Republican Senator Tim Scott of South Carolina has made a clear political bet this election cycle – he is staking a lot of money, as well as some of his highly experienced campaign staff, on Iowa. The senator’s decision was made at a critical moment in his campaign for the Republican nomination for president. After a strong showing in the first two Republican televised primary debates, Senator Scott appeared to be losing steam and had slipped in the polls in early primary states. With fortunes declining, Senator Scott made a bold move. He diverted his personal resources and that of his national political action committee to what he called “ground zero” – Iowa. He tripled his staff on the ground and purchased large blocks of television and radio advertising there. The bet appears to have paid off, at least in the short term. Senator Scott rose in the polls in Iowa following his move, and has been able to raise his profile in the early voting states, which in turn will help him in later ones. However, Senator Scott’s Iowa gambit could have unforeseen consequences. It’s likely that his resources have been diverted from other states and that the campaign team he invested in could be hard to replace if he’s forced to move on from Iowa prematurely. Ultimately, Senator Scott’s gamble on Iowa will only be considered a success if it’s followed by a win in that crucial early primary state or, at the very least, a strong showing that elbows him past the competition and into the national spotlight. Until then, it’s anyone’s guess as to how this risky move will play out.