It’s official: Ted Cruz is the Republican winner of the Iowa caucus. The Associated Press called the contest, the first vote in the 2016 primaries, for Cruz on Monday evening, after he definitively defeated Donald Trumpand Marco Rubio in the polls with 28% of the vote.
Cruz stressed his conservative credentials in his victory speech. “God bless the great state of Iowa,” he began. “Tonight is a victory for the grass roots. Tonight is a victory for courageous conservatives across Iowa, and all across this nation.”
He continued, “The Republican nominee for the next president of the United States will not be chosen by the media, will not be chosen by the establishment, will not be chosen by lobbyists…but will be chosen by We the People.”
Though this is a big victory for the Cruz campaign, it’s worth noting that the Iowa caucus is becoming less and less reliable at predicting the Republican nominee. In 2012, Rick Santorum won the caucus. Today’s polls will, however, likely shake out a few of the dozen-plus candidates and narrow down the race to half as many.