Open Season Primary Thread: Paulite Bros for Bernie, Sleepy Ben Wakes Up on Open Evangelical Highway
Pick a topic relating to New Hampshire, South Carolina, or Nevada. The floor is open. Except for that whole Impractical Bernie vs. Electable HIllary thing, that’s been done to death. Some topic teasers for you.
The shakeout from Iowa more intense than I predicted, first O’Malley and Huckabee and now Paul and rumors have it Santorum. And this morning Kasich saying “Do or Die” in New Hampshire. All of which shuffled the lanes particularly on the Republican side.
For example Paul’s dropout slams the Libertarian lane shut. Leaving College Libertarian Bros adrift. Where do they wash up? Where does some Ayn Randian atheistic personal liberty gold bug anti-Fed pot smoking small government guy go? Evangelical Ted? Authoritarian Donnie? Big Government Bernie? It sure ain’t Hillary or Marco. I think there is a good case for Bernie. After all who really wants to throw your Grannie off Social Security, and Aqua Buddha knows your chances of meeting good looking college girls are better at the Sanders rally. And you can bring your blunt, or number, or joint (whatever kids call it these days).
So topic one: Liber-Bros for Bernie
Another lane, another topic. Nobody I know expected Ben Carson to actually get on track. But four things happened. First it looks like both Huckabee and Santorum have dropped. Meanwhile Trump revealed that he literally couldn’t navigate around the New Testament even with a native guide (Ralph Reed). Two Corinthians forsooth? And mistaking the Communion Plate for the Offertory? Meanwhile Dr. Carson is mightily chapped that Cruz workers played dirty by saying he had dropped out. How do evangelicals in South Carolina take this diss? AFter all Carson still finished in fourth in Iowa with all kinds of competition for evangelicals. Now he has the opportunity to take on board the Huckabee and Santorum contingent while siphoning away actual church goers from Trump and Christians who woke up to what a nasty piece of work Cruz is.
So topic two: Carson Wakes up on Highway Evangelical racing with whom?
Topics: three, four and five? Open buffet, diner’s choice. But make it a little original please, no equivalent of green jello with carrot salad.
New Hampshire hypothetical: R’s finish Trump, Kasich, Cruz, Rubio in the 25 to 18 share with Christie, Bush, Fiorina in single digits and Carson perceived as not competing.
Per topic two Carson has an open road into South Carolina now, nothing that happens in NH can really change his dynamic (if using that word about the Drowsy One is not too ironic). So in this case I see four cars out of New Hampshire: the leaders Trump, Kasich, Cruz, Rubio leaving Christie behind with a blown engine and Bush and Fiorina limping along in patched together cars powered by PAC money and a hope for a cabinet postion respectively.
Which gives us this lineup in South Carolina. In alpha order starting with the viable five:
Before Cruz’s dirty trick on Carson I would have bet on our boy Rafael. But now?
New Hampshire Boxing
Main Event: Trump vs Cruz
Undercard: Rubio vs Bush and Kasich vs Christie
Trump needs a clear 7-8 point victory over the field or he might as well change his name to L-Rump,
Rubio dispatches Bush if he gets about the same margin and also Kasich over Christie. How the winners finish against each other being of less importance. Although if Bush in his match outpoints Kasich in his the latter has essentially pledged to drop out, he needs at least a top four.
I don’t know Bruce. If you look at the Iowa demographic data evangelicals were a huge part of the Cruz support. I don’t think that type of demographic make-up is present in NH. In addition voters who self-identify as “very conservative” (40% of all voters/44% went to Cruz, 21% Trump, 15% Rubio) broke heavily for Cruz. Again, I think NH voter demographics are not so skewed to the “very conservative”. In 2012 self-identified “moderate” and “liberal” GOP voters totaled 47% of those who cast votes in the GOP primary. (The categories are very conservative, somewhat conservative, moderate, liberal.) Very much like Santorum in 12 and Huckabee in 08 I think that Cruz is ideal for white, very conservative, evangelical Iowa GOP caucus voters, but that’s about it. BTW with non-evangelicals Cruz was the weakest of the top three.
cast votes in the NH GOP primary
I already sent my absentee in NH primary. I won’t say my vote.
I am aware of the state democratic party regime, which is solid HRC. However, they lost one of two democrat incumbent HoR seats in 2014 with stunningly bad voter turn out.
Kicker: Independents can declare a party in NH at the poll. I think it would be “fun” for indies to jump for Trump. However, NH indies do not bother to vote unless excited which help Bernie, too.
Link to 538’s NH GOP primary polling analysis:
Trump polling ~30%; Cruz Rubio and Kasich ~12-10%.
Not so many evangelicals but they do come out. Kasich is more typical of NH demographic than the Canadian Cruise and the Miami Cuban Rubio.
My town in NH has paper ballots going into “readers”.
I will be “on the road” next Tuesday so will have 538 live on line…..