Here's something a little different for today. The presidential primaries are really starting to heat up, as it is now one month until the Iowa caucuses. The big news recently is that Barack Obama and Mike Huckabee have pulled ahead in the polling and are now the Iowa front-runners. Of course, some candidates, especially on the Republican side, it seems, appear to be planning to skip Iowa or at least not make a serious run, and place their bets on other states, including New Hampshire.
What do y'all think will be the effect of the eventual winners on the Illinois races? I suppose I am focusing on the winner of the Democratic race, as the probably winner will either be Hillary Clinton or Barack Obama. Both are from Illinois. Both have the potential to have coattails, but Hillary, at least, has the potential to bring Republicans to the polls en masse, if you consider her polarizing nature and high negatives.
Obama on the other hand, should he win, is likely to be a very popular candidate among Illinioians and Dems in general, but given the "blue" nature of the state and the clear "favorite son" status he would have here in Illinois, would the Dem in the street be motivated to come to the polls simply to vote for Obama, since everyone would guess he would win Illinois easily?
I suppose the effect of the Republicans should not be entirely discounted. Giuliani, for example, seems to indicate he thinks Illinois might be in play (we know former governor Jim Edgar has already signed on), particularly if Hillary is the nominee. If he wins the nomination and comes into Illinois to spend money, that might also bring Republicans to the polls, perhaps.
If I'm Mark Kirk, or any other Illinois candidate, how is this potentially going to affect my race? Kirk has endorsed McCain, but would he the best presidential candidate to really "help" his congressional race? What's my "dream slate" at the top of the ticket, depending on which candidate I am?