The following looks at various possible scenarios but these are NOT predictions.
This past Sunday I finished reading Sean Trende's book The Lost Majority. Its a good read though poorly edited and at some point I may write a full review, but today I wanted to follow along on one of his points. Call it the History of the Road Not Taken.
Life is full of decisions that instantly alter our future choices and destinies. Who hasn't wondered how their life would have been different if they hadn't taken a certain job, or if they had asked a certain girl for a date?
Politics is especially full of Roads Not Taken given the constant tug of war between parties, factions, and ideologies. Imagine if John McCain had edged Barack Obama in 2008. It is not at all unlikely that McCain would have been an unsuccessful president. His lack of understanding of and interest in economics might well have lead him into various bargains with Congressional Democrats that would have proved fruitless.
If McCain had won in 2008, there would never have been Obamacare which in turns means there would have been no Tea Party and no backlash in November 2009 and November 2010. Scott Brown would have likely never reached the Senate, and the Democrats probably would have padded their already sizable majorities in both Houses of Congress.
Today, after twelve years of GOP control of the White House, there would be little suspense as Hillary Clinton enjoyed a large lead over the fading McCain. The Democrats could well be on their way to historically large majorities cementing the certainty of one or two more extreme liberals on the Supreme Court.
The Clinton's, being far savvier politically than Obama, would make better political choices and Hillary would hold the Oval Office till January 20, 2021.
Because that's a Road Not Taken, no matter what happens today the GOP will be better off than that scenario.
If Obama is re-elected the GOP will still control at least the House, and it will leave the Democrat Party in a bad spot come 2016. After two more years of no leadership from the President, the country may well opt for a GOP controlled Senate in 2014. After eight years of Obama's narcissism and failure, the Republican party should be well positioned in 2016 with a deep bench and no weak heir-apparent to clog up the works. The Democrats will have Crazy Joe Biden, Past Her Sell By Date Hillary, and Andrew Cuomo if he manages to stay scandal free till then.
If Mitt Romney wins then the GOP will have a chance to move the nation back from the abyss as they control at least the House and the White House. If Romney is as good as I think he can be, he could rebuild the Republicans as the party of fiscal soundness and personal freedom.
What road will we take today? What road should we take tomorrow?