Friday, January 4, 2008

Primary 2008: Bloody Iowa -- On to the New Hampshire Primary

It’s already old news, just one day after Iowa. There’s no sense repeating that Huckabee was the favorite saint of Midwestern Evangelicals. There’s no denying that he has an amiable demeanor and disposition, too, and a personal style that passes muster with the Harper Valley PTA. But Iowa is Iowa and the primary process is ahead of us.

The story so far:

John McCain’s newly discovered popularity shouldn’t be newly discovered. It was only the drive-bys who were so quick to count him among “yesterday’s men.” It’s a bit like boxing—the truth always emerges after the fight starts, not before.

I wouldn’t make such a big story about Mitt Romney’s “defeat”. He came in second with a wide gap between himself and Huckabee, sure, but 2nd best in Iowa isn’t bad. Not when you consider that 40 % of the state is Evangelical. The real story there, unfortunately, is that Romney’s going to have to knock back on McCain and it’s going to be bloody. He’ll hit the headline stories:

• McCain’s vote against the Bush tax cuts.
• McCain’s compromise with the failed immigration bill.

People ought not to forget that McCain’s vote against the tax cuts was actually a vote against excessive pork-fat expenditures. He wanted the R’s to get their spending in line before the tax cuts were in place.

McCain’s support of the Immigration Bill was pure realism. Anyone can demagogue the issue, and most people are. Spare me the spectacle of a mass deportation of 12 million men, women, and children herded across the border to Tijuana. McCain supports stronger immigration enforcement and border security. The failed immigration policies we inherited over the years cannot be ameliorated with cattle prods and a Bataan style death march.

Which brings us to Billary and Barak. Obama’s great success in Iowa is not so much surprising as the degree of it. Obama’s strength is that he’s not a reactionary, and not interested in letting himself be pigeonholed into representing a mere slice of America’s Democratic Party political establishment, as Billary does. I also can’t help thinking that Michelle Obama helped Barak out a great deal. Her late appearances in Iowa were as hot as an Iowa wood stove in winter.

Billary lost big in Iowa. It’s a bad sign for her that she finished such a distant third. Lanny Davis couldn’t think of anything to say about it except that Obama negelected to kowtow to Billary in his victory speech. Is that some kind of joke? Or a veiled threat? Let me translate Lanny Davis:

“You can’t get anywhere, Barak, unless you bow to the nice love-me-liberal plantation owners in Massachusetts and New York.”

Which is what makes me puke about a certain contingent of today’s Democrats. They’re so phoney-baloney.

Editor’s note: The “baloney” reference is due to the Romney influence.

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