ABC-6 Reporter Mark Curtis: "The Sunday Political Brunch" Februa - ABC6 - Providence, RI and New Bedford, MA News, Weather


ABC-6 Reporter Mark Curtis: "The Sunday Political Brunch" February 23, 2014

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by ABC6 News Chief Political Reporter Mark Curtis

(Providence, Rhode Island) – Every couple of weeks we've been exploring the potential Democratic and Republican candidates for President in 2016. We've looked at a total of sixteen – eight in each party – so now let's look at some real long shots who may get the chance to ride Air Force One, whenever they wish (photo above). Hey, it's still two years away and anything can happen: 


"Scott Walker" – There is no lukewarm with Governor Scott Walker, (R) Wisconsin. People either love him or hate him. He's up for reelection this year, and if he wins a second term, he's got a free shot at the White House in 2016. Plus: He gets chops for standing up against public labor unions and surviving a 2012 recall election. Minus: Paul Ryan could not carry Wisconsin for the Republicans in 2012, so why would the GOP think Walker could? A national candidate must carry the home state. Period! 

"Martin O'Malley" – Governor Martin O'Malley, (D) Maryland, is a rising star in his party. While he's a Hillary Clinton protégé, he might even run against her if she looks vulnerable. All loyalties are off. Plus: He's highly visible in the Maryland-District of Columbia-Virginia corridor, which means a leg up on national endorsements and campaign cash. Minus: High-level hyperbole! He once suggested President George W. Bush's budget was an attack on American cities, akin to the 9/11 terrorist attacks. O'Malley later recanted.  

"Brian Sandoval" - Governor Brian Sandoval, (R) Nevada, was considered a possible Vice Presidential running mate for Mitt Romney in 2012. Romney might have fared better in the swing state of Nevada had he chosen Sandoval. Plus: He's Latino, and from a western battleground state with lots of Hispanic voters - and potentially pulls in that demographic in other nearby states of Colorado, California and New Mexico.  Minus: Brian who? Few people outside of Nevada ever heard of him, making his national appeal dicey.  

"Deval Patrick" – Governor Deval Patrick, (D) Massachusetts, is retiring after his second term, even though he could have run again as the Bay State does not have term limits. But, he's also being mentioned as a potential U.S. Attorney General or U.S. Supreme Court Associate Justice, if either job opens. Plus: He's a bright, passionate, and thoughtful campaigner and leader, well liked among his party's rank and file. Minus: He's a young, black politician from Chicago, who went to Harvard Law School just like President Obama. Many independent voters may simply say, "Been there; done that."  

"Ted Cruz" – Senator Ted Cruz, (D) Texas, is still a relative newcomer on the national political scene, in his first term on Congress. Plus: He's from a huge state, with a key Hispanic demographic that may spread its momentum to other states, such as New Mexico, Colorado and Nevada, which could swing them back into the GOP fold. Minus: His filibuster by reading the Dr. Seuss classic, "Green Eggs and Ham," on the Senate floor will live forever on You Tube, and elsewhere on the Internet. It was cute for a day, but years later, it may get old.   

"Amy Klobuchar" – Senator Amy Klobuchar, (D) Minnesota, is "one to watch" if not for 2016, but for election cycles beyond. At 53, and in her second Senate term, she has a bright political future. Plus: She offers a legitimate alternative for those looking for a female Presidential nominee, should Hillary Clinton falter. Minus: Liberal Minnesota is all but certain to go for Democrats – no matter the nominee – so where else can she help the party? Hubert Humphrey and Walter Mondale had the same problem trying to widen their party base beyond the Gopher State.

"Rand Paul" – Senator Rand Paul, (R) Kentucky, has made a real national name for himself, moving out of the shadow of his father, Rep. Ron Paul (R) Texas, who has run three times for President. Plus: The brash, independent streak of his dad, has rubbed off. "The apple doesn't fall far from the tree!" Minus: He has angered and offended many mainstream Republicans, which does not lend itself well to a national campaign. 

"Elizabeth Warren" – Senator Elizabeth Warren, (D) Massachusetts, might be the longest of long shots. She's a rookie, only two years into her first Senate term, so who would go out on that limb? Well, that was also Barack Obama's resume and it worked for him. Plus: She has to be taken seriously after knocking off rising-star, Republican Senator Scott Brown. Minus: She can win in liberal Massachusetts, but can she win in the Heartland? Potential female candidates Hillary Clinton (an Illinois native) and Amy Klobuchar (Minnesota) have Midwestern roots that can help them there. Warren, who grew up in the much more conservative Oklahoma, may not have the same appeal. 

"Indies" – Okay, we have now looked at twelve potential candidates in each party since 2014 began. But is there another option? Is there a potential independent candidate out there who might break us out of the two-party domination – or act as a spoiler tipping the election one way or the other? Keep an eye on former Republican-turned-independent New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg. Plus: Bloomberg already has national name recognition and a bottomless wallet. He could assemble enough independents and moderate Republicans to make a serious run. Minus: Banning "Big Gulp" colas offended the right; "Stop and Frisk" offended the left. So who's his base?

Who would you like to see run for President. Is there someone outside of the 25 we've named as potential Commanders in Chief? State your nominees by clicking the comment button at

© 2014, Mark Curtis Media, LLC.

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