Friday, January 22, 2016

It's Friday morning, the Iowa...

...caucuses are a week from Monday, and we need to consider where the race is today. And today it could be Sanders vs. Trump. Seriously.

Do I think it will really be Sanders vs. Trump in November? No. I just can't bring myself to believe that one of America's major political parties will nominate someone who self-identifies as a socialist while the other nominates a thoroughly unqualified outsider. I'm just not there yet. (I'd guess it would be more like Hillary vs. some establishment-approved compromise candidate like Paul Ryan.)

But if Trump wins both Iowa and New Hampshire (which is increasingly likely) he may just run the table. And if Sanders does the same (also increasingly likely) the Democrats could go into full freak-out mode and try to draft someone like Joe Biden. (Or Michael Bloomberg. Wouldn't that be something? Two New York tycoons duking it out for the White House? Only in America.) But it might be too late. Could ol' Joe even get on the ballot in most of the remaining states?

So today -- today -- it's Bernie vs. the Donald. And, according to Real Clear Politics, Sanders would best Trump by an average of five points. Over at the Huffington Post it's an even wider margin, Bernie by eleven.

Now, do I think Bernie Sanders will be the next president of the United States? No. Paddy Power still has Hillary as the odds-on favorite. But it does have Trump in second place:

Hillary Clinton 5/6
Donald Trump 7/2
Marco Rubio 6/1
Bernie Sanders 6/1

Here's the deal: the U. S. electorate is essentially split 50/50 Democrat/Republican. If the economy is still in recovery in November, the Democratic candidate wins. But if the current stock market sell-off is forecasting a recession, or if there's some foreign policy/national security/terrorist event in the fall, then the GOP candidate wins. I think it's that simple.

So could Donald Trump really be the next president of the United States? Yes, it's possible.

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