When your predictions are wrong, you can either concede with grace and dignity like the great Joe Biden did last night, or ignore the fact you were defeated like the feisty John Edwards did last night. Or you can just be delusional like the creepy Mitt Romney was in his very odd concession speech last night.
I was wrong.
Just as I texted a friend last evening the Iowa caucuses were truly an historic night. The Obama operations ability to capture and turnout their voters was amazing and spells trouble for Clinton in the short and long term. The significance of a state 95% white voting for an African American is encouraging and a turnout of 240,000+ caucus goers for the Democrats shows the motivation of a party ready to take back the White House.
The speech by Obama last night showed that this guy can capture a moment. The message of hope and unity is a strong one and more importantly is one that is hard to attack by rivals. What is most exciting is that he seems to have tapped into and motivated a group of voters who haven't been motivated for quite some time. In my years on the campaign trail and following campaigns the youth vote and the under motivated vote has always been talked about but has almost ever come through. Last night those voters may have decided a nominee for President.
There were many mentions and comparisons last night to Bobby Kennedy. I don't think that Obama is yet this kind of moving force as I think the movement towards him is more based on being fed up with the Bush and Clinton dynasties than his message but think he is on the path to be what this generation needs. An idea, a force of change that is positive, intelligent, passionate, and eloquent.
As for Clinton and Edwards, desperation comes quick with this new front loaded system of primaries. The concession speeches by both last night were very interesting to me. Edwards was confrontational and in denial. Clinton's speech showed some much needed humility, but also started to redefine her campaign to the left.
Seemed like Edwards was in denial. He kept saying, the people 'voted for change', but seemed to imply that the change vote was for him and not Obama. I just don't see how a 7 point loss in the state he really had to win gives him momentum going forward against two campaigns who have raised so much more money than he has. Think he'll be lucky to get over 15% of the vote in New Hampshire or South Carolina which doesn't set up well for him going forward. While I like Edwards think his campaign suffered a crippling blow last night.
As for Hillary, was it me or did she jump left last night? The candidate who has tried and tried like no other to position herself for the general election so she could look tougher against Republicans suddenly sounded very populist.
Going forward the momentum and coverage is definitely with Obama. Just like Iowa catapulted John Kerry four years ago, it very well could do the same this year. However, think that being the front runner is tougher than being the challenger and the Clinton's are not going to go down without a fight. Think this race is still a long way from being decided.
The worst part of the night for me is that it appears as though 97% of the vote when to just 3 candidates. There were three other candidates who worked very hard and had staffers and volunteers work tirelessly and think the results for them are a shame as the reality is if not for the crazy caucus rules you wouldn't have seen Richardson and Biden dividing up a mere 3% of the vote.
And to Joe Biden, one of my favorite Senators and the person I would have voted for, you deserved better. The intelligence, experience, and eloquence of Joe Biden is an important voice for this country and hope he gets strong consideration for the VP slot on the ticket for either Hillary or Obama as they and the country would both would greatly benefit from this true statesman.
In conclusion about the Democrats, want to apologize to Joe Biden, since I endorsed him on this very blog the