Iowa Caucus

2012 Iowa Caucus
For those of you who don't know, tonight is the first of many political primaries.  This process determines the Republican Presidential Candidate to run for the office against current President Barack Obama come November.  Historically, the Iowa Caucus, in addition to New Hampshire and South Carolina, is of the most important primaries to win.  No candidate has gone on to become the party's candidate without winning Iowa and South Carolina or Iowa and New Hampshire.  A lot of time, effort, and money could be realized a waste after the citizens of Iowa speak their mind tonight.

Front-runners in today's caucus are Mitt Romney, Ron Paul, and Rick Santorum, with Newt Gingrich, Rick Perry, and Michelle Bachman still in contention.

Ron Paul
Ron Paul, often seen as an unelectable libertarian (there is speculation that Paul could eventually run on a third party over the Republican ticket), has seen jaw-dropping success as most polls currently place him closely behind, or in some cases, ahead of the widely favored Romeny.  This Texan Congressman is not a typical candidate in that his views are in some cases criticized as too "left field."*  Most are critical of his ability to act as the nation's commander-in-chief should he be elected, given his more lazzie-faire approach to foreign matters.  However, Paul has always been consistent, transparent, and genuine (the candidate left Iowa for the New Year holiday so as to spend the time with family in Texas.  Paul puts his money where his mouth is - "Family values" at work.), things most Americans are starving for domestically under our current political climate in Washington, DC.  Moreover, the candidate boasts incredible economic insight - again, arguably the thing Americans are concerned with most short term.  I plan on voting for Paul in Virginia's primary in two months.  I think the candidate brings fresh, interesting, and different ideas to the table, something that can't necessarily hurt our nation, especially for only four years (should he be elected).  
Rick Santorum

The last few days has given rise to Rick Santorum's campaign.  Coming out of the ashes, the former Pennsylvanian Senator has the "socially conservative" reputation of the candidates, with a strong emphasis on morality, family, and faith.  Roman Catholic, should he be elected, he would be the second Catholic in office, to John F. Kennedy.  I personally know the things Santorum campaigns on work, but unfortunately Americans don't actually like to do what's right.

Mitt Romney

Mitt Romney, former governor or Massachusetts, is the currently the front-runner in Iowa's caucus and favored to win the candidacy for the Republican ticket.  With a past of changing views on various issues and the development of government run health care (neither of which really help is cause with the deep conservative base) Romney's consistency can be questioned.  Rightfully so.  Although it seems that Mitt has sincerely moved past these issues and genuinely accepted the things he says to believe as what he now actually believes, it is uncertain how unforgiving voters may be come time to cast their vote and critical his past may determine his future.

All this to say - get out and vote, regardless of your ideology.  People have died for you to be able to do it.  and it will only take an hour out of your life (that's a very generous projection too).  

*Used only as an expression with no intention to be taken literally - "Left field" ... "left wing."