As I mentioned last night, I’m going to be focusing my campaign attention for the next two weeks on the Nevada caucuses. To that end, David McGrath Schwartz attended the Obama campaign’s Iowa caucus watching party in Las Vegas:
There was euphoria at the Paradise Cantina, with its tiki décor and tequila flags. More than a few supporters sported Kennedy buttons, and made the comparison to a deeper overall movement.
Nevada’s little caucus remains a secret to the grown ups in the national mainstream media, garnering only scant mention in all the breathless what-happens-now speculation. An exception: During the course of delivering a eulogy on the Clinton campaign on the teevees with Keith Olbermann and Tweety Matthews Thursday night, Howie Fineman predicted that the Culinary would endorse Obama. Is it that obvious?The nation now turns its eyeballs to New Hampshire, while Nevada’s caucus is characterized by the same two questions that have engulfed it pretty much from the get-go: Who will the Culinary endorse? And will anybody outside Nevada care what happens here one way or the other?
Aaron Smith on Obama’s YouTube moment– video of the victory speech follows below:
it’s likely that relatively few people, outside of the most inveterate political junkies, actually did watch the speech live and in its entirety. And prior to the days of broadband access and easily accessible online video, it’s likely that most voters would never have seen more of the speech than an odd clip here or there on the cable and network news shows. Instead, more than 160,000 people have watched just the official campaign YouTube clip alone in the twelve hours since it was posted, in addition to the tens or hundreds of thousands more who watched from other video or news sites.
Dayo Olopade asks whether Murdoch and the WSJ pulled punches in their coverage of the Iowa results.
Steven Teals of the Reality Basd Community is thinking about what Obama will need to govern:
I’m now willing to predict that if Obama is nominated, he will win the popular vote comfortably–54-46. The Democrats will pick up seats in both the House and Senate as well, putting them in a position to pass significant legislation across a range of issues. The challenge for Obama will be to craft sufficiently strong, clear and focused (that is, prioritized) policy positions during the election that a strong win gives him (and his party) a victory that cannot be chalked up to the idiosyncracies of his personality.
Finally, I think that Hillary and Edwards need to think very carefully before unloading with both barrels against Obama over the next few weeks, in an effort to get themselves back in the running. The Democrats just can’t afford to damage their likely nominee via friendly fire.
Michael Goodwin in the Daily News:
Her campaign is a campaign. His is a movement….. She has to stop being a celebrity if she wants to be President….To win she has to become less calculating, less programmed. She needs to come out from behind Bubba and the barricades and the imperial court of handlers who create a bubble. She has to stop being a celebrity if she wants to be President.
In short, she has to become more human.
Maybe losing Iowa will do that for her.
Andrew Sullivan (Obama’s Boswell?) on rhetoric:
In the television and internet age, old-style rhetoric is sometimes regarded as an anachronism. It isn’t. Huckabee’s brilliance in the debates gave him this opportunity. Obama’s public speeches have been the best in a candidate since Reagan and Kennedy. As someone who was trained in and loves debate, it’s good to see this old skill gain new salience. Lincoln would be proud.
Robert Naiman faults Obama’s Africa proposals:
It seems that unlike his Democratic rivals, Senator Obama would not commit to $50 billion in new funding in coming years to the Global Fund to fight AIDS, tuberculosis & malaria. He also would not to commit to the goal of universal access to treatment.
Reading the candidates’ statements on the issues one can’t escape the feeling that Obama’s answers are (Bill) Clintonian. He feels their pain. Where the other candidates make specific commitments, Obama offers vague phrases. All hat, no cattle, as Jim Hightower used to say.
Africa Action says Obama’s plan “does not go far enough, for instance, instead of debt cancellation, he talks of reducing debt, instead of universal access to treatment, he talks of increasing the numbers; does not commit enough money.“