Last night’s Iowa caucuses proved to be a bit raucous, with the TV experts proven wrong once again, and shown that the greatest experts in any election are the voters themselves.
They all predicted that Donald Trump would take the GOP race, and were all proven wrong when Ted Cruz won, and Marco Rubio nearly beat the gregarious New York mega-millionaire out for second place. While Cruz had a good night by any and all accounts, the Florida senator will probably be the man to watch going forward.
On the Democratic side, the oddest thing happened: neither Hillary Clinton could score a clear victory, nor could Bernie Sanders. As of this writing (6am ET on February 2nd), Clinton held a 49.9% to 49.5% lead by my computations. However, the results from 90 precincts have gone missing according to the Drudge Report, enough of a gap that can swing the outcome to the Vermont senator.
Bernie looks like the real deal. The key will be how he does in the Southeastern primaries, where Hillary would probably fare best with a more moderate voting base that could build a firewall to hold off Sanders and take the Democratic nomination. But, if Sanders can continue to do well in the Midwest and Northeast, look out. This could be close all the way to the end, and that’s provided Hillary can stay out of legal trouble. If she cannot, all bets are off.
Going to be an interesting political year, that much seems certain.
(EDIT, 2/2/16, 11:15am: Hillary was declared the winner around 11am or so, 49.8% to Bernie’s 49.6%)