Iowa Caucus Results: What They Mean Going Forward

rick santorum familyLast night, a record number of Iowans gathered in local schools, churches, and various meeting halls across the state to discuss the various presidential candidates and cast votes for their favorites. The process is interesting, nonbinding, and while it doesn’t necessarily pick out winners, it has a history of narrowing the field.

That certainly remains true in 2012, the year that Rick Santorum surged, and Rick Perry and Michele Bachmann imploded.

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Just a month ago, Rick Santorum was seen as a non-entity with single-digit support in Iowa. But the former Pennsylvanian Senator has been boots-on-the-ground in Iowa, touring the state to shake hands, kiss babies, and most importantly, talk to the constituents about their concerns.

Rick Perry broke my heart a little bit with his poor showing. I'm sad he didn't do well, and hope moving forward he gains more momentum

Michele Bachmann is out, and part of me wonders if she were ever really in. I’ve been in Iowa these past few days, and have been scratching my head over some of her moves. Take Monday, for example: I went to one of her events in Des Moines around lunchtime. After that, her team had no scheduled appearances for the entire afternoon ... the day before the caucuses. That’s not exactly how to get people excited to vote for you.

Newt Gingrich has probably had the most volatile campaign this go-around; his highs have been high and his lows have been low. Last night, unfortunately for him, was a low. He’s holding on though, and I don’t doubt that he’s smart enough to bring some of those numbers back around.

Mitt Romney did well, as expected. Don’t expect any surprises next week in New Hampshire; the former governor of Massachusetts is a favorite to win the nomination in the northeastern corner of the country.

Ron Paul came in third with 22 percent of the vote last night, but first according to some people. The crazy congressman has a long history of doing well in these kind of votes, but with his insane ideas about ‘liberty,’ he doesn’t have a shot at the general election.

And apparently Jon Huntsman is still in the race. Cute, considering he only got 0.6 percent of the vote.

Given what happened in Iowa last night, what are your predictions going forward in this campaign season?


Image via Rick Santorum

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