Ginni Thomas

National Journal Editor: Political Parties Have ‘Never Been Weaker’

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Ginni Thomas Contributor
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National Journal’s political editor says the Republican Party is essentially split in two, and it’s “unlikely” these factions will unite to win the general election.

“The Republican Party is like two parties in one right now. You have the Trump party and then the Bush Party, the chamber of commerce party and the tea party,” Josh Kraushaar says.

Sensing July surprises from both party conventions in Cleveland and Philadelphia, Kraushaar says in this exclusive video interview for The Daily Caller News Foundation that “the parties have never been weaker” and we may be watching the “last gasp of the party establishments.”

Sen. Bernie Sanders’ allies are already mobilizing his campaign based on former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton’s early advantages with superdelegates of the 4,763 Democrat delegates. Superdelegates, made up of Democrat party elites can who vote regardless of the will of a state electorate, offer Clinton significant assurances of prevailing in the Democrat convention, despite early primary losses.

Kraushaar spoke with Republican National Committee officials already sizing up their emerging 2,472 delegates being chosen to vote in Cleveland. As one RNC official told Kraushaar, it may come down to those who are there “for the party” versus those who “like to party.” If no nominee gets a majority of delegate votes on the first ballot, Kraushaar explains, many state rules allow their delegates to vote for whomever they choose for the next ballots. Un-tethered by the popular vote from their state, Republicans who happen to be in Cleveland may have extraordinary powers over November’s Republican nominee pick.

Kraushaar’s eyes light up as he uses words like “volatile, chaotic, unprecedented, and entertaining” to imagine what could happen at both party conventions.

Kraushaar was one of the few to expose the shifting loyalties of Republican establishment forces right before the Iowa caucuses — a shift that suddenly and surprisingly began warming to presidential candidate Donald Trump with the hopes of crushing Sen. Ted Cruz’s candidacy.

Exit polls show Trump is drawing a lot of moderate Republicans and is pulling Reagan Democrats away from the Hillary camp. Trump is “tapping into a vein of discontent within the Republican party,” the analyst says. These Republicans and estranged Democrats are using the primary process to voice frustration with Washington’s feckless leadership to counter the fundamental transformation of the nation.

Kraushaar says it is “stunning” that in Iowa, exit polls showed more Democrats associated with socialism than capitalism. The Democrat base thinks President Barack Obama has not gone far enough to fundamentally transform America, and activists think he has not stood up enough to Republicans. This demographic wants single payer health insurance, without any conception of costs that go into more federal giveaways.

Meanwhile, having former President Bill Clinton as America’s first gentleman complicates Hillary’s campaign for the White House — he doesn’t hold the same vivaciousness or effectiveness on the trail.

At the end of the 26-minute video interview, Kraushaar discusses what an increasingly likely candidacy of former New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg could do to the mix, saying a Trump/Sanders/Bloomberg race is a “fantasy political matchup.”

For more on Josh Kraushaar, you can read his pieces here, listen to him discuss the congressional races for 2016 here or follow him on Twitter @HotlineJosh.

(This author has endorsed [crscore]Ted Cruz[/crscore])

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Ginni Thomas