Tuesday, February 2, 2016

Over-reaction Tuesday

In the NFL, the day after a full slate of games is what we like to call "Over-reaction Monday".  If your team wins, the talking heads on sports radio and TV are debating which jersey color they should wear in the Super Bowl--because it is clear that no one is going to beat them the rest of the season.  If your team loses, the talking heads on sports radio and TV are calling for the firing of the head coach and the general manager while trying to find one more game on the schedule they might have a chance to win.  It's the nature of the sport--since there really is nothing to do but rehash what happened yesterday because another contest is a week away yet.

Welcome to the "Over-reaction Tuesday" of the political world.  The 24-hour news channels will be filled with "post Iowa Caucus analysis" for at least the next two or three days--as "experts" pore over the results of voting done by about 15% of eligible voters in that state in an archaic and exclusionary format.  But that certainly won't prevent everyone from making broad pronouncements.  Well here are my impressions from last night's festivities:

Hillary Clinton is really disliked by a lot of people in Iowa.  Consider that the anointed candidate by the Democratic Party Machine was barely able to beat an avowed Socialist from a state with an even smaller population than Iowa.  Just like Barack Obama in 2008, Bernie Sanders benefited from the "anyone but Hillary" mindset within the Iowa Democratic party to make it s close race.

There are a lot of Republicans in Iowa that vote based on religion.  Ted Cruz is the "Evangelical Candidate" this time around.  Just like Rick Santorum was in 2012 when he won in Iowa (and nowhere else) and just like Mike Huckabee was in 2008 when he won in Iowa (and nowhere else).  Apparently, Huckabee wasn't "Evangelical enough" this time around--since he got less than three percent support and immediately dropped out of the race.

You don't win elections just because you are famous.  "The Celebrity Candidate" Donald Trump is likely wondering how he lost to Ted Cruz (and almost to Marco Rubio as well) last night.  Trump is famous.  Trump is on TV all the time.  Trump talks louder than everyone else.  How could Trump have lost?  The answer is simple, he didn't put in the work.  He didn't do the coffee shop "listening sessions".  He didn't do the fairs.  He didn't call the supporters on Caucus Day to remind them to bring as many people as they could with them Monday night.  Trump thought he could just show up, be famous and win.  And with no real party infrastructure support behind him to do that kind of real "grassroots work"--his poll numbers in other states likely won't equal ballot box success either.

So, next week it's New Hampshire's turn--followed by "Over-reaction Wednesday"--where everything we thought and said today won't matter.

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