Saturday, December 8, 2007

C minus 26 - has Huckabee peaked?

The big, and good, news for Mike Huckabee over the last week or so is his meteoric rise in the polls. A Newsweek poll now has him at about twice the support of his next closest rival (Romney) in Iowa, although some think the poll (of only 275 people) is a bit suspect. Nonetheless, it must feel good to go from nowhere to everywhere in nothing flat!
Of course, what goes up, must come down, both in gravitational fields and in politics. And with more than three weeks to go before caucus night it maybe that this rise is too soon. With good numbers come increased scrutiny, and the scrutiny has not been kind so far. News has come out that he supported an AIDS quarantine, in 1992, and is also on record as saying that homosexuality is sinful (again, in 1992 - by which I mean that he said it in 1992, not that homosexuality was sinful, according to Huckabee, only in 1992 - clearly my grammar needs work!). Various other issues are being raised, such as his role in paroling a rapist who subsequently raped and killed someone, his fiscal actions while governor of Arkansas, and his tendency toward "Nanny Statism" with regard to health care. None of these may hurt him with his base here in Iowa, but they may limit his ability to grow beyond his base.
A ripple effect of the surge of Huckabee is that it may make life a little easier for Romney. Romney did very well with his speech on Thursday (see here for some quotes) and will likely see a bump in the polls as a result. The Sunday morning news shows tomorrow will likely focus on this a lot, along with another recent development, which is...
That Fred Thompson has decided to roll the dice in Iowa in a major way (hat tip to the Corner). He will be in the State, traveling around by bus, every day between now and the caucuses except for Christmas day. I, and others, have been waiting, with increasing impatience, for Fred to get moving. His policy statements are great, his ideas are excellent and exciting, but he needs to close the deal. Perhaps, by bus, he can do it! His Senatorial campaign succeeded on the basis of a state tour in a red pickup - maybe the bus will do the same for him.
So, lots of excitement in the coming weeks here in Iowa. And on the home front, I got a visit this evening from a couple who are the precinct captains for Obama. Very friendly and pleasant, and if this is indicative of the level of organization of the Obama team, a good sign for him. It should be noted that while I am a registered Republican, my daughter, who is living at home at present, is a registered Democrat, and it was her they were coming to see!

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