by Steven Ertelt
January 4, 2008
Des Moines, IA (LifeNews.com) — Iowa produced big nights for Mike Huckabee and Barack Obama, though neither were considered the establishment pick for their parties. Huckabee topped Mitt Romney on the Republican side despite spending far less and Obama defied pundits who thought Hillary Clinton would win her first victory on the way to the Democratic nomination.
On the Republican side, former Arkansas Gov. Mike Huckbee carried the day with 34 percent of the vote — ahead of former Gov. Mitt Romney who took home 25 percent.
With 93 percent of the precincts voting, Huckabee captured 38,605 votes, Romney 28,367, Thompson 15,054, and McCain 14,479.
“Tonight, we proved that American politics still is in the hands of ordinary folks like you," Huckabee told supporters.
"A new day is needed in American politics, just like a new day is needed in American government," he said. "Tonight, it starts here in Iowa, but it doesn’t end here. It goes all the way through the other states and ends at 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue."
Huckabee’s nine point victory margin was a strong victory considering pre-election polls showed the two neck and neck with about 30 percent apiece.
As expected, Fred Thompson and John McCain raced for third place and both finished with 13 percent of the vote of Iowa Republicans. Thompson finished with slightly more votes than the Arizona senator.
Ron Paul continued to ride the support of his Internet backers and their recent fund-raising success with a 10 percent showing and Rudy Giuliani failed to reach double digits only garnering the support of four percent.
Rep. Duncan Hunter finished further behind with just one percent but said he wouldn’t exit the race.
Looking at the Democratic vote pro-abortion Sen. Barack Obama won with 38 percent of the vote, trailed closely by pro-abortion former Sen. John Edwards at 30 percent and pro-abortion Sen. Hillary Clinton third at 29 percent.
The results closely mirrored the polls on the Democratic side which saw Obama coming to Iowa with newfound momentum and all three of the top-tier Democratic candidates within striking distance of the lead.
The second-tier Democrats failed to generate much momentum in Iowa as New Mexico Gov. Bill Richardson received the support of two percent of Iowa Democrats and Sen. Joe Biden attracting just one percent.
Connecticut Sen. Chris Dodd, former Alaska Sen. Mike Gravel and Rep. Dennis Kucinich of Ohio all failed to reach one percent.