Opposite assertions used for same argument

Friday, January 15, 2016

Critics of the Iowa presidential year caucuses use two nearly opposite arguments in support of stripping Iowa of its first-in-the-nation status.

One argument is that since Iowa is not representative of the demographics of the rest of the country, it does not deserve to have so much influence in the nominating process. The other argument is that since Iowa caucuses are not predictive of the nominee, they are irrelevant to the nominating process.

The fact is that Iowa has an important - but limited - role in the nominating process.

It makes sense that a low-population state like Iowa becomes an early focus in the multi-state process. Voters in more populous states have a better opportunity to evaluate candidates before choosing and candidates with limited resources have more opportunity to make a case directly to the public.