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Jim Hightower notes that the Supreme Court’s Citzens United ruling is bailing out the uninspiring Republican field in his column, “Mediocre Candidates And Corporate Cash Storm Iowa:”

And away we go!

Not just into a new year, but –zap! — suddenly we find ourselves catapulted en masse into the turbulent Twilight Zone of the 2012 presidential election. On day three of the year, while most of us were still woozy from our New Year’s Eve celebration, Iowa voted. Well … sort of.

The media’s breathless coverage of Tuesday night’s 1,774 local Republican caucuses in the Hawkeye State offered a mind-boggling blizzard of statistics, but made practically no mention of two telling stats.

First: 5.5 percent. That’s the percentage of Iowa’s eligible voters who ventured out in the cold to pick from the GOP’s rather unappetizing menu of Mitt, Rick, Ron, Newt, The Other Rick and Michele. So the top vote-getters (Romney and Santorum) each got only 25 percent of the paltry turnout of 122,000 Iowans who bothered to show up — fewer people than who live in one block of some big cities.

Second: zero. That’s the number of delegates allocated to the contenders in Tuesday’s Hawkeye hullabaloo. You see, the 25 actual voting delegates Iowa will send to the Republican presidential nominating convention this summer will be chosen in a separate, arcane series of county, district and state meetings. The caucuses are just for show — a glorified straw poll.

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