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Chan Lowe: The Iowa miscount


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He who lives by the stats, must also die by the stats. Mitt Romney was crowing after the New Hampshire primary that he had “made history,” which is to say that no Republican candidate had snagged both Iowa and New Hampshire since Abraham Lincoln or somebody. All this because he had won the Iowa caucuses by eight votes. Evidently, it is hard to do this because only a political contortionist can tie himself in enough knots to appeal to both the God-fearing agrarians of Iowa and the flinty pragmatists of the Granite State.

Romney was trafficking on his presumed universal appeal, derived from both “victories,” to bolster the illusion of inevitability that appears to be his only selling point. He was going to win New Hampshire anyway, but now he goes into South Carolina having really only come in second in Iowa. And it was not a “statistical tie,” which was the gloss Romney tried to put on it. He lost by four times as many votes as the number upon which he based his so-called triumph.

Even before the news, his lead was eroding to a revenge-crazed Newt Gingrich. Now that Perry has slunk back off to service his venal little circle of Texas political back-scratchers, all that’s left is for Newt to crack deals with Attorney General Rick Santorum and Treasury Secretary Ron Paul to fold their tents, and South Carolina could be his for the taking.

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Who do the Iowans think they are--us, twelve years ago?


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About the author
Chan LoweCHAN LOWE has been the Sun Sentinel’s first and only editorial cartoonist for the past twenty-six years. Before that, he worked as cartoonist and writer for the Oklahoma City Times and the Shawnee (OK) News-Star.

Chan went to school in New York City, Los Angeles, and the U.K., and graduated from Williams College in 1975 with a degree in Art History. He also spent a year at Stanford University as a John S. Knight Journalism Fellow.

His work has won numerous awards, including the Green Eyeshade Award and the National Press Foundation Berryman Award. He has also been a finalist for the Pulitzer Prize. His cartoons have won multiple first-place awards in all of the Florida state journalism contests, and The Lowe-Down blog, which he began in 2008, has won writing awards from the Florida Press Club and the Society of Professional Journalists.
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