07 January 2008

Political Strategy at the Iowa Caucuses?

This is my friend Lynn Vavreck at the Iowa Caucuses the other day. Lynn is not an Iowa voter, she was in town for nerdy professional reasons (she studies campaigns). Nor, unless she has had a dramatic shift in partisan preferences of late, is she anything close to being an Edwards supporter. My suspicion is that she was sureptitiously seeking to make it appear like Edwards had more support than he really did, thereby contributing to a devastating loss by one of his rivals, namely Dennis Kucinich. My recollection is that Lynn grew up in Ohio and that her estimation of Dennis's political record and current views is rather low. Of course that sort of behavior would be unbecoming of a professional political scientist, so my suspicions must be unfounded!


Anonymous Lynn Vavreck said...

Well, I couldn't resist a little clarification on the Edwards enthusiasm! I have just finished a book on political campaigns (that I have been working on for over 8 years). Turns out, of all the candidates who have run for president in the last eight years, John Edwards is the one whose campaign most closely reflects my theory. Now that Obama has tightened his message (Got Hope?) he, too, is campaigning on a single message that is broad in scope and thematic in style. To learn more about the theory, you'll have to read the book (at the publishers now!) but suffice it to say that in terms of partisanship -- I think it's over-rated!

I vote for the problem solvers and to do that, I look for candidates who clearly articulate the problems as they see them. Again, Edwards does well on this score (as does McCain in my view).

And, yes, Kucinich. My Cleveland roots leave me feeling a strange affinity for him -- but then I remember the energy crisis and the city going bankrupt and my sentiment is tempered!


07 January, 2008 11:40  

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