Monday, February 1, 2016

Talking with VOA about Iowa's "socialists"

Happy Iowa Caucus Day to all you political junkies out there. In honor the day, Voice of America has this piece exploring why so many Democratic caucus goers in the Hawkeye State say they have no problem with socialism.

Reporter William Gallo asks them and me about the phenomenon, and gets a similar answer: the legacy of early Euro-American settler groups casts a very long shadow. "“To a lot of people, what Bernie Sanders is suggesting is a completely foreign idea,” one resident of (very Danish-American) Elk Horn tells him. “Whereas to Scandinavians, this is something that in the old country, it’s been this way for a while.”

For more background on the ethnographic legacy in Iowa and why it matters to the rest of the American political map, please consider my recent Politico story on such, or if you're up for a book length treatment, American Nations.

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