"One of the reasons I came was to check about viability because this will only be my second caucus," said Worthington, a food stylist. "I learned quickly last time that without some number of supporters, it'll be pointless, especially in my district. I really came to see how many people were out here and what kind of support he was getting."
Worthington, who supported John Edwards in 2004, is confident Biden will have the bodies he needs — including his own — come the Jan. 3 Iowa caucuses.
Swelling crowds have accompanied what appears to be increased attention to Biden from potential caucusgoers. The 35-year senator is enjoying a slight jump in the polls. The results of a Dec. 20-23 American Research Group poll show Biden in fourth place, at 8 percent, ahead of New Mexico Gov. Bill Richardson, at 5 percent.
"We hear this debate going on, whether is it about experience, or is it about change? And the two candidates with the most money talk about experience and change. I've got more experience than all of them, including the candidate who says she has experience, and I've changed more things than the guy who talks about change," Biden said of Democratic Sens. Hillary Clinton and Barack Obama. "It's about action. You don't have to wonder what crisis the next president's going to have to face. You know what they are now."
Biden weaved into his speech his assertion that his talk about international problems, including Iraq, isn't just lip service.Authorization from the president would mark success for the bipartisan plan for a weak central government with three separate regions — one each for Sunnis, Shiites and Kurds. The plan was endorsed by the Senate in September in a 75-23 vote.
His much-touted plan for a decentralized federal government in Iraq - a nonbinding resolution attached to a larger bill authorizing defense spending - has been sent to President Bush.
Biden said early Wednesday that he was confident the bill would be approved later in the day, but it still awaited Bush's signature as of late Wednesday.
In other news, Benazir Bhutto has been assassinated and Biden was quick to comment:
Sen. Joe Biden said today he twice urged Pakistan President Pervez Musharraf to provide a strong security detail for Peoples Party leader Benazir Bhutto in her return to the nation, but stopped short of blaming him or the Pakistani government for Bhutto’s death in a suicide bombing.
In a letter written to Musharraf Oct. 24, Biden, along with Sens. Joe Lieberman and Patrick Leahy, lay out specific security suggestions, including government-provided, bomb-proof vehicles, jamming equipment, and offers of U.S. resources to investigate the first attempt on Bhutto’s life; a suicide bomb attack at a welcoming rally that killed 140 Pakistanis.
“The failure to protect Mrs. Bhutto raises a lot of hard questions for the government and security services that have to be answered,” he said at a hastily-staged press conference at the Marriott Hotel in downtown Des Moines. “And they need to be answered by a transparent and full investigation.”