World Affairs Brief, January 4, 2008. Commentary and Insights on a Troubled World.
Copyright Joel Skousen. Partial quotations with attribution permitted. Cite source as Joel Skousen’s World Affairs Brief <http://www.worldaffairsbrief.com>
MY ANALYSIS OF THE IOWA CAUCUS RACE
For the Democrats, Obama came in first with 39%, Edwards second with 30% and Clinton third with 29%–a major embarrassment. For the Republicans, Gov. Huckabee received 34%, and Gov. Romney was second with 25%. Thompson and McCain were in a tie for distant third at 13% and Ron Paul finally burst out of the single digits with 10% –not what his ardent supporters hoped for but certainly a respectable showing considering the media blackout against him and his anti-establishment cause. The big losers were Hillary Clinton and Rudolph Giuliani. Although both were promoted all year long by the mainstream press as front runners, they were clearly not popular in Iowa. It was also clear that the Des Moines Register, which tried to sway the race in favor of McCain and Clinton, is out of touch with it’s own constituency.
As I have pointed out in recent briefs, we are front and center watching a major case of media manipulation. Huckabee’s strong showing in Iowa was almost solely due to his ministerial attractiveness to rural Christian conservatives in Iowa, and even that would not have gained any notice without a major media campaign to promote him out of nowhere, as they made a major issue out of Romney’s Mormon faith–which predictable galvanized some evangelical Christians against Romney and for Huckabee.
However, Huckabee’s God and Big Government campaign has little pull in other larger states where the number of secular voters is much stronger than in Iowa. He will get a boost in New Hampshire from the media label as a “winner,” but it is doubtful he will break the 20% support level. Before Iowa, he was at 10%. It is interesting to note the grouping of Iowa counties that voted for Romney were concentrated around the cities where he visited personally –indicating that he was successful in converting a majority in urban areas which had a chance to meet him. Huckabee’s support was almost exclusively found in the small rural counties which rely on the news media and what fellow church-goers are saying to form political opinions. That will not translate to a winning percentage in other states with larger urban populations.
McCain wouldn’t even be in this race if it were not for the massive media support he receive just recently –with six major newspapers endorsing him in an attempt to boost him over Romney (when it became apparent that Giuliani might not be able to sustain his front-runner status). This strategy of boosting McCain to cut off Romney is probably not going to work either. McCain’s poor showing in Iowa, despite the Register’s endorsement, does not bode well. If McCain doesn’t beat Romney in New Hampshire (currently in a dead heat), the Powers That Be will be looking for another strategy. They’ve still got spoiler Michael Bloomberg in the wings. Using a major liberal newspaper in NH to editorialize against Romney (“Anyone but Romney” without endorsing anyone else) suspiciously smacks of media manipulation on a grand scale. But New Hampshire voters can be pretty independent when they want, so the results next week should be interesting.
Ron Paul continues to build support in the “Live or Die Free” state, so it will be interesting to see how much higher than his current 7% polling numbers he is able to reach. I fear that the false media coverage promoting Huckabee as an anti-establishment conservative (which is false) may keep last minute voters from switching to Paul. It won’t help that the Fox media moguls are intent upon keeping Ron Paul out of the New Hampshire Republican debates–even though Paul polls higher in NH than Fred Thompson, who is invited. ABC News is hinting that they may use the same double digit national polling criteria in their debate selection process as well. So, it is important that Ron Paul breach the 10% mark in New Hampshire. The establishment really doesn’t want the electorate to have an anti-interventionist, anti-big government, anti-globalist choice in this election.