James Antle, Washington Examiner:
Iowa evangelicals could play an unfamiliar role in 2016: Putting down an insurgent Republican candidacy rather than boosting one. This is a crucial demographic in the country’s first nominating contest. According to the 2012 entrance polls, 57 percent of last time’s caucus-goers were evangelicals or born-again Christians…
A Trump Iowa loss would disrupt the early state juggernaut the billionaire is counting on to keep the field from easily coalescing around an alternative candidate. What if someone with experience in elected office rises there? The CBS/YouGov poll that showed Trump regaining a double-digit lead in Iowa also found Ted Cruz slipping past Carson for second place.
One of Cruz’s Senate colleagues, Marco Rubio, may also be positioned to make an Iowa play. After the Paris attacks, conservative activists and likely caucus-goers in the state have begun to voice doubts about Carson’s lack of foreign-policy experience, opening the door to the two senators who round out the top four in most Iowa polling. “This is THE Iowa fight to watch,” said Republican consultant Rick Wilson, who is backing Rubio.