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Coffee Houserss

Who will drop out after tonight?

3 January 2008 23:19

As we wait for the caucuses to get under way, the press are wondering who will leave the field after tonight’s results. This morning, The Politico reported that Senator turned… Continue reading


Obama wheels and deals

3 January 2008 21:18

One of the many quirks of the Democrat’s Iowa Caucus is that if your candidate gets less than 15% support, you can choose to shift your support to another candidate.… Continue reading


What does Hillary do if she loses to Obama?

3 January 2008 19:06

It looks increasingly like Hillary’s nightmare Iowa scenario is about to become true. So, the question is how does she come back? The brutal truth is that there is no… Continue reading


Is Brown finished?

3 January 2008 17:17

“I think Brown’s character, specifically the lack of charisma or warmth will prevent him being able to bring it back. When problems hit Brown will never be able get away… Continue reading

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Number crunching

3 January 2008 16:34

The FT’s story about 500,000 youths “too sick to work” should cause shock, but not surprise. The “figures obtained by the FT” can also be obtained by any teenager with… Continue reading


Caucus day

3 January 2008 15:07

One of the odd things about the Iowa caucuses is that because they do not start until 6:30PM there are no early indications on turnout or anything else. But we… Continue reading


Is the force with Obama?

3 January 2008 7:32

The difference in enthusiasm and size of crowds between the Barack Obama and Mitt Romney rallies was stark.  Obama was clearly exhausted at his eve of caucus rally in Des… Continue reading

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Romney’s last rally feels flat

3 January 2008 6:54

Mitt Romney’s final event before the Iowa caucus was surprisingly downbeat affair. The crowd was not huge—about 625 to 650 people according to the Romney camp—and Romney was in reflective… Continue reading

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The Ron Paul phenomenon

2 January 2008 23:47

Tonight, I’m planning to go and see Mitt Romney and Barack Obama’s big pre-caucus rallies but before that I’m going to pop in on a Ron Paul event.  Paul is… Continue reading


The key to victory in Iowa

2 January 2008 21:15

Des Moines, Iowa Quite remarkably on the eve of the Iowa caucuses both the Democratic and Republican races are far too close to call. The determining factor on both sides… Continue reading

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Obama makes his pitch

2 January 2008 20:23

Des Moines, Iowa Barack Obama’s closing video is radically different from Hillary’s talk to camera. Obama’s ad-men have gone for essentially a collection of his greatest hits starting  with that… Continue reading


Hillary’s closing argument

2 January 2008 15:20

Every Iowan watching the 6PM news tonight will see this extended ad from Hillary Clinton. The message hits Hillary’s theme that she is ready to be president from day one,… Continue reading


Brown’s challenge in 2008

2 January 2008 5:43

Jonathan Freedland has a typically smart piece on what Gordon Brown needs to do in 2008 in this morning’s Guardian. Freedland writes, “We will not vote on him this year,… Continue reading


New Iowa Poll has Obama winning big

1 January 2008 19:01

Today’s Des Moines Register poll suggests that Barack Obama is on course for his dream result in Iowa. It has Obama at 32, Hillary Clinton at 25 and John Edwards at… Continue reading


What the candidates want from Iowa

31 December 2007 14:47

It is now only 4 days until Iowa Caucuses get the 2008 presidential contest under way. The most precious commodity that Iowa can bestow upon a candidate is momentum; the… Continue reading


Brown needs help, but he won’t take it from the Blairites

31 December 2007 14:03

Few columnists can claim to understand Team Brown better than Jackie Ashley, so her Guardian column this morning on this weekend’s Blairite overtures is particularly interesting. Ashley writes that Brown… Continue reading


Son of Fraser

31 December 2007 13:27

My favourite Ronald Reagan quote is how government is like a baby’s alimentary canal: endless appetite at one end and no responsibility at the other. I now have the chance… Continue reading


Who will get knocked out by the Romney one-two punch?

30 December 2007 11:10

The Democratic presidential contest is getting the lion’s share of the media coverage because the two main competitors in it are political superstars whose candidacies would be historic and because… Continue reading


Could Cameron have survived an autumn election?

29 December 2007 13:30

I was on BBC Radio Four’s Talking Politics today with Anne McElvoy of the Standard and Michael White of the Guardian – and Dennis Sewell in the chair. During it… Continue reading


What will fill the vacuum in Pakistan?

28 December 2007 12:47

Ahmed Rashid’s Washington Post column on what happens next in Pakistan is an absolute must read. As Rashid puts it, “The assassination of Benazir Bhutto has left a huge political… Continue reading


Bovver for the BBC over the foul Catherine Tate Christmas Special

28 December 2007 11:52

On Boxing Day, The Skimmer noted how the Catherine Tate Christmas Special with its orgy of swearing was hardly suitable for BBC1 on Christmas Day. Now, The Times reports that… Continue reading


How politicians reacted to Bhutto’s murder

28 December 2007 0:48

The Bhutto murder lets the world see how politicians of all kinds react to such events. Mike Huckabee rather failed the test by offering "sincere concern and apologies for what has… Continue reading


Can the Musharraf regime keep a lid on the violence in Pakistan?

27 December 2007 19:09

The political fall-out in Pakistan is likely to centre around a letter that Benazir Bhutto wrote to Pervez Musharraf on her return home, demanding that in the event of her… Continue reading


Musharraf’s share of the blame

27 December 2007 18:38

I don’t think Musharraf can now avoid be blamed for failing to provide Bhutto with the security she needed. Even worse for him that this should happen in Rawalpindi, the… Continue reading


Why is the BBC’s coverage of the Pakistan crisis so poor?

27 December 2007 18:27

Anyone listening to BBC Radio for the latest on Pakistan would have found only Five Live running with it. When I switched on, they had a chap with a South… Continue reading