Friday, January 4, 2008


What a set of results! First, I must admit to my failure as a political seer. I had no idea the results would be Huckabee by 9 and Obama by 8, with Hilary third. This throws both races into turmoil, with only 5 days until New Hampshire.

What effect does all this have on the races? Damned if I know. I think the Huckabee win helps McCain and Giuliani (and obviously Huckabee). It helps McCain because Romney, who was already faltering in Hew Hampshire, has lost any positive momentum, and McCain appears likely to win NH. It helps Giuliani (gulp!) because it means no Republican candidate is likely to be the front runner before the Florida primary. Therefore, Giuliani still has a good chance there, and will go to the Super Tuesday primaries on 2/5 with a win.

Obama's win is, I think, transformative. As Juan Williams noted on Fox News last night - who'd have thought a black man could win a caucus in such an extraordinarily white state as Iowa? I think this will propel Obama to wins in South Carolina, and a number of other Southern states. Why? Because, I think a large portion of the African-American vote has been going to Hilary on the assumption that a black man cannot win in November. After Iowa, that assumption is much less valid. Hilary might still win in NH, which will reenergize her campaign, but what was once a not so competitive race after SC becomes a real dog fight. A loss in NH will really hurt her, and require something big to recover.

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