The Iowa Democratic Party’s chairman says Barack Obama’s election is good news for the status of the Iowa Caucuses. Iowa Democratic Party chairman Scott Brennan says Obama’s 2008 Iowa Caucus victory could silence some Caucus critics.
"There have always been two historic criticisms of the Caucuses: one, that not enough people turn out and two, that we’re not a diverse enough state," Brennan says. "Well, in fact on January 3rd, you know, 240,000 people participated in the Caucuses which is almost double the old record and Iowans selected an African American, which just proves the open-mindedness of Iowans."
But some Iowa Democrats are worried about a commission that’s been created to study the party’s nomination process. Dave Nagle, a former congressman from Waterloo, fought to retain Iowa’s first-in-the-nation Caucuses when he was chairman of the Iowa Democratic Party.
"We’ve got to survive another calendar commission study group and hopefully the president will back us," Nagle says, "but if the press in there is strong to get rid of Iowa were going to have a fight on our hands again, so we’re still in precarious waters and as long as we’re first we’ll always be in precarious waters."
Michigan politicians have long complained about Iowa’s Caucuses and this past year Michigan’s legislature moved the date of its primary forward. None of the Democratic presidential candidates campaigned there, however, as the Democratic National Committee’s rules did not sanction the earlier date. All of the Democrats but Hillary Clinton went so far as to remove their names from Michigan’s primary ballot.