Tuesday, January 20, 2004

Where was that tight 4-way race in Iowa all the news outlets and pundits were telling us to expect the last few days? Where was the guaranteed Howard Dean victory they all predicted just a few short weeks ago? Where was it, I ask?

Iowans offered up plenty of "surprises" last night. Kerry surged up from near death. Edwards popped up out of nowhere. Gephardt was stiffed by his union cronies. Dean got trounced by 20 points, then gave a truly bizarre speech to his faithful, complete with what can only be described as feral howling. According to Drudge, "his face became red, his gestures sharp and angry. For a few moments, it appeared Dean had slipped into an unnatural state."

I'm still holding out some faint glimmer of hope that Howlin' Howard will still ultimately win the nomination, but it doesn't look good. Unless he can rebound strongly in New Hampshire, then hold his head above water in Arizona and the South, I think he'll be toast. Andrew Sullivan opined that Dean's candidacy suffered the kiss of death with Al Gore's endorsement. I think he might be proven right.

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