Related Content: John Kerry

Peeling the Onion (Or, Why Iowa and New Hampshire Really Matter)

Gwen's Take

We have by now spent so many weeks consumed with the ups and downs of Republican Presidential politics that we are in danger of misgauging its real impact, especially in these early days.

It can be easy to dismiss the Iowa caucuses. Ask “Presidents” Huckabee and Gephardt how winning there worked for them. Winning the Hawkeye State in 2008 and 1988 respectively turned out to be the high point of their campaigns.

The John Kerry Moment?

On The Radar

Failure, it turns out, is an option. In fact, it sounds more and more like an imperative. “I’m worried you’re going to fail,” Erskine Bowles, the Democratic chairman of President Obama’s debt- and deficit-reduction commission, told the super committee on Tuesday. Hours earlier, Rep. Mick Mulvaney, R-S.C., told a National Journal panel on the 2012 election that he fully expected the super committee to fail and expected all of the underlying political and policy issues to be settled, at least in part, by the 2012 election.

Confidence, Conviction and Campaign 2012

Gwen's Take

I once covered a politician who was a very certain man.

He remained convinced throughout his public career that he knew best – certainly better than any naysayer, political opponent or reporter.

His certainty got things done, but you had to accept that his priorities and values were the correct ones. He acted first and accepted – but did not welcome -- questions later. He was a Democrat, but only because that’s how you got elected in Baltimore. And he was unwavering.