Good morning everyone! One day closer to the weekend and probably a four day weekend for some of you. Pat is ready for a long vacation, so you’ll be stuck with me on the morning show and the blog for a while.
Just getting to the Blog during the Nooner. We’re taking some time off for the holidays and it will be a nice break…seeing some family, some friends and taking part in some good Holiday tradition.
The 500 billion dollar budget that President Bush is about to sign tomorrow will not include about 48 million for Earthpark. The people behind the project say they raised enough money to match the federal grant they thought they were getting. But this morning, it looks like the project is up in the air without that government money. This project has had more roadblocks than the reconstruction of 1-235. Some wonder if this is the final blow.
You’ve read my opinion on this before. I just can’t understand why the Earthpark wouldn’t want to release all of the financial support it’s received to the public. To hear them talk about it, there’s been a huge infusion of cash to this project. It looks like all of that money may have been raised for nothing. The federal grant is almost surely dead.
We are hearing that Republican Tom Tancredo will announce later today in Des Moines that he is dropping out of the race. He’s never really had any success in any polls done in Iowa or nationally for that matter. Some might say he focused too much on just one issue — immigration reform. No matter what you think about his politics, at least he is out there doing what he thinks is good for our country. Pat and I were talking about this very thing earlier this morning. After seeing Chris Dodd walk into our studio looking very tired from campaigning until 1:00 am, we both agreed that these men and women who decide to run for President sacrifice a lot to run for office. (Pat will have more on Dodd’s interview later) It’s got to be the most exhausting thing these people will ever do. And they do it because they want to continue to make this country a great place to live. I am not saying we need to feel sorry for them, but at least be thankful there are so many people who want to be President so you have a choice.
I’d only add that all of these men and women join the race with the idea they can win. In Iowa that dream is never out of reach. You can look at several examples of people who didn’t have all the money in the world or all of the pundits talking when they got started. They put a up a huge effort at the grassroots and won. I think this year they call him Mike Huckabee.
Back to Chris Dodd. I won’t lie. Pat and I were upset this morning because he got to our studio late. He was supposed to be on the show at 6:35 but didn’t show up until about 6:40 even though his staff was told to arrive NO LATER than 6:20. Some places would have just told him sorry, but our wonderfully talented producer, Lisa was able to shift everything and get him on. I realize it’s hard always being on time when you make as many stops as a Presidential candidate does, but live TV should be a no-brainer.
Dodd looked dead tired when he walked in with a cup of coffee. I made the mistake of telling his campaign when he was actually on. I should have told them ten minutes earlier.
Dodd isn’t the first candidate to be a few minutes late.
I imagine it’s a perpetual state of being on the campaign trail. You go from one event to the next never knowing how any people are going to be there and trying to connect with as many people in a day as you can.
As for the tardy Senator, I’ve seen the first comment on the blog. I think you might be taking this a little far,. Brooke and I aren’t mad…and who cares if we are?
It does take a little more than just slapping a mic on the Senator to get him on the air. That’s why we ask him to be early. We also have a lot of things to juggle in the 6:30 half hour. Both Justin and Brad do reports for WHO radio while we’re on the air and if our timing falls apart, we may or may not have both ready to go when we need them. Anyway it is a little more complicated than it looks.
As far as the actual interview goes, The Senator is one of about four candidates hoping they can sway the 33% of Caucus voters who say they may still change their minds. He told us he needs to finish fourth or better to have a realistic chance to move on to the next set of primaries. He also says he’s not planning a challenge to Sen Harry Reid for Majority leader in the Senate as was rumored on some blogs this morning. Finally Dodd talked about living in Iowa while he campaigns here, and how much his family is enjoying it.
Hope you all have a great day. I am making Christmas cookies and candy like a mad woman. I am trying to fatten everyone up who works in the newsroom.
It’s time for I’ll be back January 2nd..
It’s time for our holiday Road Trip. It’s also time for me to thank all of the people who helped put on Today in Iowa all year. There are a lot of people you never see who don’t ever get credit. I know this show would not be as good as it is without them and I enjoy learning, debating and succeeding with them every day.
Until I see you all again…I hope you have time in the next few days to enjoy your family and friends and to take stock of the many gifts in your life that aren’t under the tree. Merry Christmas.
Brooke and Pat