Some of the presidential candidates chose to usher the Old Year out in very public fashion here in Iowa. Democrat Hillary Clinton campaigned in eastern Iowa on Monday. Her husband, former President Bill Clinton, campaigned in western Iowa. Then, the two met in Des Moines for a New Year’s Eve Party organized by her campaign. Big Head Todd and the Monsters peformed before the Clintons. The group recorded the song Clinton now uses as a theme for her events.
Clinton spoke briefly to the crowd. "Iowans are going to start to pick the next president and I am excited and energized by that," Clinton said. "In the new year we think about New Year’s Resolutions. Well, I resolve that I, with your help, am going to run a winning campaign in 2008 and take back the White House." Clinton was joined on stage by her husband and her daughter.
Republican Mitt Romney stopped by an alcohol-free, family-friendly New Year’s event in Des Moines. Earlier in the day in Dubuque, Romney suggested it’s time for new resolutions in the nation’s capitol. "We need Washington to help our schools and make sure that our teachers and our parents and the kids come first and the (teachers) union comes behind," Romney said. "We need to make sure we settle the challenges in health care (and) get everybody insured in the private, free-market rather than handing out government insurance and government pay."
Democrat Chris Dodd rang in the New Year at an establishment named "Happy’s Place" in Dubuque. Democrat Joe Biden spent New Year’s Eve with family and friends — in private — after three public campaign appearances yesterday. "When power is handed off from George W. Bush to the next president of the United States — and pray to God it will be a Democrat — that Democrat will be left with literally no margin for error," Biden told a crowd in Ames.
Democrat John Edwards met with supporters in Mason City early Monday evening before gathering in private with his wife and children in Des Moines. Democrat Barack Obama held a mid-evening rally on the Iowa State University campus.
Around six o’clock, Republican Mike Huckabee visited with supporters who’d gathered at the Wakonda Club. It’s a private, members-only club. Huckabee joked during an interview with Radio Iowa that he just wanted to see what it was like. "I’d never been to the Hope, Arkansas, Country Club until my 10th year class reunion. That’s the truth," Huckabee said. "First time I ever set foot in the place was when I came back after being gone out of high school for 10 years and we had our class reunion and had a reception there and it was kind of like, ‘I always wondered what this place looked like.’ I was kind of surprised. I thought it was going to be something amazingly exclusive and, you know, it was just a place."
Republican Fred Thompson dropped by his campaign headquarters Monday afternoon to chat with supporters working the phones for him, then he dropped out of public site. Democrat Bill Richardson hosted a party at a Des Moines hotel Monday evening for his supporters.
Today many candidates plan to drop-by football-watching parties.