Barack Obama and Mike Huckabee have claimed victories in Iowa’s first-in-the-nation caucuses Sen. Barack Obama says the night was a “defining moment in history.” With all Democratic precincts reporting, Obama had the support of 38 percent of voters, compared to 30 percent for John Edwards and 29 percent for Hillary Clinton.
“The numbers tell us this was a debate between change and experience, and change won,” said CNN political analyst Bill Schneider. Iowa delivered fatal blows to the campaigns of Sen. Chris Dodd of Connecticut and Sen. Joe Biden of Delaware. Both have decided to abandon their White House runs. New Mexico Gov. Bill Richardson, who finished fourth, said his campaign plans to “take the fight to New Hampshire.” New Hampshire holds the nation’s first primary Tuesday. Clinton and Obama are in a statistical dead heat in New Hampshire, according to the latest CNN/WMUR poll. On the GOP side, Sen. John McCain of Arizona, whose campaign was languishing six months ago, and former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney are now tied for first place in New Hampshire, according to the poll, which was released Wednesday.
McCain left Iowa before caucus night even began. He was already in New Hampshire by Thursday afternoon, trying to get a jump on his rivals. For the winners of both party’s caucuses in Iowa, it’s an age revolt for Democrats versus a religious revolt for Republicans, Schneider said.
Among Democrats, Obama took 57 percent of the under-30 vote, according to CNN’s analysis of entrance polls. Speaking to supporters, Obama called the night a “defining moment in history.” “You came together as Democrats, Republicans and independents to stand up and say that we are one nation, we are one people and our time for change has come.”
Huckabee’s victory can be attributed to his overwhelming support among evangelical voters and women, the polls indicate. With 92 percent of Republican precincts reporting, Huckabee, former governor of Arkansas, had the support of 34 percent of voters, compared to 25 percent for Romney. Fred Thompson had 13 percent, McCain had 13 percent and Ron Paul had 10 percent.