Expect an announcement from the Iowa Democrats sometime this week -- perhaps as early as today -- on when they will hold their caucuses. Much of the momentum behind the scenes appears to be for joining the Iowa GOP on January 3.
NBC/NJ's Mike Memoli notes the Red Sox effect in New Hampshire, and how that could make campaigning in the state near pointless until AFTER the World Series. When Huckabee filed for the New Hampshire primary last week, a supporter noted that if the Red Sox won that night, he would be bumped off the front page. They did, and he was (assuming his filing would have been front-page news). And today, New Hampshire's front pages have banner Red Sox headlines.
The moral of the story? New Hampshire is deep in Red Sox nation, and another week of wall-to-wall baseball coverage means one less week of prominent political reporting. Boston NBC affiliate WHDH has said it's holding off on serious primary reporting until the Red Sox run ends. That's likely the case with the rest of Boston television, which is watched by many in the southern part of the state. And it probably means higher ad rates, too. Another argument against an early primary? The World Series could go as late as November 1.
Per NBC/NJ's Aswini Anburajan, rumor on the street has it that the New Hampshire SEIU may be endorsing as early as Tuesday of this week. The leadership in the state is largely making a decision to endorse either Edwards or Obama. If Obama can score the endorsement, it will be a significant boon to him in an early primary state, and prevent the other state chapters who have endorsed Edwards from sending volunteers to campaign on his behalf in New Hampshire. Also significant is Nevada, where Edwards and Clinton both met with SEIU leaders this week and where Clinton enjoys strong support among nurses. But also significant in Nevada, according to Democrats there, is the endorsement of the culinary union -- which has thousands of members working at the casinos. On Thursday, Obama met with Local 213 in Reno, which is in contract negotiations with their casino, and he sported a Culinary Union button on his lapel as he spoke.
Under the headline, "Hard work, little return," the Sunday New Hampshire Union Leader looks at Richardson and Dodd in New Hampshire and the fact that they haven't caught on. "Their names may not be on top of presidential primary polls, but the two Democratic hopefuls are near the top of the list when it comes to the number of days and events logged in the nation's leadoff primary state. Mired in single digits in primary polling, the challengers spent yesterday criss-crossing the state hunting for votes."