This Saturday morning (1/19/08) at around 11am pacific time, the Nevada Caucuses take place for both Democrats and Republicans. However, the Republicans are busy focusing on South Carolina and Mitt Romney is favored to win in Nevada without much contest.
Therefore, the focus has come down on the Democrats in Nevada where Obama, Clinton, and Edwards have been campaigning hard this past week and a half following the New Hampshire Primary.
First, here’s a video report from Fox News on the Democratic Caucus:
For Nevada, the latest RealClearPolitics Nevada poll averages have the following break down:
% on average (1/09 – 1/17)
37.0 – Clinton
33.3 – Obama
19.5 – Edwards
At this point, and there isn’t much more campaigning time, Hillary Clinton appears to have the edge. However, let’s not lose perspective of New Hampshire where the polls were dead wrong. I am assuming that they have tried to prevent such an event from happening in Nevada.
The question in Nevada will be whether the union endorsements can push Obama over the top. I’m going to have to give Clinton the edge at this point but I think anything is possible.
If Hillary Clinton can take Nevada, she will have built some major momentum and could have a chance to take back South Carolina from Obama. As always, we’ll be covering the Nevada caucuses for both the Democrats and Republicans tomorrow with full results as they are released.
Obama’s taking some late-breaking heat over his comments praising Ronald Reagan, story from Breitbart:
RENO, Nev. (AP) – John Edwards and Hillary Rodham Clinton criticized Barack Obama’s praise of the Republican Party and Ronald Reaganâ€”an anathema for many Democrats, particularly union members considered crucial to winning Nevada’s Democratic caucuses Saturday.
Obama told the Reno Gazette-Journal editorial board Monday that “Reagan changed the trajectory of America in a way that Richard Nixon did not and in a way that Bill Clinton did not. He put us on a fundamentally different path because the country was ready for it,” Obama said.
“I think it’s fair to say that the Republicans were the party of ideas for a pretty long chunk of time there over the last 10 to 15 years in the sense that they were challenging conventional wisdom,” Obama told the newspaper.
On Friday in Las Vegas, Clinton, responded, “That’s not the way I remember the last ten to fifteen years.” She said she didn’t consider it a better idea to privatize Social Security, eliminate the minimum wage, undercut health benefits, shut down the government or drive the country into debt. “I think we know what needs to be done in America. And I think we’re ready to do it. I’m ready to lead on day one.”
Edwards questioned Obama’s commitment to labor in his final appeal to Nevada votersâ€”a rally with about 100 of his precinct captains in Las Vegas.
“Ronald Reagan, the man who busted unions, the man who did everything in his power to destroy the organized labor movement, the man who created a tax structure that favored the richest Americans against middle class and working families, … we know that Ronald Reagan is not an example of change for a presidential candidate running in the Democratic Party,” Edwards said.
If I were an Obama adviser, which I’m not, I would have told him to save his kind remarks about Reagan for the general election, should he get the nomination. In the primary and caucus process, the voters are the Democratic base, most of which I would say probably do not share those rosy sentiments for Reagan. Now, in the general election, I would say these remarks could have helped him in that they would have appealed to the “Reagan-independents” and perhaps some other moderates who liked Reagan.
I don’t blame Edwards or Clinton at all for calling Obama on this considering the party base they’re all trying to court right now.