Right now, the most striking thing about the public polling on the 2016 Republican nomination for President isn’t just the absence of a clear frontrunner: It’s the absence of a clear pair or trio or even a quartet of frontrunners. Republicans have no idea who they will choose. Or do they? Some may know. The Republican establishment often secures the race for their favorite. Rural counties and grassroots are often left to choose between a Democrat they can’t stand and a Republican who is so moderate the difference i s too slim for many. The Republican establishment’s money and their ability to generate all kinds of endorsements and media buzz has chosen candidates in the past. Grassroots voters have watched as their candidate either gets very little press or he is buried under a pile of falsehoods.
The latest Iowa Republican Presidential poll has Mike Huckabee in the pole position with eleven percent, and then eight (!) others are bunched between six and ten percent. The path that every post-1970s Republican primary campaign has ultimately taken, in which a candidate who seems reasonably electable, performs well with “moderate conservative” primary voters and wins the blessing of the party’s donor class successfully buries challengers that have been more popular with the grassroots before the Presidential politics started.
Grassroots voters, usually about 15%, almost always regret going along with the powers that be, but it is usually too late when they finally see that they have listened to the wrong “information”.