Martin O’Malley is a condescending, not very astute blowhard who fell backwards into power in Maryland basically by having executive hair and skin that borders on being translucent. Like so many other politicians of this type, he erroneously believed that his ham-sandwich-on-white-bread persona and bland looks would carry him all the way to the top. Also like most of fellow Roger Goodell clones, he has been ill prepared for the day that people would stop giving a crap about his run-of-the-mill thoughts and ideas anymore.

And so, Martin O’Malley finds himself slogging across the frigid Iowa plains in December, participating in Democratic primary that is so degrading to everyone not named Hillary Clinton that even Lincoln Chafee politely excused himself from the ongoing humiliation. The Des Moines Register, being dedicated to the craft of reporting on Iowa’s unique brand of cornpone politics, sent along a reporter on O’Malley’s most recent excursion to Iowa, at something called the Hardin County New Leadership forum.

The event was described as an “intimate crowd,” but at some point the AP Photographer who came along mistakenly caught a picture of the entire room where Martin O’Malley actually flew to Iowa to speak.

If you’re in the mood to count, you’ll note that there are exactly nine people in this room not including O’Malley himself, but definitely including the girl who appears to be about four years old and whose dad is probably trying to teach her a lesson about perseverance in the face of abject futility, or something.

Allow that to process for a moment. Martin O’Malley, former governor of a relatively important state, traveled (presumably with some sort of campaign entourage, and also presumably on dollars donated by actual people who gave money to his campaign) to Iowa in order to speak with eight eligible caucus goers, in the middle of a massive storm.

Folks, Vanilla Ice is a bigger draw at dive bars these days than this. If Whitesnake had a reunion tour, and that reunion tour came to Hardin County, Iowa, it would have outdrawn this event by at least one order of magnitude.

These are the humiliations that must be borne by a man who desires the privilege of going on national TV to practically beg Hillary Clinton for a cabinet spot during every debate. For Martin O’Malley, it’s all he has left.