The Czar cannot remember anyone being excited about the Iowa caucuses, given they’re (a) caucuses and (b) in Iowa. But last night’s event was just as much fun as a national election, but doubled.First was the Republican side, which everyone pretty much assumed Trump would narrowly sqeak out a victory. The Czar figured that Cruz, Rubio, and Trump would all be within a couple points of each other, and that Trump—if he got second—would be a very close second to first. Were we wrong: Cruz won by the largest turnout in state history, and trumped Donald.
Another surprise was Rubio being less than a percentage away from tying Trump, due to what’s reported as a large number of Trump supporters defecting to Rubio at the last minute. Quite a few people predicted this (we didn’t), saying that gag candidates are great for a laugh, but when it comes time to pull the lever, you wind up going with a guy you trust more. And more Trump supporters trust Rubio, apparently.
A third surprise for us was how badly Jeb Bush did. We never thought he’d finish in the top three, but he wound up below Rand Paul. Hell, our own ‘Puter as many delegates as Jeb Bush, and he’s not even running. He can barely walk.
If the Republican turnout and voting wasn’t impressive enough (where the hell were you people in 2012?), you have the Democrats to watch as well.
Two things could have gone wrong for Hillary Clinton: a poor showing by her, or a strong showing by Sanders. And she got both, so much so that her victory—if it even is, pending a possible recount—is insignificantly small, and Sanders’ turnout is significantly large. Donors are going to dump money on Sanders now, and voters are going to switch.
Clinton was never a strong horse in New Hampshire, and she’s certain to lose there by a landslide; however, with Iowa’s results, that gap could become even more ridiculous. Which of course means that she’s going into Nevada and South Carolina with 0-2 score, and with her support dropping further. With no hint of exaggeration, this is really bad for Hillary Clinton and may be insurmountable. Bernie Sanders’ supporters may indeed be reasonably optimistic.
This could all change of course, and Hillary could cakewalk to an easy nomination in March: it’s certainly within the realm of possibility that the Clintons will unleash their war machine on Sanders and go utterly low-ball. But we’ve seen her screw this up terribly before, and there’s no reason to think she can’t do so again.
The bottom line is this: the first shot in the 2016 elections was fired yesterday, and it nearly guarantees a wild ride for both parties. We could get a historically memorable election again, and you’re going to want to be part of it.
Божію Поспѣшествующею Милостію Мы, Дима Грозный Императоръ и Самодержецъ Всероссiйскiй, цѣсарь Московскiй. The Czar was born in the steppes of Russia in 1267, and was cheated out of total control of all Russia upon the death of Boris Mikhailovich, who replaced Alexander Yaroslav Nevsky in 1263. However, in 1283, our Czar was passed over due to a clerical error and the rule of all Russia went to his second cousin Daniil (Даниил Александрович), whom Czar still resents. As a half-hearted apology, the Czar was awarded control over Muscovy, inconveniently located 5,000 miles away just outside Chicago. He now spends his time seething about this and writing about other stuff that bothers him.