Your 2016 Advance Tip Sheet


[See birther update below.] I generally think that the first time when sane people should start talking about prospects for the 2016 presidential election is two-plus years from now -- that is, well into springtime of the pre-election year of 2015. Yes, I know that campaign pros have been seriously at work for several months now, but the rest of us can avert our gaze and attention for a while.

Cruz.pngBecause it sheds interesting light on the Congressional-vs.-Administration politics of 2013, very much including the ongoing Hagel wars, here's a note from a reader in Montana:

Senators Rubio, Paul and Cruz are all maneuvering for the Republican presidential nomination in 2016. By that time, they will probably represent the liberal, moderate, and conservative wings of the Republican party. Think about that.

So let's see: Rubio won't be nominated because the anti-immigrant crazies of the GOP can't stand him. The neo-cons will torpedo Paul. That leaves Cruz [right]. Hillary v. Cruz would be something to see--a pundits' paradise. Let the pundit screeching begin.

You heard it here first. If you were wondering, in 2016 Cruz would be roughly the same age Barack Obama was in 2008, and would have exactly the same amount of experience in national office: four years in the U.S. Senate. 

Update: and those worried about a version of the "birther" controversy being applied to Cruz should check here. In short, he was born in Canada to a U.S.-citizen mother (herself born in America) and a Cuban-immigrant father -- and while Donald Trump might disagree, there are good reasons to think that his mother's citizenship and decades of residence in the U.S. get him past the constitutional requirement. One more reason to make this a pundits' paradise.
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James Fallows is a national correspondent for The Atlantic and has written for the magazine since the late 1970s. He has reported extensively from outside the United States and once worked as President Carter's chief speechwriter. His latest book is China Airborne. More

James Fallows is based in Washington as a national correspondent for The Atlantic. He has worked for the magazine for nearly 30 years and in that time has also lived in Seattle, Berkeley, Austin, Tokyo, Kuala Lumpur, Shanghai, and Beijing. He was raised in Redlands, California, received his undergraduate degree in American history and literature from Harvard, and received a graduate degree in economics from Oxford as a Rhodes scholar. In addition to working for The Atlantic, he has spent two years as chief White House speechwriter for Jimmy Carter, two years as the editor of US News & World Report, and six months as a program designer at Microsoft. He is an instrument-rated private pilot. He is also now the chair in U.S. media at the U.S. Studies Centre at the University of Sydney, in Australia.

Fallows has been a finalist for the National Magazine Award five times and has won once; he has also won the American Book Award for nonfiction and a N.Y. Emmy award for the documentary series Doing Business in China. He was the founding chairman of the New America Foundation. His recent books Blind Into Baghdad (2006) and Postcards From Tomorrow Square (2009) are based on his writings for The Atlantic. His latest book is China Airborne. He is married to Deborah Fallows, author of the recent book Dreaming in Chinese. They have two married sons.

Fallows welcomes and frequently quotes from reader mail sent via the "Email" button below. Unless you specify otherwise, we consider any incoming mail available for possible quotation -- but not with the sender's real name unless you explicitly state that it may be used. If you are wondering why Fallows does not use a "Comments" field below his posts, please see previous explanations here and here.
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