Today, February 17th, I'm going to be bold and make a prediction. Of course, there will always be the chance I'm wrong but I have this new feeling in my gut: John McCain will be the next president of the United States.
About sixteen months ago I called it for Obama. While the polls were crying out for Hillary, I thought Barak would still be able to pull it off by now and take it home. I've been saying for months now that if Obama could simply win the nomination he'd be the next President, but I'm sensing something different now. Two reasons:
First, McCain as the Republican nomination changes things. While conservatives don't like him, they'll tolerate him. Moderates will gravitate to him as well. Despite a certain awkwardness he possesses, people respect his national service and experience. I'm not sure if his being from the western United States [Arizona] will help in November, but it certainly won't hurt. If the Republicans had picked any other candidate, they would have lost this election. McCain was the only guy they had that could help keep the White House and they picked him.
But the major reason I'm now predicting a McCain presidency is that the Democrats are eating each other alive and there will not be enough time to reconcile the party. I've seen dirty politics before, but nothing like the scale we're witnessing between Hillary and Obama. Their supporters are beginning to truly hate each other. And it doesn't help that the topics of race and gender are inescapable [ironically for the party supposed to lead the fight for those issues of equality] and nothing good can come from them. Neither candidate is going to give up before the convention. Obama will enter ahead in the delegate count and Hillary will press for the Michigan and Florida delegations to be seated to push her over the top. Friends, it's not even begun to be brutal. The convention will be a melee. After the convention the party will be divided, many will be apathetic, and McCain will benefit.
And McCain will be president.
Again, if the Republicans had nominated anyone else, the Dems would've been fine. And if Obama had been able to secure the nomination before Super Tuesday he could've made a push. But I'm no longer convinced that Obama will be able to muster the campaign he needs to win in the fall if he gets the nomination. As it is, there is still plenty of racism and ignorance out there in middle American [I forgot this but have been reminded by the numerous people trying to convince me that Barak is a Muslim]. Obama has a huge uphill fight, even if he wins the nomination. I just can't see him proving his case in such a short amount of time.
And Hillary is polarizing in her own party, let alone on a national level. I can't believe the Democratic party, after being handed the keys by George W., are going to lose the White House. It's amazing.
So sorry about changing my prediction, but unforseen circumstances drove me there.
This is crazy.
I should reiterate, as I did recently in response to someone's question about my political leanings, that I really have no horse in this race. I will, most likely, vote third party again this year as neither party best expresses my beliefs. That said, all of this is still extremely fascinating and I'm somewhat addicted. I'm reminded of the Seinfeld quote about Kramer, "He is a loathesome, offensive brute, and yet I cannot look away."