Decision Time in Iowa

Ryan Mauro is a fellow with the Clarionproject.org, the founder of WorldThreats.com and a frequent national security analyst for Fox News Channel. He can be contacted at ryanmauro1986@gmail.com.


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Decision time has arrived for Iowa’s Republican voters. The polls generally show Mitt Romney in first, followed by Ron Paul and Rick Santorum, but there is room for an upset with 41% of voters saying they haven’t made up their minds. The field will likely be thinner tomorrow as at least one candidate will probably drop out after a disappointing showing.

Mitt Romney has a lead of just 1.3% in the RealClearPolitics poll average. Romney is predicting victory, but a first-place finish isn’t vital to his campaign. One of his aides explained, “Iowa is about eliminating Gingrich and Perry without us having to spend a lot of money to do so.” Apparently, Santorum and Paul aren’t viewed as real threats. Mitt Romney has a huge lead in New Hampshire and seems certain to win there. He is also ahead nationally.

A victory by Ron Paul is a distinct possibility. He is right on Romney’s heels in the polls and his non-Republican supporters can show up and declare themselves as members of the party just to support him. InsiderAdvantage has him statistically tied for first at 22.4% to Romney’s 22.7. That poll has Santorum in third at 18%, Gingrich at 16%, Perry at 9.6%, Bachmann at 5.8% and Huntsman at 1.8%. Public Policy Polling has Ron Paul with 20%, one ahead of Romney. A win in Iowa could give Paul momentum into New Hampshire, where most polls have him in a distant second place to Romney.

Rick Santorum is the latest candidate to surge, bringing a huge boost in fundraising and momentum after lingering in the single digits for the entire campaign. The polls consistently show him in third place, but one had him in second place at 17%, seven behind Romney and third ahead of Ron Paul. The aforementioned Public Policy Polling survey that shows Paul in first has Santorum in third, only one point behind Romney and two behind Paul, making it essentially a three-way tie.

Newt Gingrich’s massive leads in the polls have collapsed as every other presidential candidate took aim at him. About 45% of all television ads in Iowa became attack ads against Gingrich. He admits that he did not respond quickly or decisively enough against them. When asked whether he felt he was “Swift-Boated,” referring to a campaign that raised questions about Senator John Kerry’s military service in 2004, he said he felt “Romney-boated.”

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  • StephenD

    Chez (Iresponded to your e-mail), you asked so here it is:
    Santorum to me is the consummate politician. He hedges and haws around questions put directly to him. He seems too willing to play the diplomat with Islam. I still am with Gingrich even with all his faults. At least we know he will focus on the economy and he knows the issue of Islam.

  • ze-ev ben jehudah

    I still like to put my dough on Newt Gingrich couse I like him the most.
    Besides that, he would make a good president and I think he can knock out
    Barack Hussein Obama flat ( a fellah I don't trust one bit).
    Happy New Year to you all.

  • ObamaYoMoma

    “Here is my simple tag line: Somebody who will lie to you to get you to be president will lie to you when they are president.”

    Gingrich has folded like a cheap suit and loss his self control, as all of us that have been following his career for many years always new he would. He's toast.

  • Steve

    US elected Obama as a way of an apology to the muslim world. GOP has no answer for Obama. Whatever happens, US is going down the toilet, fast.

    This is sooo good to watch.

    • mrbean

      The US elected Obama out of the "it all be whitey fault" white guilt that blacks have used a crutch since the 1960s. Obama has been proven to be incompetent, a man completely out of his depth who has no understanding of real-world economics or realpolitik, who cannot deliver a coherent speech without the aid of a teleprompter, who is compelled to rely on the advice of 3rd string leftist ideologues, and who has absolutely no prior, genuine accomplishments to his credit outside of a capacity for illegal political maneuvering, polished mendacity and the ability to wear perfectly creased trousers? How else would a Alinskyite black community organizer become president? He is a feckless nonentity as Commander-in-Chief. The Republicans also chose "seen too many winters" turncoat McCain as their candidate which didn't help them at all.

  • alexander

    E A S Y W I N :
    promise to close southern border, tax heavily goods from China, drill wherever oil is.
    Jobs and security what it is.
    Say it and the do it!

    • ObamaYoMoma

      What about amnesty? If amnesty is ever implemented, it will mean first the end of conservatism of America, then next it will mean the end of America.

  • StephenD

    "What about amnesty?"

    A Conversation that must be had to be sure. But…Until we secure the damn border these conversations are useless.

    • Fred Dawes

      amneaty has been done under bush with obama, the people of the third world are moving here by the millions each year, within 10 years this will be a hispanic country poor evil mean and mass murder can't stop it now.

  • RPisOurSalvation

    Ron Paul 2012!

  • crackerjack

    The tea party approved ship of fools is heading for the iceberg, regardless who is at the helm. There is more to the world than hateing gays and loving Israel.

    After giving us the worst president in US history, the GOP now presents the worst candidates in US history.

  • http://www.contextflexed.com Flipside

    Ryan Mauro is lying about the Iowa poll results. Therefore his entire analysis is spurious.

  • Fred Dawes

    Ron Paul is the best guy he is not a globalists and the boy can't buy him that is who so many boys hate him. why isn't it people want to be puppets of the one world guys why is it some PEOPLE Want us to pay 100 percent of our money to the globalists bankers and make us into some third world money nation.