Opinionated @ CFE

Some Thoughts on the Iowa Caucuses

Jan
04

Just a few things about Iowa.

  • It was hilarious to watch people say that Iowa only matters if the “right” person wins. Most of them were actively talking about Ron Paul as the “wrong” person. The logical contortions required to take this position, that the result dictates the relevancy of the result, are astounding at best.
  • Speaking of Ron Paul, he didn’t exactly “lose”. He scored as many delegates as Romney and Santorum and got more supporters elected to party positions than the other folks. He has a lot of caucus state ground game, and that matters when the “real” delegates get selected.
  • Rick Santorum is the new Mike Huckabee. He pandered to evangelicals, has no money or ground game outside of Iowa, and will likely fade out after a few more states. I give him no longer than Super Tuesday before he drops out after many dismal showings. The idea that a good showing in a single early state can create momentum is laughable at best. There’s 49 other states, dude, and you’ve done nothing in any of them.
  • Romney is calling this a “win”, but let’s consider a few facts. He’s been more-or-less campaigning constantly since at least 2007, spent a crapton of money, and won by just 8 votes over a guy who can’t come up with a campaign message beyond “I hate gay sex and abortions”. To have such a dismal showing in a state where ground game matters should be considered an unmitigated disaster. Consider that Romney has been stuck at a 25%-ish ceiling for most of the race and is counting on a crowded field to split up the Not Romney vote. Bachmann has just dropped out and Perry isn’t far behind. If Gingrinch continues to tank and Santorum falters, that can put a quarter or more of the vote back on the table, or roughly the entirety of Romney’s support. This should be scaring the crap out his campaign and supporters, but they seem to take for granted that Mitt can just coast to victory.

9 Responses to Some Thoughts on the Iowa Caucuses

  1. Like I said yesterday, with a name l like Santorum, can you blame him for hating gay sex? I have to admit as a foolish child, I poked fun at a classmate with Gay in his name.

    I was kind of hoping there’d be more people left in the race to split the vote in Paul’s favor. Darn Herman Cain for not thinking with his brain.

  2. Let me set the record straight on the Mitt Romney picture in Iowa.

    –“He’s been more-or-less campaigning constantly since at least 2007, spent a crapton of money, and won by just 8 votes over a guy who can’t come up with a campaign message beyond “I hate gay sex and abortions”. To have such a dismal showing in a state where ground game matters should be considered an unmitigated disaster.–

    In 2008, Romney campaigned heavily in Iowa, spending tons of his own money, only to finish 3rd in the caucus. It really damaged his campaign then. Considering that, his initial strategy this time was to skip Iowa and concentrate on other early states like New Hampshire and Florida. He only started campaigning in earnest in Iowa a few months ago when it looked like he had a shot of winning there (without, again, any real organization there up to that point).

    On the other hand, Santorum has been practically living in Iowa for the last year trying to drum up support. It’s unfair to characterize his message as simply being against homosexuality and abortions, but it should come as no surprise that he finished well in Iowa, and good for him. He has no realistic strategy going forward, however.

    Considering that Santorum has been campaigning there nonstop and Romney has only been campaigning there for a relatively short time, the fact that Romney finished as well as he did is more than encouraging for his campaign.

    –Consider that Romney has been stuck at a 25%-ish ceiling for most of the race and is counting on a crowded field to split up the Not Romney vote.–

    Nonsense. It’s a primary with multiple candidates. No one has had a majority of support. No one has had more than 25% support for more than a month. But this is particularly puzzling coming from a Ron Paul supporter. This particular argument is worse against Paul, who would be THRILLED to get 25% support at all.

    As it becomes clear that Santorum has no way forward and as Gingrich and Perry inevitably drop out (though I expect Perry to have one more surge of support), Republican voters will solidify behind Romney, just as has happened with the nominee in every primary election.

  3. Romney spent $117 per vote in Iowa, Santorum spend $1.67 per vote in Iowa.

    odd statistic of the day!! This primary season is going to be very very expensive for the republicans.

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