Monday, December 17, 2007

Time: What Edwards Has Going for Him in Iowa

In Time, Mark Halperin offers a compelling list of seventeen things John Edwards has going for him in Iowa (and he doesn't even mention the Georgia delegation that will be heading out there to do whatever we can to help Edwards win-not just the Iowa caucus, but ultimately the White House-that would be 18). As Halperin correctly notes, increasingly the numbers tell us that Edwards is the best general election bet for democrats. Here's the whole list, Halperin dubs "The Millworker's Dozen."

1. The endorsement of the First Lady of Iowa.
2. The support (some secret) of people close to Governor Culver.
3. Big Labor help being quietly marshaled by one of Iowa’s top Democratic operatives and by Edwards’ 2004 campaign manager.
4. A consistently confident, upbeat demeanor.
5. A re-tooled stump speech that has audiences rising up, and that is filled with
specifics of his agenda.
6. Caucus rules that work to the advantage of those with strong support in rural and blue collar areas.
7. Dedicated supporters who will likely turn out even if the weather is cold and
8. National trial lawyers who are going to do something (read: “everything”) to get their guy elected.
9. A popular, visible spouse.
10. More than enough money to be competitive.
11. Fearlessness.
12. A stronger work ethic than anyone in the race.
13. Perfect pitch in handling Clinton-Obama conflict.
14. A strong Des Moines Register debate perf.
15. New polling showing him as a strong general election candidate and some new boffo national media clips.
16. High favorables and strong second choice support.
17. Trained precinct captains in almost every precinct – a true, old-fashioned organization.

Imagine that. A truly grassroots campaign fueled by a simple, populist message that is resonating with voters and packing his events: "I will fight for you."

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