It never ceases to amaze me how an event like my home state Iowa Caucuses can be covered by so many smart people who have absolutely no idea what they’re talking about.

You would think with nothing less than the presidency of these United States at stake, folks whose job it is to be well-informed would up their game a bit. Except I’m frequently asked questions with flawed premises I have to correct by people in national politics, and far too often it is the candidates and/or their consultants who believe many of the same myths as well.

This column intends to set the record straight.

Lie & Clever Myth #1: Iowa isn’t really all that important and rarely decides who the nominee is. Fact: The Iowa caucuses have actually launched the last four general election winners.

Fact: Since the advent of the first-in-the-nation Iowa Caucuses in 1976, the winner has gone on to be the nominee of at least one of the major political parties 75 percent of the time.

Fact: The Republicans have never nominated someone that didn’t finish in the top three in Iowa.

So bottom line: If you’re not competitive in Iowa, you’re not competitive — period.

Continue reading →