Wednesday, August 26, 2015

Election 2016 Prediction: Biden Throws In

Three predictions, actually:

  • US Vice President Joe Biden will formally announce his intention to seek the Democratic Party's 2016 presidential nomination no later than September 15, 2015.
  • In terms of campaign strategy, his overt game plan will be to concentrate on the third contest, South Carolina. He's had a personal presence and cultivated many friendships there for a long time. At the moment, Hillary Clinton seems to have Iowa fairly well locked down, but Bernie Sanders will do fairly well there and may well pull a Eugene McCarthy type near-win versus, or even beat, Clinton in New Hampshire. Sanders won't play that well in the south. Biden will be a sitting vice president, up against a wild card (Sanders) and a wounded opponent (Clinton). He'll come out of South Carolina as the one to beat.
  • BUT: All bets will be off well before the Iowa caucus. More, and more damaging, information will come out about Clinton's secret email server, mishandling of classified information, etc. before then. She's probably too stubborn to drop out (see the 2008 primaries for confirmation of that), but her campaign will effectively be over by some time in November at the latest. If Biden has the money and the organization, he'll have to decide whether to let Sanders gain momentum from whipping Clinton in Iowa and New Hampshire or contest those races himself. Whatever else he may be, Biden is a smart politician, and he's already thinking this angle through.

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