This week the Iowa caucuses officially kicked off the 2008 presidential election cycle with resounding results. If you look at the results, it appears that Republicans voted for the basic principles of lower taxes, limited government, and personal responsibility. Huckabee may have received a large amount of the Evangelical vote. The Democrats on the other hand, rejected Hillary Clinton’s promise of higher taxes, socialized health care, a weak national defense and a million ideas that Americans will have trouble paying for.
Most Americans are familiar with how elections work- secret ballots, an 18-year-old age requirement, all-day voting, with no electioneering but, not in Iowa. In a previous Op-Ed article I wrote titled “Is Politics Interfering With Your Sex Life.” (You can read it by clicking HERE) I describe the vitriolic feelings that have developed among friends over political discord that have caused tremendous rifts in relationships–even amongst married couples and significant others. In Iowa without a secret ballot, this rift seems to widen now that you have to break into groups to be counted. Your neighbors now really know how you feel.
Why have the Iowa caucuses become so important? The Iowa caucuses claim to be a grass-roots exercise in direct democracy. Yet only about ten-percent of the eligible voters participate. They feature face-to-face meetings between the candidates or their representatives and the caucus members. The members are wooed and cajoled to change their minds and vote their way. On the Democratic side if a candidate does not receive fifteen-percent of total vote in a caucus the voters must cast their vote for another candidate who receives more than the required fifteen- percent. It sounds a little disingenuous to me. I find it strange that a group of people gathering to meet in people’s homes, firehouses, public libraries and such are going to be the first people to help decide who will be the candidate for each party. The Republicans and Democrats alike have their own set of rules how the caucuses will be conducted.
Watching the mainstream media coverage of the caucuses was predictable. Fox News reported on all the candidates. However, if you listened carefully to CBS, NBC and ABC you did not hear much about Hillary Clinton losing. An obvious testimonial to the MSM real feelings about the self-coronated queen from New York. They kept reporting on how Mike Huckabee was winning on the Republican side and what impact it might have to the Giuliani, Romney, and McCain campaigns. Some of the words I heard were how the Republicans are now divided and really do not have a clear front-runner. I thought they were predicting a Huckabee win for days before the caucuses. Where is the surprise? I did not hear those same sentiments voiced towards the Democrats.
The shake out from the results on the Democratic side are Joe Biden and Christopher Dodd dropping out of the race, which narrows the Democratic field by two– so, who’s regrouping? If you analyze why Barrack Obama (D-IL) won, you will find that he bussed in thousands of college students to take part in the caucuses. In addition, he had the youth vote, which broadcast a message to the baby boomers that their rein is over. You had your turn with LBJ and Jimmy Carter now it is our turn. We want change the way you wanted change back then. Nevertheless, are they studying what changed back then?
President Johnson escalated the Vietnam War where over 50,000 Americans died in combat. Some died during demonstrations against the war at home. When he put his Great Society Program in place, he had to rape the Social Security trust fund to pay for it. It took a Republican administration (Nixon) to get us out of the war. However, only after public sentiment against the war with the help of a congress that demanded we get out. Sound familiar?
Under Carter, we were held hostage for 444 days and had the highest prime rate and inflation rate in history. Now the former president travels around the world bashing America. I wonder if Roslyn is embarrassed, (my thought).
All Obama keeps saying is that he wants to pull the troops out of Iraq immediately and there are “changes coming.” There will be changes coming all right, when the war on terror is brought back home because of his lack of experience in foreign policy and refusal to believe as the Left does, that there is a war on terror-Something the Republicans are better dealing with than the Left. In addition, there is the small cloud that hangs over him about his early days in a Madrassa–which he hasn’t really addressed, except to tell us he is a practicing Christian and let’s not go there (my emphasis).
So now, it is on to New Hampshire, which may have a different result for the Republicans. However, the real questions are will Obama’s win in Iowa sweep him on to a win in New England? What affect will that have on Hillary?
On the Republican side, the question is, will Mitt Romney lose in New Hampshire right next door to his home state? What affect will that have on the rest of the Republican field?
Hopefully, the voters will wise up and reject those risky and backward-looking principles on both sides of the aisle and do the right thing. Four years ago, very few of us heard of Mike Huckabee. Two years ago, no one heard of Barbaro until the Kentucky Derby. And, we all know what happened to Barbaro.
Four years ago, no one knew the name Barrack Obama. In 1978, few of us heard of a peanut farmer from Plains, Georgia either. That’s what corn dogs and peanuts have in common.
Michael Solomon is a former NYPD Detective. He is the recipient of 19 awards for Excellent and Meritorious police work. During his tenure in the intelligence division, he was assigned to protect the Shah of Iran, and Madame Chang of Taiwan. He has personally met four U.S. Presidents. He was assigned as the intelligence officer to the U.S. State Department during treaty negations between the United States and Turkey. He holds a Bachelors Degree Magna Cum Laude in Behavioral Sciences, from the New York Institute of Technology and a Masters with Distinction in Public Administration from Long Island University.
In 2003, he was cited by both houses of the NY State Legislature in a Resolutions as Humanitarian of the Year for his charitable contributions to his community. – He has published two books. “Success By Default”, – The Depersonalization Of Corporate America. His second book “Where Did My America Go?” explores the hypocrisy in American politics. – He has been the subject of numerous magazine and news articles. In 2006, he was named as Time Magazines “Person of The Year.”
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