This article was written well ahead of scheduled publishing in order to accommodate my travel plans.
Today is Election Day 2021. It is an off year election, (unless you are a candidate), and I’d like to look one year ahead to Election Day 2022 when the mid-term will determine control of the next Congress. Especially the House (with gerrymandering) and the Senate will be in play. No early predictions from me a year out. For the best forecasts on the House I suggest following the Cook Political Report.
The predominant thinking is that if the Republicans take the House it will be because of the influence of Donald Trump and that Kevin McCarthy will be the next Speaker. I’m among the minority (at this point) that says not so quick.
Gerrymandering will be uglier than ever. A combination of computer advances and partisanship make it so. In fact, it looks like some Democratic controlled states are doing as bad of a job of redistricting as red states. Their excuse is defense. All that aside that aspect of the “game” will be rigged to a degree never before seen. I expect the most extreme field of GOP House candidates ever and that is strictly because of the meddling of the former guy. If the GOP takes control of the House and it can be attributed to his candidates he will cement his hold over the elected Republican officials in Washington. Trump will effectively control the House and that is a scary thought!
Kevin McCarthy has never been anything more than Trump’s useful idiot. He told the truth for a few minutes after 1/6 and ended up having to go down to Mar-a-Lago to kiss Trump’s ring and beg forgiveness. Right now having Kevin in charge of the House minority caucus suits Trump well. If he takes the House he will want someone smarter (that won’t be difficult to find, even by Trump’s low standards McCarthy is not very bright) and certainly more loyal. My prediction is that regardless of the outcome of the 2020 elections Kevin McCarthy will not be the next Speaker of the House.
The natural question is: If not Kevin then who? The first thing to keep in mind is that the Speaker does not have to be a member of the House. Trump, like all corrupt wannabe authoritarian’s values loyalty above all else. If he doesn’t want to rock the boat too much, he may well pick a House loyalist. Jim Jordan is high on that list as are Paul Gosar and Marjorie Taylor Greene. Going outside opens up the door to the likes of Donald Trump, Jr., Steve Bannon, Mike Flynn, Paul Manafort and Kellyanne Conway.
Don’t tell me that those choices are too extreme or that the Republican caucus would never go along with it. Trump was twice impeached and tried to overthrow the government on his way out. Nothing is too extreme for him!
As to the House GOP Caucus they will do whatever Trump tells them to do especially if they feel he put them in the majority. In some cases they will do it out of loyalty but in most out of fear, both personal and political.
As bad as George W. Bush was I would have taken him back over Trump. If the Republicans take back the House we may well wish we were dealing with Kevin McCarthy instead of whomever Trump effectively installs.
Elections matter! Vote!!!!!!
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