The Iowa prediction you’ve been waiting for!

Somebody will win.

I’m looking forward to learning the results, of course, but barring any major surprises, this isn’t going to shake things up all that much.  Even if Bernie wins, he is still a very long shot to win the nomination.  And, either Trump or Cruz winning doesn’t really matter all that much so long as neither one craters compared to expected support.  That said, if forced to predict, I would go for a narrow win for Hillary and a win for Trump.

Barring a massive under-performance by Hillary, there’s nothing else of interest to really look for on the Democratic side.  On the Republican side, I am actually much more interested in what happens with the lower candidates than whether Trump or Rubio wins.  Does Rubio pull off a strong third?  Does he slip unexpectedly to fourth (if so, that really hurts?  Do any of the other “establishment” guys to particularly poorly or well?  Even so, I think New Hampshire still ends up being more interesting in regards to those questions, barring a major over or under performance.

Well, I guess we’ll all know a few hours from now anyway.  But, of course, what really matters is not the delegates from Iowa (a tiny pittance), but how this all ends up being played in the media.  The key to primary/caucus is how a candidate performs relative to expectations, and we’ll see how that all has played out in the days ahead.

About Steve Greene
Professor of Political Science at NC State

One Response to The Iowa prediction you’ve been waiting for!

  1. ohwilleke says:

    Iowa can’t declare a winner by itself, but it does routinely cull the herd. O’Malley and Huckabee were out of the race before the clock struck twelve. There is a decent chance that at least one or two more Republicans may drop out before New Hampshire, and if they do, Rubio has a lot to gain. Had Huckabee and one or two other also rans dropped out before Iowa, Rubio probably would have outperformed Trump. He trailed Trump by less than 1.3 percentage points and is the natural choice for supporters of other establishment candidates who crash and burn. Nobody from Jeb on down has any business claiming that they have any shot at winning the nomination at this point.

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