Around The Table: Iowa Caucuses Are 1 Week Away

PITTSBURGH (KDKA) – We are getting down to the wire. In less than a week, people of Iowa will be going to caucuses, and begin the process of choosing the Democratic Presidential Nominee.

That, along with a stunning announcement dealing with state politics are the subjects as we go “Around the Table.”

One of our two analysts is Tom Corbett, a former Republican Governor of Pennsylvania. He also served as the state Attorney General and as the U.S. Attorney for the Western District of Pennsylvania. The Governor currently teaches law at Duquesne University.

As we go around the table, our other analyst is Joe Mistick. Joe also teaches law at Duquesne and has a solid background in local and state politics, including advising candidates and serving as deputy mayor of Pittsburgh.

The general thought going into the impeachment trial was that it would have an adverse effect on the four democratic senators who want to be president. They would be stuck in Washington and unable to campaign in Iowa.

That might be the case for three of those senators, but not for Bernie Sanders.

In the Real Clear Politics Average of polls in Iowa, Sanders has surged into the lead, overtaking Joe Biden and making it look as if it is now a two-way race.

KDKA’s Stacy Smith asked Mistick if this means the people of Iowa are becoming democratic socialists.

“No, it does not mean that,” he says. “We don’t know how things are going to turn out next week in the Iowa caucuses, because the Iowa caucuses are notoriously un-pollable.”

He says it’s a constant source of surprise and also a cumbersome process that may not be a clear indication of where the voters really are.

Corbett says he doesn’t think this is a two-way race.

“The other candidates are out there. You don’t know where their support is,” he says. “They do it by counties there at the same time. So I think right now, if you’re within five or six points, you’re in the margin of era.”

It is not just Iowa where Sanders is doing well. That primary is two weeks from today, and at this moment Sanders has a big lead in New Hampshire, which is not unexpected given the proximity of the two states.

So, the question becomes, does this now make him a front runner?

Mistick says he doesn’t believe so.

“Remember that Bill Clinton lost Iowa and New Hampshire and went on to be a two-term president,” Mistick says.

Corbett says it’s interesting how far behind Senator Warren was to Senator Sanders in the New Hampshire Real Clear Politics poll.

Nationally, former VP Joe Biden continues to maintain a lead, but his numbers are not moving, and Bernie Sanders is closing the gap.

Last week, Corbett says Biden may have hit his highwater mark and he thinks these numbers back up his theory at this moment.

“In politics, it’s what’s going to happen tomorrow or the day after,” Corbett said.