Romney’s dangerous temptation in Iowa
The race for the Republican nomination is looking a lot less competitive than it once did, with Mitt Romney appearing firmly in control. But one place where that’s not true is in Iowa, which holds the first caucus two months from today. Earlier this year, Iowa flirted with irrelevance, as top names like Romney stayed away, mainstream candidates like Tim Pawlenty flopped, and the state’s socially conservatives Republicans swooned over a series of fringe figures, including Michele Bachmann, who won an important straw poll in August. Iowa’s role as springboard to the nomination - think Barack Obama - seemed in jeopardy; its caucusgoers appeared likelier to back someone unacceptable to the rest of the country and thereby ratify Romney’s decision not to compete seriously.