Thursday Blog Talk

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Theocons Unite [Richelieu, Campaign Standard]: "Most of the media will miss this, but if Sam Brownback is indeed dropping out, the big winner will be Mike Huckabee. It's all about Iowa. Brownback's support there was small, but it was centered in Iowa's hardcore Christian conservative circles, where Huckabee will now have little competition." (See Noam Scheiber's response to Brownback dropping out here.)

Agribusiness Hearts Hillary [Matthew Yglesias, The Atlantic]: "Clinton to hold 'Rural Americans for Hillary' lunch and campaign briefing at the DC offices of agribusiness giant Monsanto's lobbyists. Of course, invoking the imagery of the family farm and then doing the dirty work of giant companies is nothing new in politics, but this seems like a deliberate effort to stumble into what John Edwards and Barack Obama are trying to say about taking money from lobbyists."

Palmetto Problems [Tom Bevan, Real Clear Politics]: "One thing seems fairly certain: we're less than 100 days out from the vote in South Carolina--and less than that in Iowa and New Hampshire--and the questions surrounding Romney's religion are still out there swirling."

Giuliani's Calendar Woes [Christopher Beam, Trailhead]: "With Iowa and now possibly New Hampshire pushing their dates earlier and earlier, Feb. 5 is looking rather distant. If Romney dominates in Iowa (recent polls show him beating Giuliani by a factor of two) and uses that momentum to finish solidly in New Hampshire (where the two candidates are currently neck and neck), there's more time than ever for those victories to sink in. ...[A]n early win could be all but calcified by February."

Tap Into Dodd [kos, Daily Kos]: "Dodd has perhaps the most clearly defined rationale for running for president of any of the candidates--he's running to restore our tattered Constitution. And what better way to underscore that rationale than by single-handedly killing the Senate Democrats' capitulation on FISA?"

--Josh Patashnik

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