The last 60 days of 2014 saw a flutter of activity by potential 2016 Presidential candidates who began making their moves in earnest. On the Democratic side, Jim Webb announced an exploratory committee and Hillary Clinton just continued coasting. On the Republican side, Jeb Bush rocked the field with his exploratory announcement and a dozen other GOP hopefuls continued jockeying for support and donors.

As it stands today, here is the polling average for the Republican nomination courtesy of Real Clear Politics:

17% – Jeb Bush
11.2% – Chris Christie
10% – Paul Ryan
8.6% – Rand Paul
8% – Mike Huckabee (tied 8%)
8% – Ben Carson (tied 8%)
5.5% – Ted Cruz
4.5% – Marco Rubio
4.3% – Rick Perry
2.8% – Bobby Jindal
2.5% – John Kasich

Despite Jeb’s recent polling surge, due to his announcement, the race is still very open. However, there is no doubt that Jeb Bush has consolidated some support simply by coming out and announcing his intention to explore a 2016 run. Christie is still lingering but I suspect Jeb will suck his support out of the room. The biggest challengers to Jeb should be Rand Paul and/or Ted Cruz. However, Ben Carson and Mike Huckabee will hold considerable weight with social conservatives if they choose to launch a campaign. Not mentioned here is Rick Santorum which either means he may come out of nowhere to be a contender or he’s won’t even make it on the radar.

As for the Democratic nomination, here is the latest polling average, also courtesy of Real Clear Politics:

61.7% – Hillary Clinton
12.2% – Elizabeth Warren
9.8% – Joe Biden
3.6% – Bernie Sanders
1.5% – Jim Webb
1.5% – Andrew Cuomo
1% – Martin O’Malley

As you can see, Hillary is currently lonely at the top. Unless one of those candidates, or someone else not yet named, can catch fire and dethrone he candidacy, she will win the nomination. There clearly is a block of Democrats who are not pleased with the prospects of Hillary as their nominee but so far, they’ve been drowned by the “inevitability” factor. A lot of credit is being given to Jim Webb as someone who could topple the Clinton machine but it remains to be seen in the first quarter of 2015 how the field will shake out.

In conclusion, expect to see a tremendous flurry of announcements and activity during the first four months of 2015. I believe Hillary Clinton will announce a campaign no later than February in order to prevent anyone else from stealing the spotlight. I’m also not convinced that Elizabeth Warren will decide to run at all.

See you in 2015! Bring on those debates! Enjoy your New Year’s and be safe. Also leave any predictions in the comments.

5 COMMENTS

  1. I don’t think the Jeb Bush high will stand. The only chance he has is ‘electability’ – if the media starts touting him as the most electable, then it is likely enough republicans will support him.

    The country really needs a more libertarian conservative than a moderate conservative. There is a lot that needs to be undone, and a lot that the country has been wanting to be done for a while now. A moderate or liberal will not do any of these things.

    The most important thing we need now is to get rid of Obamacare. It just makes me sick to hear that everyone must sign up for insurance … or else. Insurance reform is one thing, but a forced purchase is just too far.

  2. “The tensions that have erupted between Mayor de Blasio and the cities Police Union are casting a giant shadow over the Mayors bid to bring the DNC National Convention to Brooklyn.” ………….”There’s no solution in sight President of the Sergeants Benevolent Association Ed Mullins said.”

    From the New York Daily News article entitled: “De Blasio Tense Relations With NYPD Casting Shadow Over DNC Bid”

    http://www.nydailynews.com/news/politics/exclusive-de-blasio-bad-nypd-relations-shadowing-dnc-bid-article-1.2062570

  3. THE BUSHY HILLBILLIES

    Come and listen to my story ’bout a man named Jeb,
    a rich son o’bitch, politically-fam’ly-bred.
    And then one day, George became a pres’dent dude,
    Despite the fact he was stupid, also crude.

    (Bushisms, like “I’m the decider!” “They misunderestimated me.”)

    Well, the next thing you know, ol’ Jeb’s a-puttin’ on airs
    Tho’ kinfolk said, “ain’t there no one else anywheres?”
    But Karl Rove said Wash’ton’s the place ya oughta be,
    So he loaded up on cash, and talked presidentially.

    (The White House that is, Oval Office, Air Force One)

    But it’s time to say goodbye to Jeb and all his kin
    We’d all like to thank ’em for just kindly givin’ in
    They’re all invited back to their own locality
    To have a heapin’ helpin’ of Bush obscurity
    (Bushy Hillbillies, that’s what they’ll call ’em now.
    Nice folks. But, don’t come back now, y’hear?)

  4. Hot Air has an interesting article, saying that Jeb has figured the angles.

    http://hotair.com/archives/2014/12/29/cnn-poll-jeb-bush-leads-gop-field-with-23-outside-the-margin-of-error/?utm_source=newsletters&utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=JVL+01_07_15

    While the writer dismisses snapshot polls, especially at a time when only one candidate has committed, he notes that when specific issues are raised, 58 to 64% of Pubs say his “progressive” policies make them more likely to vote for him–or make no difference, while only 35 to 40% say they’re less likely to vote for him because of his stands. That’s great news for Bush, since it says Pubs just want to win.

    Trouble with that analysis is that it totally discounts people who hate Bush. Think about it–if a policy would make you less or more likely to vote for him, then you could be swayed–especially by the “electability” point. HOWEVER, those who say an issue makes no difference might also be people who wouldn’t vote for him no matter what he says. If you look at it that way, up to 89% of those those polled don’t like his policies, or can’t be talked into voting for him.

    Nobody ever seems to consider that way of looking at a poll like this.

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