Tag Archive: Yale on the Trail: Bill Richardson

  1. From Boston, five quick reactions to the Dem debate

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    Obama supporter excites crowds in Iowa

    BOSTON, Mass., 4:05 a.m. — 1) Maybe it’s time to stop trying to make these debates hip and tech-savvy. What did Facebook’s “sponsorship” add to the debate other than some pretty lame polls? Couldn’t they have at least done something fun to add the “Facebook touch” on the dry proceedings? Maybe they could have let each candidate write in a status? (“Bill Richardson is wondering what he is doing here.”)

    2) I really liked the banter between Hil and Obama throughout the night. Except when Obama said “You are likable enough” to Hilary, I was confused. Was this earnest? Was it an underhanded insult? Was it one of those things you say without really knowing what it means but just because it sort of sounds like the right thing to say in the moment? Was I thinking about the whole thing too much?

    3) I don’t think I will be forgetting anytime soon how many years of experience Hillary Clinton has since she managed to mention her THIRTY-FIVE years of experience about thirty-five times.

    4) My favorite question was, “What is something you said in a previous debate that you wish you hadn’t said?” Seriously?! Did he expect anyone to actually answer that?! These are politicians! It’s like asking someone on a first date, “So, how did you mess up your past relationships?”

    5) There was this wonderful moment when they all started talking at once in response to one of the five thousand questions about “change” when Edwards cracked a smile and – just for a second – I felt like maybe, just maybe, he was realizing just how strange and ridiculous these debates are. Or maybe he was just smiling. It was hard to tell.

    —Josh Duboff

  2. LIVE: Can change have four definitions?

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    MANCHESTER, N.H., 9:34 p.m. — The minute-by-minute speaks for itself:

    9:26 p.m. | “We’re all advocating for change,” Clinton asserts. But it’s easier said than done, she says, and points to her record. Change, she says, “is a result of very hard work, bringing people together, stating very clearly what your goals are, what your principles are, and then achieving them.”

    9:27 p.m. | Oh no she didn’t! Clinton just called Obama a flip-flopper, particularly on healthcare. “I think that’s relevant,” she said. “I think we’re looking for a president we can count on.” Didn’t someone — perhaps a certain Republican? — make that same argument against John Kerry in 2004?

    9:32 p.m. | Oh no he didn’t! Bloodbath! Edwards just attacked Clinton for attacking Obama, lamenting that people who support change — like him and Obama — always get beaten up. “That’s not the kind of discussion we should be having,” he said, adding that whenever anyone pushes for change, “the forces of status quo are going to attack.” That’s a not-too-subtle dig at Clinton.

    9:34 p.m. | It gets worse! Forget any attempt to be subtle. Edwards says what everyone in the filing center is thinking. “I didn’t see these kind of attacks from Senator Clinton when she was ahead,” he said.

    Clinton can’t let that go. “Wait a minute now, I want to respond to this,” she said. “Making change is not about what you believe, it’s not about a speech you make, it’s about working hard.”

    9:36 p.m. | Richardson chimes in, and sets the room afire with laughter. “I’ve been in hostage negotiations a lot more civil then this,” he quipped. “Let’s stay positive,” he implores. He notes, for the record, however: “I love change.”

    — Thomas Kaplan

  3. Caucus afterthoughts

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    ANKENY, Iowa, 1:45 p.m. – Last night, I saw of the most bizarre proceedings I’ve ever been witness to, from within the Ankeny United Methodist Church in Iowa. There my companions and I observed the Ankeny Precinct 3 Democratic caucus.


  4. The Iowa Numbers: West Des Moines — Precinct 111

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    WEST DES MOINES, Iowa, 7:32 p.m. — The first round of results are in: Before the critical realignment stage of the Democratic caucus in this precinct, here’s an update from West Des Moines, Precinct 111:

    Joe Biden: 7

    Hillary Clinton: 75

    Chris Dodd: 9

    John Edwards: 49

    Barack Obama: 99

    Bill Richardson: 22

    They tallied 264 caucus-goers in attendance, so I’m missing 3, but you can see the trend here in West Des Moines. The viability threshold of 15% means a candidate must have 40 votes to remain viable. They’re realigning now.

    -Zack Abrahamson

  5. In West Des Moines, backers of unviable candidates flock to Obama

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    WEST DES MOINES, Iowa, 7:27 p.m. — The library at Hillside Elementary School in West Des Moines was packed. Outside the door, bright-eyed women wore bandoliers of Hillary stickers and handed out cookies to caucus-goers.

    “Are you supporting Hillary? Supporting Hillary? That corner in the back, that’s where we are.”

    The Iowa caucuses began at 7:00 o’clock tonight across the Hawkeye state, ending months of media and inside-the-Beltway speculation about which Democratic and Republican candidates would win the first voting of the year. In West Des Moines, however, Iowans acted as though they had simply gathered to chat about the neighborhood.


  6. For Dodd, a struggle to matter

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    LE MARS, Iowa, 12:29 p.m. “This has to be about something more than celebrity,” Connecticut Senator Chris Dodd told a crowd of 30 as he stood atop two stacked forklift palletes. “This has to be about something deeper, much deeper – about substance and about who has the ability to lead this country.”

    This week is likely to make or break the campaign for dark horse Dodd, who has lagged in polls in Iowa and nationally since the announcement of his candidacy in January. At the 4 Brothers restaurant in Le Mars, Dodd asked Iowans to look past his relative obscurity and “prove the national pundits wrong.”

    A third-place finish here would be an impressive victory for the veteran Connecticut legislator, although Dodd left himself room in the expectations game to finish fourth, telling those in attendance that “Iowans could punch three, even four tickets out of this state.”

    Harold Schaitberger thinks he can make that happen. The general president of the International Association of Fire Fighters union has been on board with the Dodd campaign since August. He has traveled to all 40 local firefighter unions across Iowa, urging members to support Dodd and lending “firepower” to a campaign that Dodd admits has few celebrity allies.

    Dodd - Dec. 30

    Chris Dodd at an event in Le Mars, IA at the 4 Brothers Restaurant. Dodd discussed his experiences in the Senate, the need for substance over celebrity in this year’s election, and made a passionate appeal for Iowa voters to believe in his underdog crusade for the nomination.