Thursday, January 3, 2008

After Iowa: Who Will Win?

This is a political analysis.

These are not my personal preferences, so I don't want to hear jack shit from anyone saying Jesse is showing preference for or against one candidate over another. Fuck you if you say that. I have never said who I'm personally in favor of winning. Even my colleagues don't know. (I may have told Sara when we had breakfast last week. Maybe.) But this... this is what I think is likely to happen, not what I'm in favor of happening. Got it?

Let's review Iowa, starting with thanking Hubris Sonic for his great election night coverage. Well done!

Obama : 37.55%
Edwards : 29.81%
Clinton : 29.45%
Richardson : 2.10%
Biden : 0.94%
Uncommitted : 0.13%
Dodd : 0.02%
Precincts Reporting: 1763/1781
SDEs Reporting: 2474.51/2500

Even though Obama really kicked Hillary's ass in Iowa, I think Hillary is still likely to take the Nomination.

Here's why.

It's all about delegates -- 2,184 is the magic number -- and you win them state by state in a particular order.

Hillary is poised to win in New Hampshire this coming Tuesday, Jan 8, currently over 7% ahead in the polling, precisely the same margin Obama had going into Iowa, which is what Obama won by in Iowa.

After New Hampshire comes Michigan one week later on Jan 15. Obama and Edwards like absolute idiots sat out Michigan because Michigan jumped the DNC rules on when you can hold primaries, and ran to the front of the line. But the DNC's suspension of delegates won't hold up; Michigan's delegates will be allowed to vote in the Convention, so Hillary will get all of them, as Obama and Edwards didn't put their name in the hat. Again, idiots.

What counts as I said is wining delegates towards the magic 2,184 needed to win the nomination. Clinton has done this before. The other two have not. (Well, I guess you could say Edwards has. But he hasn't ever won.)

Then comes South Caroline and Florida (same deal in Florida as Michigan, which means Clinton gets more free delegates) and then, it's Super Tuesday on February 5. Hillary still holds a commanding national lead in the polls over everyone else. Go on... look at the polls. On a state by state basis, Hillary just smokes everyone. And that will be that, short of a real gaffe (and that simply isn't going to happen) or a brush-fire for someone else with only one month to go.

Assuming Hillary wins New Hampshire -- and I believe she will -- unless she gets blown up in a huge way somewhere else and the entire momentum of this race somehow shifts, she will walk away from Super Tuesday either with the nomination complete, or with a big enough lead to squeeze out the oxygen for everyone else.

This is not my saying I support Hillary. This is a cold-blooded political analysis of what I think most likely to happen.

The youth are clearly clamoring for Obama (including my daughter Kyle.) They think he is hot, sexy and way cool. (The press also love Obama. Absolutely can't get enough of him. Keep that in mind as you read the breathless coverage.) Leaving aside the issue of if the United States will elect a black man in the general election, I have my doubts if the youth will turn out enough to elect him in the primaries (although Kyle is working hard to get out the vote for Obama.)

Obama has the biggest chance to unseat Clinton. Given him the slightest chance and his campaign will explode into a national JFK phenomena. Look for the Clinton campaign surrogates to start playing brutal hardball with Obama now, casting doubts on everything from his experience, to his race, to his religion including bringing out lies and total bullshit. There are no points for second place, and with Clinton in third in Iowa, she's going to make damn certain Obama doesn't get any oxygen to catch on fire, as he is poised to do.

And then there is Edwards. Second tonight in Iowa, barely, the press are going to paint him -- watch and see -- as not having enough money to go on. The press hate Edwards perhaps even more than they hate Clinton, and that is truly saying something. He doesn't cozy up to them at all, and they doubt his authenticity. But there's no doubt among his supporters, and tonight he managed to pull out a second place win by a fraction. He's in this till at least Super Tuesday, and if he manages to get any oxygen at all, who knows what could happen.

On the Republican side, Huck... oh Huck, winning tonight is the best thing you could have possibly done for Romney. I was going to say, for McCain, but with McCain's 100 year war fuck-up today in New Hampshire, he is toast. Done for.

So Romney is now going to be the Republican candidate, you betcha. Huckabee is too fucking insane for even the Republicans, what with the dog killing son and the raping and the creation science. They can't let this insane guy take center stage; they'd lose by a solid 65/35, and the Senate would become filibuster proof. So watch for the money to flow to Romney.

From the GNB Political Desk, it's Jesse Wendel with post-Iowa analysis.