Walter Winchell cut his political teeth on the likes of FDR, Hitler, WWII and Josephine Baker. Bosses and conservatives alike told him to stay the hell out of politics and writing political articles. Pointedly, frankly he was told (and threatened): stick to Hollywood and gossip—that is your forte, your bread and butter. Winchell the man, the poet had his own ideas. He was a poet really who put pen to paper and poetry to politics. He was misunderstood, ahead of his time. Heloise gets much of that too. But what do they know? She will keep her own counsel and keep on writing and spewing nonsense on politics like it or not. And here’s what she has to say today:
It’s finally here people, the Iowa Caucus and the day we have been writing about for sometime. Caucus countdown goes something like this on January 3: The Democratic part of the caucus does not begin until 6:30 p.m. CST. It is an intricate affair, subject to more parameters and many more rules by which the caucus goers must abide. Here's the official Web site. Since the caucus does not begin until the evening (when it's colder outside so only the most dedicated will venture out) results will not be known until some hours later, 'round midnight.
(A) poll asked Iowa Democrats which candidates they would vote for if the 2008 Democratic caucus were held today. The top three candidates were Sen. John Edwards at 22 percent, Democratic U.S. Sen. Barack Obama at 22 percent and Vilsack at 12 percent. U.S. Senator Hillary Clinton of New York came in fourth at 10 percent. KCCI political analyst Dennis Goldford said that Edwards left himself well-positioned from the caucuses.
"Barack Obama is the rock star of the moment. What's interesting is Vilsack is ahead of Hillary Clinton in Iowa," he said.
The rules governing the GOP caucus goers and the Democratic caucus goers differ. The Dems must actually testify to their candidate. They talk among themselves (or caucus) then they must give a little speech in order to get their candidate in play. They vote. If their candidate, proves not viable, i.e., fails to make the 15% cut (or higher), then they are able to regroup and vote for another who is more viable. The GOP goers are under no such duress. They just have a secret vote and go home. That is why it is not called a straight-out primary like the upcoming New Hampshire primary. This small state will host the first real primary. Then there is February 5th AKA super-duper Tuesday. Thus many people are sitting Iowa out. But conventional wisdom and history tell us this would be a sagacious move.
Do polls lie or people?
The latest polls as of New Year’s Eve put all the Democratic candidates in a dead heat. I thought it was a dead heat the week before when Barack was leading the Iowa polls, the New Hampshire polls and the South Carolina polls, but suddenly the numbers were the same. It was anybody’s call: But it was, after all, the people of Iowa caucus: In a poll held the week of December 18-20th. Barack and Edwards were in a tie at 22% for the lead.
A Rasmussen poll of the same week shows very different results: Obama 39.5%, Clinton 37%, and Edwards 31.7%. “In the race for the Democratic Presidential Nomination, it’s Hillary Clinton 42%, Barack Obama 23% and John Edwards 16%. No other candidate tops 2% nationally (see recent daily numbers). “
What is the meaning of the above-mentioned particular poll? It’s about the man or woman who will become the national party candidate, not just the potential winner in Iowa. Here’s what we must consider when voting or polling numbers top for Clinton: as the national Dem Party candidate for president, she wins hands down. Those polls, check out the Rasmussen numbers shows her winning that race each and every time. So, regardless to who wins Iowa, Hillary Clinton still touted as the candidate of the party and polled as the one most likely to win the nomination. That’s a completely different bet. And one that Heloise is not likely to engage.
Iowa: Barack Blast off?
Barack Obama (D-IL), in the latest and greatest polls, has pulled even-steven with Clinton and Edwards. Each one deigns to be either the top of the ticket (admittedly) or (un-admittedly) the bottom of the ticket (i.e., VP). But wait there was breaking news on that front too, tonight from Breitbart.com:
The poll by the Des Moines Register showed Obama, an Illinois senator, with the support of 32 percent of those surveyed, compared to 25 percent for Sen. Hillary Rodham Clinton of New York and 24 percent for former Sen. John Edwards of North Carolina.
I predicted in a Daily Kos article and poll that Obama would gain exactly 1 percentage point by the day of the Iowa caucus. Thus he would go from 30% (at that time) to 31%. I predit that there will be no pity party at Heartbreak Hotel Iowa for Obama. We will leave that party to the second, nay the third place Candidate: (place your guess here).
Who will be in attendance–caught on camera? Methinks it obvious who will fill the stands at the party: Yesterdays will fill most of the back seats. The Regret family has been invited as well as the Spin clan. Who will be sitting in the front rows? Well you know the answer to that question: The major networks: would a, could a, and should a, naturally in that order holding up their mikes to catch every crumb from the second- or third-placed candidate’s mouth. The MSM gleefully shout back “you’re not dead yet!” He, or she, shakes his head—confidence stirred but not shaken. Or better yet, might we rub together sticks leftover from the Edwards and Clinton campaign to start a Barack rally bonfire?
Tough Guy or Timid Guy?
Who is more prepared to be president: The tough-guy trial lawyer or the timid-guy community organizer? Who will be hosting that party? Will it be the attacked or the attacker(s)? What exactly the nature of personal attack ads? Do they work? Do they best highlight the well-heeled man or woman or show their weakness? The greatest weakness: lack of confidence. The most recent attack was said to come from Mr. "Nice guy" Edwards. His calling someone "nice" was on par with the housecat telling the tiger that they have nothing in common: Different stripes, but both feline. In all fairness to Edwards were his words a direct attack on Obama? Or mere suggestion that perhaps took a wrong turn on someone’s computer screen? Probably a bit of both. I know all that I want, or need, to know about Edwards from his last race.
After reading books on, and by Obama I came to understand his life better. He bears the hallmark of compassion and change. He used his education and credentials for the people. On the other hand I found the wealthy, very wealthy trial lawyer shamelessly using my maternal home town for his campaign announcement! What irony, Barack lives down the street from my old stumping grounds (Hyde Park) and Edwards stands up in NOLA after Katrina. However, the irony does not end there:There is the little matter of the trial lawyer living in the palatial (28,000 square foot) mansion. Huh? Yeah, you heard right.
Tough or timid Barack "the Compassionate" Obama has pulled off the kid gloves in the final weeks. He had to. We had been urging him to hit back. Now that he has, the media and the other candidates are crying "foul." I think it was candidate John Edwards who has been the “nice” guy in this race. After all he was nursing a wife recovering from cancer. But was he? He was out on the stump in New Orleans talking to the few black people left in New Orleans. And who praytell was minding the mansion and the kids? Mrs. Edwards was also out on the stump and calling out Michelle Obama, good luck with that one. I hope Iowa hands him his hat (or a hat) to cover his $400.00 haircut.
Truthfully, both Clinton and Edwards make me feel undecided. And what's worse uncomfortable about this race. I don’t want to see either one of them on the ticket at this point and people have been "playa hating" on me for that sentiment. Finally, I could be wrong, but Edwards, to my chagrin, had a pretty damn good week: Speaking of the devil: Nader endorsed Edwards today. I compared Ralph Nader's past presidential run to spoiler if there is a possible entry (or Obama endorsement?) by Michael Bloomberg, currently New York mayor. Are you thoroughly confused? Well, you're in good company. I hope this little article has helped you with links and rethinks.
Finally, I leave the people of Iowa with these few words: If suggestions mean anything, then I would like to suggest that the second-choice votes go to Senator Obama.