“It has been seven years, and loads has modified,” Hillary Clinton mentioned Sunday in her first go to to Iowa for the reason that state dealt her presidential marketing campaign a devastating physique blow.
However there was a second within the afternoon when it appeared like not a lot had.
Roughly 200 credentialed media had been gathered in a far nook of the Indianola Balloon Area, the grassy expanse the place Sen. Tom Harkin was convening his thirty seventh and closing Steak Fry, an annual fundraiser that doubles as some extent of entry for formidable Democrats curious in regards to the Iowa caucuses.
After a 90-minute wait, the press scrum – scribblers and photographers alike – had been herded like cattle by way of a sequence of gates and escorted as much as a sizzling smoking grill, ready to seize the identical picture: a staged shot of Invoice and Hillary Clinton, recent out of their motorcade, ritualistically flipping steaks with Harkin.
The Clintons ignored the half-hearted shouted questions from reporters – “Mr. President, do you eat meat?” – with practiced ease. They had been two soccer fields away from the closest voter. Mechanical, distant, heavy-handed: The afternoon spectacle felt loads like Hillary’s 2008 caucus marketing campaign, a succession of errors that crumbled below the burden of a feuding top-heavy employees and the candidate’s incapacity to attach together with her social gathering’s grassroots.
After which the top pretend – and one thing completely different.
Learn Peter Hamby’s report from Indianola in full.