December 19, 2018



Blame it on the Founding Fathers. Those white men who crafted the U.S. Constitution back in the 1770s and concocted a methodology to elect a president that included an Electoral College rather than a popular vote, and separate executive and legislative branches of government rather than a parliamentary system.

The Electoral College numbers 538 votes, which is the aggregate of 435 U.S. representatives, 100 senators, and three votes from the District of Columbia. In certain leftist circles, that is deemed to be blatantly discriminatory, constituting disparate treatment, as voters from lower-populated states have a greater impact nationwide than voters from higher-populated states. For example, Hillary Clinton received 8,753,788 votes in California, and 55 electoral votes, but Donald Trump got 409,055 votes in Idaho, and four electoral votes. That equates to 102,263 votes per electoral vote in Idaho, compared to 1,569,159 votes per electoral vote in California.

In those circles, particularly among Democrats who ardently seek U.S. regime change, want impeachment now, and find abhorrent and intolerable the prospect of Trump's presidency continuing through the end of 2020, if not beyond, the 2018 mid-term election results were a definite source of encouragement.

The president lost the 2016 popular vote to Hillary Clinton 65,853,514-62,984,838, a margin of 2,868,676 votes, and 2018's popular vote, at least as measured in the 435 U.S. House contests, with a Democratic pick-up of 40 seats, and a new 235-199 majority (one seat remains undecided), clearly demonstrates that the divisions of 2016 remain.

But so remains the Electoral College, which in 2016 put Trump in the White House 304-227, just 34 over the 270 constitutional minimum, based entirely upon narrow Trump majorities in Pennsylvania (with 20 electoral votes) Michigan (16), Wisconsin (10), Florida (29) and Iowa (6), and a big win in Ohio (18). Should just MI (16) + PA (20) or FL (29) + WI (10), or any combination of those four exceeding 34 flip from pro- to anti-Trump, the president is a goner in 2020.

Trump won Pennsylvania by 54,282 votes, Michigan by 10,704 votes, Wisconsin by 22.748 votes, Florida by 112,911 votes, and Iowa by 147,224 votes, but piled-up a huge 532,277-vote margin in Ohio. Much sound and fury will now ensue as Democrats roll out their 2020 field, with everybody jousting to be the most anti-Trump and corral some Democratic demographic, such as women, African-Americans or the growing socialist/left voters, and all can be encouraged by the party's 2018 showing in the foregoing states.

In Michigan, a Democratic woman won the governorship, and the party picked-up two congressional seats. In Pennsylvania, the incumbent Democrat retained the governorship, and the party picked-up three congressional seats. In Wisconsin, a Democrat ousted the much-despised Scott Walker (R) as governor. In Iowa, a Republican woman kept the governorship, but Democrats picked-up two congressional seats. In Florida, an African-American Democrat came very close to winning the governorship, and the incumbent Democratic senator was defeated, albeit narrowly, but Democrats picked-up two congressional seats in a record off-year turnout that energized their party's base. Only in Ohio, where Republicans retained the governorship and their 12-4 congressional edge, were Democrats repulsed.

In short, Democrats need to swing ONLY about 200,000 votes in Michigan, Pennsylvania, Wisconsin and/or Florida and Iowa, and the presidency is theirs. As the 2020 presidential battle begins, the Democrats' focus should not be on who is the politically correct candidate, but rather on who can beat Trump in Florida, Michigan and Pennsylvania. That's the ball game.

The presidential primary gauntlet is front-loaded, with early contests in Iowa, New Hampshire, Nevada and South Carolina designed to highlight and winnow the field before the 11-state "Super Tuesday" March primary. Until then, raising money is critical; by Super-Tuesday getting votes counts more.

The emerging 2020 Democratic field is not overly auspicious. It does not thus far include Hillary Clinton, age 71, who could likely have the nomination for the taking, and would likely win the presidency on a wave of I'm-so-sorry-I-didn't-vote-for-you remorse. But several Baby-Boomers (or pre-Boomers) are in the mix. They might be termed the "Geriatric Generation" candidates, meaning those of the Trump/Clinton/Bush generation who want to hang on forever.

They include Joe Biden, age 76, former two-term vice-president and 36-year senator, who can invoke the nostalgia of the quietude of the Obama Administration. Vermont senator Bernie Sanders, age 77, who is a declared socialist but has a warm-and-fuzzy grandfatherly image and has become iconic since his 2016 primary challenge to Clinton, in which he amassed 13,167,848 votes. Sanders is polling at about 15 percent. Michael Bloomberg, age 76, the billionaire former New York City mayor, has the money to run if he so chose, and would set up a who's-the-better-billionaire contest if nominated. He could run as an independent but has declared himself a Democrat. The most likely and palatable nominee would be Massachusetts senator Elizabeth Warren, who could appeal to both women ad leftists. She has not yet announced.

There will definitely be an African-American candidate, maybe two. Senators Cory Booker (D-NJ), who got some publicity for his vociferous opposition to the Kavanaugh Supreme Court nomination, and Kamala Harris (D-CA), who has a West Coast base and would be a fresh face, with great appeal to women and minorities. Booker knows that, and is campaigning energetically in Iowa and New Hampshire.

Two Millennials have surfaced: Former Obama Administration housing secretary Julian Castro, age 44, a former Austin, Texas, mayor, is angling to lock-up the Hispanic vote, which could be considerable. He is making himself everybody's top-choice for vice-president. Beto O'Rourke, age 46, the El Paso congressman who narrowly lost the 2018 Texas senate race to Ted Cruz (R), is a great retail politician and is being prodded to enter the 2020 contest and start campaigning in Iowa and New Hampshire. He has plenty of free time. O'Rourke and Booker are polling around 5 to 7 percent each in polls.

And then there are the fifty-something-plus white guys, which are approaching afterthought stage in Democratic primaries. A white Democratic guy for president? Not a chance. But keep somebody with testosterone around for vice-president. 2020 possibilities include New York governor Andrew Cuomo and outgoing Colorado governor John Hickenlooper, and senators Tim Kaine of Virginia (who was Clinton's 2016 running mate) and Michael Bennet of Colorado.

This much is certain: Given the current politically volatile environment, the anti-Trump rage, and the certainty that the Democrats will nominate a woman and/or an African American (or both) for president, it is difficult to believe that the Democrats can blow the presidency in 2020. But, given the caliber, ideology and quality of the Democratic field, that's definitely within the realm of possibility
The early caucus is in Iowa in January, then New Hampshire in February, then South Carolina, and then Super Tuesday (AL, AR, GA, MA, TX, TN, VA, CO, MN, OK and VT) in April. By then, the Democratic nominee will be known. And so, too, will Trump's fate.