The 2016 presidential field is a long way from sorting out. In fact, as of now there is no officially declared field, just a small platoon of wannabes and talked-about possibilities.
As this story notes, the prospects include an unusually large number of lawmakers hailing from just a handful of states: two apiece from Texas, Florida, Wisconsin and New York. It is an unusual confluence of geography and ambition that is without precedent in modern times, and possibly goes back to the country’s founding.
Some of the maybe-candidates are likely to defer to others once decision time comes, presumably soon after the 2014 midterm election has passed. The big question: Who curbs their ego and stows their presidential dreams to stand aside for whom?
Polling in the four states gives each of the potential candidates something to think about.
In Texas, freshman Sen. Ted Cruz is far and away the most popular Republican in his state, easily surpassing outgoing governor -- and possible presidential rival -- Rick Perry. In a hypothetical primary match-up, Cruz was the first choice of 32% of self-identified Texas Republicans, followed by Perry at 10%, according to a University of Texas/Texas Tribune Poll released last month. The remainder of the prospective GOP field polled in the single digits.
In Florida, a Quinnipiac University poll last month pegged former Gov. Jeb Bush’s support among registered Republicans at 22%, followed by freshman Sen. Marco Rubio at 18%, New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie at 14%, Cruz at 12% and others in single digits.
Republican and Republican-leaning independents in Wisconsin were just as closely divided over the state’s two presidential possibilities, according to an October Marquette Law School survey. Twenty-nine percent said they would like to see Gov. Scott Walker as the party’s 2016 presidential nominee and 25% chose Rep. Paul D. Ryan, the 2012 Republican vice presidential nominee.
On the Democratic side, New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo has been mentioned as a possible 2016 candidate, but seems unlikely to run if the strong early favorite, former Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton, formally enters the presidential race. Cuomo has good reason for pause: A Marist College poll released last month showed New York Democrats favor Clinton over the governor by a crushing 64% to 14%. The rest of the prospective Democratic contenders polled in the single digits.
Twitter: @markzbarabakCopyright © 2015, The Baltimore Sun