Mitt Romney makes his return to Iowa on May 27. Some thought he would skip the state entirely after losing badly there in 2008, but Romney needs to compete there or risk losing his shot at the GOP nomination.
Business Insider's John Ellis says:
The problem with that gambit is that it might enable someone else to come in and "occupy" Romney's "space." Right now, Romney is the GOP establishment's default candidate. But they could fall in love with anyone who looked strong in Iowa, touched all the GOP establishment's hot buttons and seemed acceptable to social conservatives. The GOP establishment worries that Romney's health care initiative in Massachusetts and his religion (Mormon) may make him unacceptable to the party's social conservative base.
The only way for Romney to prevent an "establishment alternative" from emerging in Iowa is by competing there and beating anyone who might occupy his "space." Presumably Romney would then go on to win New Hampshire and dispatch with all those who seek the GOP establishment's affections.