I'm wondering about the Republican nomination. Will the crazies cancel each other out while the sane Republicans nominate Romney?
I mean, Palin (won't run), Bachman (dies in the first states), Giuliani (won't actually run), Gingrich (sells books, won't run), Huckabee might get 20%. Who else is Fox "news" grooming in its candidate stable?
I know almost nothing about Thune, and Pawlenty is remarkably forgettable. But neither seems to be ready for the money primary against Romney. Other than them there are no apparently credible "surprise" candidates currently in the wings warming up to undertake an Obama-style outsiders campaign by someone new.
I left Rick Perry off the list but I think Rick Perry may have been serious when he said he was not going to run and his efforts to deal with the currently $27 billion (and counting) Texas shortfall of revenues vs expenses will clobber any chance he might have had. That deficit is roughly a quarter of total anticipated revenues in a low-tax low-service state that spends on almost nothing now except health care and education. Texas is going to look like Arizona on a much larger scale. Perry has no more chance to run for President than does Arizona's Gov. Brewer.
Who does Romney have to run against to get the more sane voters in the Republican primaries? The crazies are going to cancel each other out and leave the field to Romney by default. That makes the nomination Romney's the same way 2008 belonged to McCain. That's a problem of its own, of course.
The problem McCain had was that the social conservatives detested him and he couldn't get a majority at first. It was only when everyone else was proven unable to get the nomination that they settled on McCain. But the social conservatives still detested him, so he was forced to go with one of theirs - Palin. He also had to abandon all his carefully established sensible persona to cater to the Dominionists who want a Biblical-based government over the Constitution. It didn't get McCain elected (nothing could have done that right after Bush) but Palin on the ticket kept the social conservatives from sitting at home and not voting. The choice of Palin and the shift of political positions to appease the radical Christianists avoided a Goldwater-style blow out.
I see the same social conservative - movement conservative split doing much the same thing this year and next, with the Tea Partiers acting as the wild card. The social conservatives don't like Romney any more than they did McCain. But the party is going to reluctantly go with Romney and try to patch up with the social conservatives.
With money behind him, I think that still means Romney and a social conservative to be named later as their ticket. No one is going to love it, but they can unify the Republicans after the nomination through their hatred for Democrats and especially for Obama.
The hatred will be above ground mostly lies and hatred for liberals, and below ground it will be another round of Racism. Anti-immigration will fit about half-way in the middle of that, with anger at any immigrant mixed with race hatred for Mexicans.
That's my best guess right now. Of course, in fall of 2007 I was expecting Guiliani to be the Republican nominee. This time, though, I don't expect Romney to self-destruct the way "G" did.
One last thing - This is going to be the Citizen's United Presidential race in 2012. It's going to be massive amounts of corporate money and wealthy family money, combined with the radical right organizing power of FOX News against the grass-roots organization and fund-raising power of Obama. Since the Citizens United money will be mostly secret (no one will know who is paying for the ads) the lies from the right are going to swamp the airwaves. It will all be seasoned with more shootings like that of Gabby Giffords in Tucson. (See link below.)
This is a prediction for the next 21 months, and we all know that predictions run into reality and become unrecognizable. It'll be interesting to see how close this one turns out to being true.
Addendum: 01/24/2011 at 11:56:37 PM CT
I predicted these shootings above, but I really expected them to take longer to happen. Apparently they are already in progress. Police fear 'war on cops' At least 11 shot in 24 hours; death toll apace with 2010 uptick . This is from MSNBC This evening.
The only questions are (1)whether the shootings will be more frequent and (2) whether the quite inadequate media will bother to report them or aggregate the reports to show what is happening.