Wednesday, January 04, 2012

Rounding Up the Iowa Caucus Results

Greets and saluts from the NYC metro area. I see that Santorum lost to Romney by all of eight votes. Not bad for a guy who was seen as too extreme for PA when he was booted by his constituents from the US Senate. Now, he's probably not extreme enough for the Iowa voters but will have his moment in the sun as the anyone but Romney candidate de jour. Meanwhile, Romney probably wasn't extreme enough for Iowa voters, who found themselves splitting their votes for everyone else, rather than giving a thumbs up for Romney who actually spent more money in 2012 than 2008 to lose votes over the 2008 numbers.

Still, all is not completely lost. Perry may have been battered into his senses and will likely drop out in the next few days. Bachmann, whose senses are extraterrestrial, wont have the good sense to drop out, even though her chances remain on the other side of nil (but will at least make for some entertainment value). Gingrich has vowed to stick around - and to stick it to Romney who he despises. That too will be for entertainment value, but Gingrich went from being a contender to also-ran in record time, if you don't count Herman Cain or Rick Perry.

And then there's the crazy uncle, Ron Paul, who will claim he got the youth vote and his 3d place showing will somehow be proof that he's got momentum. Alas, we've seen that from Paul before, and Iowa will be his high water mark (not counting VA, where only Romney and Paul are on the ballot).

The race is Romney's to lose, and he's done just enough to not lose so far. But he hasn't done enough to win either. There's little enthusiasm, and his negatives are starting to show in a big way. The extremists in the GOP are continuing to tout other candidates who are pushing the right wing extremist agenda envelope, and that works against Romney, who has struggled to stay consistent (I know, wild understatement there - he's flip flopping in the breeze) in the hopes of trying to peel off independents and moderates in the general election. But trying to appeal to moderates wont work when the GOP primaries is all about catering to the extremists in the party, and that works no where better than in places like Iowa.

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