The Other McCain

"One should either write ruthlessly what one believes to be the truth, or else shut up." — Arthur Koestler

Herman Cain on the Iowa Caucuses

Posted on | January 11, 2011 | 2 Comments

Duane Lester interviews the not-yet-official candidate after an event in Council Bluffs, Iowa:

In Iowa, like New Hampshire, candidates really get the chance to be vetted. This meeting that we had here today is a good example. They didn’t hold back. And in Iowa, you can’t just buy enough advertising and you’re going to win the caucuses. And so Iowa is special, not only because it’s an early primary state, but because the process that is used here is so unique that it truly forces candidates to be vetted as they begin to campaign the other states around the country.

This is an important point about the organizational aspect of the presidential campaign. Barack Obama’s defeat of Hillary Clinton in the 2008 Iowa caucuses ultimately proved decisive, and the secret of Obama’s victory in Iowa was a superior ground game: She began the campaign with far more money and vastly greater name recognition, but the Obama campaign simply out-organized her.

“Retail politics” — the candidate shaking hands with individual voters and talking to small gatherings of supporters in people’s living rooms — really makes a difference in Iowa and New Hampshire. Voters there have become accustomed to being actively courted by candidates and Cain’s recognition of that dynamic is important to his grassroots approach to the campaign.

Read the rest of Duane Lester’s interview with Herman Cain.


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