Dem. Presidential Hopefuls Blanket Iowa State Fairgrounds, Other Venues

Nearly two dozen Democratic presidential candidates paraded through Iowa this weekend, speaking at the state fair, the annual Wing Ding dinner in Clear Lake and a forum on gun control.

The sheer volume of contenders signals a new phase of the primary campaign, ending the get-to-know-you period and beginning a six-month sprint to the Iowa caucuses.

In that time, the historically large field will likely winnow, front-runner Joe Biden will be tested more forcefully and a fierce competition will unfold for candidates to be seen as the more viable alternative.

They’ll be competing for the support of Democrats who say repeatedly that, despite their differences, their top priority is landing on a nominee who can defeat President Trump.