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« Young To Run For Re-Election | Blog Home Page | Obama Still A Big Draw »

A Little Help From Their Friends

LAS VEGAS -- When Politics Nation called to reserve a space at the Nevada Democratic Party's caucus-day location, someone familiar called us back. Iowa Democratic Party Communications Director Carrie Giddins, apparently a glutton for punishment, is lending a helping hand to her colleagues in the Silver State.

Two weeks after Iowa finished their caucuses, transplanting is not uncommon. Familiar faces are everywhere, as campaigns ordered their Hawkeye staffs to pack up and ship off to the new caucus state. The John Edwards campaign, for one, says they dispatched 75 staffers from snowy Iowa to sunny Las Vegas and environs.

With experience in training caucus-goers and getting them out the door, Iowa staffers can lend a hugely important hand to their Nevada counterparts. Few in this state have caucused before -- just 9,000 showed up in 2004 -- and the local NPR station's daily talk show spent half an hour exploring the privacy issues behind caucusing, a significant concern to many callers.

Strategists on all sides have little idea of what is to come. "Anybody who says they know what turnout will be has too high of an opinion of themselves," Clark County Commission chairman Rory Reid told Politics Nation. "This is not Iowa." With some help from Hawkeye veterans, though, the campaigns -- and even the State Democratic Party -- hope to import some of the success Iowa Democrats found earlier this month.