It's been a while since my last post, and a lot of stuff has happened which I might get into at a later date, but it seems like time to give trilby hats and coffee's official Iowa caucus predictions:
Barack Obama first by 2 percentage points over John Edwards. Hillary Clinton a disappointing third, a further two points down. Jo Biden will come best of the rest, then Richardson, Dodd, Kucinich and finally Gravel will come dead bottom.
Mitt Romney then Mike Huckabee, about three points between them. Romney will be relieved, and Huckabee a little disappointed. Ron Paul will come a shock third, followed by John McCain (who will survive to New Hampshire but will fall apart after losing to the vampire again) and then Thompson, Rudy (who will scrape through to Feb 5th), Alan Keyes (some people like crazy) and finally Duncan Hunter.
I predict the following people will drop out after the caucus:
*Chris Dodd (who's earnest campaign never really picked up any steam - maybe it's just too late for him? He will have wanted to stay on to New Hampshire, but he will be advised not to waste the money. He will endorse Obama, and return to Senate life, maybe making a run against Harry Reid for Majority Leader.)
*Mike Gravel - not much to say, who was he kidding?
*Very possibly Kucinich (but that's not really his style) - he will endorse Obama (he's already de facto endorsed Obama by calling on his supporters to make him their second choice in Iowa).
*Fred Thompson, stopped as soon as he started, a return to Law and Order, maybe he'll play the President in another film.
*Duncan Hunter - see Gravel, Mike.
Longer term predictions:
Ron Paul and Jo Biden will both get boosts from their 'best of the rest' finishes. Hillary will see a drop in New Hampshire as Obama and Edwards both rise. Bill Richardson will drop out after February 5th (more on that closer to the time), as will whoever is in the worst position of Obama, Edwards and Hillary. Alan Keyes will stick at it, and will be roundly ignored (thankfully - too many crazy people these days). On February 5th the following will be left in the race:
Obama, Edwards, Clinton, Biden, Richardson, Kucinich (of which all but the leading 2 and maybe Kucinich will be left on Feb 6th).
Romney, Huckabee, Giuliani (if he's lucky), Paul and Keyes (of which Huckabee and either Paul or Giuliani will drop out afterwards - depending on who does best: if all goes well for Giuliani he could be winning by Feb 6th).
Final Nominees (from what can be discerned at this stage):
Dems - Whoever is winning out of Obama, Edwards and Clinton on February 6th: my current bet is Obama.
Republic*nts - Romney, unless things go particularly well for Giuliani in February.