Thursday, October 4, 2007

It's Pure Politics

First off, I had better respond to my brother Matt's argument about my post on Iowa and its caucuses.

The one thing I like from his argument is that the primaries/caucuses should be consolidated later in the year. This is great, but it will never happen. John Edwards started running for the nominee on November 3, 2004. The candidates and the states will never allow the dates to be reigned in, though I support this whole-heartedly.

Instead let's try to get what we can. Matt lives in Tacoma, Washington, probably the biggest thing undercutting his entire argument. He tries to say that Iowa is more conservative than "some places in America." True, we are more conservative than about 10 states and more liberal than about 30. Matt also thinks Iowa is pretty homogenous. Wrong. Iowa City, and Des Moines are much more socially liberal than the rest of Iowa. And that is where all the poeple live. Iowans widely elect Senator Tom Harkin, one of the most liberal members of the Senate, and Charles Grassley, largely one of the most conservative members. The representatives are all over the spectrum and the Statehouse is largely split down the middle. To say Iowa isn't mainstream America is laughable. Sure we're not Seattle, New York, or Chicago, but we're sure as hell not Topeka, Birmingham, or Columbus.

And Matt does make a good point, Gravel, Kucinich, and Paul do have some good, new ideas. That doesn't dispute the fact that they are still idiots. To have the foreign ministries of several countries, and the US State Department issues its own statement is definitive evidence that I'm right, they are idiots.

So, what does this mean. Iowa should stay first. We are responsible. We shouldn't be first alone. As we saw with Kerry, Iowa does matter, maybe a bit too much. Let's have Iowa, South Carolina and a Western state be the first three barometers of the candidates. Some geographic and political diversity would be a valuable addition to the contest, but Iowa deserves its place.

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