Hillary Brings Mom and Chelsea, Rolls Out Buddy System in Iowa
Update: Chelsea is in Iowa today as well.
While Oprah stumps at two events in Iowa for Obama today, Hillary has her own plan. She'll be bringing her mother to three events and promoting the "buddy system."
More than a mother-daughter act, the appearance was designed to illustrate an urgent point of her campaign: The Buddy. “I wanted to bring a buddy with me!” Mrs. Clinton said. “So I brought my mother, Dorothy Rodham.”
The idea is that women will be more likely to attend a caucus if they have someone to go with.
In her quest to win the caucuses, Mrs. Clinton is working to demystify the curious Iowa process. With women voters her key target, she believes two are more likely to attend together than one would alone.
“We have thousands of women in their 80s and 90s who live alone who want to caucus on the night of Jan. 3,” Mrs. Clinton said. “It’s very inspiring for me for people who want to be there.”
The Washington Post has more on the gender race between Hillary and Obama in Iowa. [More]
Dorothy Rodham's appearances at a series of rallies around the state Saturday are just the start of the effort to move women, a group the campaign has long viewed as its core constituency, into Clinton's column. Kathleen Kennedy Townsend and former secretary of state Madeleine K. Albright will come to Iowa to vouch for her "strength and experience," which her advisers view as her main asset, and even more surrogates will be arriving in the next two weeks.
....Take your buddy to caucus" events have filled Clinton's Iowa schedule in recent weeks. These sessions are aimed at helping women understand the time-consuming caucus process, to drive up their participation rates. Emily's List, the abortion rights group that supports female candidates, has also launched an education program for Iowa women who are inclined to support Clinton but who had not planned to caucus for her. That demographic may represent her best chance for increasing her support.
As for the Oprah factor,
"I think they're going to have some really terrific events with Oprah," [Clinton Strategist Mark ]Penn said. "I think the big question really is, does Senator Obama have the experience, compared to Hillary Clinton? And I don't know how that's going to really change that. I think at the end of the day, she will get more women than anybody else, and I think she will because I think Iowa women will break late for her."
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