Nope. Still Too Early

I hear the Iowa caucus are tonight. [Yawn. Stifled.] The only question in my mind is “why?”.

Iowa (State Motto: “Failing to choose our next president since 1972”) does not (should not, can not) determine our next president, and doesn’t even do that well in choosing our nominees for us. That it does is a myth created, I suppose, by the national media, way back when there was such a creature. Now, one yell by one candidate undoes the results of the vote (um… didn’t it once take an assassins bullet to accomplish that much?), so barring a return of 1968 (check your calendar) nothing decided here will be definitive.

The surprise is that the results will be so meaningless. The Republican winner will be McRomson, apparently, who will battle Guiliani when it counts. Outcome, TBD. For the democrats, Either Clinton or Edwards or Obama will win (with either Clinton or Edwards or Obama in second and either Clinton or Edwards or Obama in third). Regardless, Edwards will likely drop out, and ABC (Anybody But Clinton) will win, eventually, with tonight’s winner determining when this happens (not who will win).

It was ever thus. Anyone reading the blogs knew a year ago that ABC would win the democratic nomination.

And all this is subject to change at the first outbreak of…

Of what? A Tet-like offensive in Iraq or Afghanistan? Probably not. The assination of Bhutto after Christmas did little to deflect attention away from domestic issues which currently dominate. The wars are simply not an issue any more, it seems.
Inflation or Recession? The economy is likely to stay strong. There is a question, thought, about reporters. Will they notice? Probably not.
Immigration? Congress failed to take action, so the American public did.

The plan, the product of a bipartisan group, collapsed under the weight of conservative objections. It was revived after an agreement was reached among Republicans to limit the number of amendments, then collapsed again on June 28, when a proposal to end debate and move toward final passage was defeated. Senators on both sides of the issue said at the time that it was unlikely a bill could be passed before the 2008 elections.

Immigration is an issue, but one that’s not going to change before November. Read ’em and weep.

And that’s the problem. The political landscape we see today is nearly exactly what we’ll see in 10 or 11 months. There is no reason to decide now, today, who the nominees will be, especially since they are far more likely to change than the politics. My guess is that the only sure candidate certain to not be there in October and November will be tonight’s winner.

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