When viewed in an inertial reference frame, an object either remains at rest or continues to move at a constant velocity, unless acted upon by an external force
Newton’s 1st law of Motion
Lyndon Johnson’s loss had been due a political fluke. He had been beaten not by his opponent’s friends but by his opponent’s foes.
Lyndon Johnson the Path to Power
A few days ago I saw a piece concerning Iowa that crunched the numbers in Iowa that suggest Donald Trump is going to have more trouble than he thinks in Iowa.
Really, so in order to justify Trump’s lead, somehow 50,000 more caucus attendees will have to show up and vote for Trump than have ever shown up before. Trump has 12 paid staffers in Iowa, led by Tana Goetz, a 48-year-old former runner up on “The Apprentice.” Wow, what raw horsepower.
He contrasts that to Ted Cruz:
Cruz has over 1,000 precinct chairs, a 240-plus person leadership team and over 5,000 volunteers in every one of Iowa’s 99 counties (all of which Cruz has pledged to visit before the caucuses, and it looks like he’ll make it happen). They’re led by seasoned professionals such as Jake Dagel, who was field director for Turning Point USA.
It’s a devastating analysis but it overlooks one very important thing, and that’s strategic voting
While the GOP doesn’t have the same process as the dems who can, if the supporters of a candidate can’t get enough people to go with them to advance go with another candidate, it’s going to be very apparent very early if an attendee’s candidate has a shot in their district.
When that happens then it will be time for voters to decide: “Do I stick with my guy or do I think strategically?”
Think if you are a Jeb Bush, or a Chris Christie, or a John Kasich guy. Your man isn’t going to win Iowa, you likely won’t even finish in the top 3. What is your game plan to win the nomination?
If you’re Jeb Bush guy, you need to be the last non-Trump man standing. So you have to stop Ted Cruz.
If you’re Chris Christie or John Kasich you have to finish in the top 3 in NH, you aren’t likely to stop Donald Trump there so you have to stop Ted Cruz.
You’re Carly Fiorina, Trump is a perfect foil for your campaign, Ted Cruz is not so you have to stop Ted Cruz.
and it’s not just establishment types thinking this;
You’re a Mike Huckabee or a Rick Santorum supporter, your only prayer (assuming you have one) is to cancel out the one guy who has taken the votes you won with in 2008 & 2012 so that you can win in the south so you have to stop Ted Cruz.
You are Ben Carson voter, you know your man who has the potential to attract voters in the south who might normally not vote in a GOP primary but you have to get to those primaries with a campaign still alive so you have to stop Ted Cruz.
Your Rand Paul voter, you can’t allow libertarians to be looking for another principled alternative so you have to stop Ted Cruz.
The only candidate with a disincentive to this is Marco Rubio, the NYT not withstanding he needs to keep his guys in line to keep himself viable, a fight between him and Cruz diminishes his rivals and increases him, he needs is folks to boost his numbers at all costs.
Now you might say: “But Datechguy Iowa is a big conservative state what makes you think there are enough establishment votes to save Iowa for Trump”
My answer. Mitt lost Iowa by only 8 votes and those Mitt guys are all in for Bush stopping Cruz.
Bottom line, with the exception of Marco Rubio every single other candidate has an incentive to stop Ted Cruz from winning Iowa, even if it gives the win to Trump.
Trump doesn’t need 50,000 extra voters to show up at the caucus to win, he simply needs enough voters to put the other candidates voters in a spot where they have a pragmatic choice between helping Trump win or helping letting Cruz win.
That is Donald Trump’s secret weapon and don’t think for one moment he doesn’t know it.
P.S. You’ll not that I didn’t include Jim Gilmore with all due respect for the former gov of VA why would I?
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