Presidential Winners

The Iowa Republican Caucuses Historically: A Waste Of Time!

The Iowa Caucuses, which have existed since 1972 for the Democratic Party and competitively for the Republicans since 1976, have been largely a “waste of time” as far as picking future Presidents, and even Presidential nominees.

At least, the Democrats have chosen Jimmy Carter, Walter Mondale, Bill Clinton, Al Gore, John Kerry, and Barack Obama, with Carter, Clinton and Obama going on to the White House.

But the Republican Caucuses have been much less successful and representative of what happened. Only Bob Dole in 1996, and George W. Bush in 2000 and 2004 have gone on to be the nominee, and only Bush being elected and reelected. There was no actual vote between Gerald Ford and Ronald Reagan in 1976, and Reagan lost in 1980 and ran unopposed in 1984, and the same for George H W Bush in 1988 and no opposition in 1992.

The point is that the Iowa Caucuses gain an inordinate amount of attention, but only maybe a bit more than 100,000 people participate, far fewer than a primary in percentage of voters, and therefore, it has never been seen as a reliable barometer of who a future Presidential nominee or winner might be!

So don’t tend to think that the results in Iowa will matter, as the New Hampshire primary has ALWAYS been a much better barometer for the fortunes of Presidential candidates, since it emerged in 1952.