Dan Guild

The road after Iowa and New Hampshire

“The moderate lane is winning the closing argument,” Dan Guild writes. But changes to the Super Tuesday electorate will benefit Bernie Sanders. -promoted by Laura Belin

If anyone was worried that Iowa would become less important because of the delay in results, the polling after Iowa in New Hampshire should put that to rest. 

Joe Biden’s poor performance in the caucuses hurt him so badly in New Hampshire that he left the state before voting had concluded. Pete Buttigieg and Bernie Sanders both received bounces in New Hampshire close what one would have expected, given their Iowa finishes.

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How close was Iowa? Florida 2000 close

Dan Guild walks through the math at the precinct caucus he attended, to show how small shifts can alter delegate counts. -promoted by Laura Belin

At this writing, with 100 percent of Iowa precincts reporting but an unknown number of precincts to be recanvassed, the difference between Bernie Sanders and Pete Buttigieg is 1.5 state delegate equivalents (564.01 to 562.497).

I don’t think any account I’ve read has adequately explained how close this was.

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Another Iowa surpise?

Dan Guild‘s final thoughts on the presidential race in Iowa, along with how tonight’s results could affect national and New Hampshire polling. -promoted by Laura Belin

My brief take on the current state of the race: I think the key will be Pete Buttigieg.

I came to Iowa a skeptic, but I have found his support is real.  If he is able to get 20 percent, he splits the moderate vote and Bernie Sanders’ margin may be larger than people see coming.  If Buttigieg falls below 15 percent, Joe Biden will likely benefit in reallocation and may beat Sanders.

Other questions and observations this morning:

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Expectations: Yes, they REALLY matter

Dan Guild argues that while Bernie Sanders has clearly improved his standing in Iowa, he may be losing the expectations game. -promoted by Laura Belin

Of all the Alice-through-the-looking-glass parts of the American political system, the one I have been completely unable to explain to foreigners is expectations and the Iowa caucuses. It usually goes something like this:

Sane person from another country: “Candidate X won”

Pundit: “Well, not really”

Sane person from another country: “But they got more votes”

Pundit: “But they were expected to win by 10 and they only won by 3, so they lost”

Sane person from another country: “That makes no sense.  So who won?  The person who came in second?”

Pundit person: “No, they got about what they expected.  No, the clear winner is the candidate who finished third.  There is no doubt they won.”

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10 days left: Will someone break out?

Dan Guild expects one of the Democratic candidates to surge in the closing days, most likely Elizabeth Warren or Amy Klobuchar. -promoted by Laura Belin

Ten days before the 2016 Iowa caucuses, I wrote a piece here entitled Front-runners Beware.

Four years later, there is not one front-runner, but four. Importantly, New Hampshire seems just as close. As I wrote last month, the winner of Iowa can expect a 12-point bounce in New Hampshire.

The simple truth is the winner in Iowa is very likely to win the New Hampshire primary eight days later. And no Democrat has won Iowa and New Hampshire when both were contested and lost the nomination.

The history with tables is below, but in summary:

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Democratic presidential primary schedule needs serious evaluation

Dan Guild: “The modern primary schedule greatly reduces the voice of African Americans in the selection of the Democratic presidential candidate.” -promoted by Laura Belin

On Martin Luther King, Jr. Day, let us remember the importance he placed on African American access to the ballot box. A portion of a speech he gave in 1957 is below.  The whole text is worth reading.

But even more, all types of conniving methods are still being used to prevent Negroes from becoming registered voters. The denial of this sacred right is a tragic betrayal of the highest mandates of our democratic tradition. And so our most urgent request to the president of the United States and every member of Congress is to give us the right to vote. [Audience:] (Yes)

Give us the ballot, and we will no longer have to worry the federal government about our basic rights…

Give us the ballot (Give us the ballot), and we will transform the salient misdeeds of bloodthirsty mobs (Yeah) into the calculated good deeds of orderly citizens.

Unfortunately, the modern primary schedule greatly reduces the voice of African Americans in the selection of the Democratic presidential candidate.

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