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“Oh God …It is him!”
Picture Los Angeles Times

So what does the Iowa result tell us?  Well the first thing is to remember that it is hardly an election, more a sort of glorified vox pop of the keener elements within the activists and keenest of the republicans.  In all the state of Iowa, in all its 99 counties, only 122,000 chose to come out and cast their vote.  Large perhaps by European standards, but down considerably on the Democrat count of 200,000 last time round. Mind you the Obama and Hillary show had more class about it than this dishevelled rabble.  And Mitt polled fewer votes than he did the last time he lost.

What does the snap shot tell us?  Well it shows that the time of the circus of entertaining fools and hopefuls is closing.  The Bachmann and Perry show is over.  We enjoyed the laughs, we will miss their shining eyes, and sweating palms, but the time has come…. to go.

Newt is down too, however he will not leave without fighting clawing and kicking all the way.   So we should expect him to be around for a few bouts more.

Paul has done well to stay in the fight.  Respected, and indeed admired, I just like the fact that at his age he can get out the youth vote.  He should last a bit longer before funding starts to fade.

Above all Iowa shows how divided the Republicans are.  They simply cannot settle on a candidate they are happy with.  They just couldn’t summon up the enthusiasm yesterday, could they?  Rather than turn out in January weather they stayed at home grumbling and sitting on their hands.   A low turn out, grudging support and with the effort split across the wings of the party, it all shows a decided lack of focus.  It’s not a good start.

However, Romney won Iowa.   He will now get the extra money and publicity he needs to move on nationwide in the show that runs and runs.  Santorum will also gain a boost, at least until his campaign leaves the rural side of America and goes where his flavour of anti-abortion politics and sexualised religion finds less favour.   A more anti-woman candidate in an already anti-woman cadre would be hard to find.  Santorum also suffers from poorer campaign organisation, which will certainly begin to tell against him as we move through further bouts.  He can’t personally visit every county of every state where he fights primaries!  However, as he represents the other wing of the republican party, he may garner support from the fallen as they go down.  I do not think he will win the nomination, but he will help open the old wounds in the party and make the process that much more interesting for the rest of us.

As before, the race will go to the candidate with the strongest Oligarchical connections.  Oligarchs win, that is the inescapable rule of American politics, especially Presidential elections.  Romney has the oligarchical connections, and the others do not.  Romney will win the republican nomination.  And then he will lose to Obama.

Copyright David Macadam 2012