Late night, the people of Iowa did an amazing thing. They began the first step in the peaceful, democratic, transition of power from one chief executive to the next.
In case you haven't already heard about it, the Iowa caucuses were held last night, and Senator Barack Obama, of Illinois, was the clear winner for the Democrats.
I won't go into the specifics of the demographic percentages of who voted for whom and why, other than to say that, interestingly enough, in Iowa, Barack Obama gave Senator Clinton a bit of a thumping, even when it came to the votes coming from women. Apparently Obama garnered 5 percentage points of votes from women than Senator Clinton did.
Anyone who pays attention to Presidential politics are aware that winning... even decisively winning the Iowa caucus doesn't give a candidate a lock on the nomination of their party, but it sure gives the winner a big boost going into the New Hampshire primaries, which will be held next Tuesday, January eighth... with Michigan following on the fifteenth.
Together, Senator Obama and the people of Iowa have done another amazing thing in this caucus. They have shown America that at least from the Democratic perspective that this election will be about change, and they have shown that, not only by voting for a man that has said that he wants to be an agent of change in Washington (and God knows that we need it in this town!), but by signaling a dramatic change in the way young Americans think about race. Picture it... can any of you that are over 50 have ever imagined, when you were twenty five, that a Midwestern state, with a 94 percent white population, would have given a presidential primary victory to a black candidate?
Last night was one for the record books, friends.
This is a big country folks, and some states will be holding primaries as late as June, but I believe that this nominating process, at least for the Democrats will be locked up much earlier than that. I am certain that we will know who the party's nominee will be much sooner that. Who that nominee will be is still anyone's guess.
Another result of the Iowa caucuses is the ending of the campaigns of Joe Biden, Chris Dodd, and Mike Gravell. The herd must be thinned.