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On the Trail / IT'S A FAMILY AFFAIR

Iowa voter stays faithful to her longshot candidate

January 05, 2008|Robin Abcarian

The haggling that goes on after the first round of voting in Iowa's Democratic caucuses can test a supporter's loyalties.

But Carol Coates of Franklin Township, just outside of Des Moines, remained faithful to New Mexico Gov. Bill Richardson even after he narrowly fell short of the 15% viability threshold in the initial voting at her local Democratic caucus.

Richardson needed 23 votes to stay in the running and had 22.

"Go away!" Coates snapped at a man who had sidled over from the Obama group to poach support. "We only need one more!"

She soon found her extra voter, a dejected supporter of Sen. Joseph R. Biden Jr. who "realigned" to Richardson.

The Obama guy, as it turned out, was her husband, Paul. When it was all over, they drove into Des Moines for Obama's victory celebration.

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