The Iowa caucuses were held last night, February 1, 2016, resulting in U.S. Senator Ted Cruz winning on the Republican side while Bernie Sanders and Hillary Clinton landed in a virtual tie on the Democratic side. The next major competition between the Democratic and Republican Party presidential candidates is in New Hampshire where that state will hold their primaries on February 9, 2016. Then the candidates will face off in Nevada later this month. Ultimately the presidential nominee of both older parties will need to face whomever the Libertarian Party nominee is selected at their national convention on May 28, 2016.
As for the Iowa caucuses, Republican Ted Cruz received 27.7 percent of the vote picking up eight delegates, Donald Trump received 24.3 percent of the votes picking up seven delegates, and Marco Rubio received 23.1 percent of the votes picking up seven delegates. For the Democrats, Hillary Clinton received 49.9 percent of the votes picking up 22 delegates, Bernie Sanders received 49.5 percent of the vote picking up 21 delegates and Martin O’Malley received 0.6 percent of the votes gaining no delegates.
Republican Mike Huckabee folded his campaign last night after zero delegates and 1.8 percent of the vote. The other Republicans who received zero delegates and less than two percent of the votes were Carly Fiorina, Kasich, Christie, Santorum and Gilmore. Republicans Ben Carson received 9.3 percent of the vote and picked up three delegates, Rand Paul received 4.5 percent of the vote picking up one delegate and Jeb Bush received 2.8 percent of the vote picking up one delegate.
As much weight the media puts on the Iowa caucuses, they do not mean very much as to who will be the next president or even who will win the respective political party’s nomination. Winners of the Iowa caucuses have had very mixed historical results as to where the candidates land after winning or losing. At best, it is a psychological boost for winners and can often mean an increased motivation factor for those who did not perform well. Remember, Rick Santorum won the Republican Iowa caucus at one time, but then again, Barack Obama won also. So Iowa is not a true barometer of where the nation will ultimately vote in November, 2016.
Up to 45 percent of Iowa caucus-goers were new to voting in caucuses and there were hundreds of Iowans who changed their voter registration the day of the caucuses in order to vote in one or the other party’s caucus. According to Fox News, caucus-goers’ most important issues facing the country are government spending (32%), the economy and jobs (27%), terrorism (25%) and immigration (13%). The overwhelming majority of caucus-goers (91%) stated they are either dissatisfied or angry in how the federal government is operating right now.
No matter who the Democrats or Republicans put forth as their ultimate presidential nominee, they will have to face the Libertarian Party nominee this November, 2016 in the general election. There are twelve candidates seeking the Libertarian Party’s nomination and we heard last night that Governor Jesse Ventura may seek the nomination as well. Most polls put Governor Gary Johnson and Austin Petersen at the top of the heap of those running, but it is a long time before the Libertarian Party’s national convention where the nominee will be decided by the party’s membership. Another poll is in the midst of being conducted and Steve Kerbel is having a strong showing. That poll will be completed at the end of the week and we will bring you those results when they are in.