Forecasting the future is always a difficult task. Whether trading West Texas Intermediate Crude Oil futures, anticipating the next move of the Federal Reserve or betting who will win the Super Bowl, forecasting is always a dicey exercise. Economists, statisticians, and political pundits all try but most fail.
I’ll go out on a limb and make a two predictions for next fall: the New York Mets will not win the World Series, and Chris Christie, following his excellent handling of the hurricane Sandy tragedy, will be re-elected Governor of New Jersey.
As all political junkies know, only two states, Virginia and New Jersey, elect their governors in the year following Presidential elections. With the New Jersey contest all but decided, the Old Dominion and its candidates are in for national scrutiny not seen since the days of Massive Resistance under the Byrd machine in the 1950′s. This scrutiny has already begun to happen. In recent days, the New York Times, not the local media, reported that the House of Delegates voted by a large margin to restrict the sale of generic versions of certain biotech drugs, thus making health care more expensive for average Virginians.
Internet sites such as Huffington Post and Politico have actively covered this session of the General Assembly. Much space has been given to Republican efforts at voter suppression and the attempt by the G.O.P. caucus to change the allocation of electoral votes from the traditional winner-take-all to a system based on the victor of each Congressional district. Following a national election that proved that demographics are making the Republican party a national minority party, these demonstrations of neo-Confederate leanings are now widely reported and political poison in an attempt to broaden the base of the national Republican party.
Ken Cuccinelli,the presumptive Republican nominee for governor, has taken the unusual step of publishing a book defining his political philosophy. Usually this is done at the senatorial or presidential level. Although, according to Amazon.com, this bit of “philosophy” will not be available until February 12, members of the Washington political elite have received advance copies. Chris Matthews of MSNBC reported last Thursday that several passages of Krazy Ken’s oeuvre are right out of Mitt Romney’s famous 47% speech, blasting those who receive government transfer payments such as veterans pensions and Medicare. I wonder if he believes all rapes are legitimate, and if we should do nothing to protect 7-year-olds from gun nuts with AK47s. I’m sure his book will will be discussed in a wide swath of American political elite. What happens in Virginia no longer stays in Virginia.
– Les Schreiber