Could Hillary’s campaign be impeded by the first state to decide?
The main headline overnight on the ABC news in the US is a poll it commissioned with the Washington Post on the state of opinion in Iowa – which on January 3rd will become the first state to make its decisions on the contenders for the 2008 White House race.
In the Democrat race the black senator from Illinois, Barack Obama, is recorded as being in the top position with 30% of support compared with 26% for Hillary Clinton and 22% for the party’s V-P choice last time, John Edwards.
Unlike almost other states the way Iowa decides is by voters attending caucus meetings at more than 1800 venues. Today’s poll shows that about half of those opting for Clinton against 43 percent of those for Obamaâ€™s supporters said they had never attended a such an event. It’s believed that the voters thought to be the most reliable caucus participants are those who have have been to such a meeting in the past.â€
This was one of the explanations in 2004 when the polling leader in the state and odds-on overall favourite to get the nomination, Howard Dean, slipped into third place when the caucus results came in.
One particular issue for Hillary is the gender divide. As ABC news notes “…Clinton has a particular problem in Iowa with men — just 19 percent support, vs. her 31 percent support among women. Obama and Edwards alike lead her among men…Among women, meanwhile, Clinton and Obama run about evenly, compared with a more than 2-1 Clinton lead nationally. (Clinton leads in Iowa among single women, but trails Obama among those who are married.) ”
In the Republican race the big story has been the growing support for the ex-Governor or Arkansas, Mick Huckabee, who has edged in second place in the polls behind Mitt Romney and ahead of Giuliani.
I’ve got trading positions (that is I’m looking to short-term movement not the overall outcome) against Clinton and for Huckabee on the Spreadfair spread market.
Latest conventional and exchange White House Race betting is here.