Campaign '04: The Iowa Effect

The caucuses make and unmake candidates--and this time is no different. Can Dean beat Gephardt--and the expectations too?

Who made Iowa so important, anyway? Four years ago, the ambitious Governor of another small state dismissed Iowa and its clumsy caucuses as a waste of time. "If you look at the caucuses system, they are dominated by the special interests in both parties, [and] the special interests don't represent the centrist tendencies of the American people," Vermont's then governor Howard Dean said on an obscure Canadian public-affairs program. The caucuses can stretch on all night, Dean noted, and he expressed wonderment that average people would even bother with them: "I can't stand there and listen to everyone else's opinion for...

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