Obama's caucus victory 10 years later: A look back in photos

Many thanks to Jordan Oster, a public affairs consultant and clean energy advocate from Des Moines, for this review of a remarkable Iowa caucus campaign. -promoted by desmoinesdem

January 3 marked the tenth anniversary of Barack Obama’s victory in the 2008 Iowa Democratic Precinct Caucuses.

Like a number of supporters and former staffers, I took to social media earlier this week to share photos and memories from his campaign. You can check out the full Twitter thread here.

As this anniversary approached, I began to gather photos and recollections of the Obama campaign. The Iowa caucuses have long captivated me, and I have tried to do my part to preserve and keep its unique history alive. A camera is usually a required accessory when I attend presidential events, and I have filled many memory cards with photos of presidential candidates since I first got involved with campaigns in 2003.

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How the Iowa caucuses work, part 4: What a precinct captain does

Continuing a six-part series. Part 1 covered basic elements of the caucus system, part 2 explained why so many Iowans can’t or won’t attend their precinct caucus, and part 3 covered Democratic caucus math, which sometimes produces strange results.

Axiom of Iowa politics: the key to winning the caucuses is to “organize, organize, organize, and then get hot at the end.” Although paid staff do much of the ground work, a successful presidential campaign needs a large number of volunteers at the precinct level. I haven’t been engaged as a volunteer this cycle, because for the first time in my life, I remained undecided until shortly before the caucuses. But I spent many hours trying to turn out neighbors for John Kerry in 2004 and for John Edwards in 2008. During the past thirteen years, I’ve talked with hundreds of Iowa Democratic activists who volunteered locally for presidential candidates.

This post focuses on how precinct captains can influence outcomes on caucus night.

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Front Runners Beware

Thanks to fladem for this historical perspective on late shifts in Iowa caucus-goers’ preferences. If you missed his earlier posts, check out A deep dive into Iowa Caucus History and Iowa Polling 45 days out: Let the Buyer REALLY beware. -promoted by desmoinesdem

This is a continuation of an article I wrote about Iowa polling in November. At the time I noted how unpredictable the Iowa Caucuses are. This article is going to look at the last 48 hours. There are two lessons you can draw:

Front Runners Beware

Expect someone to come from nowhere

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Three thoughts on the first episode of the Des Moines Register's "Three Tickets" podcast (updated)

The Des Moines Register launched Jason Noble’s ten-part podcast about the Iowa caucuses last week. You can listen to the “Three Tickets” at the Register’s website or download the episodes through iTunes or Stitcher. After telling his own Iowa caucus “origin story” (hearing Howard Dean sing part of an Outkast song on a campaign bus in 2003), Noble devoted most of the first episode (“Peak Caucus”) to the 2008 Democratic contest. Roughly 240,000 Iowans showed up for Democratic precinct caucuses on January 3, mostly to support Barack Obama, John Edwards, or Hillary Clinton. Their numbers more than doubled the roughly 119,000 Iowans who caucused for Republican candidates the same night and nearly doubled the previous record-high Democratic Iowa caucus turnout, set in 2004.

Bleeding Heartland covered the 2008 caucuses extensively. Even so, “Peak Caucus” recalled some moments I had mostly forgotten and got me thinking about other aspects of the campaign I remembered well. So Noble succeeded in motivating this political junkie to listen to the rest of the “Three Tickets” series.

A few reactions to the first episode are after the jump.

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