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Iowa Democrats Caucus Too; For Obama Team, It's Practice For November

The focus is naturally on the Republican caucuses Tuesday night in Iowa, because the GOP is the party with a battle going on for its presidential nomination.

But President Obama's fellow Democrats in the state will be caucusing too. And by all accounts Team Obama is taking it all very seriously, even though he doesn't have a intra-party challenger.

The Tampa Bay Times reports that:

"Obama has eight offices [in the state] — more than any of the Republicans — and volunteers have made more than 350,000 calls. Tuesday night, volunteers will try to turn out people for their own caucuses, which will serve as a practice run for November. Obama will deliver a live message via video."

Politico's Glenn Thrush writes that:

"A Democratic operative in Iowa told me that she had been contacted no fewer than four times by Obama for America staffers trying to organize high turnout for the caucuses. ... It turns out that Obama's Chicago-based political operation views the caucuses as a serious organizing tool and dry run for next November — and sees the relative lack of GOP boots on the ground in Iowa as the basis for a they-don't-care-about-Iowa campaign theme in the 2012 general election."

And Iowa is indeed a state the Obama campaign very much wants to win in November as it plots ways to get the 270+ electoral votes needed to become president. Iowa figures in three of the campaign's "many paths to reach 270+." Iowa has six electoral votes. It was among the states that the Obama/Biden campaign won in 2008, when it collected 365 electoral votes to the McCain/Palin campaign's 173.

Copyright 2012 National Public Radio. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

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