Friday, January 4, 2008

Iowa: Obama and Huckabee

Once again, the Exempt Media has had its expectations turned on its head. The Iowa Caucuses last night yielded quite the interesting results. On the Democratic side, Sen Barack Obama (IL) won with 39% of the vote, with Sen John Edwards (NC- Retired) with 30%, and Sen Hillary Clinton with -- wow -- 29%, a disappointing third place. Technically she still is way out front in terms of delegates when you factor in the so called "super" delegates (ex officios from the federal and state parties, Senators, Representatives, Governors) but if someone with a big warchest as hers can flunk out in a state where it's the grass roots that really count, then we have a real race and those insiders will amount to nothing.

For me, the real winner is Edwards. He needed 30% to have a fighting chance moving forward. He has that. Bob Woodward at WaPo can say this is only a snapshot, but I disagree. Here's why: The Clinton factor looms large, and it puts off a lot of people who think she represents the past. She's an effective communicator, but she's also very abrasive. It's not her sex, it's her personality. Many still accuse her of running the show when Billy was in the White House; and it's not just Republicans who are mad at her for not divorcing him when he fooled around with Monica Lewinsky, many Democrats feel that too and I think last night showed just a bit of that backlash. The dinner conversations in Iowa are probably the same in the rest of America. If she can't convince the real heart of America, she can't convince the rest of America, period.

On the Republican side, what can you say? Mike Huckabee who was outspent by Mitt Romney 15-1 beat him 34 to 25; followed by Fred Thompson and John McCain at 13 each, Ron Paul at 10 and Rudy Guiliani at just 4. Now that last one is real indictment -- guess the former federal DA for Manhattan isn't America's Mayor after all. Problem with Huckabee: He's a minister and he's hell bent on turning America into a theocracy. Even the mostly anti-Resurrection Founding Fathers would be reeling over that one.

New Hampshire is in four days. Probably a different beast given the state's Libertarian grassroots, but I've seen all the commercials (I get satellite, so I'm fed the Boston stations which beam into the Granite State) and this is a very, very unpleasant campaign which could yield yet another shocker. I'm not going to call it; but if Romney and Clinton can't catch a second wind they may as well pack it up.

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Darren McEwen said...

I would agree with you except on Edwards. I don't see how he's viable going forward. I like him a lot but he needed to win Iowa. The focus is now on Obama and Clinton (to see if she can recover) and Edwards is lost in the shuffle. He isn't a factor in New Hampshire, out of contention in South Carolina unless he can somehow get momentum in New Hampshire, is way out of it in Nevada and Florida and Super Tuesday will be dominated by Clinton and Obama. He needed a win in Iowa to garner up huge media attention, momentum and money.

S.K. said...

And while Candian soldiers die Obama can't even be bothered to convene the Senate committe that oversees NATO that he chairs. He's too busy running for President.