Cruz and Clinton Victorious in Iowa Caucus
From coin tosses to Senator Ted Cruz trumping Donald Trump himself, the Iowa caucus was full of surprises and plot twists catching voters off guard, adding a little excitement to their Monday night last week.
The numbers and results were undeniably close to say the least. On the democratic side, Hillary Clinton declared a razor-thin victory against Bernie Sanders after a coin toss was held to designate a final delegate. On the republican side, a surprising first place win by Cruz, with less than a 3% margin, bumped Trump down to second place.
However, there is speculation that there is a slight flaw in Cruz’s victory.
According to Trump, the Texas senator’s campaign committed fraud. Cruz’s campaign allegedly told caucus attendees that Dr. Ben Carson was dropping out of the presidential race and heading back home to Florida. Cruz’s campaign then told all of the Carson supporters to vote for Cruz instead. Could this be a possible explanation for his sudden victory to first place?
“After looking into Iowa and Cruz, I was surprised,” said Elainy Mata, president of the Suffolk University polling club. “CNN stated that he gathered a lot of momentum and support with the Evangelists in Iowa. Remember, he did say he was a Christian first and an American second. Religious support played a big role in the caucus and Cruz has stood by his beliefs and he used it to his advantage to win.”
Despite the bump in Cruz’s campaign trail, the top three candidates remain: businessman Donald Trump, Texas Senator Ted Cruz, and Florida Senator Marco Rubio.
“Marco Rubio is the underdog!” praised Mata. Rubio placed third in Iowa, just about 1% behind Trump. Other Republican candidates, like former senator Rick Santorum, received only 1% of the total votes.
“I love that Santorum dropped out, as I see him as a product of the past,” said Joseph Tringale, board member of Suffolk University’s College Republicans club. “Too socially conservative and pretends to like small government, yet would like a big government to legislate morality.”
There has also been some speculation over the method used to declare Clinton the winner over Sanders. The race between the two democratic candidates was so close, Iowans relied on a coin toss in at least six precincts; Clinton was declared winner each time.
“I honestly think if you have to flip a coin to choose between an open socialist and a woman who will do anything for a vote, we have a bigger problem,” said Tringale. “The only people that vote for Bernie are economic illiterates [who think] ‘Woo! Free college! Don’t worry about the $19T national debt!’”
Senator Rick Santorum, Senator Rand Paul, Governor Mike Huckabee, and Governor Martin O’Malley have suspended their campaigns after the Iowa caucus. The four candidates didn’t wait for the New Hampshire primary, taking place only a week after Iowa, to determine whether or not they have a fighting chance for the presidency.
“I felt particularly bad for Martin O’Malley because hearing him speak twice, I felt that he really wanted to prevail from being a small name next to two big ones,” said Mata. “The numbers are embarrassingly low that solely based on that, I think it was smart to drop out.”
The New Hampshire primary will be held Tuesday, February 9, 2016. The percentages are close in the granite state as well, but on the Republican side, it is looking as though Trump is taking the lead by a near 20-point margin.
“For Democrats, it totally depends on who goes out and votes,” said Mata. “For Republicans, I actually think it might be a close call between Rubio and Trump.”
A representative of the College Democrats club could not be reached for comment.