Sunday, November 30, 2014

2016 Starts in 2015

Yes, I know that we just had a round of midterm elections and not every race from early in the month has been settled. Yes, I know the new Congress has not even been seated. Yes, I know the first NFL coach has yet to be fired so far this season. None of that matters because we're now on to the 2016 presidential election season.

At least I let you digest from Thanksgiving. Time to limber up and get your long-distance political mojo going. It's going to be a long campaign.

President Obama has done his level best to maintain his relevance, and I am firmly on the side of any chief executive who can hold onto the media cycle well into their sixth year. We'll see if he can do that. The Republicans are livid because they thought they actually won the elections and figured that Obama would cave in to their demands to deport all undocumented immigrants, give subsidies to the coal industry, and call for more heavy-handed police tactics in areas where the officers are mostly white and the population is mostly African-American or Hispanic. Just as he expected, after winning reelection in 2012, that the GOP would cave in on taxes and entitlement reform and immigration. So I guess we're all even.

As for actual legislation, I don't think that much will pass through the House, Senate and White House. It looks like congressional lawsuits against the executive on health care and the environment will have to suffice as the democratic process for the time being, and I doubt that a disaster, such as a collapsed bridge or more  extreme weather, will get the parties together.

And you know what that means, don't you? More time for politics, polling, breathless cable news pronouncements, pundit speculation and, of course, Twitter and Facebook explosions on race, women, the minimum wage, the war on coal and privacy.

This is just a friendly warning. I'm not going to prognosticate just yet. We have a holiday season to get through and I don't want to deter anyone from shopping or saving the economy. But the election is coming and it's best that we prepare.

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