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Reuters: Obama Is The Big Winner In Iowa

From the always dependable Reuters:

Analysis: Obama among the winners in Iowa

By Tim Reid and Sam Youngman
January 4, 2011

DES MOINES, Iowa (Reuters) – After a dramatic, confusing night of suspense in the Republican Party’s Iowa caucuses, the big winner may well have been a Democrat: Barack Obama.

The president’s re-election campaign had reason to smile early Wednesday, as Mitt Romney and Rick Santorum battled to a virtual dead heat in the caucuses that kicked off the campaign for the Republican presidential nomination.

[Romney’s] razor-thin margin over Santorum – a social conservative who ran a low-budget campaign with little advertising – reinforces persistent doubts about Romney’s ability to win over his party’s conservative base.

It also increases the chances that Romney’s still-likely march to the Republican nomination will not be the quick kill Romney has hoped for, analysts and strategists said on Wednesday.

We will soon see who these analysts and strategists are.

For an Obama campaign that has long operated on the assumption that it will face Romney in the November 6 election, that is good news.

"Democratic heavyweights are quietly celebrating tonight," David Gergen, a former adviser to two Republican and two Democratic presidents, told Reuters. "They see the presumed (Republican) nominee, Mitt Romney, unable to close the deal and a Republican electorate not only uncertain, but lacking great enthusiasm." …

Well, if David Gergen says it, it must be true.

HAS ROMNEY ‘FLATLINED’?

That is really the Reuters sub-headline here.

When he finished second to Huckabee in Iowa in 2008, Romney won 25 percent of the vote in the state.

On Tuesday he received roughly the same percentage of the vote. Despite being the front-runner in the Republican race, Romney has not risen above 25 percent in national Republican polls.

Many Republican strategists say that is a problem.

"Mitt Romney has flatlined," said Ford O’Connell, a Republican strategist. "Obviously, he emerges as the odds-on favorite to win the nomination. But (Tuesday) was a good night for him, not a great night." …

"Many Republican strategists" say this?

"What comes out of Iowa is not a clear picture," said Tad Devine, a Democratic strategist. "Romney is a guy who got 25 percent of the vote four years ago. There is a lot of incentive for the (other Republicans) to keep going."

So, all told, Reuters ‘analysts and strategists’ consists of two Democrats and some Republican nobody has ever heard of.

By the way, note that while Reuters deems Obama a clear winner in Iowa, they don’t see any Republican winners.

Isn’t that odd? But typical.

This article was posted by Steve on Wednesday, January 4th, 2012. Comments are currently closed.

26 Responses to “Reuters: Obama Is The Big Winner In Iowa”

  1. artboyusa says:

    Reuters is right, for once. Campaigning is the one thing Obama is good at; he acts the role of “President” better than Romney, better than anyone in fact. Romney is afraid – watch his eyes when you see him interviewed – afraid to get mad, afraid to make a “gaffe”, afraid to speak up and start a fight and haunted, I think, by the memory of how one slip of the tongue, in which he did no more than speak the truth, killed his father’s political career. I remember when that happened, so does Willard. He will run to the middle, do nothing to get people stirred up, will run a safe, decorous campaign, lose narrowly and give a gracious concession speech. He’ll be rewarded for his good loser qualities with an ambassadorship or somesuch bauble…he’ll be fine. We’ll be screwed.

    Romney has been running for years, spent millions, and beat Santorum by eight lousy votes. That’s because no one really wants, as opposed to “will tolerate”, him as president. No fire, no convictions, no point. He’s only another rich white guy who doesn’t know what to do with the rest of his life, so wtf, he might as well be president if he can buy it.

    The only person who can beat Obama, a certain golden tressed columnist to the contrary, is someone who isn’t scared of him and that’s no one, once you take Ron Paul out of the equation. We need someone who will fight for it and I don’t see much of an appetite for a brawl in what’s left of our dessicated field. I wish I did, believe me…

  2. nascarnation says:

    I agree Rooters is correct on this one. Mitty produces no enthusiasm among conservatives. And as I’ve said throughout this election cycle, Mitty is the only Republican candidate likely to incite a 3rd party conservative POTUS candidate in most states. Resulting in a Clintonian plurality win for B. Hussein Obama.

  3. proreason says:

    Romney can’t beat the Liar in Chief. He will rerun McCain’s campaign. It is already abundantly clear that he won’t say a single negative word about the marxist.

    The Cabal is already in the process of ensuring that the official gubamint stats in October 2012 will ALL be better, some spectacularly better, than Dec 2008. Romney’s strategy of “he’s been a failure” will be easily countered with “not according to the data”.

    To the side, millions of evangelicals will be learning exactly how wierd the Mormon religion is. Millions of independents will be learning exactly how ruthless Romney was at Bain Capital. Millions of pissed off
    conservatives will be reminded every few minutes about his liberal record in Massachusetts and flip-flops since.

    I hate to say it, because he is extremely high risk, but Newt is the only one with the balls to go after Obama and the verbal chops to penetrate the fog of lies. He’s no slam dunk, but he’s the only guy who has a chance.

    • tranquil.night says:

      This is a point that we’re going to be right about, but we don’t keep on making it because we want to be right.

      Sadly, it should be that any one of these candidates should defeat Obama in a landslide. I’m not convinced of that reality whatsoever from what we’ve seen so far.

    • BigOil says:

      Spot on analysis Pro. Romney has been as silent as a church mouse over the past 3 years while a Marxist has been systematically knee-capping our country. Romney is not up for this fight.

      I had thought several weeks ago Newt’s ascendency meant our side was ready for the necessary ideological fight – but I guess not. We will once again watch Presidential debates where you cannot discern between the candidates. It will be a Marxist pretending to be a moderate against a moderate talking like a moderate.

      When an electorate that does not pay close attention sees no distinction between the candidates, we will probably end up with the Marxist – again.

    • proreason says:

      All of the strategizing and optimism so far has been based on the assumption that the economy will be horrible on election day. Rush is so sure about it that he thinks Daffy Duck could get elected.

      But Obama OWNS the statistics. The key “facts” in October will be:
      – unemployment is turning steeply down
      – GDP will be trending up
      – inflation will be under control
      – the stock market will be way up for the year and way way way up from the bottom
      – all will be in spite of the Republican Congress that has thwarted the Light Worker at every turn

      Now, a fully informed electorate will be able to see through all that won’t they?

      Anybody willing to bet on that?

      Anybody willing to be that Romney will be willing and able to turn the high beams on the truth?

    • tranquil.night says:

      The narrative is that the attack ads killed Newt and that his no return-fire tact demonstrate he wouldn’t be up to the task of defending himself against Obama, which is one of the sillier bits of conventional wisdom to arise amongst a very competitive crowd of silliness. I don’t know how dedicating yourself to wanting to keep the contrasts in perspective to Obama, rather than sink into the muck of distorting every little choice made by every other candidate to ensure nobody is electable but you, indicates a lack of fortitude in being able to keep the focus on Obama. The distortions made by the establishment’s messaging organization trumped Newt’s weak attempts to set the record straight and move on. When people say the establishmennt conspires to choose our candidate, no, but they do have natural advantages because they are the establishment. What surprises people all the time is the lengths to which they’ll work against their own base during power struggles – much more aggressively than they go after Democrats – because it’s assumed we’re on the same team.

      Newt bled out because he wasn’t aggressive enough in defending himself from the attacks and resetting the national narrative to his message as he had done on his rise. There are many self-inflicted errors there, and in the end it was enough to chase off the skiddish voters to start considering the other options.

      As of now Romney’s still the Inevitable One by my count. I’m trying to give Santorum a chance now that he’s pulled the Cauci, but while he strikes me as somebody with the most admirable personal character, his political record, substantively, electorally and just in general style, are some of least inspiring.

    • proreason says:

      I don’t think Newt is dead yet, but he is certainly a longer shot than he was a month ago. He can’t go too negative either, which he is clearly flirting with doing. If I was him, I would draw the contrasts with Romney, but keep it strictly on policies and experience, and hang in there through many more primaries. The biggest news from Iowa is that Romney can’t get above 25% while there is still somebody standing. As Newt, I would work at remaining in the contest.

      Santorum can’t last, for many reasons. He did well in Iowa becuase gazillionbags went nuclear on Newt. When that artillery is turned on Rick, he will fade as well. He’s an ok guy, but if he has national appeal, we would have known about it months ago. He’s annoying and there is no compelling reason to support him.

    • tranquil.night says:

      Agreed. Romney maintains his strength relative to the split field but Not-Romney remains a credible force when taken as a whole force, and now we’re beginning the period of consolidation in the field. A lot can still happen. My expectations are cynical at this point to guard against the likelihood of more disappointment, but I’d certainly prefer to be pleasantly surprised.

    • tranquil.night says:

      Oh, just listened to Newt on Sean and he’s sharpened and taking this on exactly the way you suggested Pro: sharp, aggressive candidness in contrasting Conservatism to Mitt, but not hyper-emotional or vengefully. He cited the core difference which is that Mitt is going to shy away in timidity when it comes to challenging Obama where it counts, referencing how Mitt isn’t for capital gains cuts for above 200k because it’s not an argument the establishment believes we can win.

      Will see if the Right Scoop has the interview later.

      Looks like we might have a game on our hands after all.

    • Melly says:

      I choose to focus on the positive. Mitt Romney is actually a pretty strong candidate against the failed Barry. He has the temperament, the experience, the personal attributes and the philosophy to be an effective standard-bearer for the GOP and to take back America.

    • proreason says:

      Newt explains why he didn’t respond to Romney’s Newclar attack on him.

      http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/21134540/vp/45870261#45870261

      Don’t forget, 75% of Iowans voted against Mitt Romney.

      I can’t see how that makes Romney inevitable.

      Also note well how Newt describes obama in this clip and find some clips of Romney talking about the most dangerous person on the planet.

    • 3 percent of Iowans voted.

  4. JohnMG says:

    …..”Don’t forget, 75% of Iowans voted against Mitt Romney……”

    Following that logic through to its conclusion, 87% of Iowans voted against Newt. Neither statement bears much allegiance to reason in that it is impossible to prove a negative.

    My opinion (and that’s all it is) is that all of the candidates lacked essential planning in the early stages. They had little of an agenda other than to stand apart from the other contenders. Is it any wonder a circular firing squad was the result?

    Now the media drives the whole process instead of a candidate with a plan, and the willingness to counter every unfair distraction from the fifth column. Every time ANY of the candidates were presented a loaded question the topic should have been turned back on the Won with documented references to his lies, distortions and outright unconstitutional practices. Lord knows there is enough material to work with. Who has the ‘nads to do this? Probably Newt, better than the others. But they all should have united behind that tactic right from the start, then the most adept among them would have stood out from the crowd without destroying the others in the process.

    Lest everyone forget, the object is to turn Obumbles out to pasture. Instead, the main attraction, being cheered on by the media, is the joke called the GOP primary campaign.

    If the people on this site can’t come to a concensus, what makes anyone think the general voting public can?

    • proreason says:

      I don’t agree that the candidates lacked plans.

      Certainly Romney didn’t lack a plan. He planned to offend the least number of people, to outlast the others, and to use his fortune to smear real threats. That plan has worked like a Swiss watch.

      Santorum’s plan was to concentrate on ground work in Iowa. That has worked very well so far. Part II is to leverage that success nationally. I don’t know how he is going to do that, but at least it’s a plan.

      Newt’s plan was to use the debates because he didn’t have much money. It worked well until he got Newked.

      Perry’s plan was to ride the Texas story to a quick knockout victory. That didn’t work very well because he was horrible in the early debates.

      Bachmans plan was to be the most rigorously conservative candidate. That didn’t work very well either because she doesn’t know when to shut up.

      Pauls plan was to let his kook supporters get him 20% in Iowa. That worked perfectly. If he has a part 2, it’s to run as an independent. But I also think Ron’s longer range plan might be to build the Paul brand and setup Rand Paul to look like a sane person. (ps: I like Rand a lot. He does seem like a sane person)

      Cains plan was to sell books and get a tv show. He has succeeded.

      Nobody has figured out Huntsman’s plan or why he is running, unless it is to lay the groundwork for a future campaign or just likes publicity. But who knows, his New Hamshire tactic may work as well as Santorum’s did in Iowa.

    • tranquil.night says:

      “But they all should have united behind that tactic right from the start, then the most adept among them would have stood out from the crowd without destroying the others in the process.”

      Ideally. And for a while that did appear like that would be the tone of the primary. But when it became clear to a particular candidate that they were going to have a severe challenge to the nomination with the national discussion centered around this arena of ideas, all the play-nice rules and sense of proportion compared to who we’re up against went out the window in favor of scorched earth.

      When you cite a lack of consensus, I believe it’s because we don’t yet have that rallying figure with the plan and polish that inspires the type of confidence people are desperately looking for – since there is near uniform consensus that Spike is politically weak and unraveling the country among the voters in the country, not the establishment (and this is an important division within the party right now).

      That person may not emerge in the end. Speaking for myself, I’m simply trying to make judgments based on the facts as they are and offer analysis as an anonymous commenter based on my compiled knowledge of the powers at be, how they operate, and the hurdles that outsiders have to acknowledge if they’re to be overcome and a true change in the status quo established.

      Everything you say is true and common sense John. It is what we’re up against.

      Good points also Pro.

    • JohnMG says:

      Points taken, Pro. But those are more like goals than plans. Goals are where you want to end up–plans are how you get there. ( I know you are aware of this–no sarcasm intended)

      Every one of these people should have at least anticipated attacks from the media on their weaknesses and been prepared to rebut or defend against the accusations. Newt has the fire, but he seems almost stunned that anyone would go after him in the manner they did. I like Newt but he’s fully prepared to conduct his own brand of scorched-earth policy after last night–the very thing he complains of about others. He should save it for Jug ears

      Most of the others weren’t/aren’t well financed. To enter into this kind of endeavor takes a balanced approach. This isn’t a sprint (never has been) it’s a marathon and some of these people don’t appear to have considered that, Perry being an example as you noted. I don’t quarrel with your assessments at all. But if all these people really are as anxious to to rid us of Obama that should have been the formost focus for all of them.

      Obama’s record furnished all of them with enough campaign fodder to put Alinski’s tactics to work against him. And being as there could only be one winner (nominee) from the GOP, the best one at taking Oama to the woodshed would have emerged as the likely candidate. But instead, they’ve given Obama and his goons a veritable menu of attack-options.

      Really, the way each of the hopefuls have conducted themselves toward each other, can you see the also-rans coalesceing around the eventual nominee? And what about the die-hard followers of each? How many times have you heard someone on this site say they wouldn’t vote for (insert name here) if he/she’s the nominee?

      Unfortunately, I predicted this to play out as it has right after the elections in ’10. All I know is I’ll vote for whomever the candidate is but probably won’t like whoever that is. If we’re to turn Obie out in November it’s going to take a unified effort. Certainly there is more that unites us than divides us but none of them seems too anxious to find what that “something” is.

      As you say, t.n, it’s what we’re up against. I’m not a highly educated man, but if I can see what’s happening, why can’t the candidates themselves see it?

    • tranquil.night says:

      “I’m not a highly educated man, but if I can see what’s happening, why can’t the candidates themselves see it?”

      They’ve been turning to the wrong people for political expertise: the “highly educated” :)

    • proreason says:

      I agree with much of what you said John, but am also aware that plans in campaigns are a lot like plans for wars. They incoming disrupts a lot of things.

      You are probably correct that with the exception of Romney, who is very well organized, the candidates were mostly seat of the pants.

      Now that you’ve made me think about it, however, I wonder if it might not be the norm. It takes so much money and effort to mount a thorough campaign with well thought out contingencies that certainly most candidates must get into it with the idea that they will give it a go and see how things pan out. If they catch fire, they can add staff as they go.

      But I also agree that several of them seemed to have been caught flat-footed. In addition to Gingrich, Cain and Perry come easily to mind. You would think that at the very least they would have planned out what to do for the obvious stuff. For Cain that would have been the settled lawsuits, and for Newt, the Fannie Mae stuff and old enemies jumping up to slander him. For Perry, he probably didn’t even know he was a bad debator, but he should have had his written plans ready to go at the get-go. They were good plans, but by the time he published them, he had already lost momentum.

      It also makes you wonder how Obama pulled his campaign off in 2008. The guy hadn’t organized anything bigger than a molotov cocktail party in his life. For me, the wondering leads directly to a very large and well funded team of puppet masters pulling the strings.

  5. Yota says:

    I think you are letting your conservative idealism shade your view of the dynamics of this primary campaign. For Republicans, politics has never been a team sport. The strongest survives and that is what makes our party the best for this country. Newt’s “plan” was his pledge to run a “positive” campaign – that’s because he has the most skeletons in his closet to defend and trying to keep the discussion positive appears admirable rather than defensive. And it worked up until a couple of weeks ago until people realized he has a lot of problems in his past that are not admirable. Today he is starting to sound whiney which I bet will continue until he drops out. Santorum has great conservative values, but unfortunately hasn’t got the pizaz to be a real contender (unfortunately last night will be just a blip). Romney has the best organization, best proven leadership skills, and will attract the moderates. His plan is just as Pro said – and everyone knew it would be effective. As for the media, they are hoping they can make a mockery of the Republican field, truth is this primary campaign is making the surviving candidates stronger which will be ideal to kick Obama’s butt. There is no perfect candidate out there, and there nearly never will be. I will be excited to vote for any of the three (Romney, Santrum or Gingrich), because they are all excellent candidates, especially compared to Obama. So practice what you preach and turn your blogging into a more positive dialogue and lead the way. If you had to pick the best basketball player of all time, you would agree between Jordan, Magic or Kobe either – That doesn’t make them all jokes, does it?

    • tranquil.night says:

      “For Republicans, politics has never been a team sport.”

      That’s the danger with overly simplistic analogies: they’ll always get used out of context.

      Team is meant to imply that there is a core principle and objective that unites the party, not that there shouldn’t be honest competition. Honest being the key word there, because my grief is when politicians are maliciously dishonest and cuthroat just for short-sighted, self-serving political gain.

      ‘Cause the truth is I don’t care if Alinsky’s rule of picking your target, isolating it, and polarizing it is the “strongest” method to winning elections. And I don’t care if being righteously indignant when Republicans engage in it too means I’m ‘whining.’ It disgusts me just as a good football player with poor personal character would, especially against the backdrop of current national circumstances and how much all this infantile political gamesmanship undermines our message. Romney was the first one to set the context that any of the candidates would be better than Obama. Yet his camp’s primary argument ever since is that nobody else is electable but him. He has never sought to win on the strength of his governing vision, which he knows over a majority of the Republican electorate would consider a missed opportunity to more broadly tackle the big government stifling freedom

      Again, as I used to preface all my anti-Mitt posts, I will still vote for him enthusiastically over the Boy King. I completely understand his appeal, his poise, discipline, and the strength of his organization. He is better than McLame. My only concern about his potential in the general is, as Pro said above, that his consultants are going to trap him into a prism where he can’t adequately contrast and challenge the 24/7 LIEberal machine. Not because I’m trying to dump on Romney but because if he is the guy, we really need him to be able to win.

      But this isn’t 08. This isn’t the same electorate. These aren’t the same stakes and circumstances, and I’m not going to pretend that a populist technocratic managerial agenda for the green welfare state, centered around the premise that we have to find common ground with radical corruptocrats, is the best approach to fixing the problems in the country. Only better than the radical corruptocrats currently in charge who are destroying it on a populist Marxist-progressive platform.

      “The strongest survives and that is what makes our party the best for this country.”

      No, the fact that our party is that which still pays some marginal respect to the principles of our founding is what makes it (better than the Democrats) for the country.

  6. sticks says:

    Mean-while back at the ranch, king Obama, without regard to the senate, the constitution, or any sense of ethics of any kind, has just appointed a new czar with lots of power over all kinds of finacial transactions and institutions and very little if any accountability to anyone, certainly not the public. This person will almost certainly do whatever the king wants him to do. King Obama is a; statist, an absolutist, a Marxist and above all else a man who believes that no law or governmental body should be able to stop him from doing whatever he wants. The leaders of the Republican party are saying that the courts should stop this, but someone has to bring it to the courts, will they have what it takes to do that? the media will without a doubt raise up a massive sh#t storm about it and the OWS people and the SEIU will probably go camp out at their houses, will the police protect them? We conservatives need to remember that our nation is dangerously close to the edge. Whoever is nominated, we have got to get behind that person because 4 more years of going in this direction could very well push us over. O course the tragic truth is that a weak candidate could, and in all probability will, lose the election no matter what we do.

  7. Yota says:

    Tranquil.night, I like your passion and you are right, it is our principles that is most important.
    I think this excellent dialogue about principles through the entire campaign will make even a Romney candidate stronger for conservative values. Remember, he is being touted by the media as moderate because of his tenure as Governor of Mass, but to lead that state very conservatively very well would have been a failure. You have to work with what you have – and fortunately, the Tea Party Republicans are setting the dialogue and the direction that the next Republican president will lead.

    • tranquil.night says:

      Thank you Yota for not taking my response as a personal disregard for your points. Mitt has improved through this process. I see him making the effort to listen to his critics. I like his temperament even though sometimes it’s too robotic and lacking in indignation at the people, ideas, and entities responsible for the most predictable economic hardship and societal decay ever. But I see him going outside his comfort to talk ideology and make the moral case for capitalism. His family seems lovely. I truly hope if he’s president that he’s someone who Conservatives can work with in good faith, not be co-opted, marginalized, or subverted by, which is often the tact I get the impression he is trying to take. It is only cynicism directed towards those who’re invested in him, who have their own way of doing business in that town, who I know to a large degree resist much of our agenda to change how business is done in that town, that has me wanting to actively point out these contrasts. Because of course when they want your vote they’re going to promise you what they think you want to hear.

      I really appreciate the opportunity to have this discussion. Thank you again.

  8. wirenut says:

    Great points, all. First and foremost is to lose, the loser. I’ll take anybody but B.O. That said, we need “somebody” thats electable. It’s taken years to get to this sad state of affairs. America needs a voice, a message. I don’t really see it or hear it, from anyone. What I like about one canidate, gets lost on the baggage that they brought on themselves. Are their no true statesmen anymore? Our founders were under the penalty of death for what they believed in. THE PEOPLE! I don’t hear that. Unite us by, turning us lose. We are an exceptional people and nation.
    Just turn us lose! The time is now. This may take years for a correction, but let’s start in November.

  9. artboyusa says:

    And now Willard has been endorsed by…McCain. Oh great. Its in the bag now, right?


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