The Iowa caucuses

January 20th, 2004 – 10:18 pm
Tagged as: Uncategorized

As you may have heard by now, Kerry was the surprise winner in the Iowa caucuses, followed closely by Edwards, with Dean coming in a disappointing third and Gephardt getting totally wiped out.

The blogs are filled with post-game analysis, and most of it’s a lot more insightful than what they’re peddling at CNN or the networks, and I highly recommend checking out the intensive coverage over at Daily Kos. There are also a couple of great posts over at Electrolite, here and here, with some good ideas about what happened, and how things might go from this point on.

My own thoughts on the matter are that, while this definitely wasn’t a good result for Dean, it’s also not the catastrophe that some in the media are making it out to be. First of all, the Iowa caucuses are a notoriously poor indicator of who the eventual nominee will be (Iowa picked Bush I over Reagan in 1980, Dole over Bush I in 1988, and Harkin over Clinton in 1992, and that’s just a few of the many examples). Second, Dean still has the most money and the best organization, and maybe they’ll have come out of Iowa with some important lessons for the rest of the campaign. Oh, and as for Dean’s fiery post-caucus speech somehow “proving” that he’s the angry guy that the media tries to make him out to be, I say, bullshit. Being passionate has somehow become a bad thing in politics, and that just gives the bored electorate another reason to stay home and not vote.

I personally think that Kerry is the last one of the remaining major candidates (those being Kerry, Dean, Clark and Edwards) that I’d like to see as the nominee, simply because I think he has the worst chance of actually beating Bush in the general election. My first choice would of course be Dean, followed by Clark, and then Edwards. Kerry has the background and the brains to take on Bush, but at this point he seems to be determined not to actually use them. Plus, I hate the way he waffles about his support for the war in Iraq. Fortunately, I don’t think he has much chance of doing better than second place in New Hampshire, and he’ll be going nowhere in the next contest in South Carolina.

In the end though, as long as it’s not Joe Lieberman (and it almost certainly won’t be), I’ll vote for whichever Democrat gets the nod, and urge my friends (and others who read this blog) to do the same.

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