Monday, August 17, 2015

Krauthammer: The 2016 Presidential Candidates' Racing Form - Third Edition

With both presidential nomination contests scrambled by recent events — the FBI taking control of Hillary Clinton's private email server and a raucous, roiling GOP debate — the third edition of the Racing Form is rushed into print here.
Legal disclaimer: This column is for betting purposes only. What follows is analysis — scrubbed, as thoroughly as a Clinton server, of advocacy. (Unless I simply can't resist.)
Hillary Clinton: Ever since her disastrous book-launch performance, I've thought her both (1) a weak candidate and (2) the inevitable Democratic nominee.
No longer. She's fallen from her 95% barring-an-act-of-God perch. The email imbroglio has already damaged her credibility. But now that she's lost control of the server, there's potential for further, conceivably fatal, damage. It hinges on how successful she was in erasing the 32,000 emails she unilaterally deemed private.
Whatever happens, she will stay in the race. Clintons never quit. But if more top-secret information is found, if she did destroy work-related emails and if her numbers continue their steady decline, the party might decide it simply can't afford to continue carrying her baggage.
Odds: 1-3.
Bernie Sanders: A less flighty, more serious Gene McCarthy. Fiery and genial, Sanders is the perfect protest candidate. But can a 73-year-old dairy-state Brooklynite socialist win? Of course not. If Hillary falls, Joe Biden fills the vacuum. Possibly even John Kerry. (Note to Dems: The beatified Jon Stewart is unemployed and at large.) Meanwhile, over at the GOP . . .
Donald Trump: Clear front-runner. Are you waiting for him to bring himself down? He won't. He's impervious to the gaffe. In fact, he has a genius for turning a gaffe into a talking point, indeed, a rallying cry.
Since the debate, his numbers have plateaued, and in some places declined. In New Hampshire, he's gone from the mid-20s to the high teens. And he had a rough debate, as reflected in the Suffolk University poll in Iowa taken right afterward, in which, by 55%-23%, respondents felt less comfortable with him as president.
Nonetheless, his core support, somewhere around 20% (plus or minus a couple), remains as solid as that once commanded by Ron Paul and Ross Perot. Which means Trump will likely continue to lead until the field whittles down to a handful, at which point 20% is no longer a plurality.
Teflon Don. Solid constituency, fixed ceiling. Chances of winning his party's nomination? About the same as Sanders winning his. 
Read the rest of Krauthammer's Picks HERE.

If you like what you see, please "Like" us on Facebook either here or here. Please follow us on Twitter here.

No comments: