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Clinton Pitches Her Experience; Disputes Register Poll

AMES, Iowa -- In her first event of 2008, Sen. Hillary Rodham Clinton drew deeply on her accomplishments both in and out of office as she sought to make the case that she alone has the requisite experience to handle the job of president.

With the Iowa caucuses now 48 hours away, Clinton is going beyond simply stating that she has been fighting for Democratic causes all her life. Beginning with her work for the Children's Defense Fund fresh out of law school, Clinton documented -- in a detailed manner -- the accomplishments she has accrued over the past three decades to a standing room only in this college town located thirty minutes north of Des Moines.

"I care about change," Clinton said. "I care about actually producing it."

There is some truth in the Clinton campaign's assertion that Hillary is the "most famous person no one knows." Many voters still do not feel like they know Clinton beyond a superficial reading of her life. People have a general sense that Clinton is accomplished but they don't much about the details.

Clinton's task in the final 50+ hours of this race is to show people why a vote for her is the safest one they can make if they worry about nominating someone who can both win next November and govern effectively from the White House.

"If you want to know what kind of changes I will make, look at the changes I have already made," she said. "We don't have any margin for error or time to waste."

She also pre-butted attacks from her rivals -- most notably Sen. Barack Obama (Ill.) -- who have said that talking about past accomplishments means little for future results.

"When I talk about the '90s some of my opponents say 'There she goes again talking about the past,'" Clinton said. "It's not like it's ancient Rome. It's ten years ago."

A senior Clinton strategist told us: "Everyone is talking change -- we believe the best way for voters to judge what kind of change HRC will make is for them to look at the kind of change she has made over her life."

Clinton's argument is complicated by the latest Des Moines Register poll -- released last night -- that not only showed her trailing Obama 32 percent to 25 percent, but also showed a desire for change is trumping the need for experience in the minds of Iowa voters.

Thirty percent said that a candidate's ability to bring about change was the most important factor in their vote, while 27 percent said they wanted a candidate who could unite the country. Just 18 percent said that having the experience to lead was the most important factor in making up their minds.

Hoping to blunt Obama's momentum -- which may be an impossible task at this point -- the Clinton campaign released a memo this morning from its in-house pollster, Mark Penn, disputing the results of the Register poll.

"The Des Moines Register poll adopts an unprecedented new turnout model for the caucuses, and its new poll is out of sync with the other polling done in the race," wrote Penn. He also noted that in two new polls out this morning -- one conducted by CNN and the other by Zogby -- Clinton has the lead (albeit within the statistical margin of error).

"Momentum is on our side," insisted former Iowa Gov. Tom Vislack. "Two polls out this morning indicate Sen. Clinton is ahead." Not surprisingly, Vilsack made no mention of the Register poll.

Momentum is the buzz word of the final hours of this caucus. Former Sen. John Edwards (N.C.) insists he has it, citing his large crowds; Obama believes he has it -- based on the Register poll; and Clinton argues that she has seized the initiative following her endorsement by the Des Moines Register and the release of the polls that show her on top.

Who's right? It's impossible to know. The key for candidates now is turning out supporters and hoping that something in their stump speech or campaigns ads catches the eye of undecided voters.

The excitement and nervousness in Iowa from all the campaigns is palpable. What a contest!

By Chris Cillizza  |  January 1, 2008; 11:19 AM ET
Categories:  Eye on 2008  
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Next: Edwards Continues to Amp Up The Rhetoric

Comments

My prediction polls:
Democrat side;
HRC 34%
Edwards:28%
Obama28%
GOP side;
Romney 29%
Huchabee 28%
McCain 26%
Turn out will be so so, women and seniors are more dependable,evangelicals are not enough to overcome Romney's money machine. First time caucusers will be also average.

Posted by: johnycheng1 | January 3, 2008 5:53 PM | Report abuse

Here's another HillPrank on caucus day.

5. Ask the HillSupporters to bring their pearls and throw them on the floor when Obama supporters rush into the caucus room.

Posted by: JohnMcCormick | January 2, 2008 10:29 PM | Report abuse

You know Hillary has tried everything during this campaign. Lying, flip flopping, name calling, planting questions, taking money from fugitives, firing campaign managers, distancing from Ohio governor, digging up kndergarten essays, usig surroates to mock opponents name and religion, etc. etc.

Watch on caucus day for the following from the Hillary camp.

1. Call Obama supporters and tell them caucus has been moved to the 4th of January.
2. Put nails in the tires of Obama supporters to prevent them from reaching there.
3. Goto the Obama pre caucus party and spice up the punch, so that during the caucus all Obama supporters will be in the bathroom.
4. Bring a bunch of Hillary nutcrackers and crack the nuts of Obama supporters during the party.

Let us keep the list growing and see how many more we can capture. Please add any other Hillary pranks you can think of.

Posted by: JohnMcCormick | January 2, 2008 10:17 PM | Report abuse

As per the following article Hillary's knowledge about Pakistan is worse than that of a high school kid.

http://www.politico.com/blogs/bensmith/0108/Clinton_errs_on_Pakistan_.html

I can't believe Hillary is so naive about the political structure of Pakistan. After being the first lady for 8 years and then spending another 7 years in senate, she still does not understand that the countries who are part of the commonwealth of the United Kingdom follow a different power structure than the United States. So much for her lies about her foreign policy experience. As Obama said, it takes more than sipping tea with foreign dignitaries to understand how those countries work.

We will have a disasterous foreign policy if Hillary is elected. She is worse than Bush.

Posted by: ChunkyMonkey1 | January 2, 2008 7:10 PM | Report abuse

Hey CC, you should do a report concerning the lefty lawyer in Ill. that attacked the Marine Sgt's. vehicle b/c he has a military license tag. The sgt. called the cops and they came out. It turns out that the damage done to the vehicle was $2,400. The court date set was Jan. 1, 2008 if I heard it right. The attorney issued a continuiance, knowing the Sgt. had to report back to duty in Iraq on Jan 3. This is a travesty of justice. You want to talk about "hate crimes", how about this? A liberal attacking the vehicle of a member of the Armed Forces due to his own hatred of this nation & the freedom the military preserves for our nation. Where is the justice?

Posted by: bryant_flier2006 | January 2, 2008 1:53 PM | Report abuse

Mark, jimd52 & rpy1: I plan on voting for Hillary in the Dem primary as well as in the GE. You guys should think a little as to how rational the Repubs are in supporting Obama in the early states, there is nothing delusional in my thinking or theirs. Because from everyone I have talked with over these many months has come to the same conclusion I have, Obama Has ZERO chance of being elected in 08 and the Repub party knows this. I am almost convinced that McCain will drop out at some point because there is something out there that none of his family, friends, or even himself would want known, and I firmly believe his Repub opponents will use it as a last resort if necessary. I KNOW Hillary is the one many, if not most, Repubs "FEAR" most. The past few days have all kinds of predictions as to turnout and this, I think, will be the key.

Posted by: lylepink | January 2, 2008 1:53 PM | Report abuse

Some GOP may be crossing the caucus line to help bring Clinton down; some, though, are just as hungry for change: http://www.brooklynpaper.com/stories/30/51/30_51iowamayor.html

No surprise - Chris Rock puts it perfectly as to why being First Lady can't count as experience:

"I've been with my wife for 10 years now. If she got onstage right now, y'all wouldn't laugh at all."

Posted by: GordonsGirl | January 2, 2008 12:38 PM | Report abuse

Lyle,

So who are you planning on voting for in the Republican primary? I would guess that McCain would be the worst opponent for Clinton, but am not really sure who the best R would be for Dems (especially Clinton) to beat.

Or, as a Democrat in a highly contested election, are you planning on voting in the Dem primary?

Posted by: rpy1 | January 2, 2008 12:20 PM | Report abuse

Last night at 5:06P I wrote:

"lyle, I hope you are dead wrong about McCain. I think you are mistaken in assuming that anyone who intends to vote R in the General would vote D in the IA caucus. But I hear some of you saying the DMR counted Rs in their D poll. Is that right?"

I have since read the DMR Poll's
setup, and it includes only those who say they will vote in the primary for which they were polled. But many Rs said they were voting in the D primary. They also claim disenchantment with R politics generally. I stand by my belief that it is illogical to assume that any R would abandon his/her R candidate of choice and vote in the D primary.

Lyle, your analysis is still based on a faulty premise.

Posted by: mark_in_austin | January 2, 2008 9:45 AM | Report abuse

lyle,

With a Republican presidential race that is extremely competitive, the idea that a significant number of Republicans are participating in Democratic caucuses and primaries in order to undermine Hillary Clinton is delusional. To the extent that Republicans are supporting Obama it is because they are disgusted with their own party and attracted by Obama's message of change.

Posted by: jimd52 | January 2, 2008 9:25 AM | Report abuse

Being ready to be President from Day 1 means absolutely nothing and is hollow. Being a great choice for leadership, integrity, character etc are the reasons to elect someone President. Hillary and Bill have none of these. "Being Ready" is a crock.

Posted by: tknewell | January 2, 2008 7:16 AM | Report abuse

I will try and answer four or five of you with the same answer that is applicable for each in itself. I don't see how I could be any more specific on why many Repubs are supporting Obama in these early states. They see him as "WEAK" and Hillary as "STRONG". Use a little common sense and answer your own question about who you would rather run against in the GE.

Posted by: lylepink | January 2, 2008 6:42 AM | Report abuse

On two confident television appearances, on CNN and ABC, Clinton made an elementary error about Pakistani politics: She described President Pervez Musharraf as a "candidate" who would be "on the ballot."

Experience???

In your opinion was Hillary referring to Musharraf's party or to Musharraf himself being on the ballot?

http://www.youpolls.com/details.asp?pid=1419

.

Posted by: PollM | January 2, 2008 12:05 AM | Report abuse

"McCain, Heckabee, all of the Democrats and the rest of the open Border pro-illegal Aliens supporters false compassion for Illegal Aliens is sicking."

umm, just sad. what can you say?


'And putting Gore in charge of the EPA is a no-brainer. Putting anyone else in that post should be considered a crime against humanity.'

well said, judge...

Posted by: drindl | January 1, 2008 11:37 PM | Report abuse

It is really jarring to see good news about any candidate, let alone a front runner, downplayed. Many people are interested in the contest because of the Obama presence and the great human story it is. Many are very sharp non-political administrative and academic types. These folk particularly the professionals smell favoritism a mile away. It offends their sense of work place fairness, makes them skeptical of the process and drives support to the would be target.
That is maybe one of the big reasons Mr. Obama has jumped to a 7 pt lead. People have been picking on him and he has keep up his theme of change. Iowa has gotten more good publicity out of him than any other candidate. He made the race so spectacular and world riveting. Who would have watched Hillary crush Edwards. A storybook ending for Obama on Thursday will seal Iowa's place in the annuals of political history, for at least a generation maybe two. Regardless of who goes on to win the nomination they will say, Iowa is alright.

Posted by: empireport | January 1, 2008 11:36 PM | Report abuse

I really believe Hillary is for the common man and change . Bill was great at delagating power . I believe she will be the same with the same group behind her . Howdy Doody can beat the GOP this time . No more Repo's

Posted by: jerseydevil | January 1, 2008 10:34 PM | Report abuse

vbhoomes you can vote for Obama, simply join all of the other astute Republicans that are voting for the candidate that you described. And for you Chris - - what is going on with you? Are you tired? Tell me how could you write a column about the latest poll showing Obama leading and talk about Clinton the entire article. I must stop here before I say something that I will regret. Get a grip.

Posted by: ddraper81 | January 1, 2008 8:50 PM | Report abuse

E Eave
Some of held our noses and voted for Kerry in spite our doubts about him. Many Republicans I know (I realize this isn't real evidence) just stayed home. To me it highlighted the possibilities for a candidate with crossover appeal.

Posted by: ViejitaDelOeste | January 1, 2008 7:52 PM | Report abuse

"I care about change," Clinton said. "I care about actually producing it."

The only "change" that Hillary Clinton really gives a tinkers dam about is changing the occupant of the White House; and changing the party of the person only really matters to her if she can also change the gender. It's all about Hillary.

"If you want to know what kind of changes I will make, look at the changes I have already made," she said.

What changes is she talking about? I certainly don't know about any, and my attempts to discover what changes or other accomplishments Ms. Clinton has made ran into a brick wall. I visited Clinton's site; the Official US Senator Hillary Clinton web page that is sponsored by the government; the one that other US Senators are proud to use to display a list of bills they have written and sponsored along with their voting record. Lo and behold . . . Clinton's sight fails to provide any such record at all. Trying to find the truth behind what Senator Clinton stands for and what she has accomplished is as difficult as trying to get a straight answer out of Candidate Clinton on where she stands on the issues.

HRC spent most of the campaign, so far, repeating the same two lies about her being "the most experienced" Democrat, and being "the most electable" democrat. Most of us have discovered the truth, that she is neither! Now as the votes are about to be cast in Iowa, Clinton hopes to steal the momentum from her two chief rivals by stealing their identity as "the candidates for change".

Hillary Clinton is all about "status quo" - NOT change, when it comes to how she would govern this country and let the rich and powerful to gain more wealth and power. In 7 years as a US Senator, Clinton has stood for nothing that remotely represents change. In the past year, the only thing we have seen from Candidate Clinton that can rightly be identified as change is her taking almost every conceivable side of the issues before her (depending upon what group she is addressing or what the latest polls seem to indicate she "should" say) and her repeated efforts to change her own persona. Is it any wonder that so many people feel like they don't know the real Hillary Clinton? Unfortunately, those of us who remember her as the First Lady at the center of more scandals than any First Lady in the history of this country and her efforts to hide the truth (and evidence) about her involvement in these scandals know the real Hillary all too well. She hasn't changed, and I wouldn't hold my breath expecting her to either.

Posted by: diksagev | January 1, 2008 7:36 PM | Report abuse

"To those who take issue with our thesis that CC is pro-HRC, dig through the Fix archives and find an entry that is as positive about Obama as this entry is about Clinton. Go ahead, I'll wait."

Still waiting.....

Posted by: judgeccrater | January 1, 2008 7:34 PM | Report abuse

Here's an interesting page where McCain beats all Dems except Obama and Edwards, who beats all Republicans:

http://www.realclearpolitics.com/epolls/2008/president/national.html

Posted by: rfpiktor | January 1, 2008 7:34 PM | Report abuse

No, I'm not kidding. I'm really not going to debate the level of Bush-hating in this country, which is plain to see. You must live in Texas, or another similarly situated red state, to suggest that many people find the president "likable." People bash him for no apparent reason, and entirely out of context, just as they bash Hillary. I don't see how the former is justified, without justifying the latter.

Posted by: smc91 | January 1, 2008 7:26 PM | Report abuse

Apparently some of the readers of "The Fix" belong on the NBC TV Show "Medium"

Not only have they determined that "The Fix" is supporting a certain candidate, but they have determined the "who that candidate is!"

As a long time reader of this column, I apparently lack their clairvoyance.

Not bring clairvoyant, I lack the ability to detect any bias in this column.

If you are a "Medium" thank you for exposing this column and please, keep up the good work.

BTW: Any clues on 2012 yet?

Posted by: bobnsri | January 1, 2008 7:23 PM | Report abuse

Franklin at pollster.com today observes that while its easy to get lost in this poll and that, "the trend estimates are Clinton 29.5%, Obama 26.6% and Edwards 25.2%."

Posted by: mmeyerdc | January 1, 2008 7:07 PM | Report abuse

You're kidding, right? After eight years of absolutely insane Bush hating, why is it so surprising when some of that venom is directed towards Hillary?


Posted by: smc91 | January 1, 2008 06:45 PM

You're the one kidding, right? When media coverage of Bush went from non-probing to completly compliant, it took great effort for Bush to drop his 90% approval rating.

Seems like a lot of people still find Bush "likable", but vast majorities now regard him as as incompetent and his presidency as failed. In other words, upon reflection people don't like the job he's done. How does that qualify as eight years of "insane Bush hating" (assuming you're talking about people WITHIN the US)?

Posted by: Alan4 | January 1, 2008 6:59 PM | Report abuse

claudialong wrote: I can't beleive anybody think Hillary has more experience than Biden.

No one thinks that, and Hillary isn't claiming to be more experienced than anyone else running. The experience is more directed at a new to Washington Obama who touts that as his strength, the outsider, and to some degree also Edwards.

Of course Biden would make an excellent President. Hillary has more policy appeal to me that quickly turns around the Bush Cheney neocon machine. Biden is a great statesmen, but we need an equally effective and probably even more important change to domestic policy.

I support Hillary as the one who can accomplish that.

To the poster who wondered why Democrats are tearing each other down, they aren't. These are Republicans in here trying to goose Obama in the primaries because they know they will lose to her in an election. They've alreadt trotted out all the lies and venom about her they can dream up.

Obama is fertile ground for swift boating. They would make mincemeat of him. You saw what they did to war heroes in Kerry and McCain. By the time they were done with Obama he would end up like Dukakis and McGovern.

By the way, McGovern would have been an excellent President also. Doesn't matter if they never make it there due to Republican lies and dirty campaigns, the only way they know how to steal elections.

rd

Posted by: ralphdaugherty | January 1, 2008 6:52 PM | Report abuse

At a time when each candidate professes s/he is best suited to bring change, how do we assess "capacity to bring change". We have been conducting a survey on leadership intelligences and here are some preliminary results.

Interim Results: Leadership Intelligences of Presidential Candidates Survey
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

Here's an interim analysis of the results of this first-of-its-kind, by-invitation only survey which is still ongoing. It ranks the candidates on the basis of 5 leadership intelligences (explained below). The results are proving to be both insightful and interesting.
Chris, if your readers would like to participate in a similar survey that is open to the public, please visit:
http://www.surveymonkey.com/s.aspx?sm=CVDmCfy5onWirBylihce0A_3d_3d
The only condition is that participants should not be associated with any candidate's campaign, officially or unofficially.

The results so far
------------------
(Percentage score reflects how many respondents ranked the candidate "High" or "Very High" in each leadership intelligence category; Other categories are "Average", "Low", and "Very Low")

General insights
----------------
1. In every leadership intelligence, the top Democrat fares better than the top Republican
2. Significant percentages of respondents said they did not know enough of Dodd to assess
3. Clinton is ranked significantly better than Obama in Analytical and Operational LSmarts, is on par with him in Communicative LSmarts, and is ranked a little below him in Inventive LSmarts; Obama is ranked significantly higher than Clinton in Ethical LSmarts.
4. Edwards is ranked surprisingly low in 4 out of 5 intelligences, being above the crowd only in Ethical LSmarts.

Details
--------
Analytical LSmarts (ability to respond to new situations requiring analysis)
-------------------------
Republicans: McCain 71.5%; Giuliani: 71.4%; Romney: 65.6%
Democrats: Clinton: 76.1%; Biden: 75%
Surprise Finding: Low rankings for Huckabee (14.3), Obama (57.2%), and Edwards (55%)

Operational LSmarts (ability to respond to surprise crises in operations)
--------------------------
Republicans: Giuliani: 73.7%; McCain: 71.5%; Romney: 50%
Democrats: Clinton: 78.9%
Surprise Finding: Huckabee: 10.5%; Romney: 50%; Obama: 52.6%; Edwards: 47.4%

Inventive LSmarts (ability to set a vision)
-----------------------
Republicans: Ron Paul: 64.7%
Democrats: Obama: 75%; Clinton: 70%; Biden: 63.2%
Surprise Finding: Edwards only 47.4%; Every Republican other than Ron Paul rated less than 50%

Communicative LSmarts (ability to respond to new situations using communication skills)
---------------------
Republicans: Ron Paul: 61.1%; Romney: 57.9%; Huckabee: 55.6% Giuliani: 52.7%
Democrats: Obama: 79%; Clinton: 78.9%
Surprise Finding: Edwards only 55.6%; Obama same as Clinton; McCain: only 28.6%

Ethical LSmarts (ability to understand the ethical dimensions of a new issue or perceive the ethical standpoints of others)
---------------
Republicans: McCain: 57.2%
Democrats: Obama: 63.1%; Edwards: 55.6%; Clinton: 47.4%
Surprise Finding: Republicans rate VERY low (Giuliani: 21%; Romney: 26.3%; Huckabee: 33.4%)
Other Democrats don't fare much better (Kuchinich: 27.8%; Richardson: 31.6%; Biden: 38.9%)

Posted by: prasadbiz | January 1, 2008 6:50 PM | Report abuse

It's quite a phenomenom -- the absolutely insane pavlovian hillary hating. what an irrational country this is.

Posted by: claudialong | January 1, 2008 02:43 PM

You're kidding, right? After eight years of absolutely insane Bush hating, why is it so surprising when some of that venom is directed towards Hillary?

Posted by: smc91 | January 1, 2008 6:45 PM | Report abuse

We have survived 8 years of Sleaze, Scandal, and Corruption under Bill and Hillery followed by 8 years of Arrogance, Corruption, Criminal Incompetent and Gross Stupidly under Bush Jr.. and Chicken Hawk Chaney. Either party cares about our Constitution and the rule of Law but served their selves first, the party second and the special interests third. It is increasingly looking like this Nation cannot survive more years of the same type of Corrupt, Lying, Self serving, Worthless Politicians.

Now both parties seen to have the nearly the same type candidates seeking our vote. From the polls it seems we have learned very little in the least 16 years and seen to prefer Sleaze, Corruption and Lies over Honor, Principles, our Constitution, the Rule of law and Love of our Country or Ron Paul would win the election by a wide margin.

Posted by: american1 | January 1, 2008 6:30 PM | Report abuse

For the Republicans who claim they'll be voting for Obama because they despise Bush, where were you in 2004? You had your chance then.

Posted by: eeave | January 1, 2008 6:29 PM | Report abuse

If Obama is selected, I'll be writing in another candidate, likely Hillary. Wait till Republicans start calling him an obamanation, and attacking his total lack of experience. The sight will be unpretty.

Posted by: eeave | January 1, 2008 6:28 PM | Report abuse

Let's assume Mccain has regained his mojo and will be the Republican candidate.

If Hillary is his opponent, Mccain wins.

If it is Obama will ViejitaDelOeste's mojo tip the election and cobble out an Obama win?

If Mccain is the candidate, would you prefer a Democrat?

The only candidate that got an impressive bump out of the Pakistan outrage was Mccain and he's back in the game.

The only candidate that sounds and acts like an inspiring leader in the Democrat side is Obama.

Edwards has had a four-year operation in Iowa and is running third.

Can't wait for those "reallocations"! That would be some mojo.

Posted by: rfpiktor | January 1, 2008 6:11 PM | Report abuse

Looks like the Clintonistas are at it again, trying to put a spin on an inevitable defeat; just like her "experience". The Country is sick and tired of politics as usual and that is reflected in this new poll. What's even more telling, is the Des Moines Register polls two days before an election have ALWAYS been the predictor of the order in which the candidates fall.

Are FIRED UP and ready to GO?

Obama 08

Posted by: yesiammike | January 1, 2008 6:00 PM | Report abuse

@ lylepink: I don't believe you are correct. From what I hear, the Reps' favorite candidate is Hillary, because she obviously carries the heaviest baggage, and seems easiest to beat. There are a lot of people who will vote "ABC" (Anybody But Clinton).

Posted by: dunnhaupt | January 1, 2008 5:45 PM | Report abuse

I think ViejitaDelOeste has it right in that Obama will attract plenty of crossover voters. Once we had "Reagan Democrats;" I don't think that "Obama Republicans" will be too much to expect.

Even if Huckabee wins I suspect he'll be seriously wounded by the primary process. Romney is the consummate flip-flopper and would get nailed for it in the general.

Boko, I'm not sure whether HRC or Obama would make a better POTUS. HRC is tapping into Edwards' audience and into the expected mudfest she rightly expects in the general. I'd expect her to govern more from the middle. Maybe not as much in the middle as Obama.

Not clear on whether Obama's message will carry if elected POTUS. Certainly he'd be a true "uniter, not a divider" but DC is a funny place (an not laughing-at funny). Still, his experience in the Senate involved building at least a couple of bridges to the R aisle and that's at least a thousand times more than what GWB had to start with.

And putting Gore in charge of the EPA is a no-brainer. Putting anyone else in that post should be considered a crime against humanity.

Likewise, Mark.


Posted by: judgeccrater | January 1, 2008 5:31 PM | Report abuse

Until the Clintons release their white house records I don't think Hillary should even think of the presidency. All of the other candidates records are on file and open to the public but not the Clintons. Why would that be? You don't suppose that they would reveal wrongdoings or lack of any real accomplishments? Until they are released I cannot in good conscience vote for her. Nothing to base a vote on as her speeches are "me-me-me" look at all I have accomplished!! - please present facts that can be backed up." I know the RNC wants her in the run as they feel she is highly beatable in the final election. But if per chance she did get the highly coveted title would she be returning all the furniture etc that they stole from the white house when they left eight years ago? Another thought and this pertains to all candidates that are presently holding jobs in the Senate - How can they honestly spend all this money traipsing around the country when they have a job in Congress that should be their first priority. After all we are paying them a salary. Maybe they should all take an unpaid leave of absence first. Secondly, think of all the good that these campaign funds would do for people that need the help.

Posted by: sdrdk5 | January 1, 2008 5:31 PM | Report abuse

svreader says "I still think Hillary would be an even better candidate, as well as a better president" and he/she is, of course, entitled to that opinion. I happen to disagree - as I said above, with the D positions so similar (not identical, but most within +- 10%) the difference is the candidate, and his/her ability to present these to the electorate and sell them effectively. Based on what I have seen of the 3 frontrunners, I believe Obama would have the most success in that, and Clinton the least.

Posted by: bokonon13 | January 1, 2008 5:21 PM | Report abuse

Why is it assumed that IF republicans support Obama because they seem to think he would be the weakest democratic candidate, that they are necessarily right?As of now everyone has proved that they don't know much about the current races, much less the eventual one. Btw looneybin: is that where you are, or where you escaped from (or did Reagan let you out and have you been a squeegie man since then)?

Posted by: lourie | January 1, 2008 5:21 PM | Report abuse

LylePink and others
It is true that many Republicans prefer Obama but you are mistaken as to the reason. Many are so disgusted by Bush & Co. that they (we) have despaired of getting a decent candidate out of the GOP nominating process. If the Republicans nominate Romney, Giuliani or Huckabee, you will see many crossover votes for Obama in the general election. That's assuming he gets the nod from you Democrats.
You could also get some crossover for Biden, Dodd or Richardson; most Republicans take Edwards' theme of economic warfare very seriously (I like him for it, but I don't think that makes me a typical Republican) and we see Clinton as being a leftish version of G.W. Bush.

Posted by: ViejitaDelOeste | January 1, 2008 5:14 PM | Report abuse

Posted by: julieds | January 1, 2008 01:52 PM
The Clinton's are such spinners.

Just 2 weeks after the Des Moines Register endorsed Clinton, they were touting how wonderful and insightful the newspaper is. Now they slam the same paper and try to discredit it, for reporting the facts in Iowa.

Julieds got it right...

Clinton is in a tailspin and nobody believes them. Watch out below. Obama won't be slowed by any thing they say. There is a disconnect between fantasy and reality for the couple. Looking back now I can't believe I supported her at the beginning of this race.

Posted by: jrw34 | January 1, 2008 5:11 PM | Report abuse

The funny thing about Biden is that he's everyone's favorite second choice. Even most Republcans secretly like his policies and his gravitas, and he'd probably win the national election by a landslide.

Having said all that, I still think Hillary would be an even better candidate, as well as a better president.

I'd like to see Hillary get the nomination.

I think she's a dynamite lady and would be a fantastic president, but I'd also be almost as happy with Biden, and quite happy with Edwards.

The problem for me is Obama.

I can't imagine him winning the national election and I can't stand the thought of the Democrats losing it.

America can't take any more Republican rule.

The middle class doesn't have any money left for them to steal!!!

Posted by: svreader | January 1, 2008 5:08 PM | Report abuse

boko, judge, thanks for elevating this thread. You were not the only ones to do so but there was a lot of bashing and our two resident bashers were not even represented.

I do think that CC has covered HRC in the past and does give her the benefit of the doubt more readily. But I think he tries for even handedness and that shows, too.

If HRC really called Musharraf a "candidate" I suspect it shows how tiring this campaign has been. She knows who he is. But it would be fair game for her opponents, of course.

lyle, I hope you are dead wrong about McCain. I think you are mistaken in assuming that anyone who intends to vote R
in the General would vote D in the IA caucus. But I hear some of you saying the DMR counted Rs in their D poll. Is that right?

Posted by: mark_in_austin | January 1, 2008 5:06 PM | Report abuse

From: http://www.southernpoliticalreport.com/storylink_1231_103.aspx :

"December 31, 2007... Using the reallocation methodology InsiderAdvantage used in 2004 - which correctly indicated a fairly comfortable win for John Kerry - our new poll reveals that, if the caucuses were held today, the reallocated final outcome would be:
Edwards: 41%
Clinton: 34%
Obama: 25%"

Posted by: Indeendent | January 1, 2008 4:59 PM | Report abuse

lykepink; Are going to support Obama if he wins? My guess you will, which means the dems will be united on Obama. Not spinning on him, I think Biden or Dodd would be your strongest candidates followed by Obama. Hillary would be the easiest for us to beat because she is so unlikable and most of country does not want any more Clinton soap opera's. Which we would get if that dysfunctional couple returns.

Posted by: vbhoomes | January 1, 2008 4:54 PM | Report abuse

Republicans are really pulling out the stops to trash Hillary and push Obama.

They know they can't stop her but can easily stop him.

I'm worried that Democrats are going to blow it again by not responding quickly enough to character attacks.

Everyone knew that Republicans would "switft-boat" Hillary, but no one knew how much they'd help Obama, and how much he'd return their help by contantly repeating Republican talking points and pushing the Republican agenda.

He seems like a Democratic party version of George Bush. He's amiable, but impossible to tie down on specifics.

I bet he thinks of himself as a "big picture" guy who can't be troubled with specifics.

We've just had six years of that and we've seen where its gotten us.

We need a detailed oriented President.

We need Hillary Clinton.

With Hillary, we get Bill and probably get Al Gore for head of the EPA.

I'd love to see Bill back in the White house, especially as special advisor to the President.

I'd love to see Gore heading up the EPA, because I love breathing and I'd like my children and grandchildren to inherit a world that they can live in.

Posted by: svreader | January 1, 2008 4:53 PM | Report abuse

So it looks like it all comes down to turnout in Iowa. Big turnout favors Obama, normal turnout favors Clinton.

First, I think we have to give some credit to Yepsen and the Des Moines Register as having a better finger on the pulse of Iowans than the hordes of outside pundits trying to handicap this race. They seem to see a large turnout coming and have adjusted their polling model accordingly. It's hard to discount the experts who live and breathe this stuff.

Second, I argue for an historic turnout because America is so over the Bush Presidency and wishes to skip ahead to the next chapter. In 2004, the republican message of fear still carried weight. Now it is repudiated. Americans want change and have hope for a better future for their children, and they want to play their part in setting that new course.

Third, America wishes to be inspired again. The last 7 years of Bush's deficiencies of body language and speaking the English language have us all looking for a leader who knows how to speak and inspire.

Fourth, the length of this campaign and the truly open races on both sides and the endless polls and debates and analyses by the punditry gives voters a sense that this is a once in a lifetime election that need be taken seriously. I believe Iowans are eager to play the enlarged role the process has anointed them with.

We'll know how true this is in 48 hours, but doesn't it strain credulity to think that this is just another "ordinary" Iowa caucus where the old rules apply. I think not.

Posted by: optimyst | January 1, 2008 4:44 PM | Report abuse

"McCain, Heckabee, all of the Democrats and the rest of the open Border pro-illegal Aliens supporters false compassion for Illegal Aliens is sicking."

Is that you, Tancredo? Got a lot more time on your hands, obviously.

Posted by: judgeccrater | January 1, 2008 4:35 PM | Report abuse

I am trying to get a fix on how many Rs will be caucusing for Obama, for this seems to be their strategy for their wanting the "Weakest" Dem in the GE. The GOP is not a bunch of fools and they only want the weakest opponent to run against, makes perfect sense to me.

Posted by: lylepink | January 1, 2008 4:31 PM | Report abuse

|McCain, Heckabee, all of the Democrats and the rest of the open Border pro-illegal Aliens supporters false compassion for Illegal Aliens is sicking. This Nation has 47 millions citizens without medical insurance, Million of our elderly chose between food and medicine every day. Millions of American children live in poverty with no chance at the American dream. Our vets. return from the war that came about by lies from Politicians without proper medical care or treatment. Yet they shower rewards on the Illegal Aliens, free medical, free schooling for their many children, no reward is too great for the ones that break our laws, invaded this country and demand their rights while Slaughtering, Raping and Robbing thousands of American Citizens each year.

The Corrupt Politicians and Media try to get the public to believe they are Compassion, & wise but Citizens are racist & xenophobe if insist that our Constitution and Immigration laws followed and enforced!

It is the money they get from business from supplying them cheap labor with 20K worth of benefits paid each year by the tax payers and the Latino votes with the promise of millions more if we give them amnesty that they are really after.

If they really are Compassion and Caring there are Millions of American Citizens that have played by
the rules, payed their taxes, obeyed the laws, fought the wars and built this Nation in great need that the Politicians could use to show their Compassion but Compassion for American citizens or legal Immigrants does not get either Money or Votes for our Corrupt lying Politicians.

Posted by: american1 | January 1, 2008 4:31 PM | Report abuse

I think this races is still too close to call. The only thing I'm sure of is that I hope Sen Clinton is the winner.


BAC

Posted by: BAC104 | January 1, 2008 4:29 PM | Report abuse

The Polls in NH right do not mean that much because the will change once the Iowa results are in. If Obama comes in 1st and Hillary 3rd, just watch how fast polls change overnight.

Posted by: vbhoomes | January 1, 2008 4:28 PM | Report abuse

"each party subsample of 300 respondents of +/- 5.65%." - campaigndiaries.
Your poll is junk.

Posted by: jonathanmstevens | January 1, 2008 4:24 PM | Report abuse

I'm not sure why everyone's accusing Chris of bias. I'm devoted to Obama (I'm a small donor, and am headed to New Hampshire this weekend to canvas for him), but I've always found the Fix's analysis to be fair; this post is no exception.

The Register Poll has me cautiously optimistic, and it may well be accurate. It makes sense that in a year where the enthusiasm for the Democratic candidates is so high and the desire for change is so strong, turnout would soar.

It's also pretty clear that the Register's polls are more sophisticated/nuanced than the other firms' in their approach to projecting. I hope that means the Register is right. But I'd certainly be feeling better if Zogby's and CNN's polls hadn't contradicted it. Not only are the polls at odds regarding the head to head match-up (which I know I'm not supposed to take to literally), but they are at odds regarding Obama's movement (the Register shows him making gains in the last few weeks, the others show slight losses for him).

I'm guessing that the difference is in the turnout projections. This seems particularly plausible since the Register suggests that if turnout were to be what it has been in previous years (which seems to be the formula the other polls are using), Hillary has the same edge she has in the other polls. So it appears that, if the Register is right, Obama may have a lost bit of support among previous caucus-goers over the last month, but has more than made up for it by finding new supporters that will caucus for him.

Wishful thinking on my part? No. It's hopeful thinking.

Posted by: peter.b.franklin | January 1, 2008 4:23 PM | Report abuse

OK Democrats lets go into self destruction mode! The Republicans are just waiting for this to continue. Why are we fighting over Clinton and Obama. We should be building them up not down.

Posted by: swannrl | January 1, 2008 4:22 PM | Report abuse

At least Clinton gets some good news in New Hampshire in a new poll today that has her up with a massive lead: http://www.campaigndiaries.com/2008/01/getting-away-from-iowa-mccain-leads-in.html

Posted by: campaigndiaries | January 1, 2008 4:13 PM | Report abuse

Hillary is like Joe Loserman.

They're both AIPAC and corporate.

Posted by: TomIII | January 1, 2008 4:09 PM | Report abuse

Nice rebuttal as usual, boko.

To those who take issue with our thesis that CC is pro-HRC, dig through the Fix archives and find an entry that is as positive about Obama as this entry is about Clinton. Go ahead, I'll wait.

BTW, like most D voters I'd be happy with any of the three D leaders as the nominee at this point. Edwards perhaps being my least favorite.

Posted by: judgeccrater | January 1, 2008 4:07 PM | Report abuse

Hillary is reminding me more and more of Sore Loserman, the loser who got a do-over in 2006.

They're both AIPAC. They're both corporate.

Hillary is Joe Loserman in a pink pantsuit.

Posted by: TomIII | January 1, 2008 4:02 PM | Report abuse

Her experience?

She says in many press releases that she strongly opposes the war in Iraq, presidential shredding of the Constitution, tax rates on the middle class that increase as those on the ultra rich decrease, and the immense national debt left for our children and grandchildren

Our experience with Clinton is that her votes in the Senate contradict what she tells us! When Bush says "I will veto ..." she will roll over and play dead just like so many others in the Senate and House.

We should vote for someone who holds promise for the future rather than for Clinton and her record of surrender. Further, we should apply the same test in selecting all candidates receiving our future votes!

Posted by: ChoKum | January 1, 2008 4:02 PM | Report abuse

KIPP 144 tHANKS FOR THE COMPLIMENT, AND i WILL LEAVE IT AT THAT!!!!!!!

Posted by: LOONYBIN2000 | January 1, 2008 3:58 PM | Report abuse

We have survived 8 years of Sleaze, Scandal, and Corruption under Bill and Hillery followed by 8 years of Arrogance, Corruption, Criminal Incompetent and Gross Stupidly under Bush Jr.. and Chicken Hawk Chaney. Either party cares about our Constitution and the rule of Law but served their selves first, the party second and the special interests third. It is increasingly looking like this Nation cannot survive more years of the same type of Corrupt, Lying, Self serving, Worthless Politicians.

Now both parties seen to have the nearly the same type candidates seeking our vote. From the polls it seems we have learned very little in the least 16 years and seen to prefer Sleaze, Corruption and Lies over Honor, Principles, our Constitution, the Rule of law and Love of our Country or Ron Paul would win the election by a wide margin.

Posted by: american1 | January 1, 2008 3:58 PM | Report abuse

Listen, it's pretty obvious to anyone that reads Chris' "work" that he's clearly in the Clinton camp, as are some of the WaPost columnists. The fact is that the entire establishment is in Clinton's camp. Don't waste your time trying to point out Chris's objective weaknesses - it only makes sense if it's accidental. This is very clearly a pattern of downplaying good news for Obama, and even worse, taking quotes directly from the HRC campaign without any hint of criticism or balanced analysis.

Posted by: ohio4580 | January 1, 2008 3:55 PM | Report abuse

svreader,

First of all, Hillary does not have "better propoals." In fact, with a few exceptions (notably health care, but even there not very much) the policy proposals of all the D candidates are largely similar. (please note that in saying this I do not take into account the ideas of Mike Gravel, Kucinich, and Richardson - Gravel is crazy, and the other 2 don't seem to have a realistic chance of winning.)
The difference, then, is the ability of the candidate to get them passed and implemented. Here, I think, is where Hillary fails... as others have noted, she is the most "hated" Democrat by voters of both parties, and is unable to win opponents over by means of charisma. Please note that I do not doubt that she is intelligent and competent, but that is true also of Obama, Edwards, Biden - all of whom are more personally appealing than Hillary. Add to that the baggage of the Monica and impeachment stuff in the late '90s, and I don't think she has made the case for her candidacy.
in re: Obama being the 'dream' candidate for the GOP - why? You say "by running him, Democrats could lose the election for President and quite possibly lose control of congress as well."
That is contrary to other polls I have seen which show Hillary as having short/nonexistent coattails for Senate and Congressional Democratic candidates. Obama and Edwards both do better.
You also say "Nothing will bring racist republican behinds into southern voting booths than a Black Democratic candidate for Preisdent.(sic)"

A few things - first, why do you assume that racist voters would not be equally motivated to oppose a liberal female from New York whose last name is Clinton? That defies logic.

Secondly, you realize that by assuming certain behaviors are prevalent among voters in this country, you reveal a bit about your own worldview. We all know that there are voters who would bring such prejudice into the voting booth with them, but your assumption that they are a majority - and your implicit suggestion that their prejudice must not be challenged - is a good way to continue a status quo which you presumably think ought to change. Poll after poll has shown Obama strong in regions where, according to your logic, he shouldn't be registering.

Maybe that's partly because as the first black candidate thought to have a credible shot at the oval office, Obama has the potential to dramatically increase turnout among African Americans, who after all are a majority in many states of the GOP 'Solid South.' If he were able to do that, he could put many states at least in play that the Democratic Party has traditionally assumed as lost.

Curiously, you also claim as a disqualifying factor that Obama is 'way too gaunt,' and that Romney would out-JFK him. Dude, now you're really reaching - Obama seems to have a more or less normal build for a taller man, and in terms of everything but 'not being white' is far more reminiscent of JFK than is the Mittster.

Posted by: bokonon13 | January 1, 2008 3:52 PM | Report abuse

Listening to Edwards you would think we were back in the 1920's when America was going through the great depression. His angry message of fighting everyone is scaring the people of Iowa who want to unite our country. Sure Big corporations are a problem, but listening to Edwards you would think they were going to destroy us all if no one elects him president. And Hillary at this point is just a joke looking for any excuse to further divide our nation. Our prayers are with Obama. Lets go out and win this one for the country people.

Posted by: lumi21us | January 1, 2008 3:51 PM | Report abuse

Yikes. Claudiolong said - "It's quite a phenomenom -- the absolutely insane pavlovian hillary hating. what an irrational country this is." So true. And one of the commenters here (inevitably) said "shrill". And so many people blasting CC the messenger for cranking out descriptions of what's going on - as brosen459 said, "this is why i cannot stand about the obama and edwards people. if you do not agree with them and if you say anything positive about clinton you are you are pro clinton and you views should be discarded." Maybe people don't appreciate the up-to-the-minute and possibly somewhat off-the-cuff reporting and should just read the in-print stuff... I don't see *bias*, just an effort (with good humor) to keep us informed...

Posted by: Lanark1 | January 1, 2008 3:50 PM | Report abuse

Barry Obama or just BO- Bad Odor! The world has had enough of foul odors in the White House., and certainly we do not need anymore noodleheads. Rush L. on the radio said we should not vote for Hillary because Women do not age gracefully. Now thats the mental capacity of a Republican, and the radio station who pays that nitwit !

Posted by: LOONYBIN2000 | January 1, 2008 3:50 PM | Report abuse

Loonybin2000,
I am sorry, but your an idiot and i'll just leave it at that.

Posted by: kip144 | January 1, 2008 3:46 PM | Report abuse

I've been reading the fix for a few years now I can't see the pro-Hillary bias. I'm a Florida Democrat who is likely to vote for Obama. I think we need to get past the knee-jerk calls of bias when it doesn't exist. I don't know who Chris would vote for and I don't care. His reporting has been even-handed.

Mike Dowling
West Palm Beach, Florida

Posted by: mikedow | January 1, 2008 3:45 PM | Report abuse

Obahma is the least person we should want for a President. He is a Muslin, and a religious one. We have had enough of religion in politics with dopey GWB., who has said "If you are not an Evangilist you cant get in to Heaven" What did they do with the Pope Mr. B????????. For 15 years BO has claimed to be a member of a Christian churc. What religion did he practice for the other 30 years of his life. ? If Hillary does not get the nomination, my vote goes to Joe Biden. The Best of the Best.

Posted by: LOONYBIN2000 | January 1, 2008 3:38 PM | Report abuse

Hey Chris,
What about this?

http://www.politico.com/blogs/bensmith/0108/Clinton_errs_on_Pakistan_.html


If Obama had made such a dumb mistake, Hillary would be screaming about it from the mountain tops.

Posted by: julieds | January 1, 2008 3:38 PM | Report abuse

Yawn, makeover number umteen hundred and four, Hillary what part of change do you keep missing?

Americans are tired of the Bush/Clinton's and it's just that simple.

Ye we want change, no you do not represent change.

Posted by: TheodoreRoosevelt | January 1, 2008 3:36 PM | Report abuse

Ifs its Huckabee & Obama, this republican will vote for Obama, Why, because Huckabee is only a conservative on socials issues, frankly I could less about abortion or gay marriage. If its HRC, I will vote for our nominee no matter who it is.

Posted by: vbhoomes | January 1, 2008 3:33 PM | Report abuse

Why is the headline about Clinton in a story where the factual data being reported (rather than the campaigns' spin) is about Obama's lead in a poll, which was run by a newspaper whose editorial board endorsed Clinton? Why is the story about the poll itself so far down in the piece? What happened to the inverted pyramid? When a team wins in professional sports, the only place that the headline is about the loser's response is the losing team's hometown paper. The focus of the story just seems to be in the wrong place. It's not necessarily suggestive of bias in favor of Clinton winning, but it does imply that the author is simply more interested in her campaign.

Posted by: jonathanmstevens | January 1, 2008 3:29 PM | Report abuse

Sampling is key for any poll. So, It may be worth noting that the DMR poll may be picking up a lot of the voters (18-35; Obama's strongest demographic) who'd traveled away, but are just now returning home from holiday travels. Interestingly, Obama's numbers dropped significantly right around the time that holiday travel would start. http://www.realclearpolitics.com/epolls/2008/president/ia/iowa_democratic_caucus-208.html#polls
Maybe the previous polls are flukes, because they were skewed by the Iowans who didn't travel away: older voters -- Hillary's demographic of greatest support. Perhaps, Hillary has never really had much actual movement, just a distorted "bounce." I don't think this prospect should be easily discounted, particularly due to the fact that much of the polling coincided with the Holidays.

The CNN/Opinion Research has Clinton with higher numbers, but taking the poll's large margin of error (4.5 for Democrats) into account, Obama may be ahead in that poll as well. The same could be said of the Zogby poll, whose MOE is +/-3.3. The bottom line is that Clinton doesn't have a definitive lead, if she even has one at all.

BTW, maybe Obama will produce "unprecedented" turnout. He is an unprecedented candidate.

Posted by: associate20 | January 1, 2008 3:27 PM | Report abuse

I have been reading comments on Iowa all over.

The general concensus: ANYONE BUT HILLARY!

Posted by: rfpiktor | January 1, 2008 3:27 PM | Report abuse

this is why i cannot stand about the obama and edwards people. if you do not agree with them and if you say anything positive about clinton you are you are pro clinton and you views should be discarded.

where is the bringing us together? it is such a piece of bs. obama is the same way, he is a whiner. i also question any of his supporters to point to one bill that his has introduced that has bi-partisan support. you can't because he has no record. as an old advertising slogan said, "where is the beef"

Posted by: brosen459 | January 1, 2008 3:24 PM | Report abuse

So, Sen. Clinton is drawing "deeply on her accomplishments both in and out of office" in trying to close the deal in Iowa.

Can anyone please point to a single significant bill signed into law (or vetoed, for that matter) authored by Sen. Clinton?

If "experience" (or "wisdom," or "honesty," or "legislative accomplishment," or "leadership") was the key to the race in Iowa, the chattering classes would be focused on Sen. Joe Biden.

Martin Edwin Andersen
Churchton, Maryland

Posted by: Martinedwinandersen | January 1, 2008 3:21 PM | Report abuse

svreader ... The Register poll included Independents and Republicans, and it shows that they are more willing to vote for Obama. How does that indicate that Mrs. Clinton has a better chance of winning the general election? It indicates the opposite: Obama has a better chance of winning the general election.

Posted by: tom.mueller | January 1, 2008 3:19 PM | Report abuse

JohnMccormick: From what the press has reported, the Clintons spend liitle time together in the same house. I think Bill wants this for his own ego, as way of validating his 8 years. I do not believe this marriage will survive if Hillary loses. Obama carries himself very well, he ACTS Presidential, reminds me a little of JFK, great speaker, inspiring, with a sense of dignity and eloguence. I just wish he was a Republican so I could voter for him.

Posted by: vbhoomes | January 1, 2008 3:19 PM | Report abuse

Truly a fabulous contest. Soon caucusers and the caucusing will take over the discourse and determine who gains momentum when it counts to carry the election. No one can complain that it hasn't been grand except maybe Chris Dodd.

Posted by: rarignac | January 1, 2008 3:14 PM | Report abuse

Does anyone believe that only 55% percent of Democratic caucus goers will actually be Democrats? To assume that 45% of people who caucus will be independents and Republicans is ludicrous. Every other poll shows Clinton leading. For Obama to win more men, youth, independents and Republicans will have to caucus for the Democrats than ever before in history. That's a lot of bets to place. I actually believe he will come in third because the other tow have mroe support from more reliable demographics.

Posted by: slbk | January 1, 2008 3:12 PM | Report abuse

Does Mark Penn now post as "svreader"?

Posted by: kip144 | January 1, 2008 3:10 PM | Report abuse

I think Hillary has better proposals and is a much stronger candidate than Obama.

I'm also Extremely concerned that Obama is not a strong candidate for the national election, and that by running him, Democrats could lose the election for President and quite possibly lose control of congress as well.

Obama is the "dream candidate" for the Republicans. Nothing will bring racist republican behinds into southern voting booths than a Black Democratic candidate for Preisdent.

Obama also looks way too gaunt.
On television, he'd look like Nixon and Romney would look like Kennedy compared to him.

Obama also did a lousy job on "meet the press", and most people weren't very impressed, to put it lightly, with how he did in the debates.

Obama would be the worst possible candidate for the Democratic Party.

Posted by: svreader | January 1, 2008 3:07 PM | Report abuse

Who is Tom Vislack? I've heard of Tom Vilsack- he has a funny name.

Clinton made a gaff on Pakistan, not understanding the election system (http://www.politico.com/blogs/bensmith/0108/Clinton_errs_on_Pakistan_.html). Why is nobody mentioning that?

Posted by: dharazdu | January 1, 2008 3:03 PM | Report abuse

Let Hillary tell us about Nafta and the loss of some 3,000,000 industrial jobs. Let her tell us how she promoted the outsourcing of millions of jobs to India. Full disclosure of the Clinton Millions from the Saudis..

Posted by: umt | January 1, 2008 3:00 PM | Report abuse

the word is "preempted", not "pre-butted"

Posted by: mdowd | January 1, 2008 2:57 PM | Report abuse

As expected, the NYT and Post avoid using Obama's name at all costs. If Oprah talks about Obama, it's all about Oprah. If Obama has a lead over Clinton, it's all about Clinton.

Posted by: tom.mueller | January 1, 2008 2:43 PM | Report abuse

'Is Hillary afraid of Barbra cozying with Bill while she is busy getting stuck in the Iowa snow?'

It's quite a phenomenom -- the absolutely insane pavlovian hillary hating. what an irrational country this is.

that said, i hate Mark Penn too.. he's a weasel. unfortunately, most political advisers in DC on either side are scum.

Posted by: drindl | January 1, 2008 2:43 PM | Report abuse

The CLinton campaign is as pathetic as their candidate. A week ago they were trumpeting the outler ARG poll and discrediting Obama. A week before that they were going after his kindergarten record. The truth is that the more people get to know Hillary Clinton, the more they realize that she is shrill, not a leader, does not possess the "experience she sats she does, and is not someone they want to listen to for the next 4 years. Good riddance Hillaryland. It's time for change.

Posted by: MilesLong | January 1, 2008 2:41 PM | Report abuse

The only poll that has credibility shows Clintons are done. And no wonder, they are trying to twist the poll. What a joke ! America is about hope. Not about fear. Karl Rove, Bush, Chenny, Julliani days are numbering. People not only see Bill Cilton's credentials when they see Hillary, they see her 'judgements' too. Poodle of Lobbyists can go only so far.

Posted by: khctamu | January 1, 2008 2:41 PM | Report abuse

Some people will voice support for a black candidate in order to sound fair-minded but then won't vote for him. Doug Wilder saw a 12 point gap evaporate in three days due to this phenomenon, but that was Virginia in 1989. It'll be interesting to see who will stand up for Obama and in opposition to their neighbors, which is always a challenge in a caucus process. One advantage is that the caucus goers aren't average voters, so they are more experienced in the stand-up-and-be-counted side of politics.

Posted by: blasmaic | January 1, 2008 2:39 PM | Report abuse

I can't beleive anybody think Hillary has more experience than Biden. Puh-leeze. We are in a deeply dangerous world situation, where a man who has already killed 3000 americans will very likely get ahold of a nuclear weapon soon --quite easily, i would suspect, given the degree that extremists have infiltrated the Pakistani government.

The ease with which Bhutto was murdered, after the US urged her to go, and then refused to provide the security her husband begged us for-- has no doubt emboldened bin Ladin and the Taliban--whom the US now wants to appease and 'negotiate with'.

We desparately need a President who understand the extreme dangers we face. AT least Hillary seems to get that, but I still think Biden would be superior.

Posted by: drindl | January 1, 2008 2:38 PM | Report abuse

What gives Hillary?

1. Hillary's main fund raiser Norman Hsu goes to prison.
2. Hillary appoints Shaheen as her campaign chair in South Carolina, and later fires him.
3. She asks Bob Kerrey to endorse her and asks him to badmouth Obama. Later Kerrey was forced to apologize.
4. Hillary brings up Ohio governor Strickland on stage to support her. The next day she distances herself from the statements he made about the Iowa caucus.
5. Hillary and Bill twist the arms of the Iowa Register to give her the endorsement. Now she disputes the Iowa Register polls.

What gives? It is two days before caucus and Hillary does not have a single slogan for her campaign yet. She has tried the gender card, experience card, gender card again, boys dumping on her since she is a woman card, foreign travel experience card, ready for job from day 1 card, photocopied Obama's change card and showed it as her own, elect my wife if you want your grandkids to live card by Bill, and the latest fear card ie. something unpredictable will happen without Hillary card.
Still with all these cards open nobody knows who Hillary is. She got the endorsement of Barbra Streisand, but after careful poll analysis, Hillary has asked Barbra to keep her mouth shut. Why could'nt Ms.Striesand sing Memories for the Iowa people? Is Hillary afraid of Barbra cozying with Bill while she is busy getting stuck in the Iowa snow?

Posted by: ChunkyMonkey1 | January 1, 2008 2:38 PM | Report abuse

HRC "drew deeply on her accomplishments"? Pardon me if I don't want a transcript of that speech. Exactly what is she claiming credit for? Cillizza is buying into the line that HRC is the "experienced" candidate, yet there is not a lot of objective analysis of that experience in the media. Did anyone fact-check what she said?

Posted by: wesfromGA | January 1, 2008 2:28 PM | Report abuse

"She also pre-butted attacks from her rivals -- most notably Sen. Barack Obama (Ill.) -- who have said that talking about past accomplishments means little for future results."

I don't believe Senator Obama has ever made this claim. He's said himself that you should look at people's past experiences to see what they stand for and to know what they will be fighting for in the white house. I believe what you're referring to is his claim that her experience in the white house is disputable, and that she can't pick and choose which things to claim from that period.

But if he has indeed said that I'd like to see the quote.

Posted by: fox_qajgev | January 1, 2008 2:27 PM | Report abuse

Des Moines Register polling model for likely caucus goers just doesn't make sense--they were polling for a primary, not a caucus. Reoorts on the ground showed Huckabee and Obama both going down, not up. I'm going to trust my own instincts and predict Edwards--with his strong committed base, rural voters, and powerful message, and Romney--with his superior organization, over the Des Moines Register poll predictions.

Posted by: stephenruud | January 1, 2008 2:26 PM | Report abuse

Everything Mark Penn says is either laughable or despicable. I wouldn't trust this guy with my niece's brownie troop treasurers election. He should be buying drinks for Karl Rove and toasting Lee Atwater and Hunter Thompson.

Posted by: lourie | January 1, 2008 2:22 PM | Report abuse

Okay, I realize you can't list what accomplishments Clinton listed without sounding even more biased toward her...But what exactly has she accomplished?
There is very little documentation for her claims of experience. For instance, where Obama's opponents have gone after his votes as a state legislator (a matter of public record that actually comes out as a net plus for him) and Edwards' detractors have been able to point to his record as a trial lawyer (also public record, and also loaded with pluses) Clinton's record is exists almost entirely at her own telling. So it'd be of interest to know what she is telling.

Posted by: ViejitaDelOeste | January 1, 2008 2:21 PM | Report abuse

Notice that Hillary is nixing the outrageously negative rhetoric of the past few weeks and is going toward a softer, more experience-laden approach. She knows what Iowan want...

http://www.political-buzz.com/

Posted by: parkerfl | January 1, 2008 2:16 PM | Report abuse

The HillBoat is sinking fast. Hillary better ask Bill to plug her holes. It is now or never. Bill owned up to the blame for the failed HillaryCare, in order to help her with the campaign. But Bill does not want to live with an angry Hillary after the HillBoat sinks in the election. You can imagine how Bill will be sleeping on the sofa during his old age with his hands closing his ears as Hillary yacks at him day and night.

Posted by: JohnMcCormick | January 1, 2008 2:16 PM | Report abuse

Chris, I'm an Obama supporter who doesn't think that you are particularly biased. It is difficult to report what people are saying and make a thousand qualifications at the same time. But reporting what Mark Penn said about the Iowa Poll without falling on the ground laughing is tough to do. To complain that it used a non-traditional screen when the political climate is different, is juvenile. On another point, how come you and others have not picked up on Hillary's gaffe on Pakistan as reported by Ben Smith on the Politico this morning: Sen. Hillary Rodham Clinton was praised in the wake of the assassination of former Pakistani Prime Minister Benazir Bhutto for demonstrating her command of the players and the issues at stake in Pakistan, even as another candidate, former Arkansas Gov. Mike Huckabee, was criticized for stumbling over details.

But in two confident television appearances, on CNN and ABC, Clinton made an elementary error about Pakistani politics: She described President Pervez Musharraf as a "candidate" who would be "on the ballot."

In fact, Musharraf was reelected to the presidency in October. The upcoming elections are for parliament, and while Musharraf's party will be facing off against opposition parties, the president himself is not a candidate.

Posted by: bobpyke | January 1, 2008 2:11 PM | Report abuse

Only Klyntonites and Klyntonistas could gleefully trumpet the Register's endorsement of their candidate, and then accuse the paper of bias and incompetence when their poll results show her behind. Are THESE the people we want spinning us for the next 4-8 years?

Posted by: lourie | January 1, 2008 2:10 PM | Report abuse

Somebody put a fork in the Clinton Machine...
It's done.

America is a Democracy - Not a Monarchy.
No more failed Presidents elected on the back of Nepotism.

Posted by: PulSamsara | January 1, 2008 2:03 PM | Report abuse

As somewho who doesn't favor Klynton, except maybe over Hannibal, I must take exception to those who think Chris is in her pocket-I don't see that at all in his posts, I think those people have a reading comprehension problem, and blind loyalists to any candidate don not serve the public well.

Posted by: lourie | January 1, 2008 1:57 PM | Report abuse

whoops, i meant to say,

"Just 2 weeks AGO, after the Des Moines Register endorsed Clinton, they were touting how wonderful and insightful the newspaper is. Now they slam the same paper and try to discredit it, for reporting the facts in Iowa."

Posted by: julieds | January 1, 2008 1:54 PM | Report abuse

Its hard for me to be objective with Hillary because I dislike her so, but saw her closing stump speech and was unimpressed, she talks at the voters not to them and uses way to many I this, I that. If she comes 3rd or even 4th(God Willing) she will trash those Iowa voters as being unrepresenative and not being smart enough to vote for her. Nobody will ever accuse her of great communicative skills.

Posted by: vbhoomes | January 1, 2008 1:54 PM | Report abuse

Hey Chris,
Are you looking for invites to Martha's Vinyard? You should take a look at your TV appearances and blogs the last 2 months. We get it, your for Clinton big time. You must be schlepping to be a speach writer for HRC. Your lack of objectivity is plain to see.

Posted by: kip144 | January 1, 2008 1:53 PM | Report abuse

The Clinton's are such spinners.

Just 2 weeks after the Des Moines Register endorsed Clinton, they were touting how wonderful and insightful the newspaper is. Now they slam the same paper and try to discredit it, for reporting the facts in Iowa.

Real people see through Hillary's facade. She's not experienced, and she is the least electable of all the Dems.

Not only are the Clintons old news, no one believes anything they say anymore.

Posted by: julieds | January 1, 2008 1:52 PM | Report abuse

Sounds like HRC is going down.

Posted by: skinsneednewcoaches | January 1, 2008 1:48 PM | Report abuse

"In her first event of 2008, Sen. Hillary Rodham Clinton drew deeply on her accomplishments both in and out of office as she sought to make the case that she alone has the requisite experience to handle the job of president."

Have to agree with Cameron_Carter. The statement above is completely free of objectivity. How about something equally unbalanced from the Obama campaign?

Posted by: judgeccrater | January 1, 2008 1:35 PM | Report abuse

"Hoping to blunt Obama's momentum -- which may be an impossible task at this point"

Oh come on! What momentum? Obama has been dropping in the polls for the last two weeks, and his internals must clearly show the same; why else all these attacks of late against Edwards and, to a lesser extent, Clinton?

Says Ben Smith at the Politico about the DMR poll: "The Des Moines Register hasn't released all the numbers from its last poll, but one thing's pretty clear: This is a turnout story, not a story of people changing their minds. Obama's gains appear to have been driven by independents saying they plan to attend Democratic caucuses and support him. I asked DMR pollster Ann Selzer whether the percentage of independents and Republicans saying they'd caucus had risen since the last survey. 'Same method. More independents saying they will definitely/probably caucus,' she said in an e-mail."

No Obama momentum to blunt.

This record super duper turnout for mainstream media darling Obama won't happen.

Posted by: welfarestate | January 1, 2008 1:34 PM | Report abuse

It's pretty obvious from Chris' morning blog that he can't write a balanced article. Chris is so obviously pro Clinton that it is disgusting. I'll try to avoid reading him and stick with Dana Milbank who is not only funny but truthful.

Joe Fontana

Posted by: joseph4378 | January 1, 2008 1:33 PM | Report abuse

Chris, great job but I think you made a mistake. You were supposed to post this article on the Clinton website. No big deal, we are pretty used to your schlocky Clinton trumpet posts by this point. Happy New Year

Posted by: Cameron_Carter | January 1, 2008 1:31 PM | Report abuse

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