Anything that keeps the Republican race unsettled and keeps the GOP from rallying behind a presumptive winner is good news for the White House. So the three-way logjam in the vote count and Mitt Romney's failure to come out of the Iowa caucuses with a clear win keeps the race going and makes it more likely that the remaining contenders aim more of their attacks on each other.
Even though it has only six electoral votes, Iowa is a state the president counts on to win his second term and the millions of dollars of negative ads could not help but plant doubts about him in a state he won comfortably last time. Little noticed amid all the noise on the Republican side, though, the president's campaign organization made the best out of a bad situation. Even though they were unopposed, they used the Democratic caucuses as an organizing tool.
Nothing in recent days brought more joy to campaign aides than when New York Times correspondent Jeff Zeleny, a onetime Iowan, proclaimed that Obama had "the best organized campaign in Iowa." Four years after focusing on boosting the turnout - and succeeding beyond any expectation - the Democrats focused this year on quietly expanding what one senior aide called its "unrivaled organization."