November 8, 2016
Early days. Vice President Joe Bidden has yet to decide whether he will join the Democratic Party’s presidential nominee race. At present Hilary Clinton is the favorite since that her rival Mr. Bernie Sanders is a lightweight given her credentials, formidable campaign team and financial resources.
The question is will Bidden’s entry into the race make any difference to Mrs. Clinton’s chance of becoming the Presidential nominee for her party. Should we not be worrying who will be the Republican Party’s flagbearer coming next November. Vice President Bidden is a more credible challenger than Mr. Sanders. Mrs. Clinton could have a good fight in hand if Mr. Bidden chooses to throw his hat in the race. Then it will be interesting to know who President Obama will endorse, his Vice President or his former Secretary of State?
American Presidential elections are always a spectacle to watch. I was privileged to be a witness to the 1968 Election when Richard Milhous Nixon of the Republican candidate took on his Democratic Party counterpart, Hubert Horatio Humphrey and won that intensely contested and close race to The White House.–Din Merican
Sunday Review | Letters
2016 Presidential Race–Who will emerge the Winner come next November
We asked readers to offer their predictions (not necessarily preferences) for the 2016 nominees of both parties and received almost 700 responses. Hillary Rodham Clinton and Marco Rubio were most often mentioned — until a social media campaign by supporters of Bernie Sanders led to a flood of endorsements of his candidacy. Trailing Mr. Rubio were Donald Trump, John Kasich, Ted Cruz, Ben Carson and Jeb Bush. A few readers suggested that the G.O.P. convention would be deadlocked and that Mitt Romney or Michael R. Bloomberg would be drafted.
John Kasich and Carly Fiorina led the V.P. predictions for the Republicans. Among others mentioned were Representative Paul Ryan, Gov. Susana Martinez of New Mexico, Gov. Nikki Haley of South Carolina, Gov. Scott Walker of Wisconsin and Senator Kelly Ayotte of New Hampshire. One reader, Heather Spitzberg, predicted that Donald Trump would be his own running mate: “He wouldn’t have it any other way. He’ll just use all his money to clone himself.”
For the Democrats, Julián Castro and Martin O’Malley were most frequently named for the V.P. spot. Others mentioned included Senator Elizabeth Warren of Massachusetts, Senator Sherrod Brown of Ohio, Senator Cory Booker of New Jersey, Mr. Sanders, Joe Biden for a repeat performance, and Tim Kaine and Jim Webb, current and former senators from Virginia.
Here is a sampling of the responses, which is intended simply to stimulate thought and conversation and not as a scientific poll.
My prediction for the Democrats is Hillary Rodham Clinton (president) and Julián Castro (vice president). Mr. Castro would add youth to the ticket and draw the Latino voters to the Democrats, not that they need much of an incentive. Also, Mr. Castro would add sex appeal to the ticket.
For the Republicans, assuming that the grown-ups get a hold of the helm, I would predict Marco Rubio (for president) and John Kasich (vice president). Mr. Rubio would appeal to conservatives and Latinos and get some of the youth vote. Mr. Kasich would provide gravitas and common sense. Mr. Kasich would also, I think, appeal to the more moderate Republicans and independents.
Palm Springs, Calif.
A Donald Trump-Marco Rubio ticket is exactly what the Republican Party needs. Mr. Trump is a prepackaged star who excites the masses more than recent G.O.P. candidates. Mr. Trump’s rejection of political correctness is winning the respect of Americans. Mr. Rubio would aid Mr. Trump’s image among minority voters and provide him with a young, charismatic V.P. skilled in politics as usual.
A Bernie Sanders-Cory Booker ticket would appeal to many Democrats. Democrats often rally around the candidates who embody integrity and a commitment to the average American. Mr. Sanders’s refusal of big money and his progressive voting record, coupled with Mr. Booker’s history of selfless public service, provide the ethos necessary to inspire a large voter turnout.
JOSHUA SEVIGNY Potsdam, N.Y.
Chris Christie will be at the top of the Republican ticket once people realize that while Donald Trump’s way of telling it like it is may be much more entertaining, Mr. Christie has a similar demeanor and confidence without the nonsense. Oh, and some capacity to govern. John Kasich will become his vice president, sealing their moderation, because of his ability to show empathy and kindness — two qualities that Mr. Christie lacks.
On the Democratic side Hillary Rodham Clinton will inevitably (sigh) take the crown with her vast amount of campaign funds, endorsements and media support. Even though the Democratic passion is behind Bernie Sanders, older generations refuse to support him because they view him as unelectable. Martin O’Malley will be Mrs. Clinton’s young and fresh face to play the role of her sidekick.
COLIN REIS, Portland, Ore.
The Republican electorate will conclude that it needs someone who can be attractive to conservatives while speaking to the political center. They will therefore nominate Marco Rubio. He won’t pick John Kasich despite Ohio’s electoral votes and instead seek to stoke conservative enthusiasm as well as going all-in for the Latino vote by selecting Ted Cruz as his running mate.
Hillary Rodham Clinton will be the Democrats’ nominee. She will be sorely tempted to go for the Latino vote by selecting Julián Castro as her running mate, but in the end will decide she is more in need of white working men and choose Senator Tim Kaine from Virginia, a moderate from a state with a Democratic governor who can appoint another Democrat to the Senate.
LAWRENCE J. EPSTEIN, Stony Brook, N.Y.
This is the season when outsiders are in, insiders are out and the electorate is restless. I predict that voters will decide that they don’t like their current candidates (or most of them, anyway) and draft the ones they want. On the Democratic side, a Biden for President movement will be relaunched. Joe Biden will change his mind and run, and he’ll select Ron Wyden, a liberal senator from Oregon, as his running mate. Besides, Biden-Wyden sounds so lyrical on a bumper sticker.
The Republicans will draft Paul Ryan to run as their nominee. Now that he has a track record of accepting a position he didn’t ask for, he readily agrees. Not to be outdone by the Biden-Wyden team, he selects Rand Paul as his running mate. His lawn signs read “Paul-Paul.”
EILEEN WEST, Pleasantville, N.Y.
I believe that Senator Marco Rubio will be selected in the primaries to run for president on the G.O.P. ticket, with Ben Carson as his vice president. Mr. Rubio represents the Republican Party’s best chances of capturing the presidency in 2016. He is young, smart and savvy — in short, the Republican Party’s fast-rising star. Mr. Carson will be his running mate as the G.O.P. will want to emphasize diversity and to show that it isn’t just the party of “old white men.”
For the Democrats, it will be Hillary Rodham Clinton, with Bernie Sanders as her running mate. Mrs. Clinton is the strongest candidate on the Democratic side, and it wouldn’t hurt her chances if she ran with the very popular — yet not presidential — Mr. Sanders by her side.
TRACEY BRAVERMAN, Brooklyn
The Democratic ticket will be Hillary Rodham Clinton and Senator Sherrod Brown of Ohio. Why: Voters will find Mrs. Clinton’s vast knowledge, focus and experience inspiring. And she has the donors. Mr. Brown is articulate, ultrasmart and charismatic. His straightforwardness will enthuse the Bernie Sanders voters — and he is from Ohio, a swing state.
The Republican ticket will be Marco Rubio and Carly Fiorina. Why: He is charismatic, youthful and quick on his feet, and speaks confidently, even when saying things that are false. But people like certainty. He’s also from Florida, a swing state. And Republicans will hope his background will attract some Latino voters. Mrs. Fiorina is factually challenged in the same way as Mr. Rubio, but, like Mr. Rubio, she speaks commandingly. Republicans will assume that she will take some of the female vote from Mrs. Clinton.
JEFFREY AINIS. Alhambra, Calif.
On the Republican ticket, I predict Marco Rubio, president; John Kasich, vice president. This is the ticket the Republicans need to have a chance of winning: popular politicians from the two key electoral swing states of Florida and Ohio and a Hispanic heading the ticket.
For the Democrats, Hillary Rodham Clinton, president; Elizabeth Warren, vice president. If you’re going to break the glass ceiling, why not smash it? Ms. Warren will bring the progressive, Bernie Sanders voice and energy to the campaign that Mrs. Clinton needs to mobilize the Obama coalition of young voters and minorities.
PAUL WORTMAN, East Setauket, N.Y.
Marco Rubio is the clear nominee on the Republican side: He’s telegenic, charming and moderately smart. He’s also somewhat sensible on immigration and has a great personal narrative. He would clearly give the Republicans the best chance of taking the White House. In terms of the veep, Mike Pence is a strong governor of an industrial state, Indiana. He could balance the ticket in a lot of ways.
There is no realistic chance of Bernie Sanders’s unseating Hillary Rodham Clinton as the Democratic nominee. I think Gov. John Hickenlooper would be solid choice for vice president, as he’s a relatively popular governor from a must-win state (Colorado) and could balance out the things that make Democrats nervous about Mrs. Clinton.
DAVID J. NAPIORSKI,Trenton
Democrats: It will be Hillary Rodham Clinton, and I predict she will choose Julián Castro, the current secretary of Housing and Urban Development and past three-term mayor of San Antonio, as her running mate. He will balance her ticket with his youth, consolidate her support among Hispanics, and broaden her geographic reach to the West. They will be formidable.
Republicans: (Sigh …) Mostly likely it will be Marco Rubio. As things get serious, Donald Trump and Ben Carson will not stand up to real scrutiny, and as the primaries roll out they will fade. Mr. Rubio will succeed because he’s glib, and he will convince the party that his youth and ability to reach Hispanics make him the best shot at winning back the White House. He will pick Carly Fiorina as his running mate in a cynical effort to chip away at Mrs. Clinton’s support among women.
DAPHNE CASE, Norwalk, Conn.
In the face of public opinion that all the existing options are crazy, Republicans decide to draft Michael R. Bloomberg at the convention. He mulls Senators Rob Portman (Ohio), Susan Collins (Maine) and Deb Fischer (Nebraska) and Gov. Mary Fallin (Oklahoma) as running mates, but selects Robert Gates, the former director of the C.I.A. and defense secretary. The pitch is “replace the crazies with mature adults.”
Hillary Rodham Clinton’s money and contacts overwhelm Bernie Sanders. She mulls Senator Bill Nelson (Fla.) and Govs. Tom Wolf (Pa.), Terry McAuliffe (Va.) and John Hickenlooper (Colo.) before settling on Julián Castro, HUD secretary.
PETE LEWIS, Hollis, N.H.
At this time in 2007 Barack Obama was polling with a larger gap between him and Hillary Rodham Clinton than between her and Bernie Sanders today. As Mr. Obama did, Mr. Sanders is tapping into the frustration of the American people and building a movement based on “real change.” Mr. Sanders will win the nomination and will likely choose a progressively minded V.P. with a track record to back it up. Senator Cory Booker is a safe bet.
On the right, there is a similar frustration with “establishment politics.” The success of Donald Trump and Ben Carson are proof of this. A likely Republican ticket will have Mr. Trump at the head with Mr. Carson as V.P. Mr. Trump likes to win more than anything, and he knows Mr. Carson’s appeal will help him do that.
JABARI ALLEN, St. Louis
Marco Rubio’s rise in the polls will continue, and ultimately he’ll be the nominee. He’s young and attractive, and has foreign policy experience — a potent combination. With Gov. John Kasich adding some gravitas to the bottom of the ticket, the Republicans will appear more moderate than they have in the past, and, most important, will appeal to voters in Florida and Ohio.
For the Democrats, Hillary Rodham Clinton will continue her inevitable march to the nomination. Though Bernie Sanders may pull her to the left over the course of the primary campaigns, he won’t have enough political clout to win it all. Mrs. Clinton will then choose a running mate who can fill in the gaps in her base. A logical choice? Senator Cory Booker of New Jersey.
DANIEL KOAS, Waltham, Mass.
The Republican nominee for president will be Marco Rubio. The party will not nominate a candidate who has never held office, and assuming that Jeb Bush continues to falter, Mr. Rubio is the most likely mainstream conservative who is acceptable to the right-wing. He will pick a woman as his running mate: Gov. Nikki Haley of South Carolina, who shone in the aftermath of the Charleston church shooting and the removal of the Confederate flag from the state capitol. As an Indian-American, she helps make the Republican ticket the most diverse ever.
Obviously, Hillary Rodham Clinton will be the presidential nominee of the Democrats, and her vice-presidential candidate will be the youngish HUD secretary, Julián Castro, to help her get the Hispanic vote against the Cuban-American Rubio and win Virginia, New Mexico, Nevada and Colorado.
RICHARD GRAYSON, Brooklyn
The writer was a Democratic candidate for Congress in Wyoming in 2014.
Marco Rubio has hardly put a foot wrong this campaign, consistently coming across as charismatic, presidential and mature and brushing off attacks against him with relative ease, as in the most recent debate. John Kasich has done similarly, acting the wise older statesman in the debates so far. He’ll do nicely to balance the younger, more conservative Mr. Rubio on the ticket.
While Hillary Rodham Clinton is the odds-on favorite right now, Bernie Sanders is within striking distance in Iowa and significantly ahead in New Hampshire, and can build momentum if he wins one or both of the early states. He has enormous grass-roots support and a reputation for honest consistency that can only help him going forward. Julián Castro will help with Mr. Sanders’s continued appeals to minority voters and serve as a counterweight to Mr. Sanders’s progressive views.
IAN BAIZE, Clinton, N.Y.
I predict that Carly Fiorina will emerge as the most levelheaded outsider, capturing the Republican nomination. Donald Trump will be offered the vice-presidential nomination, but will refuse and run as an independent candidate. Marco Rubio will be the vice-presidential pick.
For the Democrats, Bernie Sanders will reach a critical mass of support, where his consistent record and career of integrity will propel him over the establishment choice of Hillary Rodham Clinton. Elizabeth Warren will be his vice-presidential pick.
MATTHEW O’REILLY. Chicopee, Mass.
After Bernie Sanders finishes poorly in most of the early primary contests, Hillary Rodham Clinton will cruise to the Democratic nomination. But she will continue to attack the rich (and the Citizens United decision) to attract Mr. Sanders’s supporters. She will choose Martin O’Malley, former governor of Maryland, as her V.P. because of his youth, exuberance and governing experience.
On the Republican side, Marco Rubio will emerge as the clear front-runner after he defeats Jeb Bush in the Florida primary. To counter his youth and add gravitas to his hawkish worldview, he will pick David Petraeus, the former C.I.A. director and four-star general, as his running mate. Republican voters will readily overlook Mr. Petraeus’s misdemeanor conviction for divulging classified information to his biographer/paramour, and will deify him as the last person to successfully assert American military power.
DANIEL BERNSTEIN, Sacramento
This is an unusual election with very strong anti-establishment subcurrents, making predictions problematic. On the Republican side, Donald Trump has demonstrated amazing resilience that has baffled the pundits, and that looks likely to carry him through. Expect a Marco Rubio V.P. slot to try to reach out to Latino voters.
On the Democratic side, expect an upset, as the highly enthusiastic progressive base inspired by honesty and integrity will carry Bernie Sanders to a narrow victory over Hillary Rodham Clinton. Mr. Sanders is registering legions of new voters who are often underrepresented in polls, but will push Mr. Sanders over the edge in many close states. Expect Mr. Sanders to build bridges with Clinton supporters and Latinos by asking Julián Castro to be his V.P.
SHAWN OLSON, Alexandria, Minn.
Hillary Rodham Clinton will choose as her running mate Julián Castro, currently Housing and Urban Development secretary and former mayor of San Antonio, rounding out her ticket with youth, vitality and Hispanic-voter appeal.
And when the Republican establishment candidates fade and the outsiders implode, Mitt Romney will enter the race, becoming the default G.O.P. nominee. Mr. Romney will tag Gov. Nikki Haley of South Carolina as his running mate, bringing women to the table and solidifying the South.
The game is on: two seasoned mainstream presidential candidates with up-and-coming running mates.
LUCILLE M. KENNEDY, Somers, N.Y
A version of this letter appears in print on November 8, 2015, on page SR10 of the New York edition with the headline: Predicting the Nominees.