Four years ago, I was with John Kerry as he turned his victory in the Iowa caucuses into a clear road to the Democratic nomination. The question in this coming week is whether Barack Obama will be able to do the same.
John Edwards may have come in second, but he desperately needed to come in first. His entire candidacy has been staked on a win in Iowa. For all intents and purposes, the Democratic nomination battle is now down to Barack Obama and Hillary Clinton -- and the fight in New Hampshire could well be decisive.
If Barack Obama can follow up his big Iowa victory with a win in New Hampshire, it will be hard -- if not impossible -- to stop him. But if, like 3rd place finisher George H.W. Bush in 1988, Hillary Clinton can turn around her campaign in the snows of New Hampshire, she will make herself the "Comeback Candidate."
On the Republican side, Mike Huckabee's victory blows this race wide-open. He is -- among the real candidates - the one contender who, in this race, has offered the clearest alternative to the attitudes of the Bush administration. And no Republican candidate has offered clearer alternative domestic policies to George Bush over the past eight years than John McCain. Now these two men are on the march.
I'll be in New Hampshire over the next days covering both parties' races exclusively for the Huffington Post. I will be covering the coverage and taking you into the rooms where the candidates are making their final pitches. It will be the first time in 15 years that I'll be in New Hampshire for the primary and not working for a candidate. This time I'll be working for you.
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