Not planning to vote for Michele Bachmann because we are on the opposite side on every issue. But I will applaud her straw poll win. The Ames Straw Poll is a poll held the year before every presidential election in Iowa, a statewide poll that can also include people who live in other states. Past winners? 1979 was the first year and George H.W. Bush won. He did not go on to win the party nomination though he did win the Iowa Caucus the following year. In 1987, Pat Robertson won the Straw Poll though he did not go on to wn either the party's nomination (Bush) or the Iowa Caucus. 1995's winner was . . . a tie. Bob Dole and Phil Gramm won. The next year, Dole won the Iowa Caucus as well s the GOP's presidential nomination. 1999's winner was George W. Bush who went on to win the Iowa Caucus and, of course, the Supreme Court selected him to fill the Oval Office. In 2007, Mitt Romney won the Straw Poll, Mike Huckabee won the caucus and John McCain won the party's nomination. There were no Straw Polls in 1983 or 2003 due to the fact that a Republican was in the White House both times and planning to run for re-election.
So Michele Bachmann won today. In doing so, she became the first woman to win the Iowa Straw Poll. Her name's now part of Republican campaign history and I hope she and her family are very happy about that. I also hope that women who will vote for her realize how important this moment was and, most importantly, that women like myself realize the importance of today.
Any time a woman wants to run for the GOP nomination in the future and someone says, "Oh, no, it can't be done. You're a woman!," she can point to not only Sarah Palin's inclusion on the McCain ticket in 2008 but also to Michele Bachmann's Ames Straw Poll win. And young girls all over the country today, tomorrow and Monday have a chance at hearing adults note that a woman won. That will have an impression and let them grow up knowing anything is possible.
Closing wth C.I.'s "Iraq snapshot:"