Heather Johnson

1/2/08

I arrived in
Iowa yesterday
in a whirlwind. I stepped off the plane and nearly blew over in the
frigid, gusting wind. I’m from Wisconsin so I know cold weather,
but this was cold! I quickly made my way down to baggage claim where I
found myself surrounded by camera crews from CNN and NBC. They were
struggling to get their 8 million carts of equipment loaded into vans.
Once I saw everyone in action, I started to get excited. My producer
picked me up from the airport and we headed over to our headquarters
at the hotel.

 

Once we arrived at the
hotel, I was immediately thrown into the action. I mentioned to our
producer that I wanted to help her on the production end this week
because I could tell she was desperate for another set of hands, or
ears in this case, to manage the phones. I wasn’t in the room for
fifteen minutes before I was calling campaign headquarters and the
Iowa Caucus Committee to set up interviews. My job for the day was to
scope out the Polk County Convention
Center where the caucus results would be
posted on Thursday night and set up an interview explaining the
Democratic caucus process. I was able to set up the interview at the
Convention Center so I took a camera crew and we were off.

 

We got to the convention
center and the press coordinator met us with our credentials. He gave
us a tour of the main ballroom and even took us by the ever-so-trendy
Google media lounge. I asked him if it had been a crazy day, dumb
question I suppose, but he said it actually wasn’t too bad. According
to him, they have been planning this event for the past year so now
all of their plans are just falling into place. After we took the
tour, our photographer set up for our interview. We were able to speak
with the political director for the caucus committee and he gave us a
step-by-step description of the Democratic Caucus process. As I was
listening to him talk about the process, candidates gaining viability,
delegates voting and running around the room, groups forming and
reforming, I envisioned images of pandemonium on the trading floor of
the New York Stock Exchange. It all seems so exciting and chaotic. I
can’t wait to see it for myself in a few days. Until then, I’ll be out
on the campaign trail capturing the action.