Category Archives: 2016 Primary

1,448 Days Until the 2016 Presidential Election

At least 17 Republicans have began, either privately or subtlety, to make moves towards gearing up a presidential run for 2016. They are:

  1. Florida Senator Marco Rubio
  2. Louisiana Governor Bobby Jindal
  3. Wisconsin Representative and House Budget Chair Paul Ryan
  4. Kentucky Senator Rand Paul
  5. New Jersey Governor Chris Christie
  6. Former Pennsylvania Senator Rick Santorum
  7. Texas Governor Rick Perry
  8. Minnesota Representative Michele Bachmann
  9. Indiana Governor Mike Pence
  10. Wisconsin Governor Scott Walker
  11. New Hampshire Senator Kelly Ayotte
  12. New Mexico Governor Susana Martinez
  13. Nevada Governor Brian Sandoval
  14. South Carolina Governor Nikki Haley
  15. South Dakota Senator John Thune
  16. Ohio Senator Rob Portman
  17. Virginia Governor Bob McDonnell

This all might seem premature — and a possible big-time distraction for a party that lost the presidency and Senate and House seats this time around. But top Republican officials are encouraging the never-ending presidential campaign in hopes of creating influential national voices beyond Fox News and Rush Limbaugh. “On every conference call, the message is the same,” one top official said. “We’re going to push out our new generation of leadership. We’re not going to sit back and let the extreme voices define what it means to be a conservative.”

Republicans are still haunted by the post-election chaos of 2008, when, with John McCain diminished by defeat and few clear future leaders with national juice on the scene, Limbaugh, Glenn Beck and Sarah Palin filled the void — and dominated news coverage. This time feels different: Unlike 2008, when Republicans chalked up their defeat to a bad GOP ticket in a terrible post-Bush environment for the party, many of the most influential voices are calling for substantial rethinking of the conservative approach to politics. They are reckoning with demographic trends that favor Democrats — as well as with exit polling suggesting the assumption this is a center-right country might be wrong, or was at least wrong on Nov. 6, when a center-left electorate showed up.

If even half that list runs it would be the deepest, most policy-oriented primary we could hope for.

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Big Tent Republicanism and Looking Ahead to 2016

Former Secretary of State Condi Rice was on CBS this morning to talk election aftermath and where the GOP goes from here.

“Right now, for me the most powerful argument is that the changing demographics in the country really necessitates an even bigger tent for the Republican Party. I also think that many of the things for which the party stands are broadly popular with the American people — fiscal responsibility, a chance to educate your children in the way that you think best, the possibility of strong national defense — these are all things I think that can unite us,” Rice said.

She continued: “But when you look at the composition of the electorate, clearly, we are losing important segments of that electorate and what we have to do is to appeal to those people not as identity groups but understanding that if you can get the identity issue out of the way, then you can appeal on the broader issues that all Americans share a concern for.”

If you listened to Condi’s speech at the GOP Convention, she talked about this…about how the message of the Republican Party is to give the people opportunity to advance. We need to become a bigger, more inclusive party, pushing a message of freedom, opportunity, individual liberty, and social advancement through personal ambition.

Condi, who is in favor of civil unions and a comprehensive immigration reform, is the right speaker for our party. Strong on national defense and security and where our party needs to go on social issues. She’s an advocate for school choice and will make a great spokesperson for our party.

Moving forward, the path to the 2016 nomination looks twofold: for the Democrats, it goes through Hillary Clinton. According to PPP, in Iowa, New Hampshire, and Florida, Hillary races out of the pack and would be the clear favorite to succeed President Obama. If she chooses not to run, it looks like a knock down, drag out fight between Vice President Biden, NY Governor Andrew Cuomo, and MD Governor Martin O’Malley, with others sprinkled in.

For the Republicans, there is no clear favorite. In Iowa, Mike Huckabee; in New Hampshire, Chris Christie; in Florida, Jeb Bush. Paul Ryan, Condi Rice, and Rick Santorum are in the mix as well. Personally, I do not think Jeb will run, he knows he missed his chance and his mentee, Marco Rubio, will be one of the hot names. Jeb will be Education Secretary in a future administration or a viable candidate against Bill Nelson in 2018. Sarah Palin will not run and I encourage her to run for Senate in 2014. Rick Santorum’s time has come and gone, as has Mike Huckabee’s. I think Chris Christie is viable if he wins the governorship in 2013 again; if he loses, he might need to redeem himself with a Senate race in 2014. I wish wish wish wish wish Condi Rice will run but I think her path is the 2014 California Governor’s Race and she will win it.

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