For starters, the media would have you believe that the 123,000 people who turned out for the Hawkeye Caucii was a record. This is simply not true except superficially. If you take out the non-Republicans who came into the caucuses last night for Ron Paul, the Republican turn out was less than 2008 — even considering the ratio of independents to Republicans who turned out in 2008.

At its best, this turn out does not signal core enthusiasm with the field as it is presently constituted and perhaps signals that an alternative could still jump in. Considering “winner takes all” races do not come until April, someone coming out now could campaign and build momentum to the winner takes all states…

If Rick Perry drops out of the race it will be the ultimate failure of the tea party movement to see the race come down to two or three big government conservatives. Romney and Santorum both hide behind compassionate conservatism to expand the state to suit their purposes. Only Rick Perry has run a campaign to make Washington “as inconsequential to our lives as possible.”