The great chaos that is the 2016 election season keeps hurdling at us, and I’ll help you make sense of it all.
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Days until June 7 (Final Primaries): 23
Days until General Election: 177
Trump Beats Dropped-Out Candidates in Two States
The two states that voted last Tuesday were Nebraska and West Virginia. Of course, Trump won them both, (even after telling his West Virginia supporters to not bother voting), but he was held to ~60% in Nebraska, and Kasich came out with a delegate because of West Virginia’s complicated allocation rules. Mike Huckabee (R-AR) also came in 4th in one county, for whatever it’s worth.
Trump Meets with Spkr. Ryan - Still No Endorsement
Trump had a meeting with House Speaker Paul Ryan (R-WI), who is still not willing to endorse him. Ryan wants to unify the party, but wants to make sure they aren’t “faking unifying”. Ryan came under fire for this from apparent Trump spokesman Sarah Palin (R-AK), who endorsed Ryan’s primary challenger, Paul Nehlen. Ryan is still likely to get back his seat, and not “get Cantored” as Palin put it (After former House Majority Leader Eric Cantor (R-VA), who lost to a right-wing primary challenger.)
In Typical Bizarre Fashion, It is Revealed Trump... Just read the story
Trump also came under fire this week for an odd business tactic he used in the 80s. Trump would pose as “John Miller” or “John Barron” and call reporters to brag about himself. It’s doubtful he was fooling anyone, but it’s another strange Trump story that questions his integrity and... sanity? To add to the complexity, he had admitted it was him, but just this last week, claimed he had no idea what the story was, and that it was “Definitely not me.”
Meet Your Potential Vice Presidential Candidates
*Sorted by Likelihood
- Newt Gingrich (R-GA) - The former speaker of the house who ran for president in 2012, Gingrich could be a signal to conservative elites that Trump is a true conservative. However, he’s a slightly loony old white man; not exactly the most inspiring of all candidates. TRUMP/GINGRICH 2016: “We’ll build a moon base and make Mexico pay for it”
- Chris Christie (R-NJ) - An early endorser of Trump, the New Jersey governor (and 2016 presidential candidate) stays with Trump’s “tough guy” appeal, and is a moderate. However, he too is a white man from a non-swing state, so his appeal would be limited. Also, Bridgegate.
- Susana Martinez (R-NM) - A Hispanic woman from a Lean D state, Martinez is a textbook VP candidate. However, it’s not clear that she wants the job, and she hasn’t been the most avid Trump supporter. She also has a lower name recognition than the previous two.
- Jon Huntsman (R-UT) - The extremely moderate Utah Governor would be a good pick to win independents and disaffected Bernie voters. He could also help lock up the Mormon vote, key in Nevada and Arizona. However, he had a pretty awful presidential run in 2012 and was in the Obama administration and might turn off conservatives.
- Joni Ernst (R-IA) - As a conservative woman from a swing state, Ernst is also promising, but, like Martinez, she might not want the job. She also could be too conservative to win moderates.
- Marco Rubio (R-FL) - He may be a Hispanic from a swing state, but since his presidential run, he’s seemed to hate politics. He also won’t be attending the convention, a sure sign he doesn’t want the job. Rubio famously (OK, not really) tried to hold onto his Alaska delegates to stop Trump, so he may not be too thrilled to get the job. Also, weeks of being called “Li’l Marco” don’t show that he’s on the best terms with Trump.
- Jeff Sessions (R-AL) - An enthusiastic Trump supporter who wants the job, he is also an uninspiring old white man from a safe Republican state. He’s also very conservative, both a pro and a con.
- John Kasich (R-OH) - Kasich has been thought to be running for VP this entire time, and being from crucial state Ohio, he might be a good pick. However, he was a noted Trump hater, and doesn’t send the best signal to conservatives.
- Scott Brown (R-MA/NH) - The famed “guy with a truck” who was Senator from Massachusetts is a moderate, who is seen as inoffensive. However, Brown lost Senate re-election to Elizabeth Warren in 2010, then lost after moving to New Hampshire in 2014, showing he’s not good at winning.
- Ben Carson (R-MD) - The presidential candidate was a fellow outsider to Trump and had a fleeting moment atop the polls. However, he doesn’t have discernible policies, and has been the butt of many jokes. He also has no government experience and is probably asleep at all times.
Sanders Wins West Virginia
As expected, Bernie Sanders won West Virginia, and “other” got 13% of the vote. Meanwhile, Clinton was left with an embarrassing 35.8% of the vote. Local lawyer Paul Farrell nearly got the 15% needed to win a delegate in one Congressional District. Sanders swept every county and netted 7 delegates, but still fell under his target to win the nomination, now needing almost exactly 2/3 of the remaining delegates. The uphill battle for Bernie just keeps getting steeper, and there’s no way for him to win without a miracle.
This Week In World Elections
The Philippines: Controversial candidate Rodrigo Duterte easily won the presidential election. Leni Robredo, from an opposing party, became Vice President. Duterte came under fire for making controversial statements, and was insulted by John Oliver. The Liberal party held on to the Senate and won the most district elections again, albeit with less large majorities than previous election.
Dominican Republic: The presidential election was today, and incumbent Danilo Medina is expected to easily win. Results have been slow to come in, so we don’t know who won yet. Despite large amounts of poverty, Medina remains very popular.
I’m planning on making this a regular segment, feel free to comment. Thanks for reading! Tune in next week for coverage of Clinton’s 10 most likely VP picks.