According to Crain's though, Illinois Sen. Barack Obama has a very narrow lead in the Iowa Caucus. It's looking good, but we'll know the final tally eventually. That's what's important.
It’s close, very close, with Barack Obama seeming to hold a critical but narrow lead.
That’s the word from both pollsters and campaign insiders as upward of a quarter of a million Iowans prepare to gather in Thursday evening’s presidential caucuses.
The first formal round of the 2008 presidential campaign has turned into a real horserace among both parties, with Chicago’s Mr. Obama pressed by Park Ridge native Hillary Clinton and former U.S. Senator John Edwards on the Democratic side and ex-governors Mike Huckabee of Arkansas and Mitt Romney of Massachusetts leading the GOP pack.
Numerous factors could affect the outcome, from weather (brutally cold, but not quite as bad as early in the week) to hundreds of thousands of dollars in TV hit ads purchased by interest groups to push or punish candidates.
But the key factor, particularly on the Democratic side, is turnout — whether tens of thousands of young newcomers and political independents will show up at this state’s 1,784 precinct polling places.
If they do, Mr. Obama likely will win, outdrawing more traditional groups that prefer Ms. Clinton’s experience as former first lady and a senator or Mr. Edward’s economic populism.
If they don’t, and the college kids and others who admire Mr. Obama’s brand of post-partisan politics stay home, it will be a long night for him.
“I’ll take what we can get,” says David Axelrod, Mr. Obama’s chief campaign strategist, conceding that a landslide for any candidate is unlikely.