To No More Mister Nice Blog's Steve M., who took Frank Bruni to task for pretending that the Iowa caucuses introduce conservative extremism into the Republican Party.
I'm actually a bit ambivalent about this. On the one hand, it is definitely true that primary voters are more ideological than parties as a whole, and it's also definitely true that conservative activists have used the presidential nomination process over the years, and primary elections for other offices as well, to push the party to the right -- well to the right, overall, from where GOP voters as a whole might be most comfortable.
At the same time, however, there's nothing special about Iowa in all of that. The idea that Bruni is accepting, and that I've seen numerous times from others, that social conservatives and others with (relatively) fringe views are particularly to be found in the Hawkeye State is just nonsense. The silliest bit is where Bruni talks about "The state’s unrepresentative caucuses — in which a mere 100,000 or so of the most fervent voters, almost all of them white..." I'll not try to explain what's wrong with that. You can figure it out, right?
At any rate: nice catch!