Rand Paul had an army of young people in the audience who were boisterous and loud. Rand isn’t going away and is underestimated. His poll numbers are weak, but Republicans deperately need his voters in November 2016 and better not toss him aside as some in the establishment would love to do.
Cruz was tough-minded on terrorism and gave a fabulous tutorial on the Constitution. Carson was thoughtful and witty, and conveyed a horse sense on issues that was reassuring in the wake of his last poor debate performance. Carly brought the crowd to their feet for thunderous applause when she said: “I’m the one who should be debating Hillary Clinton.” Who wouldn’t pay to witness that slaughter?
My three take aways: First, it’s a strong and impressive field this go around. Second, where are the GOP governors? Half are gone from the initial field and Bush, Kasich and Christie were no shows.
Third, the vast majority of Iowa voters that I met haven’t made up their mind. The polls are pretty meaningless at this stage ladies and gentlemen. It’s wide open.
Don’t be surprised if Iowa voters delivers another surprise winner in 2016.
Photo Credit: “DowntownCedarRapids” by Corey Munson