Every four Januaries, the Iowa caucuses lure the political media to the heartland. Since 1972, the state has provided Americans with their first taste of the direction each political party may be heading in choosing a presidential candidate.
In 2012, Iowa was not satisfied with only being a primaries predictor. Now Iowa electors got their first glimpse of where their votes may be heading.
Politics got taken out to the ballpark.
The Quad Cities River Bandits, a Class A affiliate of the St. Louis Cardinals, held Presidential Bobblehead Night at Modern Woodman Park in Davenport, Iowa. The giveaway featured both Barack Obama and Mitt Romney bobbleheads, but spectators did not get both dolls.
At the stadium's entrance, fans who chose to enter from the left side were given an Obama bobblehead, while fans who entered from the right, received a Romney doll. Using the amount of bobbleheads given away on each side, the River Bandits could determine which political party the game's audience was leaning.
According to WQAD-TV, the current president's bobblehead was more popular than Governor Romney's doll.
"It looks like Barack Obama is strongly winning on the bobblehead front,” said Bandits' General Manager Stephanie Brown. The River Bandits directed a mock bobblehead poll four years ago with Obama defeating 2008 Republican candidate John McCain in giveaways.
On Election Day 2012, Iowa may come down to a narrower margin than Modern Woodman Park's sample size predicted. A recent poll on realpolitics.com claims Obama leads Romney by just one percent, 45.3 percent to 44.3 percent, in the state of Iowa.
In the 2008 election, Obama won 53.9 percent of the vote to McCain's 44.4 percent, giving the president-elect all seven of Iowa's electors.
The River Bandits lost the actual game, 4-3, to the Burlington Bees, a Class A affiliate of the Oakland Athletics. Future giveaway nights include Water Bottle Giveaway night, Jason Motte Gnome Night and Replica World Series Championship Ring Night.