential run and was John Kerry's political carriage in 2004. It has a foldout stage, a public address system, and its own satellite feed. The voter registration tour begins tomorrow at the state Capitol in Montgomery and will arrive in Iowa's capital city Thursday. The bus tour will initially hit Democratic and Republican candidate events, and then target churches it has had success with in previous campaigns.
And what is this "Daisy-made" banana pudding? "Daisy has been my housekeeper for 20 years and she makes a mean banana pudding," Brinson tells our campaign reporter Liz Halloran. "I'm not talking this fake stuff."