Thomas Schaller

Thomas F. Schaller is an associate professor of political science at the University of Maryland, Baltimore County and author of Whistling Past Dixie: How Democrats Can Win Without the South.

Recent Articles

COUNTY COUNTS.

Following up on the post below, the John Edwards campaign brags that its guy has been to all 99 counties—twice, in fact: once this cycle and also in 2004. Apparently, Hillary Clinton has only been in about 60 counties. A Barack Obama staffers says their guy has visited 73 counties, and if Michele Obama is counted the number rises to the high 80s or low 90s.

RACE FOR FIRST IS BATTLE FOR SECONDS.

The late whispers are that Barack Obama’s campaign may benefit from either an announced or unspoken nod from the Joe Biden and/or Bill Richardson campaigns to have their non-threshold caucus-goers move to Obama. We already know that the Dennis Kucinich camp has instructed its supporters to do so.

MEHLMAN: HUCK SHOULD FINISH SECOND.

I ran into former Republican National Committee chairman Ken Mehlman today at the Des Moines Marriott. (Believe it or not, he’s here promoting Strong American Schools, a non-partisan education non-profit sponsored by the Gates Foundation, among others.)

I asked him what his gut sense of tomorrow’s Republican caucus outcome would be tomorrow, and he pointed out something very simple, obvious yet compelling: the conservative insurgent may do well, even far exceed expectations, but usually finishes second.

WHAT HQ SAYS ABOUT A CAMPAIGN AND CANDIDATE.

So, I spent some time today bouncing around to campaign headquarters with the stated purpose of finding out where the campaigns were recommending reporters go tomorrow night to watch a good example of their candidate’s caucus operation in action. Understandably, helping media find a good caucus site is not a high priority for any of the campaigns; by tomorrow night, good media coverage matters not.

BEST IOWA CAMPAIGN T-SHIRT?

Edwards Shirt.jpg

Snapped a photo of this campaign t-shirt worn by a John Edwards supporter to a speech the former North Carolina senator gave yesterday on campus at Iowa State University in Ames.

Good stuff.

--Tom Schaller

Pages