Thursday, January 31, 2008

Florida primary results

So here’s the run down on Florida:

Hillary Clinton – the beauty contest winner is all smiles, and with numbers like 50% she may not see her shadow on Groundhog Day.
Barak Obama – Florida wasn’t impressed that he kept his promise to Iowa and New Hampshire voters not to campaign in Florida.
John Edwards – bowed out after finishing third, but didn’t say which of the two Americas he is retiring to.

McCain – takes the lead with 96 delegates to 65 for Romney
Romney – the silver medal strategy won’t work if he keeps finishing second to McCain
Guiliani – third place in his firewall state and bows out with a big nod to McCain
Huckabee – last chance is to sweep the Southern states on Super Tuesday
Ron Paul – his claim that he is more viable than Guiliani just became irrelevant

But the big unreported news from Florida: Florida supports the war. Barak Obama didn’t fare well. Neither did Mike Huckabee, who has been sometimes critical of Bush’s foreign policy. Ron Paul, the Republican anti-war candidate, got 3% which is about half or a third of the fringe he normally gets. McCain put Romney away by accusing him of supporting a secret timeline for withdrawal. With Florida being a swing state, this could be major in November. And 1,684,380 voted in the Democratic primary, 1,920,350 voted in the Republican primary.

Monday, January 28, 2008

South Carolina primary results

So here’s the rundown after South Carolina with a week to Super Tuesday, and a short stop this Tuesday in Florida (Florida’s punishment for being naughty and having a January primary: only half its delegates at stake for the Republicans, no delegates for the Democrats).

Barak Obama – big win in SC expands his pledged delegate lead 63 to 48 and gets the Kennedy endorsement.
Hillary Clinton – if she sees her shadow on Groundhog Day, expect 6 more weeks of race-baiting.
John Edwards – the not-so-favorite son finished last in his native state of South Carolina, now sleeping on a grate under a bridge.
Dennis Kucinich – hoped to create some press attention by dropping out on Friday

Mitt Romney – got the endorsement of Liz Cheney, the Vice President’s daughter who isn’t gay.
John McCain – waiting to hear him give a speech without the phrase “my friends”
Mike Huckabee – increasingly preaching to an empty choir
Ron Paul – hope is to win the Florida butterfly vote of befuddled elderly voters
Guiliani – last hope is to edge out Ron Paul for fourth in Florida
Fred Thompson – so long, we hardly knew you.

Thursday, January 17, 2008

Michigan primary results

Romney wins half a gold (half of Michigan’s delegates were revoked as punishment for holding its primary in January). All the major Democratic candidates agreed not to campaign in Michigan, and all but Hillary withdrew their names from the ballot (clever girl, didn’t campaign, got 55% of the vote). Not much love for Ohio Stater Dennis Kucinich at 5%.

Republican delegate count

Romney 52
Huckabee 22
McCain 15
Thompson 6
Paul 2
Hunter 1
Giuliani 1

A dozen senior campaign staffers for Rudy Giuliani are forgoing their January paychecks. And why not, all the evidence says they took the month off. Most have been spotted down in Florida, no doubt working on their tans. No campaign money troubles, just a vacation without pay is how I’d spin it. And why campaign in Iowa or New Hampshire in January when you can be down in Florida? Rudy may have proved it possible to be even lazier than Fred Thompson. Watch for Romney to make some big media buys and rack up the delegates on February 5.

Democratic delegate count:

Clinton 190 (24 earned)
Obama 103 (25 earned)
Edwards 51 (18 earned)

Watch them play the race dance: If Hillary offends blacks, she can’t win in November. If Barak offends whites, he can’t win in November. If Barak offends Hillary, he can’t be her VP. If Hillary offends Barak, she can’t be his VP. Meanwhile, John Edwards is polling third in South Carolina, state of his birth. Born and bred in the briar patch doesn’t count as much as it used to, I guess.

Wednesday, January 9, 2008

New Hampshire primary results

Hillary Clinton – pretty much on game plan, hugged her husband, kissed her daughter
Barack Obama – forgot to manage his expectations
Edwards – fast becoming the forgotten man
Richardson – still the best candidate in the race

McCain – how does he do it?
Huckabee – and who again is Huckabee?
Guiliani – where’s Rudy?
Thompson – what, too lazy to drop out?
Ron Paul – why, no surprise?
Romney – the Mr. Olympics spin is two silvers and a gold (in case you missed it, the win was Wyoming)

Friday, January 4, 2008

Iowa caucus results

So Obama wins Iowa and Hillary comes in third (guess those blackberry messages went unanswered). Huckabee looks like someone Obama could beat. Things do not look good for Hillary. I saw somewhere that more absentee ballots have already been cast in Florida than people who voted in Iowa (of course, Florida was kicked out of the Democratic party). And CNN says Hillary still leads in the delegate count 154 for Hillary to 50 for Obama to 33 for Edwards (the fix is still in).

I think Thompson was hoping he would get few enough votes in Iowa so that he could honorably drop out, as Biden and Dodd did on the other side. So by getting a few more votes than may have been expected, Thompson may have to stay in. Sometimes Iowans are just mean.

Thursday, January 3, 2008

Revoke birthright citizenship

I saw the new Ron Paul ad. It had a good feel until he hit the phrase “revoke birthright citizenship”. Here’s how that gets played back if someone wants to go after him: “Ron Paul wants to revoke YOUR birthright as a US citizen”. But Fox did a story on him, and the couple of hundred college kids he has working phones in Iowa.

Wednesday, January 2, 2008

Iowa Up, New Hampshire on Deck

The Iowa Caucuses are tomorrow night, and New Hampshire votes next Tuesday.

For the Democrats, look for Hillary to Eke out a narrow victory in Iowa and a wider victory in New Hampshire. Obama and Edwards will give Clinton a run in Iowa, but with the operatives at the caucuses armed with cell phones and blackberries, expect the fix to be in. A caucus is a two hour or longer meeting, which means you can walk in a Biden man and walk out a Clinton gal. No cameras in the war room this time, I’m guessing.

For the Republicans it is Romney v. Huckabee in Iowa and Romney v. McCain in New Hampshire. Romney will lose one or both of these. Look for a surprise second or third place finish for Ron Paul.

Massachusetts has quietly moved its primary up from March 4th to February 5th. That will give Massachusetts a voice in the first big round of primaries, as the presumptive nominee for both parties will likely get picked on February 5th when 23 states are set to vote. Ohio is still on March 4 (if it is still close, Ohio could be the kingmaker or queenmaker).

Reply: Robert Novak is putting Hillary at 3rd in Iowa, which is good news for Obama and Edwards supporters.

A: Hillary will win the 3-way. If the frontrunner loses, that helps everyone else: If Obama had the best chance to beat Clinton, Edwards could ensure she loses by throwing him a few votes and, if Edwards had the best chance, Obama could throw him a few votes. But since it’s so close they’ll both play for the win. Keep in mind that back in 1992 Bill Clinton finished 3rd in Iowa and 2nd in New Hampshire.