Monday, December 31, 2007

Caucus Mania!

This is the start of an amazing week in Iowa...countdown to caucus day on January 3rd. Things are really getting crazy in the Hawkeye State. On Saturday when I was uptown in Newton, it was interesting to see how many "strangers" were bustling about in the downtown courthouse square. You could see cars pulling into parking spots and folks (particularly younger ones) getting out who were definately not natives.

Just outside our lodge building and across the street, we have the Jasper County headquarters for John Edwards and Barak Obama. Across the courthouse lawn to the northeast, we have Hillary's place.

Our phone rang about every 15 minutes on Saturday...John called, then Hillary, then Barak, and Mike, and lastly Ron with a survey! Before we went to bed, we had a Barak supporter from Chicago stop by.

The "MittMobile" was in town and as I went to the bank, here comes Mitt and crew out of the hotel.

Yesterday, I drove down to Knoxville to see Barak Obama. It was really interesting to watch the festivities. The CNN Express bus was parked out in front of the high school, with two huge satellite dishes hoisted upward. In front of their bus, was FOX news. Out front of the school was Wolf Blitzer doing an interview. I finally got into the school auditorium and stood next to a young man who was working on the Obama campaign who said he was from Austin, Texas. We had a nice conversation. He said Iowa seemed like a really nice place and the caucuses were really something.

I was impressed with Obama. He seemed pretty down to earth and gave a good speech. I'm still undecided who I'm going to support. One day I'm learning towards this person and the next day I'm swayed another way. This afternoon Joe Biden is going to be in Newton, so I'll go hear from him.

Last night my oldest stepdaughter called laughing. Her five year daughter had answered the phone and was saying "yes", "yes", and then "I don't understand" that Andrea decided she better see who it was. When she wresteled the phone away from Ashleigh, she found out that this little 5 year old was taking an automated phone survey from Ron the computer was wondering how to interpret those answers!

I loved all of those special Christmas cards...from the Edwards', the Obamas', Bill& Hillary, and the Romeny family and those special holiday television ads...the Obama family reminded me so much of a Christmas on "Waltons' Mountain"...I almost thought I could heard John Boy in the background and then there was Hillary sorting through her packages, I hope she got them all delivered to the right folks.

This is definately an interesting experience that we Iowans and the folks of New Hampshire go through every four years. Despite the intensity of it this year, we really should feel honored that we two states get to know these folks who want to be the leader of our country so well. As Barak Obama said yesterday, you get to take us out for a little "test drive", get to "kick the tires" and "look under the hood".

Two of these folks will lead our two major political parties and quite likely the vice presidential candidates will also come out of this group. Whatever your political persuasion, be it Democrat, Republican, or Independent, I encourage you to go to your caucus on Thursday night and participate. Even if you decide not to support a candidate, go and be a part of the process. The eyes and hears of the country and the world are upon Iowa this week.

I think I might give Hillary a call today and see maybe if Bill could drop by later on and help me with the dishes!

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