Reports indicate that Jeb Bush is planning to skip the Iowa Straw Poll, an event which happens in August and is somewhat mixed in selecting someone who goes on to win the Iowa Caucuses. There are now reports that Jeb may be skipping more than just the straw poll.
Report from Buzzfeed News:
Jeb Bush’s decision to forego this summer’s Iowa Straw Poll has roiled many conservatives in the state, but that snub might only be the beginning: According to three sources with knowledge of Bush’s campaign strategy, the likely Republican presidential candidate does not plan to seriously contest the first-in-the-nation caucuses — and may ultimately skip the state altogether.
Tim Miller, a spokesman for Bush, strongly denied that the candidate planned to write off Iowa, and suggested those who say otherwise are merely speculating. “There is nobody with any shred of authority or proximity to Gov. Bush suggesting that, should he decide to run for president, he skip or ignore Iowa,” he said.
But a top Republican consultant and a high-level fundraiser — both of whom have been courted by the Bush camp, and requested anonymity to recount private conversations — said Bush’s advisers were explicit that the campaign would not seriously invest in Iowa during the primaries. Similarly, an operative involved in Bush’s yet-to-be-announced campaign told BuzzFeed News earlier this year that the state was a low priority.
There’s a difference between “skipping the caucuses,” and choosing not to seriously invest in them. Jeb is focused on the long game of the primary, and Iowa is often just a stepping stone which frequently doesn’t choose the nominee.
However, if you think back to 2008, there is a danger to ignoring Iowa. Rudy Giuliani, who was leading in many national polls, wrote off Iowa in favor of New Hampshire. In the end, he bombed out fairly quick because he never got any momentum despite his strong national polling. John McCain skipped Iowa in 2008 also and he made his way to the nomination. So, I suppose Bush’s strategy could go either way.