Tuesday, January 01, 2008
Road to Redemption
--Claire Brinberg, 360 Producer a.k.a. "360 Caucus Queen"

Well I'll tell you this much: New Year's Eve in Des Moines lived up to all its promise, but New Year's Morning in Des Moines is pretty damn miserable. It's extremely cold, and I'm a little tired and a lot grumpy.

The hearty young Iowans I'm traveling with, however, are bright-eyed, enthusiastic and not at all hung over. They're volunteers with Redeem the Vote, a group of evangelical Christians working to register new voters for the caucuses. We're trailing their fancy bus, as they journey from Des Moines to Council Bluffs (and beyond).

Evangelicals comprise about 40% of Republican caucus-goers, making them hugely powerful here. The three college students Redeeming the Vote today are a perfect snapshot of the debate within Iowa's Christian community.

Jason, who was home-schooled, is 100% behind faith-fueled Mike Huckabee. Brandy is torn: she was a Mitt Romney person, but might switch to Huckabee now that he's gained some momentum. And Emily is completely undecided. She tells me she'll figure it out by Tuesday night.

Candidates from both parties have launched an all out crusade to win souls like Emily, Brandy and John's. The effort in these final days is more intense than ever. But evangelical voters have been wavering and unpredictable this year. Politically speaking, the Iowa caucuses will be their ultimate "come to Jesus" moment.
Posted By CNN: 1:15 PM ET
  2 Comments
That's what is great about America. There are many voices with polar opposite opinions.
At the end of the day, all the left, all the right, and many in the middle will decide the future course of our country. We have a say if we vote. Then, it's up to us to unite behind the winner, even if our choice didn't win.
That's democracy in action.

Lorie Ann, Buellton, Calif.
Posted By Blogger Lorie Ann : 1:59 PM ET
I've never heard of a political race described as a "come to Jesus" movement before. I'm not at all sure if I'm comfortable with that. I respect everyone's beliefs but I'd rather the next President be picked on the issues and not his religion or lack thereof. I mean Bush invoked the Bible and Christianity all through his campaign and he's been a disaster.

The dynamics of this race so far have been fascinating. The ups and downs keep one guessing and on their toes. I bet you will be glad to get a breather soon. All of you have done a great job bringing the local scene to us; I think in the end seeing it this close in each state is going to strengthen the belief that we all decided together as a country who we needed as our next President.

Annie Kate
Birmingham AL
Posted By Blogger Annie Kate : 8:58 PM ET
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