I did not mean to suggest Iowa media entirely ignored the Huckabee presser, just that its take was much more low key and balanced that national media which was over-the-top scathing. But as biting as they have been about Huckabee, national media is not much kinder to Romney either. David Brooks makes a plea to Republicans not to choose Romney, arguing in part:
"Earnestly and methodically, he has appealed to each of the major constituency groups. For national security conservatives, he vowed to double the size of the prison at Guantánamo Bay. For social conservatives, he embraced a culture war against the faithless. For immigration skeptics, he swung so far right he earned the endorsement of Tom Tancredo. He has spent roughly $80 million, including an estimated $17 million of his own money, hiring consultants, blanketing the airwaves and building an organization that is unmatched on the Republican side. And he has turned himself into the party’s fusion candidate. Some of his rivals are stronger among social conservatives. Others are stronger among security conservatives, but no candidate has a foot in all camps the way Romney does. No candidate offends so few, or is the acceptable choice of so many."
Brooks concludes "Romney is a decent man with some good fiscal and economic policies. But in this race, he has run like a manager, not an entrepreneur. His triumph this month would mean a Democratic victory in November." However, I doubt David Brooks or Joe Klein or Howard Kurtz will many votes in Iowa. For my money the best indicators (other than the Des Moines Register poll) are crowd size and enthusiasm. (And that goes for NH too where McCain's crowds have boomed in the last couple of weeks.) UPDATE: More evidence Huckabee's ad gambit isn't hurting him. And some more here.
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