We first got a phone call to the newsroom at about 9:30am Monday that Bill Clinton's visit to Ames wouldn't start on time (not really news to cynical reporters who note the former Prez is virtually always late). We arrived at Fischer Theater on the Iowa State University campus around 10:30. A Clinton campaign staffer (I assume a staffer of Hillary's, not Bill's) told us the Prez would be there about 11:30. Apparently, she said, there was ice on the runway at the Ames Regional Airport, so the Prez would have to fly into the Des Moines International Airport and drive from there.
A little before 11am (the scheduled start of the event), a staffer told us Clinton wouldn't arrive until about noon. By this time several hundred people had filled the seats in the theater. Around 15 minutes past the scheduled start, former Iowa First Lady Christie Vilsack (who is now helping out the Clinton campaign), told the crowd she was the "warm up act". She talked for about ten minutes before saying she was just getting word that food had arrived and the President wouldn't show up until noon. She asked the crowd to stick around and go downstairs and get some food. This was the first the crowd knew that Clinton would be an hour late.
The donuts and cookies rushed in from a nearby Hy-Vee grocery store disappeared in a hurry. But they seemed to do the trick. I counted very few people who left before Clinton arrived.
During his speech, Clinton tried out a phrase I haven't heard him use here before. Six different times I heard him say his wife was a "change agent" or an "agent of change." Take that Barack. And Oprah.
Clinton also had a line that sounded like a little slap to the undecideds in the room leaning Obama's way. He said, "She (Hillary) has always been a change agent. It's one thing to have good intentions. It's another to change people's lives."