Posted: February 6, 2008 12:04 AM
If It's a Caucus, It Is Probably an Obama Win
Sen. Barack Obama appeared headed for a sweep of all the caucuses that took place on Feb. 5, garnering the majority of votes in Kansas, North Dakota, Colorado and Minnesota.
The Illinois senator had made campaigning in the five states caucusing on Feb. 5 a key part of his national strategy. Only Alaska, with its caucuses set to happen later Tuesday, remained as a caucus state.
By nature, caucuses tend to draw ardent supporters of their chosen candidate, and Obama’s Kansas win could reflect a shift in Sunflower State politics.
“Kansas hasn’t backed a Democrat for U.S. president since Lyndon Johnson in 1964. Governor Kathleen Sebelius says Barack Obama may break that streak,” Bloomberg reported.
The Obama team has said his strategy has always involved reaching out to new and undecided voters.
“Obama’s campaign has invested time and money in caucus states like Kansas, Alaska and North Dakota in an effort to bring new people into the process from across demographic and party lines, his aides say,” Bloomberg reported.
In the week leading up to Tuesday’s caucuses, Obama visited three of the five states, in contrast with Clinton, who has been focusing on more delegate-heavy region. The Illinois senator campaigned with a special focus on Colorado, where he celebrated another red state caucus victory.
“Despite Clinton’s dominant position with the Democratic establishment here — she snagged most of the significant endorsements including that of The Denver Post — Obama has raised more than twice as much money as has HRC,” New West Net reported. “And despite the vaunted Clinton political machine, Obama has apparently done a better job of grassroots organizing, as well.”
The Minnesota caucuses saw another huge turnout among young people, who helped Obama score a decisive victory more than doubling Clinton’s vote in the state-wide caucuses.
Victoria Hopwood, a volunteer directing traffic at one caucus site, said she was giddy about the turnout in her state.
“People are revved up. We know we have some important issues facing us. The Bush years have been bad,” she told the Associated Press. “As Barack says, ‘It’s now or never.’”
In the neighboring Peace Garden State, Obama’s efforts in North Dakota also outweighed that of Clinton.
“Obama poured organizing resources into North Dakota in advance of Tuesday’s caucuses, opening offices in Fargo, Grand Forks, Minot and Bismarck and moving nine staffers into the state. Clinton relied on campaign volunteers,” the “Dickinson Press” reported:http://www.thedickinsonpress.com/ap/index.cfm?page=view&id=D8UKFC780.
The caucus state combined will represent about 13 percent of total Democratic delegates.