The only question is whether the candidates understand this. If they do, they will probably hang in there.
Wednesday, January 04, 2012
Conventional wisdom about Iowa's caucuses is that they winnow the field: "Two tickets out of Iowa." But there is no reason why this should any longer be so. The rules have changed--primaries and caucuses are no longer "winner take all." This reduces a considerable advantage held by front-runners. Those in the back of the pack can now hang in longer before the mathematics eliminates them, hoping for a stumble or a surge. And the rapidity with which messages now get out makes late surges and stumbles that much more likely. A brokered convention also becomes more of a possibility, meaning it might pay to stay in the race in order to wield influence.