CHALLENGE
THE PREMISE

ELECTIONS 2016

PRESIDENT

February 2015 Edition

CONGRESS

Who will be the
2016 candidates
for President of
the United States?


Republicans


SCOTT WALKER!

Walker has broad appeal to
GOP constituencies and is a
proven winner. Look for him
to select New Mexico
Governor Susanna Marinez
as his running mate.



Who, from among this
strong, diverse field , will
emerge victorious to return
the GOP to the White
House?

COMPETITORS
The road to the White House
leads past the Governor's
mansion. Marco Rubio, Rand
Paul and Ted Cruz need to
go back to their state capitals
and fill out their resumes.
Among governors, Jeb Bush
and Rick Perry are stale, and
worse, remind people of
GWB 43. John Kasich is
unappealing to the base.
Mike Pence is an intriguing
alternative to Walker; the
other Mike (Huckabee) is
NOT!

Democrats


ANDREW CUOMO!????

Look for Hillary to drop out
and open the way for Bill
Clinton's HUD Secretary.
Cuomo, also Cinton's
neighbor in Westchester
County, finished his 2014
re-election with $8.8 million
in the bank, and would have
no problem raising much,
much more. Look for him to
pick MA Senator Elizabeth
Warren - or even Hillary
Clinton! - as his running
mate.



Is Hillary a foregone
conclusion, or will
someone else swoop in and
steal the show?


COMPETITORS
A Clinton run is a 50/50
proposition at best, given
her failures as First Lady
(HIllaryCare) and SecState
(Reset). In the meantime the
prospect keeps her speaking
fees in the stratosphere, and
keeps a path open for the
Clinton's hand-picked
designee: Cuomo. Warren is
an instant contender if she
jumps in. Everyone else is an
also-ran at this point. Webb
is an interesting Presidential
candidate, but a non-starter
in the Primaries: this is the
extreme left Democratic
Party of Sanders and
Warren.

LATEST ELECTION NEWS


Cruz Announces Suspension of Campaign

May 3, 2016 - Texas Senator Ted Cruz announced tonight that he will discontinue his presidential campaign after being defeated in Indiana.

Cruz had expected to do well in Indiana, and indeed needed a good night to stay alive. That was not to be as early returns show Cruz losing all nine of the state's Congressional Districts, and losing in all but a half dozen of its 92 counties.

The last win for Cruz was a month ago in Wisconsin. Lopsided defeats since then in six Northeast states created a self-fulfilling negative feedback loop of doom.

Cruz asserted that even though the campaign is suspended, the movement will continue.

Expect Cruz stay in the Senate, lying in wait for another opportunity in 2020 to reclaim rightful place as the leader of the Anti-DC movement, that he must feel was heisted by Trump.


FEBRUARY 2015 ELECTION NEWS



Media fritters away dwindling credibility attempting to defame Scott Walker

February 24, 2015 - The national media has again demonstrated its well-earned reputation for dishonesty, this time attacking Scott Walker for... well, nothing. The media only discredits itself in these blatantly partisan and substanceless attacks. A Pew poll in 2011 found that 66% of Americans believe media reports are "often inaccurate", and a 2014 Gallup poll rated trust in media at an all-time low of 40%. Not hard to figure out why.

Meanwhile, the public is not fooled and sees in Scott Walker a strong leader who stands his ground against the slings and arrows of outrageous liberals.

Scott Walker opens office in Iowa

February 10, 2015 - Scott Walker, building on his recent success, became the first prospect for the 2016 Presidential election to open an Iowa office. Technically, the space is leased by his PAC (Our American Revival) since Walker has not yet made his candidacy official.

Kerry won't rule out 2016 run

February 08, 2015 - Today on NBC's "Meet the Press" Secretary of State and 2004 Democrat Presidential nominee John Kerry said that while he was not thinking about running again, he also had not ruled it out.



2016 - PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES




PRESIDENTIAL ASPIRANTS - AS AT FEBRUARY 1, 2015
Democrat Status Republican
no contenders yet Declared no contenders yet
Hillary Clinton, Jim Webb, Martin O'Malley Strong Signals Jeb Bush, Ben Carson, Lindsey Graham
Joe Biden, Andrew Cuomo, Bernie Sanders, Brian Schweitzer Positioning Chris Christie, Mike Huckabee, Rick Perry, Marco Rubio, Scott Walker
Joe Manchin, Elizabeth Warren, Andrew Cuomo Mixed Signals Ted Cruz, John Kasich, Rand Paul
Mark Warner, Tim Kaine Weak Signals
Julian Castro, Deval Patrick Hard No Rob Portman, John Thune, Mitt Romney, Paul Ryan


2016 Election Archives

Januay 2015


THE REPUBLICANS

1. SCOTT WALKER - Scott Walker had a very good month. He announced his PAC, brought down the house at a confab in Iowa, and now leads the pack in some polls.

2. JEB BUSH - Jeb's closest establishment competitor, Mitt Romney, has dropped out. But a new establishment competitor, Lindsey Graham, has jumped in.

3. CHRIS CHRISTIE - Chris Christie had a meeting with Mitt Romney after Romney dropped out. Christie is probably the biggest beneficiary of Romney's move.

4. RICK PERRY - Perry has been making more noise about his intent to try again. Keep an eye out for Perry 2.0.

5. MARCO RUBIO - Rubio has told his camp to push forward as if he will indeed pursue the nomination. He's gotten a lot of mileage out of Obama's Cuba announcement.

6. LINDSEY GRAHAM - A newcomer to our top-12. In the wake of Romney's drop-out, the Senator has announced the formation of a committee. He is in the pro-amnesty / defense hawk establishment camp. His huge war chest and knack for airplay should make him a player, but most helpful is that his home state of South Carolina is the largest of the four early states. That guarantees Graham will be hanging around with the front runners when things get serious.

7. MIKE HUCKABEE - Huckabee has been out making comments intended to stir up social conservatives, but they do nothing other than give social conservatives a bad name. Mike, please fire your strategist.

8. JOHN KASICH - Playing the long game, taking it slow and easy, keeping options open.

9. RAND PAUL - Paul will not succeed. He wants to play neither defense (for example, NSA eavesdropping) nor offense (attacking radical Islamists) on national security. His seeming wallflowerism terrifies people.

10. TED CRUZ - Cruz has been building a team and making fiery speeches, but hasn't said much about an official campaign.

11. BEN CARSON - Carson is not an establishment favorite, and party insiders are dredging up what little they can to tear him down before he gains momentum.

12. MITT ROMNEY - Romney briefly dabbled with a candidacy during January but kyboshed it by month end. He dipped his toe in the water but got a cold reception. It's time for Romney to take his place opposite Bill Clinton as the party's elder statesman. We believe the following two comments from Romney indicate he would tend to be more supportive of Scott Walker and less supportive of Jeb Bush:

"I believe that one of our next generation of Republican leaders, one who may not be as well-known as I am today, one who has not yet taken their message across the country, one who is just getting started, may well emerge as being better able to defeat the Democrat nominee,"
“I feel that it is critical that America elect a conservative leader to become our next president. You know that I have wanted to be that president. But I do not want to make it more difficult for someone else to emerge who may have a better chance of becoming that president.”

XX. PAUL RYAN - Ryan has officially dropped out. The next governor of Wisconsin.


THE DEMOCRATS

1. ANDREW CUOMO - Will the arrest and resignation of New York State Assembly Speaker Sheldon Silver start a chain reaction? Will Andrew Cuomo be implicated if the corruption investigations widen? How much scrutiny can Andrew Cuomo withstand?

2. HILLARY CLINTON - Clinton's outlook dimmed somewhat this month when word got out that she was the strongest proponent of overthrowing Gadhafi. Apparently she learned nothing from Iraq. Now Libya is a failed state inching toward ISIS control. Now Clinton has pushed out her announcement date to July.

3. ELIZABETH WARREN -Warren continues to not discourage her supporters from encouraging her.

4. JIM WEBB - Jim Webb's been saying Dems need to do better with the white working, which runs counter to everything that Democrats think about their destiny.

5. MARTIN O’MALLEY - O'Malley confessed to being knocked off balance by Democrat losses in 2014, especially the defeat of his gubernatorial defeat of his protégé Anthony Brown. Still, we expect him to recover and press forward.

6. JOE BIDEN - He really does plan to run for president. Really. He made news recently by blaming ISIS gains in Syria on a lack of US "boots on the ground". He may be right, but it's surprising he would say that. Actually, it's probably not so surprising.

7. BERNIE SANDERS - Only Sanders can make Obama look like a conservative. In one of the very few policy instances where we agree with our President, Sanders sent a scathing letter to Obama excoriating the Administration over the Trans Pacific Partnership trade deal that is about to move to the front burner.

8. BRIAN SCHWEITZER - A headline-challenged month for Schweitzer. With Hillary lying low, he should be taking advantage of the opportunity to fill the void.

9. JOE MANCHIN - Joe Manchin kept his name in the news by being at the forefront of a group of Democrats who oppose the president and support the popular bipartisan Keystone legislation.

10. MARK WARNER - The Virginia state GOP has filed an ethics complaint against Warner, alleging he discussed employment possibilities with the daughter of a state senator in exchange for political favors from her father.

11. TIM KAINE - The further left of the two Virginia senators, Kaine has opposed the Keystone initiative and has expressed a desire to lift the budget sequester and allow federal spending to run wild again.

12. BARBARA BOXER -Boxer has announced her retirement from the senate. She did not take advantage of the opportunity to announce a presidential bid.



The 114th Congress will see Republicans Mitch McConnell and John Boehner repair the damage done to the institution by deposed Senate Majority Leader, Democrat Harry Reid.


SENATE PREVIEW

Long Term Outlook:


DEMOCRATS NET +2

A net gain for the Democrats is widely expected. They have only 10 seats to defend against 24 for the Republicans. Also favoring Democrats is the demographic makeup of the turnout in an "on" Presidential year such as 2016.

Republicans would do well to limit losses to low single digits and retain control of the Senate, where they presently hold a 54-46 advantage. Still, none of the Republican seats are seen as lay-ups for the Democrats yet, with the possible exception of Illinois.

Democrat Pick-ups:
1. Mark Kirk, R-IL

Republican Pick-ups:
1. Harry Reid, D-NV

Even:
1. Ron Johnson, R-WI

Close:
1. Pat Toomey, R-PA
2. Michael Bennett, D-CO
3. Richard Burr, R-NC

Marginal:
1. Marco Rubio, R-FL
2. Rob Portman, R-OH
3. Kelly Ayotte, R-NH

Fluke:
1. Barbara Boxer, D-CA (Retiring, jungle primary dilution)
2. Joe Manchin, D-WV (Might retire to run for governor)



HOUSE PREVIEW

Long Term Outlook:


DEMOCRATS NET +10

A Republican tide swept the Democrats from control of the House in 2010. The wave receded a bit in 2012, then a swell pushed the GOP waterline even further into Democrat territory in 2014. We expect the wave to recede again - just a bit - in 2016.

We expect Republicans to remain in control of the House over the next few cycles, with some fluctuation in the absolute seat count. With GOP totals at a 90-year high-water mark, expect some fall back.

Of great help to the GOP is there success in finally dislodging four Democrats who had stubbornly hung on in conservative districts: UT04, NC07, WV03 and GA12. Don't expect Democrats win back any of these four in your life time.

Here's a starter list of some of 2016's most vulnerable Representatives:

Democrat Pick-ups:
1. Martha McSally, R-AZ02
2. John Katko, R-NY24
3. Frank Guida, R-NH01
4. Bruce Poliquin, R-ME02
5. Bob Dold, R-IL10
6. Rod Blum, R-Ia01

Republican Pick-ups:
1. Brad Ashford, D-NE02

Even:
1. Lee Zeldin, R-NY01
2. Carlos Curbelo, R-FL26
3. Ann Kirkpatrick, D-AZ01

Close:
1. Gwen Graham, D-FL02
2. Cresent Hardy, R-NV04
3. Collin Peterson, D-MN07


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