Democratic vice presidential candidate John Edwards stood in for his running mate John Kerry at events in Iowa yesterday to let Kerry rest his voice. At a meeting in Davenport aimed at speaking with women voters, Edwards said “the only two people in America who believe no mistakes have been made in Iraq are George W. Bush and Dick Cheney.” Afterwards, Edwards spoke by phone with Radio Iowa. “The reality is obvious,” Edwards said. “Over a thousand Americans have died in Iraq. We’ve now spent over 200 billion dollars and counting.” Edwards said Bush clearly had no plan to win the peace in Iraq, and he accused Bush of not telling the truth about what’s really happening there. Edwards called Iraq “a mess.” Yesterday, the interim Prime Minister of Iraq said in Washington, D-C that Iraq was better off now than it was before the war, and the insurgents are destructive but small in number. Edwards rallied democrats in Cedar Rapids last night, and in our phone conversation he said it was “perfectly normal” for the Bush/Kerry race to be so close in Iowa. Edwards said he “expects” to win Iowa partly because he himself visited all of Iowa’s 99 counties before the Iowa Caucuses, and because both he and Kerry have spent a good deal of time listening to Iowans’ over the past two years as they’ve campaigned here. Edwards said he and Kerry have plans to create jobs, fix the health care system and clean up the mess in Iraq. “We believe we can do better,” the first-term North Carolina Senator said.