The Iowa Caucuses


Joe Cunningham, III

Lots of speculation is currently running wild about the Iowa caucuses, which will occur this week, and specifically how Donald Trump will do. A recent poll had him up about 11 points over Ted Cruz, who is in second place behind the billionaire mogul.  Every campaign (other than Trump’s) seems to be acting as though their internals say it’s really much closer than that. If it turns out that Trump wins Iowa, then that should worry some folks, but not as much as you might think.  The caucuses have been terrible at picking candidates.

Moreover, the Trump campaign has no professional infrastructure and is not even relying on their own polling – they don’t have a pollster at all.

If the business mogul’s campaign can put together a good showing in a caucus system (which Trump supporters may not even be able to navigate), then it’s entirely possible that the race is thrown into even more chaos than we’ve already seen. There is panic among conservatives that Trump could actually get the nomination and it’s thrown the Republican Party into a state of disarray.

D.C. Republicans are trending toward Trump over Cruz because they see the negotiating prowess of Trump and know a deal can be reached with him. They likewise know that Cruz would be as likely to throw them out on their ears as listen to them. They don’t like Cruz and he doesn’t like them.

But, if Trump underperforms, as is expected by a few folks, then Cruz gets a big momentum boost.  He has invested a lot into winning Iowa.  While the Iowa caucus does not have a good track record of picking the nominee in a normal year, this is not a normal year. Trump has seen to that.

If Cruz wins Iowa, and someone who is not Trump can take New Hampshire, then it would deal a big blow to Trump. If Trump takes New Hampshire, he will likely get South Carolina. Things will only get more complicated from there because, here in the Republican Party, we didn’t want any semblance of order, clearly.