The presidential GOP Iowa Caucuses have become the traditional staging area of the GOP clown car, but this election cycle some GOP candidates race to portray themselves as moderate and sane vis a vis their records.
There's Sen. Rand Paul (R-Kentucky) joining the I'm-a-moderate caucus though Paul (Peter, NYT) just can't help himself from loudly declaring the Federal Reserve is an evil that needs to be vanquished in defense of "liberty" (Audit the Fed; Jacobs, Des Monies Register), notwithstanding the fact the Fed staved off a depression after the Bush-Cheney global economic crisis. (Donnan, Financial Times)
Des Moines Dem of the Bleeding Heartland in Iowa sees Chris Christie and Jeb Bush competing for the moderate image as well. Writes Des Moines Dem:
Theoretically, if the presidential field remains fractured with half a dozen conservatives or more, a moderate candidate could sneak through to place first or second in the Iowa caucuses. I see Bush as slightly better positioned here than Christie. Although Bush's stands on immigration and Common Core are huge negatives with the hard-core conservatives, they will not bother establishment Republicans. Christie registered the highest unfavorable ratings in the recent Des Moines Register/Bloomberg Politics poll of Iowa Republicans, and Bush is likely to raise far more money during the first half of this year. Those dynamics may make Iowa moderates ready to coalesce around Jeb by the summer or early fall.
As for Scott Walker, the word is out he is a destructive extremist who has attacked voting rights, the environment, the University of Wisconsin, K-12 education, the search for truth as a mission of higher education, the right to unionize, the largest city in Wisconsin, and rewarded campaign contributors, while dodging criminal probes of corruption and misconduct in public office.
Hence, Scott Walker is polling number one in the white, rural bin of nativism steeped in pig shite that is the Republican Party of Iowa.
Walker v. Jeb seems likely, unless Walker, in London for four days and meeting with British Prime Minister David Cameron, tells journalists that he cares too much about our friends across the pond to not advise Cameron that England should scrap its number one-ranked, socialized healthcare system. (The Independent)