Wednesday, December 30, 2015

10 Factors That Will Probably Determine the White House Winner Next Year

Enough with all the political speculation, here's some real political science prognostication!

From Larry Sabato et al., at Sabato's Crystal Ball, "10 Factors That Will Determine the Next President":
Here’s a thought experiment: What if Republicans nominated the 2012 version of Mitt Romney — same fundraising, same baggage, same everything — at their 2016 convention? What sort of odds would that candidate have in 2016?

We suspect the candidate would be a small favorite at the start of the campaign. He would be running against a Democrat who lacked the power of incumbency, and he would be competing in an environment where the public was ready for a change: The most recent NBC/Wall Street Journal poll showed that about three-quarters of those surveyed wanted the next president to take a different approach to governing than President Obama, similar to how the public felt about how George W. Bush’s successor should act at a similar point in the 2008 campaign. It’s hard to precisely quantify, but there’s a generic desire for change that hampers a party the longer it stays in the White House. To satisfy that general feeling, a generic Republican might do the trick, which is why we cite Romney circa 2012 as an example of what could/should be enough to win the White House: A candidate who is largely average could flip a few percentage points of the national vote from the 2012 results, which is all it will take for the Republicans to win.

However, it’s quite unclear that the Republicans will produce a candidate of even the quality of Romney. After 2012, the party took a hard look at its inadequacies, producing a report that suggested the party needed to do more to reach out to nonwhite voters. Donald Trump, the GOP’s current polling leader, is not helping on that front. The Republican leadership is worried.

What follows is an exploration of 10 factors that will probably determine the White House winner next year. Some of these — many of them, in fact — suggest that the GOP should be seen as a narrow favorite. But a few factors, combined with the live possibility that the next Republican nominee will make Mitt Romney look like Ronald Reagan, indicate to us that, as we turn the page from 2015 to 2016, that the 2016 general election is still a coin flip...
Keep reading for the 10 factors.

I hope Trump's the nominee, mainly because he's so unlike Mitt Romney, particularly in that the latter might have won in 2012 if he'd have adopted some of the former's pugnacity. Conservatives need a fighter, and while Trump's not really conservative, he's definitely fighting on those issues really dear to the conservative base. I mean, Diana West is a movement conservative, as is Ann Coulter, and they see Trump as a savior. [And I forget to mention Phyllis Schlafly --- Phyllis freakin' Schlafly!] Even Michelle Malkin, who's gone a few rounds with Trump (rather nasty rounds, in fact), concedes that she'd vote for Trump if he became the nominee, primarily because he'd indeed fight to reverse the diabolical damage leftists have inflicted on this country.

See also, "Voters Seek Vengeance Against Obama's 'Fundamental Transformation of America' (VIDEO)."