DES MOINES, IA — The Iowa Democratic party hosted its state convention at the Iowa Events Center in downtown Des Moines on Saturday.

The headline of the event was the party’s gubernatorial candidate, Deidre DeJear, making her first public appearance with her running mate Eric Van Lancker.

“Let me introduce to you our lieutenant governor nominee Eric Van Lancker,” said DeJear.

Van Lancker told WHO 13 on Friday that he was very happy to accept the invitation to join the ticket as he feels DeJear’s vision for the state is his as well.

“Iowa is worth the work, so let’s get to work,” said Van Lancker.

DeJear in her speech at the convention said that her story was one that could show all Iowans that their goals are possible.

“We weren’t sure if a Black woman could be nominated for governor for the state of Iowa,” said DeJear. “We weren’t sure if we were going to be up for the task in 2022. There was so much uncertainty. The fact that my story is possible in this state…my story being possible ensures that our story is possible.”

There were several other Democratic party members who spoke at the convention as well. Including the candidate for U.S. Senator, Admiral Mike Franken. He began his offensive on the incumbent Chuck Grassley, (R).

“Let’s be a leader, and he has not shown that. He does not believe in himself and he does not believe in Iowa anymore. My job is to beat him,” said Franken.

The race for Iowa District 3 will be a race that gets a lot of attention at a national level. The Democrat incumbent, Congresswoman Cindy Axne, spoke right before DeJear on Saturday, and called for foot soldiers, as she wants to get people out to vote this upcoming fall.

“We have got to be knocking on doors, we have got to be persuading Democrats to come out, we got to turn out those independents who have turned out for us in the past,” said Axne. “And we have got to be as vocal as possible against the lies and the misinformation that the Republican party is putting out.”

Other Democratic candidates were there, including the nominee in Iowa District 2 Liz Mathis, the nominee for Iowa District 1 Christina Bohannan, the nominee in Iowa District 4 Ryan Melton; and other candidates running for state office.