The 2020 Iowa Democratic caucuses are taking place today (February 3rd 2020), and are the first test of the candidates at the ballot box in the presidential primary season.

By examining results from past Democratic presidential candidate nomination campaigns, to what extent can Iowa be regarded as a bellwether for the race? How likely, statistically speaking, is it that the candidate that wins Iowa will go on to become the Democratic nominee? Have there been cases where candidates have performed poorly in the state, but then gone on to win the nomination overall?

  • 5
    5 of the last 7 winners got the nomination. Bill Clinton lost bigly but won the nom. It's more predictive at picking losers: nobody finishing worse than third has gotten the nomination recently.
    – dandavis
    Commented Feb 3, 2020 at 20:55
  • 2
    Heh heh. Looking at the news this morning, maybe nobody wants to win this one. cnn.com/2020/02/04/politics/…
    – puppetsock
    Commented Feb 4, 2020 at 13:54


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