Do the Iowa caucus results change Dean's status among the candidates?

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Yesterday's Iowa caucus had some interesting results for the Democratic candidates: John Kerry's first-place showing; John Edwards' surprise second-place finish; Dick Gephardt's poor showing that will lead to his exit from the race; and Howard Dean's disappointing third-place finish. Dean was tagged as the frontrunner before the caucus, but where does he now stand? Will New Hampshire present a fresh set of surprises for Democrats? Send us your thoughts on the results and their impact.

Please limit your responses to 80 words or less. The best entries will be published on throughout the week.

Some of your responses:

I think I must have watched a different speech. His passion was stirring and his words were just a listing of the states to be won — hardly inflammatory. I was undecided and on the fence about whom to pick before Iowa (having actually seen both Kerry and Dean speak in person), but I am firmly for Dean now, and willing to get involved. The media's on-the-bandwagon, punching-bag mentality was the real push; I am just shocked by the subjective "journalism" that abounds.
Jill L.

He may not be the frontrunner now but he still is the only candidate who has a legitimate shot at beating Bush. He will regroup and finish strong. Dean is smart, articulate, and not the person the media is making him out to be.
S. Hibbard
Willington, Vt.

Dean has been hyped by TIME, Newsweek, The New York Times and every other liberal-biased media organization. Iowa has been Dean's first stumbling block, and he will continue to stumble. Dean cannot live up to the hype. He is inexperienced, irrational and too liberal for America.
Matthew E. McCormack

He definitely lost momentum, and more importantly, will never recover from his bizarre, unstable behavior. Thank you, Iowa!
Judy Stephenson
Sollebury, Pa.

Iowa results need not necessarily harm Howard Dean's front runner status. But if almost the entire mainstrean media continues to be hostile to him, he may not run at all, let alone in the front.
K. Vijayakumar
Bangalore, India

Yes. I believe he has been overhyped by the media, and the true contenders have emerged. His bizarre performance after the caucus appeared to show a candidate imploding. Do we really want this guy to have missile codes? Dean is his own worst foe. And what a shame. W would have obliterated him in November. Now, W will have a more formidable opponent.
Craig Taylor
Houston, Texas

Whatever happens with Dean, win or lose, it is important that he was energizing, motivating, getting people interested, and alerting the voters about what is at stake in the next election. The year 2004 will be very different than the year 2000. Those who oppose Bush will not allow themselves to be divided or apathetic as they were in election 2000. After four years of Bush there will be no mistake about who to support: the bought-and-paid for president we have now or the Democratic nominee. We can thank Howard Dean for this.
Manchester, N.H.

As you state above, Dean was tagged as the front-runner in polls. It seems irrelevant to quantify the candidates before any caucuses or primaries, because the only definitive litmus is what the voters decide. As the primaries unfold and the candidates fine-tune their campaigns, let the voters, not the media, determine the person best qualified. Howard Dean did poorly in Iowa; there are 49 more states.
Glenn Sparks
Wilton, Conn.

Iowa voters choked when it came to making a difference in Washington. Howard Dean is still the only player who offers a converse agenda to Bush. Go Dean.
Terry Mohan
San Luis Obispo, Calif.

Without a doubt. People who didn't know about John Edwards are learning quickly. It's likely to be a John-John race.
Martin Wondergem

Howard Dean's negative line on virtually everything, and his lack of vision in solving America's problems, ensured him to be a loser even before the Iowa vote — the caucus results merely confirmed it. Dean will NEVER be the nominee of the Democratic Party, and will never face George W. Bush.
Ralph J. Frick
Peachtree City, Ga.

If Dean wins New Hampshire, no one will remember that about 20,000 more people caucused for Kerry. Except for Jimmy Carter, Iowa has not figured prominently for any potential nominee.
Brad Bauder
Austin, Texas

It is not so much the results — it is that AC/DC screaming rant that he put on after the results were announced. America cannot possibly want his out-of-control personality in the White House. For the love of God, I hope not.
Larry Albertson
Ballwin, Mo.

Yes. But mainly because the people of Iowa saw Dean up close and the rest of the electorate will wonder what they saw that they didn't like. I am a Dean supporter and I wonder myself.
David G. Mills
Cordova, Tenn.

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