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Clinton and Senior Iowa Operative Part Ways

Angelique Pirozzi, the Iowa field director for Sen. Hillary Clinton (D-N.Y.), is no longer a part of the campaign -- the Clinton campaign's first senior staff departure since it reshuffled its Hawkeye State staff in June.

Clinton's campaign would not confirm whether Pirozzi had resigned or had been fired; "She is no longer with the campaign," was all spokesman Mo Elleithee would offer when contacted on the matter.

Pirozzi, often described as a protege of uber organizer Michael Whouley, has a long history in Iowa Democratic presidential politics, having served as caucus manager for Sen. John Kerry's 2004 victory and as deputy caucus manager for then-Vice President Al Gore in 2000. In between those races, Pirozzi managed Kerry's 2002 re-election race to the Senate.

Clinton's campaign has had an on-again, off-again relationship with Iowa so far in the race. A leaked internal campaign memo from deputy campaign manager Mike Henry advised the candidate to skip Iowa, a suggestion that caused a national uproar. Clinton said she never seriously considered the possibility and moved to strengthen her Iowa staff in the early summer by placing highly-regarded operative Teresa Vilmain in charge of her Iowa operation.

Since then the campaign has steadied considerably. A recent Los Angeles Times/Bloomberg poll showed Clinton leading the pack with 28 percent followed by former Sen. John Edwards (N.C.) at 23 percent and Sen. Barack Obama (Ill.) in third with 19 percent.

By Chris Cillizza  |  September 14, 2007; 5:10 PM ET
Categories:  Eye on 2008  
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