Tuesday, December 16, 2003
Got to see the Senator speak three times over the weekend and was at the Davenport meeting mentioned in the article. He really does seems to be ready to fight for every vote now and I think the change is great. Monday’s speech was actually the best I have seen him. He blended populist economic themes in a delicate but effective balance with themes of the great entrepreneurial spirit of America in a speech that was uplifting and genuine. Has he been working with David Axlerod of the Edward’s campaign? Hmmm…
The new energy in the campaign may be resulting from the buzz among staff surrounding new internal polls from other camps showing Kerry surging ahead of Gephardt in Iowa. With organization even more important in a caucus than a primary, Kerry’s (larger than Dean and Gephardt) organization is set to pull the big surprise.
My suspicion was confirmed today when a friend in the Dean camp started to downplay the importance of the Iowa caucus (before my prompting) and how irrelevant Iowa has become in past election cycles. The early hubris of the Dean campaign is starting to unravel. Trippi must be looking at the poll numbers in Iowa and starting to downplay its importance to minimize the effect of a surprise Kerry win.
Read this article by David Yepsen. And yes, this blog noted last month that the media would start trying to write the Kerry as comeback kid story soon. ;-)
Also, a Globe article in the same vein of thought.
Kerry advisers say he is wagering on a "January effect" to ignite his campaign: He plans to remain in Iowa for roughly 15 days after New Year's in the run-up to the Jan. 19 caucuses, while making quick trips to New Hampshire.
"There's a slingshot effect from Iowa to New Hampshire that is very important to us," said Mary Beth Cahill, Kerry's campaign manager for the last month. "Past exit polls show that one-third of New Hampshire voters make up their minds the week before their primary, in those eight days after Iowa votes. That's huge for us."