From Decorah to Fort Madison to West Des Moines, Andrea Catsimatidis of the Manhattan Republican Party spent several days barnstorming the state of Iowa, meeting up with activist party leaders and candidates sharing a message of unity and optimism. Her trip took her to Solon, Clear Lake, and culminated in Coralville for the Johnson County Reagan dinner, where she took the stage and made it clear to Iowans that they were in a unique position to help the nation.
Andrea “AJ” Catsimatidis is an executive at the Red Apple Group, her family company. In September 2017, Andrea was elected Chair and CEO of the Manhattan Republican Party and later was elected to Vice-Chair of the New York State Republican Party, representing New York City. She’s involved in philanthropy, too, volunteering with many charities and associations, including Police Athletic League and the Alzheimer’s Association.
A millennial New York City influencer turned Republican activist may have seemed like an unlikely surrogate for Iowans this election year. Still, her tour concluded with praise and high turnout at the events she attended.
Her message was simple: Americans need to be wary of the Biden Harris ticket’s radical liberal policies. Living in New York, she’s seen first hand the damage and pain caused by those policies.
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What a humbling experience for a New Yorker to receive a standing ovation in Iowa!!! Don’t worry, I’m not running for President, I’m not old enough. 😎 . . . . #iowa #maga #makeamericagreatagain #kag #keepamericagreat #4moreyears #presidenttrump #trump #trumptrain #trump2020 #trumpsupporters #republican #gop #draintheswamp #usa #godblessamerica #backtheblue #patriotic #election2020 #vote #vote2020 #votered #america #ajslife
I met Andrea Catsimatidis at the RNC. We were both respective delegates for our states and having known of Andrea’s positions and background, I invited her to visit Iowa to inspire Iowa millennials to not be afraid of admitting they support the Republican Party for those who do or are considering, and to give a first-hand account of the political climate in New York City. As a millennial, Andrea’s participation in the party in Manhattan, New York State, and nationally has been exemplary and very brave. I hope her trip inspired young Iowans to follow suit,” explained Marlowe.
Anthony, who is also the National Co-Chair for Greek Voices for Trump, found a kindred spirit with Andrea partly due to their shared politics but also their shared personal experiences and background.
“Andrea and I connected quickly, perhaps because we are both half Greek and Orthodox Christians. When people ask me what she is like, I wish they spoke Greek because the best word to describe her is that she has tremendous “Philotimo” or “Filotomo.” In most common dictionaries, the word Philotimo describes a list of virtues that include honor, dignity and pride, the ideal actions and behaviors, hospitality, and warmth received by another. It literally translates to love of honor, or friend of honor. Needless to say, Andrea or “AJ” as most call her, is an embodiment of Philotimo,” said Marlowe.
Iowa Field Report caught up with AJ to get a better idea of her motivations to visit and help the GOP ticket.
It was both heartbreaking and terrifying to see what liberal Democratic leadership has done to my city between the crime and the decline in quality of life. I wanted to come to Iowa to bring my very different perspective and share my experience as a cautionary tale of why it is so important to elect Republicans in Iowa. You have so many fantastic Republican candidates and leaders in Iowa, it was a great privilege to be able to meet them.
Not surprisingly, she found us Iowan’s to be a friendly group. “I genuinely thought people from New York were nice until I came to Iowa,” she said. “People were so warm and welcoming!”
When asked what she sees as some of the biggest differences between her home of Manhattan and the Cyclone state, she quickly found several.
“Iowa is very fortunate to have a fantastic Republican Governor who did not decimate Iowa’s economy as our Democratic Governor did to New York’s. NYC is in chaos because constitutional rights are now only granted to select groups based on what serves our mayor’s political agenda, She explained. As a lifelong New Yorker, I now feel very unsafe in my city- our mayor has sidelined the police and we also aren’t allowed to have guns. We have no way to protect ourselves from the rampant crime that is the new normal here. In contrast, Iowa feels very safe and does not have these problems.”
In our conversation, Andrea mention how engaged and informed the people she met were; Iowa activists were happy to share their views about the current political climate and appreciated her perspective.
Iowa Republicans were captivated by Andrea Catsimatidis as she traveled the state last week. She received standing ovations after describing her love of America and her concern about the disastrous effects of Democratic Party rule in her hometown of New York City,” said Johnson County’s David Barker. “Andrea was brilliant and is an energetic advocate of free enterprise, small government, and common sense values. The only controversy that resulted from her visit was whether it would be better for her to bring Iowans to New York or for her to come to Iowa. In the end, her audiences overwhelmingly
supported bringing Andrea to Iowa.”
The @Manhattan_GOP is very blessed to have new friends in Iowa!!! My team and I were privileged to be able to spend some time with @IowaGOP Chair Jeff Kaufmann and many wonderful Iowa Republicans. If only we could bring some Iowa Republicans back to New York! pic.twitter.com/LFCY7CtXWp
— Andrea Catsimatidis (@AJ_Cats_) October 22, 2020
When asked about his thoughts on AJ, the Republican Party of Iowa chairman had high praise.
“I had a great meeting with Andrea and her staff about how Manhattan and Iowa GOP can work together moving forward. Her speeches are conservative, hopeful, and gave us great insight into what is happening on the ground in cities being run by Democrats. I’m grateful that she has decided Iowa is one of her favorite states.”
Iowans are very familiar with politicos stopping in to share their thoughts and explore the possibilities. Only time will tell if Iowa voters will ever play a role in AJ’s future.