Chicago Sun-Times
The scoop from Washington

Sweet Iowa JJ Live blog 1. Obama plans display of organizational force at party dinner.


DES MOINES, IA.—Good afternoon. Greetings from the epicenter of the Democratic presidential political world. All six major Democratic candidates are here for tonight’s giant Jefferson Jackson Day dinner sponsored by the Iowa Democratic Party. Sweet live blogging starts now.

The JJ dinner is a potential narrative-changing showdown of sorts for the three front-runners: Sen. Barack Obama (D-Ill.); Sen. Hillary Rodham Clinton (D-N.Y.) and former Sen. John Edwards (D-N.C.)

The Obama campaign is using the JJ dinner to flex its organizational muscles and to show—not tell—that it is running a superior ground game in this first caucus state.

Some 9,000 party activists are expected to attend, with the Obama and Clinton campaign transporting thousands of supporters to the dinner and organizing massive displays of peaceful confrontations in Sign Wars.

The speeches begin at 7 p.m. central and can be seen live on C-SPAN.

Winning the Jan. 3 caucus depends very much on getting your voters to physically show up and participate in a caucus where the voting is in public. There are no absentee or secret ballots. That’s why the depth of a field organization is so important in Iowa.

The Obama campaign gave me a fill on what it is up to this evening—and it looks like they may be earning major bragging rights.

*Of the 9,000 people in Veterans Memorial Auditorium, the Obama backers will total about 3,000—or at least that’s how many tickets for the bleachers the campaign has distributed.

*The Obama campaign is making sure supporters from all 99 Iowa counties will attend.

*They plan some over-the top signage display.

* In a sort of a test run for caucus night, where getting people to the right place is key, these Obama supporters will be seated in the bleachers by region, with the Obama staffer assigned to their region.

That’s the kind of hands-on retail meticulous organization that brings people out on caucus night.


I-O-W-A Barack Obama ALL THE WAY!

Thanks for the scoop on the organizational strength. Watching the live event on C-SPAn this evening, one could see that Team Obama worn the day.

True all campaigns had a significant presence but one could not help but notice the prolonged and ethusiastic welcome for Senator Barack Obama and his wife Michelle.

I belive that what has been under-reported in this campaign is the deep respect and love Generation Obama has for Barack. The love, committement and energy are things money cannot buy.

I previously read that Obama is "America's Community Organizer" and I believe this to be true.

I also know that the enthusiasm and committment of Team Obama will be crucial in producing a shocking outcome come election/caucus day

Whew sure did feel Obama's speech very powerfull america it's time for some color in the white house .

Who was it that said,"there is a sucker born every minute"? As I read the superlative blog comments on Obama I think that there was five suckers born every minute!!

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Lynn Sweet

Lynn Sweet is a columnist and the Washington Bureau Chief for the Chicago Sun-Times.

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About this Entry

This page contains a single entry by Lynn Sweet published on November 10, 2007 3:43 PM.

Sweet blog extra: Crawford White House hosting German Chancellor Angela Merkel. Pecan-smoked beef tenderloin for dinner. was the previous entry in this blog.

Sweet Iowa JJ live blog 2: Edwards rips Clinton for planting question. is the next entry in this blog.

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