Tomorrow's the big night, whether you prefer to call it Super Tuesday or the "SEC Tuesday" (because of all the Southern states). So rather than scramble to get this out before the polls close tomorrow night, I'm posting all my primary picks today.
Archive of Articles for February, 2016
Most intelligent political analysts' reaction (right, left, and center) to the news that Donald Trump may be considering a run for the presidency could be summed up as some version of: "You have got to be kidding me." Followed quickly by: "This is going to be so much fun!" But the real punchline to this joke of a candidacy was actually on the punditocracy, when Trump's poll numbers took off and soon put him either in the lead or very close to it for the Republican nomination. Republican voters, it seems, aren't following the punditocracy's lead on "The Donald."
Donald Trump just won his third primary, taking Nevada with a commanding 46 percent of the Republican vote. If you take a look back at his campaign so far, you will see a long trail of wishful Washington thinking that was proven wrong and had to be tossed to the side of the road. This started even before his campaign begun, as all the pundits confidently predicted he wouldn't even run. This was followed by a string of pronouncements that "Trump is now toast," after each of his ever-more-outrageous statements from the campaign trail (starting with his campaign announcement, where he called Mexican immigrants "rapists" and "murderers"). Each one was supposed to kill his chances dead, dead, dead. Instead, Trump has laughed all the way to where he is now -- the frontrunner and presumptive nominee of the once-proud Republican Party. He's getting tougher and tougher to beat, and his Nevada showing blew away the most recent wishful thinking from the Washington elites -- that Trump "had a ceiling" of perhaps 35 percent, above which he would never go. Toss that one on the ever-growing heap of things that have been predicted about how Trump's campaign was going to falter, none of which have panned out.
Welcome back once again to our "pick the primary winners" series! I'm going to post this fairly early in the day (for me), to be sure it gets posted before the Nevada Republican caucus results start appearing. There's only one contest happening today, but due to the stable nature of the other outstanding "first four" primary, we're also going to go ahead and roll the dice for this Saturday's South Carolina Democratic primary race as well.
There are two obvious conclusions to draw from the current state of the Republican presidential race right now -- in fact, they're so incredibly obvious that (of course) they're being almost completely ignored by the punditocracy comfortably ensconced within the Washington Beltway. The first is that the only scheme for successfully derailing Donald Trump's march to the Republican nomination would be for either Ted Cruz or Marco Rubio to almost immediately drop out of the race. The second conclusion is the obvious corollary to the first -- that this is simply not going to happen. Meaning Trump is getting very close to being undeniably the presumptive GOP nominee.
It's not often during a presidential election season that the campaigns get shoved aside in the political universe because something bigger happened, but that is what took place last week with the unexpected death of sitting Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia. The implications for the future of America run deep, which is why it has already become a monumental and historical political fight.
The mainstream media, or "Fourth Estate" (as it likes to call itself), is supposed to play an important role in how America chooses our presidents. It is supposed to "vet" these candidates, which means digging into their backgrounds and exposing any dirty laundry -- or refuting stories of dirty laundry -- while the voters still have time to make up their minds before they vote. Once again, however, the media is doing a particularly dismal job of doing so.
Yes, we've got two primary races to be decided this Saturday, in two different states and two different parties. Democrats in Nevada and South Carolina Republicans will both vote on the same day, for no real logical reason. Confused? Well, it'll only get more confusing, since next week Republicans in Nevada will caucus and South Carolina Democrats will vote in their primary -- on different days. So at least this week we'll be able to see two results on the same evening.
Because the death of Supreme Court Justice Scalia is such a monumental political event, I'm going to spend a second day speculating about how the nomination process is going to play out. In specific, there are two last-minute options that might get a lot of scrutiny in the coming months.