Unless something drastically changes the 2016 Presidential Election is Hillary v. Jeb or Christ or Walker.

Filed by drew

Declared Major Candidates, according to wikipedia, include

  • Hillary Clinton
  • Ted Cruz
  • Rand Paul
  • Marco Rubio

IS there an inherent bias to the way Wikipedia is organizing the results? E.g. what are the semiotic implications of Hillary being first, alone and at the top of the list of major candidates?

Or is it just alphabetical order? Either way, we're calling this one blue.

On the right side of the spectrum, we've got the Koch-funded Ballotpedia, listing the top potential and declared candidates as follows:

  • Hillary Clinton
  • Bernie Sanders
  • Ted Cruz
  • Bernie Sanders
  • Rand Paul
  • Marco Rubio

Seeing the prominent placement of Hillary on the top left here, dominant over a much more credible pack of possible candidates, reinforces my belief that there is something traditional or alphabetical to the arrangement.

Dissecting this page makes me believe they are organizing alphabetically by last name. Sadly, this is the only possible way Kelly Ayotte could get ahead of Jeb.

The other interesting right-wing note here is the softer language used to describe the previous failures of Republican candidates as compared to the Democrat descriptions. E.g. Hillary's bio includes, ". In 2008, she lost the Democratic presidential primary nomination to Barack Obama" while Huckabee's description only contains a vague allusion to his failed 2008 bid, "When asked on December 22, 2013, whether he would be interested in another run for the presidency, Huckabee said, "It would be, frankly, dishonest to say no."

Also in stark contrast is Biden's bio blurb, "He also ran for president in 1988 and 2008" compared to Perry's "Perry ran for the Republican nomination for President of the United States in 2012." It seems a little nit-picky, but you can definitely feel the difference in how Dems are described over Repubs. This is the front-line of the messaging war and the red are ahead.

Also, Santorum's short bio doesn't mention his previous failure to get the nom. Is this Ballotpedia trying to make him look better or are they avoiding giving his run 2012 nomination attempt credibility by not describing it as such?

On the international side, the BBC has a great primmer called "US 2016: Meet the possible candidates" that reflects the fairly common conventional wisdom:

  • Hillary Clinton (Democrat) -DECLARED
  • Jeb Bush (Republican)
  • Chris Christie (R)
  • Scott Walker (R)
  • Ted Cruz (R) - DECLARED

After Ted Cruz, the list starts to include the likes of Bernie Sanders and Carly Fiorina. Curiously, Rubio has already been relegated to the bottom-middle of the pack internationally, sandwiched between Huckabee and Biden.

This source and others on the Guardian, Pravda and everywhere else on the civilized globe reflect the same storyline - Hillary v. Jeb or Chris^t or Walker. Unless something drastically changes, this is 2016 in a nutshell.

BTW, an early storyline I'm seeing is Carly Fiorina is running for the Republican VP slot. She's positioning herself as the only one able to compete with Hillary for liberal, female swing voters.

The Zeitgeist: Ted Cruz, March 31, 2015

Filed by drew

The conventional wisdom on Ted Cruz, current front-runner for the Republican nomination to be the official candidate for President in 2016, has developed into a few storylines.

The harder line mainstream conservatives are worried Cruz isn't genuine or experienced enough. The Politico article is a great example of this school of thought, "Cruz, who announced last week he’s running for president, has the committee’s worst attendance record — by far."

Other stories in this vein highlight the mere 2.5 years of Cruzperience in the Senate and the low speech to accomplishment ratio Cruz seems to put forward. The smart conservatives are glad he's keeping the conversation red and driving national donations while keeping the spotlight warm for a real contender.

International news outlets are kinder but kookier to Cruz. Most play up his Canadian birth and tea party connections. The linked BBC article below is a perfect example, bolding the sentences mentioning Texas, Twitter, Tea Party, the twenty one hour speech and "it emerged he was born in Canada."

The international press is all looking at Cruz's candidacy from this tabloid angle. Every article mentions Chris Christie, Rand Paul and Rubio as tentative entries. None of the non-US outlets have any front-page Cruz stories, either.

The liberals love Cruz. Love, loves^loves his zany antics because the amount of stupid things he says is directly correlated to the amount of money they raise. I bet there are days when Cruz and Hillary use the exact same Ted Cruz quotes in their email campaign headlines.

For the type example see Mimi Swartz' Front-Page-Link-Worthy article in the Times, linked. Mimi goes through all the liberal stages of grief when exposed to unhealthy levels of Cruz Candidacy:

  1. Dread
  2. Superiority
  3. Resignation and Acceptance
  4. Internalization

This common blue narrative is to paint Cruz with the Texas brush until he seems folksy and harmless then yank that facade away to show the true Cruz: funless, activist conservative. It feels a lot like a vocal chuck of the liberal media is reacting to Cruz the way they wish they'd reacted to W; saying the things they wish the'd said to W. They just aren't driving the national conversation because Cruz isn't as much candidate as W.

The latest on Hillary's Zany Email Server

Filed by drew

The problem with the email is story is that anything Clintonian is multi-faceted and hard to see. Take this email story. There is smoke blowing out of an email server that's on fire. Yet it definitely wasn't illegal and followed precedent to use a home email server, like Colin Powell.

Everything seems to be true here. Just different details are highlit. The NYT goes out of their way to emphasize things were private. The Mail editors must be thrilled that there is a Huma connection, new news. And the Post goes right for the pun and the jugular, "Hillary concedes she should have used a government email server."

Jeb Bush Infuriates, Inspires, and Ingratiates at CPAC

Filed by drew

Jeh Johnson on DHS shutdown

Filed by drew

I'm going to say it's NOT A GOOD THING.

Senate Agrees to Fund DHS; No Apparent Immigration Quid Pro Quo

Filed by drew