CNN just called Iowa for Ted Cruz . It was a three-way race between Cruz, Donald Trump and Marco Rubio , and Cruz pulled it out, leading now 28%-24%. It appears Trump has underperformed his poll numbers, and the story of the night may be Marco Rubio, who has 23% of the vote. He undoubtedly took a lot of votes away from Donald Trump, doing very well in areas Trump was expected to dominate. That does not bode well for Trump going forward.
No doubt Cruz will get a bump out of this win, but Rubio may get an even bigger bump because he was not expected to do this well, while Cruz was always supposed to win in Iowa. The heavy Evangelical presence in Iowa’s GOP was tailor-made for Cruz.
The big question now is how will this affect Trump? Will Trump quickly recover in New Hampshire with a big win, or will his numbers now sink all across the nation since he has now lost the first contest.
I would expect to see a big Rubio surge in New Hampshire over the next week.
The media will play Rubio all week long now. You will see him on all the stations and he will be the media darling. How will that play in the next few states? It’s going to be something to watch.