. . . Tuesday February 17, 2004

Results (almost) In

In Wisconsin, the story is in the waiting. At the time of night we’re used to recounting a Kerry runaway, this race is too close to call. And take a look at the exit polls. A significant percentage of the people who decided who to back in the last week or so went with Edwards. And maybe even more important, Kerry backers tended to focus on electability while Edwards backers tended to focus on his position on the issues. (I questioned whether electability was enough to overcome a scandal here, but the same question could be asked in relation to an unexpected surge by a charismatic candidate.) This is already big. But if Edwards wins it, we could soon be paraphrasing his favorite stump speech hook. There are two Americas: One in which this race was over. And this other one. Update: It turns out Kerry took the state by a solid 6 points, but we’ll see if Edwards doesn’t spin this as a victory.

Concentration is important!