Harkin: Clinton should start campaigning in Iowa for 2016

Retiring Sen. Tom HarkinTom HarkinGrassley challenger no stranger to defying odds Clinton ally stands between Sanders and chairmanship dream Do candidates care about our health or just how much it costs? MORE (D-Iowa) says Hillary ClintonHillary Rodham ClintonTrump: I wish Ivanka and Chelsea Clinton weren't friends Poll: Clinton up by 6 nationally Romney: Trump victory 'very possible' MORE should start visiting Iowa more if she plans on launching a 2016 presidential bid.

"If she's going to run, she should start getting out here," Harkin told the Quad-City Times on Friday.

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He touted Clinton as a strong candidate that "would bring a lot of experience and knowledge that we haven't had in that White House for a long long time. "I mean just from the git go ... I think she's proven herself over all these years," Harkin added.

The 30-year Senate Democratic veteran, who himself ran for president, also encouraged Maryland Gov. Martin O'Malley and Vice President Joe BidenJoe BidenBiden tapes 'Law and Order: SVU' episode Hillary Clinton must overcome feminist generation gap in building a coalition FULL SPEECH: Hillary Clinton closes out Democratic convention MORE to stump in his state.

The race to replace Harkin in the Senate is heating up. Rep. Bruce Braley is the only Democrat in the race so far. Republicans include State Sen. Joni Ernst, businessman Mark Jacobs and former attorney general Matt Whitaker. 

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