Friday, July 4, 2014

Election 2016: Early Democrat Handicapping

Hilary's a shoe-in, right? 


I have been saying for a while that Hillary is vulnerable, but now that seems to be a more widely held notion. To be blunt, she is not her husband. She possesses none of his personal charm or on-the-fly political instincts, nor is she as facile a liar. She makes things up to establish empathy with her audience that stand zero chance of holding up to scrutiny (Bill does this too, but his fabrications are always harder to disprove). 

Remember when Hillary claimed she had to duck beneath sniper fire in Bosnia? Or how about when she claimed, at the time she was running for the Senate from New York, that she was a life-long Yankee fan? Suuuure, a feminist who grew up in Chicago and went to college in Massachusetts and then lived in Arkansas was secretly following the Bombers every move. 

So, here's quiz question: When you're running for office and someone hands you a hat from the hometown team, what do you do? You freakin' put it on! Anyone knows that. When someone handed Hillary a Yankee hat at a press conference, she held it out to the side like it was toxic. Probably didn't want to mess with her helmet hair.

She is stilted, and more than that, thin-skinned. We saw that in a recent interview with more-than-friendly reporters. On top of all this, there are legitimate questions about her health. 

In sum, she is a highly flawed candidate, but making things worse, for her, is that Democrats love finding the hot new thing. In fact, it is being reported that the Obama machine is quietly trying to lay the groundwork for another Obama, likely Elizabeth Warren. It's no secret, particularly after the publication of Ed Klein's Blood Feud, that Obama doesn't care for the Clintons (and vice verse).

No, Hillary will not be coronated, not unless the Clinton machine finds a way to buy off all potential challengers. (Since there aren't many - the Dems have a weak bench - this is a possibility. They might dangle Secretary of the Treasury in front of Warren).

What do the betting markets say?

                                Odds of Winning Nomination

Hillary Clinton                              61%
Elizabeth Warren                          7%
Joe Biden                                      7%
Andrew Cuomo                             4%
Deval Patrick                                2%
Rahm Emanuel                             2%
Deval Patrick                                2%
Martin O'Malley                            2%

(Note: this doesn't add up to 100% as there are many others at 1% or less.)

The following are buy, sell, and hold recommendations relative to each person's current odds.

First, holy cow, Hillary's only at 61%? Wouldn't you have guessed about 85? Seems like the markets are as skeptical as I am. I was all ready to rate Hill as a strong sell, but at 61, I'll call her a hold. Let's remember she will have more money than Croesus to play with, and many favors owed to her and Bill.

Elizabeth Warren at 7% is the new darling of the far left. She doesn't just say she hates Wall Street, she really does. Compare this to Hillary who has collected over $3 million from Goldman Sachs in the form of contribution, speaking fees, etc. Warren, like Hillary, also gives the Dems a shot at another "first," as in the first woman president. Strong buy.

Joe Biden...seriously? Strong sell.

Andrew Cuomo has tacked hard to the left in New York lately, striking a deal with Bill De Blasio and the SEIU (a hard left labor union). This either means he is worried about being re-elected this fall or he's tidying up his bone fides with the left, nationally, signalling a presidential run. Personally, I don't see any incipient "draft Cuomo" movement out there, and I don't think he would play well at all on a national stage. Strong sell.

Deval Patrick didn't particularly shine as Governor of Massachusetts, but there are close ties to Obama and he gives a good speech. At 2% Patrick is a buy.

Rahm Emanuel: see Joe Biden. Strong sell.

Martin O'Malley, the Governor of Maryland, is popular on the left and has been quietly working hard beyond Maryland's borders. Could be a sleeper. Buy.

I'll throw one more in the mix. My college classmate, Amy Klobuchar, the Senior senator from Minnesota, is another interesting sleeper, and currently trading at less that 1%. She checks all the boxes for liberals but has appeal to the middle as well. She comes across as genuine and nice, and enjoys high ratings in her home state. Only issue is that she might be too nice to take on the Clinton machine. Still, at less than 1%, she's a strong buy.


  1. You just need to stop with the predicting. She's a shoo-in. Not even Obama could beat her. If it hadn't been for the Michigan/Florida screw-up, she'd be president now. There is not even a candidate to put against her with the Dems and things are so bad for the Rs, they are digging up the corpse of Mitt Romney and trying to get the stink off.

  2. She was a shoo-in last time, wasn't she? And Republicans have many attractive candidates, unlike last time. I say that from a conservative perspective, of course. As far as Romney goes, I am skeptical, but was amused to see my friend Emil Henry write a piece for Politico a couple of days ago laying down the precedent. I gave him crap about it, but he claims he wasn't making an endorsement, merely saying it was doable. Romney is a nice man, but he should go away.

  3. Almost but not quite.. And she won even against Obama at his height. She got beat by probably the most charismatic campaigner of the modern era and a quirk of fate with Florida/Michigan. Her competition is going to be non-existent from Dems and weak from the Rs. To say she will have trouble with the nomination is absurd. Warren doesn't even poll well against her with Dems and she isn't going to run. If the Rs had attractive candidates, they wouldn't be entertaining recycling Romney and trying to run out Bush. That's desperation.

  4. Well, hate to say it, but it looks like some of what I said is already coming to pass. It is being reported today that the Obama machine is courting Warren and promising their full backing if she runs. (This is seriously screwing over the Clintons after Bill's big speech at the convention.) You cannot dismiss Warren's chances if Obama is all-in for her, plus she has more appeal to primary voters. You can read about it here:

    As for the Republicans, the only ones who are desperate are the establishment/RINO/Rockefeller types. You know, the ones that lose a lot of presidential elections. For conservatives, it's an embarrassment of riches. Cruz, Rubio, Kasich, Walker, Paul, etc. The danger is that the establishment throws in behind one guy, say, Bush, Christie, or even Romney, and the conservatives split their vote between two or three guys.

  5. You've got 2 years to keep the dream alive. Reality will have its way though once again in the end. If Clinton decides not to run for some reason, it's a ballgame.

    1. The only R with the talent to win nationwide is Molinari. She was the real deal but cashed out.