Local Politics

Iowans Weigh Edwards Popularity, Electability

Posted December 7, 2007

— Iowa's first-in-the-nation caucuses set the tone and the top issues for the presidential race, and they give state residents unrivaled access to candidates.

John Edwards, the former U.S. senator from North Carolina, has spent almost 70 days crisscrossing the state so far this year, courting some of the most powerful average people on the planet in his second run for the White House.

Polls show Edwards running a close third among Democrats in Iowa, trailing New York Sen. Hillary Clinton and Illinois Sen. Barack Obama. But polls also show more than half of Iowans could change their minds in the final weeks before the Jan. 3 caucuses.

"There will be movement. That's one thing that's absolutely certain," Edwards said.

He plans to spend much of the next few weeks in Iowa to reach undecided voters like Barb Gregersen and build political momentum.

"I was impressed with him in '04, and I just want another chance to hear him personally," caucus-goer Gregersen said.

David Yepsen, a political columnist with The Des Moines Register, notes that Edwards has the highest approval rating of any candidate in Iowa. But about a third of Iowans admit they weigh electability, he said, and Edwards lags in most polls outside the state.

In South Carolina, for example, Edwards is a distant third in the polls. He won the state primary in 2004 – his only victory that year.

"I think John Edwards has an uphill battle here," Yepsen said. "Because he's running against two celebrity candidates in Hillary Clinton and Barack Obama, if he doesn't win Iowa, I think it will be a huge psychological blow to his campaign.

"I think it effectively knocks him out of the race."

Never shy on confidence, Edwards keeps pushing forward in Iowa as he fights for the future of his candidacy.

"I think Iowa is very important for all three of us," he said, referring to Clinton and Obama as well. "I think (my campaign is) in a very strong position going forward."

10 Comments

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  • mvnull Dec 8, 2007

    Good to see the Edwards obsessed out in force again. It makes my day to read their comments.

  • jackadoo Dec 8, 2007

    The Daily Dribble (formerly known as wral.com) about Johnboy . He has spent 70 days in Iowa, and the vote there is by a select few, not the population. Iowa or New Hampshire, who cares. John, go home to be with your family and terminally ill wife, PS Support Ron Paul.

  • shine Dec 8, 2007

    Edwards the former senator from North Carolina...... according to the story - I didn't realize he was a senator except by business card - because he never showed up....

    I wish they were running for some political office on the moon. I would take up donations as well as my own money to get him there.... might not be far away enough.... maybe Mars. He acts like he might be from there or maybe has relatives there.

  • BLOCKHEAD SQUARED Dec 8, 2007

    "There will be movement. That's one thing that's absolutely certain," Edwards said.

    yeh right, maybe a bowel movement, but that's all.

  • dryhumper Dec 8, 2007

    "Edwards will do for the country, what he did for NC..... Nothing."

    Exactly what Rubber faced Dole has done for her adopted home state...

    "Why is the Breck Girl a distant third in his "home" state of SC and still a contender in Iowa: they don't know him like we know him?"

    There mus be some really unattractive men out there in North Carolina, so many are jealous of John's looks. If your screen name is any indication of how you look colliedave then I would direct you to Elizabeth Dole's plastic surgeon to fix that nose of yours.

  • cjump Dec 8, 2007

    Iowans don't know just how useless the Breck Girl is. Hopefully the old girl will be out by time we vote here. It could be embarrassing for her when she loses her home state.

  • Evil one Dec 7, 2007

    John Edwards would make a great president of any country, just not this one please.

  • djofraleigh Dec 7, 2007

    If no one had declared yet, this all wouldn't be happening so soon, too soon. Right now, I yawn over the news.

  • colliedave Dec 7, 2007

    "There will be movement. That's one thing that's absolutely certain," Edwards said.

    Yes, and the movement will be him being kicked back home. Why is the Breck Girl a distant third in his "home" state of SC and still a contender in Iowa: they don't know him like we know him?

  • imrickjamesbitch Dec 7, 2007

    Edwards will do for the country, what he did for NC..... Nothing.