We remain only in the first year of the second term of
Barack Obama’s presidency, and the media specularazzi
are already churning in predictions and conclusions. It
seems, in recent cycles, always to go this way with
breathless prognostications, meaningless polls, and
reports of instant political “nosedives”of frontrunners
and other presidential hopefuls.
On the Democratic side, the race has been declared “over”
by virtually all the specularazzi, i.e., that Hillary Clinton
already has the nomination in her handbag, and thus no
more need be said. The fact that the identical conclusion
was reached by consensus in 2006, and did not come to
pass, seems to be of no import to the specularazzi. Of
course, Mrs. Clinton has “total” name recognition, and
it has been declared that it’s “her turn”by her old
supporters (not to mention the titular "Spouse" of the
Democratic Party, Bill you-know-who). She will, of
course, be nearly 70 years old in 2016, her record as
secretary of state now judged to be “controversial” and
uneven at best. She is a poor public speaker, and has no
distinction as an administrator. Nevertheless, she is
“inevitable.” Fast-forwarding is so much fun, is it not?
By the way, I wonder if Andrew Cuomo, Mark Warner,
Evan Bayh, Cory Booker, Heidi Heitkamp, Joe Manchin,
Ron Wyden and other talented younger Democrats are so
willing to throw in the towel this far in advance. Perhaps.
On the Republican side, there is more debate. Early
favorite Senator Marco Rubio has gambled big-time on
immigration reform legislation that is very unpopular
with many in the GOP grass roots. Likewise, high profile
New Jersey Governor Chris Christie has been declared to
have “crossed the line” with his handling of a U.S. senate
vacancy and his “moderate” views. The new darling on the
rights is first-term Texas Senator Ted Cruz, an outspoken
and smart conservative who seems to be filling a temporary
political void. Concurrent with the seeming decline of Mr.
Rubio, there has been a revival of the only man in recent
U.S. history who has been disqualified for the presidency
solely because of his surname, i.e., former Florida Governor
Jeb Bush, a man with genuine accomplishments, proven
intelligence and, oh yes, all kinds of Hispanic credentials.
Of course, the Republicans also have a stable of old war
horses, including Rick Perry, Mike Huckabee, Rick Santorum,
et al, but unlike 2008 and 2012, there are none who might
legitimately claim that it is ”their turn.”
As I see it, Governor Christie, Senator Cruz and former
Governor Bush, albeit with differing points of view, are rather
talented fellows, and should make the 2016 contest (when we
finally get to it) rather interesting.
In 2005, one might also note, hardly anyone had heard of the
person who swept to election as president only three years later.
Copyright (c) 2013 by Barry Casselman. All rights reserved.