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Iowa results (D)

It was Obama 38%, Edwards 30%, Clinton 29%, Richardson 2%, Biden 1%, and Dodd 1%.

The big story on the Dem side was turnout. The more than 2-1 Dem to GOP advantage among caucus-goers has to have the folks at the RNC depressed, since Iowa is a swing state (which Bush won in 2004!). The New York Times: "A record number of Democrats turned out to caucus - more than 239,000, compared with fewer than 125,0000 in 2004 - producing scenes of overcrowded firehouses and schools and long lines of people waiting to register their preferences."

The http://www.desmoinesregister.com/apps/pbcs.dll/section?category=PluckPersona&U=3a86a5c341684631abb59d87c02a2df8&plckPersonaPage=BlogViewPost&plckUserId=3a86a5c341684631abb59d87c02a2df8&plckPostId=Blog%3a3a86a5c341684631abb59d87c02a2df8Post%3ab3 ">Des Moines Register's Yepsen has his final say on the Iowa caucuses. "Obama's big victory may well slingshot him to the nomination and the White House. He comfortably beat the national frontrunner, Hillary Clinton, who finished third. She's left reeling and the second place finisher, John Edwards, wound up exactly where he was four years ago: In second place." More Yepsen: 'Obama's going to be a hard guy to stop."

Obama was wheels down at Portsmouth Air Force Base in New Hampshire at 4:31 am ET -- the winds of victory at his back, NBC/NJ's Aswini Anburajan reports. On the flight, Obama told reporters that his "spirits were good" and that he felt the turnout in the Democratic caucuses had vindicated what his campaign had claimed about engaging new caucus-goers, young voters, and independents.

"It really was a victory for the people of Iowa that I think it's a harbinger of what's going to happen around the country," he said. "We went to a precinct and just shook hands as people were walking out. You had high school kids that had never caucused before. You had middle-aged folks who said they'd never caucused before who said they were coming out to caucus for me. You had folks who said I'm switching my party registration in order to caucus. It was just across the board."

Per NBC's Andrea Mitchell, at an off-camera briefing aboard the Clinton plane, strategist Mark Penn attributed Clinton's loss to the unprecedented turnout of younger voters. He said they got the voters they'd targeted -- but "the difference is the under 30 group turned out." He suggested they would fix that in New Hampshire "by making clear that she was about change for all generations."

How do you neutralize Obama's message? "I think her appeal as we move forward will be broadened for all generations." Penn said they have a major debate Saturday night, and that she did very well with the older generation of women. "We have to make the argument that she represents change for all generations of women."

Before taking off at 1:30 am ET, NBC's Mitchell adds, Clinton spokesman Jay Carson explained the loss this way: "It's going to be a long campaign. We've always known Iowa would be difficult for us. We're going to see this as an isolated example." Carson also suggested that gender explains her defeat, noting that Iowa is a state that never elected a woman to Congress or the governor's mansion. When Mitchell followed up by noting that Obama beat Clinton among women (according to the entrance polls), he replied that older women supported Clinton. Carson quickly added,  "Look, [Obama] had a great night tonight. We're not going to take anything away from him." More: "Judging the entire nominating process on eight percent of one state is a dubious exercise."

Edwards, who took second in Iowa, said, "The status quo lost and change won. And now we move on, we move on from Iowa to New Hampshire."

From the hometown paper, the Raleigh News & Observer: "A weakened Edwards will carry on."