As others see it: Keep the straw pollHere we go again, writing about presidential politics in Iowa.
By: Mason City (Iowa) Globe Gazette, Worthington Daily Globe
Here we go again, writing about presidential politics in Iowa. That’s probably not surprising given the fact a lot of professional pundits and those who are merely curious to see who’s snooping around the state with an eye on the 2016 race and the long process leading to the first-in-the-nation caucuses.
That’s OK by us. We like seeing who’s testing the waters. And we like it for more than the political aspect. The Iowa process brings in lots of money and focuses lots of attention on the state. That’s why we don’t want to see the GOP Straw Poll discontinued as suggested by Gov. Terry Branstad recently.
The Straw Poll, of course, is the big one-day event in Ames where candidates give their best presentations and those attending show their preference in the Straw Poll.
Candidates sink a lot of time and money in the poll trying to finish at or near the top, sometimes busing in people and plying them with food and entertainment in what's become a picnic-style event. But the results are not binding, and like the caucuses, the Straw Poll winner doesn’t always become the party’s nominee. ...
State Rep. Josh Byrnes, R-Osage, said he looks at the results as being symbolic.
“But when I put on my economic development hat, I look at all of the money that is infused into the state, and that’s a good thing. And it engages a lot of young people into the process, and that’s a good thing, too,” he said. “Let’s go ahead and do it and have some fun, but let’s remember it’s early in the game.”
We say keep the Straw Poll and let the chips fall where they may.