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Tue Jun 11, 2019, 02:19 PM

 

Why is Iowa Important?

A person asked this in another thread and I thought it best to post my viewpoint here.

Ok, sit down. Put on your tin foil hat, I am going to tell you the real reason New Hampshire and later Iowa were always given so much emphasis in presidential politics.

1. They are relatively small states, especially New Hampshire, and that made it easy for the press to cover.

Now hold on for the turbulence...

2. They are overwhelming white and non-immigration states historically and don't have very large cities.

That's right, the national media owned by white male protestants and the entire white male protestant power structure back in the day wanted the narrative about the next President to be set by this overwhelming white protestant states.

They didn't want all those grubby immigrants and minorities crowded into those big cities setting the table, so to speak. And it also excluded all the white trash factory workers. Let me not leave them out.

They wanted Norman Rockwell small business and family farm owners to set the table. In short, their view of "real" America.

Many people, including me, still thinks this is more true than not.
If I were to vote in a presidential
primary today, I would vote for:
Undecided

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Response to uawchild (Original post)

Tue Jun 11, 2019, 02:25 PM

1. They have unearned "importance" only because they are the "first" (since 1920, 1916 respectively)

 

Iowa, because it is a caucus state which feeds unpredictability and the opportunity for MSM to do their constant "man on the street" polling/interviews and focus groups. NH is a primary state but comes on the heels of Iowa.

Yes, Iowa is overwhelmingly white, but I think it is nothing more than they are the FIRST and traditionally have held that oversized importance. The latter point only underscored when you look at their poor record of picking "winners"
If I were to vote in a presidential
primary today, I would vote for:
Joe Biden

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Response to uawchild (Original post)

Tue Jun 11, 2019, 02:26 PM

2. move california to iowa's date and move iowa to stupor tuesday nt

 

If I were to vote in a presidential
primary today, I would vote for:
Joe Biden

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Response to uawchild (Original post)

Tue Jun 11, 2019, 02:38 PM

3. How about an answer that doesn't involve lazy stereotypes and conspiracies?

 

New Hampshire is the first State Primary because it was...the first State Primary.

Take at look at the 1968 Primary results. Most States didn't involve voters at all in their delegate selection. The New Hampshire Primary has existed since 1916 and into the 1960s was one of easiest Primaries for candidates to run in; hence it became popular with challengers. It's also small enough for candidates to engage face to face with voters.

Iowa also had a long history of Caucusing, which again meant actual voters got to participate. Following the horrendous 1968 Convention, the rules were reformed to go from WTA to proportional representation, which again gave lesser know candidates the opportunity to get on the scoreboard.

Sorry to disappoint you.

If I were to vote in a presidential
primary today, I would vote for:
Joe Biden

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Response to brooklynite (Reply #3)

Tue Jun 11, 2019, 02:47 PM

4. Hey, feel free, I am sure it's a coincidence.

 

I know it sounds crazy and conspiratorial.

Call it cliched thinking.

Be disappointed in me for even thinking it's even fractionally a valid view.

Funny how it worked out though, eh?

Delaware was an equally small state, why wasn't it chosen as a test bed early primary state?

Sure, maybe it just happened that New Hampshire was, but, call me silly, maybe Delaware wasn't exalted because it had too large a black population?

Just saying.

I did say I was in tin foil hat territory. lol

And now, of course, tradition dictates that we KEEP the first two primary/cacus contests in these two overwhelmingly white protestant states. New Hampshire is 1.2% African American, Iowa is 2.68%.

Why not move one to, say, Delaware, which is 20.95% African American? That way it would average out to the actual national demographics.
If I were to vote in a presidential
primary today, I would vote for:
Undecided

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Response to uawchild (Reply #4)

Tue Jun 11, 2019, 02:55 PM

5. Why not Delaware?

 

New Hampshire has 50% larger population.

New Hampshire encouraged voting and political candidates. Delaware did not. Didn't have a Primary until 1976.



If I were to vote in a presidential
primary today, I would vote for:
Joe Biden

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Response to brooklynite (Reply #5)

Tue Jun 11, 2019, 03:44 PM

9. Allow me to go on and on and on lol

 

Last edited Tue Jun 11, 2019, 05:08 PM - Edit history (1)

First, thanks for responding, I appreciate actual discussions.

I asked, why not Delaware? I am contending it was because it had too large a black population back in the day for the power that be back in the day and inertia is perpetuating this latent racism.

Let me address your answers in order:

1. New Hampshire has 50% larger population.

New Hampshire's population is 1.356 million, Delaware's is 0.967, that means Delaware's population is 71.31% that of NH, to be accurate as possible.

Ok, so what? Those are both teensy tiny populations compared to the vast majority of states. New Hampshire is ranked 41st in population, Delaware is ranked 45th.

And besides, I thought one selling point FOR New Hampshire being exalted as an early primary state was that it WAS small and HAD a small population, making it easier to campaign in for upstart candidates.

2. New Hampshire encouraged voting and political candidates. Delaware did not.

Ok, this actually makes my point that the white power structure back in the day didn't want states with significant minority and immigrant populations to be the first primary states.

Of course Jim Crow Delaware did not encourage voting, especially by its 20% African American population. That makes my point.
Delaware is a "border state" and was a slave state, even though it stayed in the Union, during the civil war. It has been dealing with that legacy ever since.

That's no excuse to not select it as an early primary state NOW.

3. [Delaware] Didn't have a Primary until 1976.

Ok... But I posed 2 questions, I am not sure if your answer addresses both.

First, as for historical reasons why Delaware wasn't an early primary state, I can see how it might apply.

So Delaware used some more indirect method until 1976? OK. I won't even try to quibble that Delaware's power structure might have been doing so for undemocratic/racial reasons.

Second, so what? 1976 was 43 years ago. Why can't Delaware be a first primary state NOW to more accurately represent the national average demographics.

Delaware/New Hampshire or Delaware/Iowa would average out to ~10% African American representation, which is right in line with the national average.


Ok, let me thank you for the discussion and the opportunity to make my points about the, in my opinion, too overwhelmingly white first caucus/primary states.

I purposely went florid rhetorically at the start to stake out a contrarian position, but I think my underlying contention remains valid:

There is no valid reason to keep the status quo, and the status quo might very well have racial/anti-immigrant roots.


Reasonable people can disagree with my view, so, thank you for the discussion and the exchange of opinions.
If I were to vote in a presidential
primary today, I would vote for:
Undecided

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Response to uawchild (Reply #9)

Tue Jun 11, 2019, 05:11 PM

12. Take a look at the 1968 map...

 

...Dozens of States, with different economic and ethnic makeups, chose not to have voting at all. This had nothing to do with the demographics of the voters, it had to do with good old-fashioned machine politics where decisions were made in smoke-filled rooms (which is in itself counter to your argument, since most political machines made sure that each cultural and ethnic group had a share of influence, to ensure that they turned out votes).

You also seem to be under the impression that we have national Parties which can pick and choose States to play a role in the Presidential process. We don't; both the Democratic and Republican Parties have been a federation of State Party Committees. If one State chose to "prevent" minority voting to "control" the process, another State would be happy to step in and sweep up the political influence.

If I were to vote in a presidential
primary today, I would vote for:
Joe Biden

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Response to brooklynite (Reply #12)

Tue Jun 11, 2019, 07:09 PM

13. I probably am over estimating the degree of centralized control

 

"You also seem to be under the impression that we have national Parties which can pick and choose States to play a role in the Presidential process. We don't; both the Democratic and Republican Parties have been a federation of State Party Committees."

Well, that's the crux of it.

I tend to think that in pragmatic terms we DO have national parties and that the DNC and RNC hold enormous sway over their respective state parties.

Thanks for making the counter argument, it changes my perspective on the process.

Cheers!

If I were to vote in a presidential
primary today, I would vote for:
Undecided

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Response to uawchild (Reply #4)

Tue Jun 11, 2019, 03:19 PM

7. It's not tradition-- it's state law...

 

Each state can set its own primary date, and NH has traditionally threatened to move its date if any other state dares to try to beat it. A couple have played around with the idea, but it's not worth the fight.

From Wiki:

New Hampshire state law[5] stipulates that the presidential primary shall be on the second Tuesday in March (the date when town meetings and non-partisan municipal elections are traditionally held), but that the Secretary of State can change the date to ensure that the New Hampshire primary will take place at least seven days before any "similar election" in any other state. The Iowa caucuses are not considered to be a similar election. In recent election cycles, the New Hampshire primary has taken place the week after the Iowa caucus.

...

New Hampshire's first-in-the-nation primary status was threatened in 2007, when both the Republican and Democratic National Committees moved to give more populous states a bigger influence in the presidential race.[8]

Several states also sought to move up the dates of their 2008 primaries in order to have more influence and dilute the power of the New Hampshire primary.[9] Originally held in March, the date of the New Hampshire primary has been moved up repeatedly to maintain its status as first. The 2008 primary was held on January 8.


If I were to vote in a presidential
primary today, I would vote for:
Joe Biden

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Response to uawchild (Original post)

Tue Jun 11, 2019, 03:18 PM

6. Just knock that chip off your shoulder and move to Iowa

 

where you can meet the candidates as many times as you like, invite them to your home, ask them questions one-on-one. You might find you actually like retail politics instead of the wholesale politics of places like California where campaign money just goes to buying expensive teevee ads.

Don't believe all the Iowa stereotype you see on teevee. We're not all farmers and our farmers aren't ignorant rubes. They're well-educated and hard-workers who, unfortunately, have bought into the repug playbook generations ago. Iowa Dems are as liberal and opinionated as Dems anywhere, we're just usually more polite than Dems in some other places; we don't boo Dems we don't agree with.

Eventually the Iowa caucuses will be over and the candidates and the media will move on to bigger states with more diverse populations and life in Iowa will return to normal. The bigger states may have different results than the Iowa caucuses, may even negate the results. What happens in Iowa may not be important by the time of the national convention but it is important in honing the candidates' ability to get their issues across to the voters.
If I were to vote in a presidential
primary today, I would vote for:
Joe Biden

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Response to SharonClark (Reply #6)

Tue Jun 11, 2019, 05:07 PM

11. I have thought about moving to Iowa!

 

It's at the right latitude and has real seasons. What small cities would be the most attractive for a retired person?
I am a bit of a homebody but like public spaces and institutions. State capitals or college towns seem to be at the top of my lists.

Cheers!
If I were to vote in a presidential
primary today, I would vote for:
Undecided

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Response to uawchild (Original post)

Tue Jun 11, 2019, 03:35 PM

8. Jimmy Carter

 

He worked harder than anyone else ever did getting to know the people, their concerns, their hopes, their personal lives. And with his folksy demeanour he captivated the state which others with far more name recognition paid little attention to. When the results came in "uncommitted" was still the highest return. In second place (presumed winner) was Carter. From then on the media were queing up to talk to him and Rosalynn and his grassroots supporters who went knocking door to door to spread the word "The Peanut Brigade", giving him greater visibility and he went from being completely unknown nationally to being the frontrunner because of Iowa. The rest is history.
If I were to vote in a presidential
primary today, I would vote for:
Joe Biden

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Response to uawchild (Original post)

Tue Jun 11, 2019, 04:08 PM

10. Honestly uaw.. it is because we are so small that is the same for NH too

 

it gives candidates like Mayor Pete and Beto a running chance... the big states cost the big bucks.. they all do.. but it makes it so much harder to get seen... the other thing for Iowa.. because our caucus voters tend to be our most liberal/progressive of our party.. it gives candidates like Bernie in 2016 a chance for national exposure..

Now you are absolutely right about us being basically looking like everyone has just come out of a snowstorm ... we are not a diverse state..

so we have a place.. should we be the first.. depends on what you are looking for.. I am supporting an establishment candidate this time.. but other times I have supported the unknown.. and sometimes successful.. sometimes not.. but at least they got a shot
If I were to vote in a presidential
primary today, I would vote for:
Joe Biden

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Response to Peacetrain (Reply #10)

Wed Jun 12, 2019, 11:41 AM

16. You know I am mostly stirring the pot...

 

I don't have anything against Iowans, it's Iowans, right?

I was just being contrarian about the status quo of both New Hampshire and Iowa getting so much early prominence.

Iowa is safe, it's New Hampshire I want to take down. lol

Iowa at least has a population of ~3 million, that's just about the median population out of all the states. Plus it's not a "coastal" state, it's more representative of "fly over" country.

New Hampshire though.... lol

Cheers!
If I were to vote in a presidential
primary today, I would vote for:
Undecided

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Response to uawchild (Original post)

Wed Jun 12, 2019, 08:50 AM

14. It is also a less expensive media market. Candidates with less money are on a more

 

level playing field in terms of media ad buys.
If I were to vote in a presidential
primary today, I would vote for:
Joe Biden

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Response to ehrnst (Reply #14)

Wed Jun 12, 2019, 11:34 AM

15. New Hampshire is in the Boston media market

 

The southern heavily populated part of New Hampshire is in the very expensive Boston media market.

But hey, I am not disagreeing with anyone here.

I just want to point out that another small state that happens to have a significant minority population (Delaware) might be a better choice than New Hampshire as of 2019.

Cheers!
If I were to vote in a presidential
primary today, I would vote for:
Undecided

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Response to uawchild (Reply #15)

Wed Jun 12, 2019, 12:15 PM

17. I was talking about Iowa. (nt)

 

If I were to vote in a presidential
primary today, I would vote for:
Joe Biden

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