Salena Zito

Until now, Richardson was the guy who wanted to be seen as a statesman. As a former U.N. ambassador who negotiated with international tough-guys, he could pull that off. Now, not so much.

If voters want a statesman, they might want to look at Joe Biden. With his plan for a "soft-partition" of Iraq, he's the only Democrat candidate who is talking about foreign policy in a substantive way -- and who, by the way, is not catching fire with anybody.

Democrat strategist Steve McMahon thinks it all depends on how Richardson handles the fleeting moment of political notoriety his Iraq position has given him.

“Hillary, Barack and Edwards gave him a new argument to run on -- they served it up on a platter in New Hampshire,” McMahon said. “The question is whether or not the platter is left there or whether it is taken around Iowa and all of the other early primary states -- and what he does with it."

Salena Zito

Salena Zito is a political analyst, reporter and columnist.