Beyond Chron Political Predictions for 2012

Randy Shawbyline‚ Jan. 03‚ 2012

Although voters are showing remarkable volatility, my crystal ball for 2012 is surprisingly clear. One reason is that 2012 is the every four-year election cycle when young people vote. Another is that predicting the Republican presidential nominee has become easier with the successive downfalls of Tea Party-backed challengers to Mitt Romney. Republicans will not follow the precedent of Delaware voters in the 2010 Republican Senate primary, who chose Tea-Partier Christine O'Donnell over “moderate” Congressman Mike Castle, but will instead nominate Romney, a candidate in the mold of George H.W. Bush, Bob Dole and John McCain. Barack Obama looks surprisingly strongly positioned to defeat Romney, contrary to what I thought even one month ago. Elizabeth Warren’s Senate race in Massachusetts, Democrats efforts to retake the House and maintain control of the Senate, the recall election of Wisconsin Governor Scott Walker, California’s tax increase initiatives, Bay Area elections for State Senate and Assembly and what 2012 holds for Oakland Mayor Quan and San Francisco Mayor Lee are all on the table. Here’s how we see electoral politics in the coming year.