Rudy Giuliani will not participate in the traditional show of strength for Republicans before the Iowa caucuses. In a nomination race that is breaking a lot of traditions, Rudy is looking to buck another trend, namely that no one who has skipped the straw poll in the last 30 years has won the caucus.

Jonathan Martin’s blog on Politico charts the ups and downs of Rudy’s decision, the main upside being able to save a lot of money and also avoiding the damage a poor showing would give had he been an active participant.

Of course there may be drawbacks to this decision as Martin points out:

The downside is that more than a few Iowa Republicans, already uncertain as to Rudy’s intentions in their state, will feel dissed. As Beaumont notes, no candidate in the past 30 years has skipped the straw poll and won the caucuses. You can be sure that the other candidates in the race, particularly Romney, will make hay out Rudy’s decision to bypass Ames.

So this begs the question, does New York not play well in Iowa? Hillary is facing fading polling numbers in the caucuses and Mitt Romney is coming up on Rudy fast.

Maybe they should ship some hot dogs out there and perhaps have a performance or two of Cats in Des Moines to put them more in a New York state of mind?