The Presidential Primary season is upon us. In less than a week, we will get the first trickles of results coming in from around the country. Up first will be the Iowa Caucus, followed by New Hampshire, Nevada, and South Carolina primaries before March 1st, when the landscape will truly begin to take shape. The Presidential Primary in New York will be held on April 19th.
The Iowa caucus is the first voting event in the Presidential Primary process, but instead of casting ballots as most voters in our country do, Iowans gather and vote in person to support a particular candidate. There are almost 1700 precincts in Iowa where citizens get together to select their candidates.
It should be noted that the Republican winner of the Iowa caucus is not always the eventual nominee. In 2008, John McCain only took 13% of the Iowan primary enroute to running against Barack Obama in the General Election. In 2012, it was Rick Santorum who tied Mitt Romney with 25% in the Iowa Caucus enroute to a second-place finish with just over 20 percent of the Popular Vote totals.
On the Democratic side, Iowa’s results have been a bit more consistent at predicting the nominee. For the last 20 years, the candidate who won Iowa became the party's nominee for President. With the race tightening between Hillary Clinton and Bernie Sanders in Iowa over the last few weeks, we will have to pay attention to see if this trend continues.
Up next, New Hampshire, which by New Hampshire State Law must be the first contest of its kind by at least one week, is the nation's first true election event in which voters cast ballots.