The Iowa caucus has come and is now gone. Mike Huckabee won the Republican primary by a surprisingly sizable margin over Mitt Romney, 34%- 25%. Fred Thompson finished in third with about 13%, just ahead of John McCain. Ron Paul finished fifth with 10%, Rudy Giuliani in sixth with 4% and Duncan Hunter last with 1%.
I had hoped for a better finish for Fred Thompson than a distant third, but considering how little time he spent campaigning in Iowa compared to most of his opponents, it was still a good finish.
Romney's campaign was hit hard by the results, considering as well how much money and time had been spent in Iowa. Huckabee's win was no surprise, just the margin between himself and Romney.
Barack Obama won the Democratic race with 38%, John Edwards finished second (again) with 30% and Hillary Clinton in third with 29%. The results there don't change anything. The three were the contenders going into the caucus yesterday and they remain so coming out of the caucus and on to New Hampshire.
Joe Biden, who finished at 1%, and Chris Dodd, who finished at less than that, both withdrew from the Democratic primaries because of their poor showings (Links here and here.) Bill Richardson, who finished fourth with only 2%, will continue campaigning for now. None of the Republican hopefuls will withdraw now, as they are all focused on New Hampshire, its primary set for Tuesday.
There's also a caucus set for tomorrow in Wyoming. Joel Harris of Indiana Fred Heads has the info, as well as his take on Iowa. And so ends the first lap of this wild rollercoaster ride. Much more to come, both here and at Hoosiers For Tancredo.