I need to begin by telling you that I have no inside information. I have no connections to the powers in either party or the pollsters who are already giving us all kinds of numbers and matchups.
What I have done is carefully read the tea leaves and clearly monitored all the smoke signals. Based on all I have gathered at this point in time, assuming there are no new major events or changes, I will confidently make the following predictions:
No. 1: Those who are paying attention will be bored out of their minds about the whole Republican dogfight by this June. The election cycle is just much too long.
No. 2: The Republicans, with their take-no-prisoners, extended primary serum featuring too many debates, will turn more people off and damage their nominee both image-wise and financially. The Republican hierarchy has mandated that there will be only sanctioned debates compared to the 20 in 2012. Still, for me, too many!
No. 3: Nice guy, super Christian Mike Huckabee and sad hanger-on Rick Santorum, as well as the six-pack of governors and senators, will muddy the waters; but since they ain’t going nowhere, you wonder why they are bothering.
No. 4: Even the once smart Newt Gingrich, who is trying to use up more of Sheldon Adelson’s Las Vegas money by sticking his pinky in the ring, will tarnish his already-tarnished image down to near zero.
No. 5: Rand Paul will attract a modicum of populist attraction in the Republican zoofest with his offbeat Libertarian ideas, but not enough to get very far.
No. 6: Sooner or later we’ll find out if Chris Christie is not a Kardashian wannabe and know whether he’s a conservative, moderate or just a fast-on-the-trigger rapper.
No. 7: I would make a contribution to the humble Ben Carson—here it is—please save us all the time and money; go home and run for congress if you want. We’re living with a current president who had no meaningful government experience. We will not elect another one.
No. 8: The Tea Party and conservative Republicans refuse to believe this but only a moderate Republican has a chance to become president.
No. 9: Romney quietly hung around hoping the party would draft him as their candidate. With the entry of Jeb Bush in the free-for-all, he started edging into the fray. When he saw he wouldn’t get the nomination, he will drop out. He did.
No. 10: Romney was running but when you lose to a weak incumbent 51% to 47% in 2012, the major non-Mormon financial interests will not pony up enough support.
No. 11: Jeb Bush and Mitt Romney are basically the same kind of moderate Republican candidates. Both decent men with solid governing experience, but Bush will raise more money and not have Romney’s stinging defeat to hamper him.
No. 12: The negative reaction to another Bush candidate can be more easily overcome than Romney’s inadequate campaign in 2012.
No. 13: Hillary will be the Democratic nominee. There will be no formidable opponent. There isn’t anyone coming out of the woods like 2008. Matter of fact, the Democrats don’t have many potential candidates coming up in their farm system.
No. 14: We’ll see a lot of Billy and not much of Barack as the final campaign gets underway.
No. 15: Hill, as we call her, will be a very vulnerable candidate, unable to shake the aura of O’Bama, whom she dutifully served, as well as her undistinguished record as a Senator or Secretary of State.
No. 16: Jeb will be the top of the Republican ticket and our next president if he selects someone with foreign relations experience as his VP running mate.
No. 17: The Republicans will maintain a majority in both the house and senate and finally have a chance to exercise their long sought desires to shrink government somewhat and rebalance a lot of what Obama tried to do with executive orders—if Bush is as strong a leader as he appears. Just don’t expect too much!
No. 18: An unconscionable amount of money will be “wasted” in electing a president in 2016.
No. 19: The voter turnout in 2016 will be lower than it was in 2012 because the election cycle is much too long and there will be an oversaturation of negative advertising; and both candidates will appear to be less worthwhile humans than they really are.
No. 20: In 2017, the economy will begin to show more significant signs of improvement. Corporate investments and expansion will stimulate a better job market and construction and real estate will continue to grow.