BY THE NUMBERS
THE NEWS That click you hear is the sound of Iowans turning their televisions back on to enjoy campaign-ad-free watching. In the 2004 campaign, Democratic candidates set a state record, spending $9.1 million on TV ads. In 2007, Republicans matched that total, and Democrats more than doubled it.
THE REAL WINNERS Democratic media consultants, who pocket a percentage of each ad buy. And the makers of TiVo, which lets viewers skip commercials.
In one last move to rebrand themselves, candidates rolled out new slogans for their campaign tours. The result? Bland rhetoric and funky punctuation for all. [This article contains a table. Please see hardcopy of magazine.]TOUR TITLE TRANSLATION HILLARY CLINTON Big Challenges, Real Solutions—Time to Pick a President Generic message in multiple parts—just give us the nomination already BARACK OBAMA Stand for Change Stop stealing our theme, Hillary FRED THOMPSON The Clear Conservative Choice: Hands Down! Who are you calling lazy? We have exclamation points!!! JOHN EDWARDS America Rising: Fighting for the Middle Class John Edwards will punch you in the nose RUDY GIULIANI Tested. Ready. Now. And by now, of course, we mean whenever Florida votes
Launching Catholics for McCain, rolling out new leadership for his religious coalition in Iowa and airing a TV ad about bonding with one of his POW camp guards over a cross, the man who once denounced Christian-right leaders as "agents of intolerance" is making an 11th-hour appeal to religious voters. Behind John McCain's turnaround: Kansas Senator Sam Brownback, who endorsed the Arizona Senator after ending his own presidential campaign. The case Brownback is making to James Dobson and others is that McCain's anti-abortion record, foreign policy credentials and electability deserve a second look.
beliefnet -- For daily God-o-Meter readings covering all the presidential candidates, visit beliefnet.com
SECULARIST / THEOCRAT
Campaign Insider. Fred Thompson's Iowa press aide is used to the limelight
MISS IOWA 2004--CAROLYN NICHOLAS Haugland--had sung at many political events, from Governor Chet Culver's inauguration to visits by President George W. Bush. But former Tennessee Senator Fred Thompson was the first candidate to really inspire her. After singing for his Sept. 6 campaign launch in Des Moines, the 27-year-old real estate lawyer gave her résumé to Bob Haus, Thompson's Iowa state director. Within a week she was hired as the campaign's Iowa communications director, even though she had had only one political internship. "I will always take someone with passion as well as experience, and she's proved me right," Haus said.
Politics is a family tradition--Haugland's great-grandfather was a Lieutenant Governor--and one that she intends to honor, with plans to work for a state representative this spring. And while she has no formal media experience, Haugland earned some stripes on her grandfather's farm in Clear Lake, Iowa, where the family gives summer tours of the field where Buddy Holly's plane crashed in February 1959.
It was her role as Miss Iowa that, Haugland says, helped prepare her for dealing with the media. "Before I was crowned, I was actually nervous and uncomfortable with being in front of people," she says. "But after you're forced to do that for an entire year ... you learn to become comfortable with yourself."