Ten (or More?) Possible Outcomes of the Republican Convention
Tom Bevan, co-founder of Real Clear Politics (RCP), was on Fox last Friday. This week, RCP ran an article about the interview, with the headline, “Five Most Likely Outcomes For GOP Convention.” The odd thing is that he only gave three possible outcomes.
The RCP article is available here.
It seemed odd that the headline says “five,” but he only gave three. And a number of other sites reprinted the RCP article, but apparently, they didn’t read the article, since no one commented that he was two short.
Here are the outcomes he discussed:
TOM BEVAN: If you look at scenario #1, I’d rate this at about 25% –a one-in-four chance that Trump acutally gets outright 1,237 delegates. That will become a lot clearer after New York in about 11 days. If he can stay above 50% and sweep up a lot of those delegates that will boost him going into the other East coast primaries. . .
KELLY: Scenario 2 is we get to June 7, the voting is done, and Trump is the leader but he doesn’t have 1,237. . .
TOM BEVAN: He’s going to have to woo these delegates… Take them out to dinner, backroom deal them. He says he is a dealmaker, he is going to have to prove it…
It is going to matter how close he gets to the [1,237] number. And I would use 1,200 as a break-even point…
MEGYN KELLY: What about this other scenario where Cruz and Trump unite…
TOM BEVAN: It seems unlikely but we have had stranger bedfellows. JFK hated Lyndon Johnson and ended up with him on the ticket, so we have seen stuff like this happen…
That’s only three options, so I went to Fox to get the transcript. See for yourself: only three outcomes.
So let’s come up with our own possible outcomes.
(1) Trump wins 1237 ahead of the convention.
(2) Trump gets close, and is able to cajole added delegates to get to 1237.
(3) Cruz gets close, and he is able to cajole his way to 1237, instead.
(4) Trump or Cruz win on the second or third ballot.
(5) Trump and Cruz decide to run as a president-vice president ticket.
(6) Trump and Cruz are deadlocked, so the convention turns to John Kasich.
(7) The deadlocked convention turns to Paul Ryan, Mitt Romney, or someone else.
Number one is possible. The New York Times says, even after losing Wisconsin, Trump is on-target to win with the New Jersey primary.
Outcome #5 seems unlikely, given the vitriol of the campaign, but Trump is a realist who loves to negotiate—and Cruz will take anything he can get.
Outcome #6 makes sense, since RNC Chair Reince Priebus has said the nominee will be one of the current three candidates.
Outcome #7 is possible, even though Ryan says he won’t run. He also said he would not, under any circumstance, take Speaker of the House.
What about after the convention? Trump has said there will be riots in the streets among his supporters, if he’s cheated. Cruz said there would be a revolt if neither of them get the nomination. So. . .what about third party?
(8) If Trump gets the nomination, many party loyalists have said they would promote a second Republican candidate, whom they could say is a “real” Republican. In 1912, Teddy Roosevelt tried to get the Republican nomination, but lost at the convention, so he ran on the Progressive (“Bull Moose”) Party ticket. In 1948, the Democratic Party split; with Strom Thurmond running as a States’ Rights Democrat (“Dixiecrat”), winning four states; and Henry Wallace recreated the Progressive Party (the name of Teddy Roosevelt’s party in 1912).
(9) Trump began the campaign saying he’d run as an independent, and the GOP talked him into running for them. He has shown that he can campaign very cheaply—with free media—so he could afford to run outside the parties. He would likely do much better than Ross Perot in 1992.
(10) Cruz was elected senator in 2012, so he would continue to be in the senate if he waged and lost a third-party presidential campaign. It would be perfectly consistent for Cruz to destroy the party to get attention—at no cost to him.
Now, it’s your turn. Are there other possible outcomes? Which would you like to see?