The Obama line, being faithfully parroted in many corners of the mainstream media, is that the Iowa results are a victory for the president.
Well, they’re not.
One of the key points Obama’s various foot soldiers are making is that turnout among Republicans for the GOP primary is a bit below expectations – just above where it was in 2008. This, they say, shows Republican enthusiasm for Election 2012 is lagging.
But the 2012 turnout is still a record, beating the 2008 turnout, which was also a record. And the turnout this year was indeed high GIVEN THE ADMITTEDLY LACKUSTER GOP FIELD.
Let’s face it, there’s nobody this year for Republicans to get particularly excited about. But we already knew that. What the numbers actually say is that despite this, Republicans will head to the polls, whether it be for Mitt Romney or Rick Santorum, whatever their flaws.
What’s more, Republicans turned out EVEN THOUGH THERE WAS NO ONE NAMED BARACK OBAMA ON THE BALLOT.
What the Obama operation fails to get, but which I get from my readers and other sources, is the depth and passion of the unhappiness with his presidency. The turnout in Iowa was strong. In November, when Republicans have something to be against as well as something to be for, the turnout will be overwhelming.
Romney stands accused by the Obama team of having suffered a massive hit because he can’t get above 25 percent of the Republican vote. But really, Romney had mostly ignored Iowa, and did much better their than expected. And once other candidates start dropping out of the race, he’ll get much more than 25 percent.
The Obamafolk are also said to be giddy at the prospect of a divided Republican Party and a drawn out nomination process.
This can only be spin, since it’s coming from the very camp that seized the presidency after emerging from A DIVIDED PARTY AND AN DRAWN OUT NOMINATION PROCESS.
Difficult nominations do not hurt presidential candidates. It didn’t harm Obama, nor Bill Clinton, nor Jimmy Carter. Bad candidates win the presidency, and good candidates lose, whether they’ve slogged through the primaries or not.
And it’s not at all clear that this is going to be a difficult primary. Romney, in my view, is poised to lock things up pretty early. He has the money and organization to swamp Santorum nationally.
And Republicans, more conservative than Democrats by temperament and less likely to be swept away by something novel, simply don’t nominate for president relative unknowns who come out of nowhere. It has just never happened in modern political history.
Romney will be the nominee, and it will probably become clear soon. Though a good fight that forced him to let his hair down a bit would help him, not Obama.