CHALLENGE
THE PREMISE

ELECTIONS 2016

PRESIDENT

March 2016 Edition

CONGRESS

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


Republicans


DONALD TRUMP??

Donald Trump has come out
of nowhere and stolen the
show. He seems to have
captured the zeitgeist, the
spirit of the times. Can it last?



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

COMPETITORS
With the inept Obama
Administration in its final
days, one would have
expected that experienced
governors with a record
of accomplishment would
dominate the Race 2 Replace
but outsiders and novices
Trump, Carson and Fiorina
are in the hunt! Seasoned
executives for sure, but
not the ones the beltway
had in mind!


Democrats


BERNIE SANDERS??

The creaky, rusty Clinton
machine grinds slowly
onward, wayward, relying
solely on muscle memory
for movement. Will
Democrats suddenly rise
from their slumber to the
realization she cannot win a
General Election?



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


COMPETITORS
Folks on the right can barely
contain their joy at the
prospect of a Clinton
candidacy. Shouldn't that
give pause to the Democrats?
Biden and Warren are both
better candidates and better
Democrats than Clinton, but
aren't even in the race. And
then there are O'Malley and
Sanders, again, both better
Democrats and better
candidates. Yet the Dems
seem intent on following
Clinton in a lemming-like
charge over the cliff.

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.

Marco Rubio Drops Out of GOP Nomination Race

March 15, 2016 - Tonight during his speech conceding his defeat in his home state of Florida Senator Marco Rubio announced he is suspending his campaign.

Rubio was victimized by a multi-million dollar attack campaign waged by Jeb Bush operatives and was never able to find a firm footing in any state, with only token wins in Minnesota, Washington DC and Puerto Rico.

The big question is whether Rubio stayed around too long and siphoned off votes that Ted Cruz could have used to defeat Donald Trump tonight in Missouri and North Carolina. As it is, Rubio seems to have gift-wrapped the wins for Trump.

Rubio is still young and has a bright future. And maybe voters thought he seemed a bit too young. He should invest a couple of years on the speaking tour to stuff his bank account, and then take a shot at Governor of Florida in 2018 when Rick Scott is termed out.

Dr. Carson Suspends Presidential Nomination Campaign

March 04, 2016 - Ted Cruz' wish has come true: Dr. Ben Carson has announced the suspension of his campaign for the Republican Presidential nomination.

The retired pediatric neurosurgeon briefly took the lead in national polling in the autumn but misspoke slightly on a few obscure foreign policy items and the "gotcha" media went into overdrive to take him down.

Carson is a good man, an exceptional talent, and will undoubtedly end up in the cabinet of whoever the Republican President might be, if he doesn't end up in the Vice President slot.

There are now four candidates remaining: Populist Donald Trump, conservative Ted Cruz, and establishment moderates Marco Rubio and John Kasich. Cruz needs the two moderates to drop out. Neither Rubio nor Kasich have a path to the necessary 1,237 delegates, and by staying in the race they hand the victory to Trump.


2016 - PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES





PRESIDENTIAL ASPIRANTS - AS AT MARCH 01, 2016
Democrat Status Republican
Hillary Clinton, Bernie Sanders Running Ben Carson, Ted Cruz, John Kasich, Marco Rubio, Donald Trump
Lincoln Chaffee, Lawrence Lessig, Martin O'Malley, Jim Webb Exited Jeb Bush, Chris Christie, Carly Fiorina, Jim Gilmore, Lindsay Graham, Mike Huckabee, Bobby Jindal, George Pataki, Rand Paul, Rick Perry, Rick Santorum, Scott Walker
Barbara Boxer, Wesley Clark, Andrew Cuomo, Al Gore, Tim Kaine, Joe Manchin, Brian Schweitzer, Mark Warner, Elizabeth Warren Non-Starters -
Joe Biden Julian Castro, Deval Patrick Irrevocable No Rob Portman, John Thune, Mitt Romney, Paul Ryan


2016 Election Archives

February 2016
January 2016
December 2015
November 2015
October 2015
September 2015
August 2015
July 2015
June 2015
May 2015
April 2015
March 2015
February 2015
Januay 2015

THE REPUBLICANS

1. DONALD TRUMP - It is becoming more likely that Trump will win the delegate race, but less likely he will obtain the needed majority of 1,237 delegates. If cannot get to there, has he made too many enemies to make a deal to get the top of the ticket?

2. TED CRUZ - Ted Cruz has opened the month of March with a good night tonight, better than expected. He picked up 99/132 delegates in his home state of Texas, establishing himself as the unequivocal not-Trump candidate.

3. MARCO RUBIO - Rubio beings the month of March with only one win, in Minnesota. He is falling far behind Trump, and even coughing the dust in which Ted Cruz has left him behind. Minnesota is not a beginning; it is the beginning of the end.

4. JOHN KASICH - John Kasich deserves nothing but a lump of coal for bleeding support from the not-Trumps. No, he will not win, and if his hope is to emerge from a brokered convention as the nominee, that will infuriate practically everyone.

5. BEN CARSON - Carson's campaign seems to be wobbly at best, ready to fall to the canvas. Tonight's dismal results continued his winless streak, there does not seem to be much hope or anything to be gained from staying in the race.

6. JEB BUSH - Thankfully Bush pulled the plug on his dismal campaign. His strategy of sticking his nose up at the base and going for the moderates was a dreadful choice, an enormous waste of money, effort, and energy. To put it nicely.

7. CHRIS CHRISTIE - Christie finally faced reality and pulled the plug. And then, endorsed Trump. If that isn't groveling for the AG slot in a Trump Administration, then nothing is.


THE DEMOCRATS

1. HILLARY CLINTON - Jaillary Clinton continues to grind forward, a crummy candidate challenged only by other crummy candidates. Non-Democrats across the board do not like her and do not trust her. Even Democrats don't like or trust her that much. Do Democrats not see what's coming in November?

2. BERNIE SANDERS - If the DNC and the Democrat Establishment had not stacked the deck in Jaillary's favor, Sander might have a fighting chance. As it is, you can expect his supporters and followers to be embittered by being offered only sham Democracy. But what do you expect from the party that weaponizes the IRS?

3. JOE BIDEN - So, what if Jaillary is indicted for her many violations of National Security law? Even if she isn't indicted, isn't she a terrible choice for Commander-In-Chief? Democrats need to seriously think about Plan B, "B" as in "Biden".

4. ANDREW CUOMO - An alternative to Jaillary if she's indicted? He'd probably jump at the opportunity except that he has the Federal Prosecutor for the South New York District, Preet Bharara, nipping at this heels.

5. ELIZABETH WARREN - An alternative to Jaillary if she's indicted? Maybe, but for whatever reason she doesn't seem that interested.

6. MARTIN O’MALLEY - An alternative to Jaillary if she's indicted? Possibly, he has a decent resume, at least on paper. But his inability to inspire any excitement would be a big negative.

7. AL GORE - An alternative to Jaillary if she's indicted? Probably not, he's too busy buying his cable channel back from Al Jazeera on the cheap.



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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