Cruz and Clinton Deliver Historic Results in 2016 Iowa Caucus
The 2016 Iowa Caucus set multiple historic records on February 1st as the American people had their first say in the upcoming presidential election. Each party had their own moments of glory, and both Cruz and Clinton will be remembered in the history books for breaking a glass ceiling of their own in powerful steps towards change in American politics. The caucus in Iowa was considered somewhat unpredictable by political watchdogs, and the evening did not disappoint.
While Hillary has been around this block before, and was the first woman to win primaries in multiple states in 2008, it should not be overlooked that she is the very first woman to win the Iowa Caucus. She did not get a lot of recognition for this on Monday evening, which is a little surprising.
With the value that is placed on the Iowa Caucuses, the shattering of this gender glass ceiling holds meaningful significance and provides a redefining of the potential of women in politics. At this time, women hold just barely 20% of political seats in national politics and not much more in state and local seats. (source: http://www.cawp.rutgers.edu/current-numbers).
Should Clinton win the nomination for the democrat party (odds), she will be setting another historic record as the first woman to represent the democrat party on the presidential ticket.
Another historic moment in the Iowa caucus for Clinton is a razor thin win over her opponent Bernie Sanders. She defeated Sanders by less than a percentage point, which marks another record setting moment for the evening.
In fact, some precincts were so close that they chose to settle their district with a coin toss. Never in history has the democratic caucus numbers been this close. Though Clinton barely defeated her opponent, she was victorious nonetheless.
Had Sanders been the one to narrowly carve out that victory, he would have been the first Jewish candidate to do so in the United States.
As far as the republicans go, Ted Cruz is the first Hispanic to win any state primary and to win the Iowa caucus. If he goes on to win the nomination and presidency, he will be the first Hispanic to claim those victories as well. Rubio also has the chance to be the first Hispanic to reach those heights in politics, though he has been unable to catch up with Cruz’ numbers as of yet.
Another record setting moment for the GOP was in regards to the turnout of their supporters, breaking the record with more than 180,000 people out caucusing on the republican side. You can view the current odds on who will win the Republican nomination here.
Is ethnicity and gender a determining factor for political success in the United States? The answer to that question may surprise you, it surprised us. According to a 2015 Gallup Poll, more than 90% of Americans indicated that they would indeed vote for a Hispanic, Jewish or female candidate. Political success seems to hinge more on ideology, with 50% of Americans indicating they would not vote for a socialist, which does not bode well for Sanders.
There is no question that politics is being redefined throughout the 2016 presidential election. Cruz winning the Iowa caucus was a bet against the odds and the polls, both of which favored Trump for the win.
Both the odds and the polls pointed to a Clinton victory, but the narrow window by which she achieved this was an unexpected turn of events. Sander’s strength or Clinton’s weakness, however you want to see it, was not something that was predicted by political pundits or those who made the betting odds for the 2016 Presidential election.
What dos this mean for those of us who enjoy betting on the 2016 Presidential election? Not much more than the obvious really. It is just a healthy reminder that nothing is set in stone and things can turn on a dime, completely negating the odds, the polls and the professional opinion of political commentators with decades of experience.