Quadrennial presidential kowtow in Iowa grows old.
Every four years, when Iowa holds its first-in-the-nation caucuses, most presidential candidates profess their undying support for a Washington mandate that forces consumers to buy billions of gallons of ethanol, a costly and inferior fuel produced mostly from corn.
Never mind that this mandate is Big Government writ large, a supposed bugaboo for conservatives. Never mind that this is bad for the environment and for people struggling to make ends meet, professed bugaboos for progressives. Winning in Iowa is apparently too important for candidates to be concerned with such trivialities as consistency.
Typically, one or two candidates come out against the mandate and write off their chances, while the rest pledge their fealty to ethanol. But this year, Sen. Ted Cruz of Texas is trying to buck the trend and win the GOP caucuses in a highly splintered field, even as he says the mandate should be allowed to die when it comes up for renewal.
Iowa is not making things easy for Cruz. A pro-ethanol group has been picketing many of his appearances. And Republican Gov. Terry Branstad, speaking Tuesday at — where else? — the Iowa Renewable Fuels Association's annual conference, said he'd like to see Cruz lose.Read the rest of the USA TODAY Editorial Board's editorial HERE.
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