To pontificate on the future of politics is to dig one’s own grave. The political climate changes every day – as it should. The greatest asset of representative democracy is adaptability. Fads and “buzz words” change with the hour, as well as people’s priorities. The media creates a new mandate every day, the economy surges and drops without provocation, and foreign diplomacy is wholly unpredictable.
That being said, predictions serve a functional purpose. They create expectations and standards and, most importantly, they give political columnists jobs. So, without further delay, here are some general predictions:
1) The Democrats will regain the Senate in 2002. Republicans have already split our campaign finance reform and tax cuts, and Bob Smith of New Hampshire is extremely vulnerable in 2002. The most vulnerable Democrats (with the exception of BobToricelli) are not facing re-election. Strom Thurmond and John McCain are very likely to step down as well
2) The presidential race of 2004 will feature George W. Bush vs. Bob Kerry. Who will win? It is impossible to tell. While many people look to the success of Bush’s economic policy, his appointment of judicial posts, and his protection of sacred endowments and international safety as key indicators, good times and high approval ratings certainly didn’t help Al Gore. America will look for an inspirational, confident President, rather than a policy-wonk. Advantage John Kerry or possibly John Edwards or Evan Bayh.
3) Bill Clinton will run for something, even if it is Chappaqua dog warden. It is his only outlet from the personal demons that pursue him.
4) The Red Sox will win 10 World Series in succession – I hope this doesn’t cloud my other predictions, but dreaming is the biggest part of predicting. Stick it to `em Nomar!