Not much of a post today, but I've got a little time to kill as I'm in the middle of a talk on time management as part of my orientation for my new gig at South Dakota State.
Whilst effectively multi-tasking between the rah rah lectures and blog reading, I came across this post on skipping Iowa by Jonathan Bernstein.
To reiterate one point: no, it's not too early to talk about this. Laying down the groundwork for Iowa an the other early contests is the essence of the invisible primary. We're fast approaching the time that events like Tom Harkin's steak fry start to attract possible Democratic hopefuls, say Joe Biden who dropped in this year, and candidates of all stripes will begin trolling the state fair for more important reasons than checking out the butter cow.
One other bit I'd add one the long list of candidates that skipped Iowa, only to flame out in spectacular fashion later is Rudy Giuliani. By skipping these early contests, Giuliani and these other candidates he mentioned showed a fundamental misunderstanding of the process necessary to win the nomination. While that might have been excusible in the 70s when parties and candidates were figuring out the new system, today it's just plain stupid. As we know the triangulation on a candidate by party activists is key to winning the nomination. Pulling out of these early races either shows a candidate doesn't understand this, or that he or she is so desperate at that point because of their systematic failures in the pre-primary phase.
So to rope this back to Christie, if he's serious and smart, he'll no doubt be popping up here in the near future.