From The Publisher- February 2016

The 2016 Election Mississippians are closely watching the 2016 Presidential Race. As in previous years, the state will likely vote for the Republican candidate and that is currently Donald Trump. Trump drew a tremendous crowd on the coast recently at a campaign rally. According to Trump’s organizers in Mississippi, he will make several more appearances in the state this year before the election. For those who feel this year’s race could not get any crazier, enter former New York Mayor, Michael Bloomberg, also a multi-billionaire and someone who could deliver a disaster to this year’s race. Two weeks ago, Bloomberg signaled he is considering a run for President this year. He considered a run back in 2008 and 2012. At the end of the day, Bloomberg concluded he could not win and bowed out. Now, he is considering running this round as a third-party candidate. We have seen what third-party candidates can do to an election. They never win, but they can certainly affect the outcome, taking away votes from a Republican or Democrat candidate. Ross Perot comes to mind. Mostly out of spite, Perot ran as a third-party candidate against President George H.W. Bush back in 1992 when Bush was seeking a second term. With his great wealth, Perot could afford to speak directly to Americans by buying large blocks of advertising time on national television running his epic commercials in which he held up a chalkboard and pointing to it in his Texas accent said, “Hee is where we are now, hee is where we are headed if George Bush wins.” While Perot won no electoral votes, he managed to split the Reagan Republicans taking 19 percent of the vote, and that is how Bill Clinton won the election with only 43 percent and became President of the United States. Had Perot not run, Clinton would never have been elected President. Bloomberg is closely watching the uncertainties taking place in this election cycle. An unusual and non-traditional candidate in Trump along with Hillary’s significant problems for mishandling classified information via email while she was the Secretary of State. While it is unlikely that Obama will allow Hillary to be indicted, voters are not happy with her mishandling of this classified information. It falls right on the heels of former questionable acts the Clintons performed over the years in which Americans have not forgotten. As mayor of New York, Bloomberg’s greatest accomplishment was reducing crime. However, he is a social liberal loathed by the conservative groups around the country, such as the powerful National Rifle Association. Bloomberg sways to the left on guns, immigration, climate control, and other major issues. Like Trump, Bloomberg has the means to finance his own campaign and that is serious. His fortune would allow him to get on the ballot in each state, bombard those states with strong TV advertising, and that
would enable him to compete on equal terms with the Republican and Democrat candidates. The question is, will Bloomberg go through with it this time and run? Then, the larger question…could he win enough states to stop the 270 electoral votes from going to the other candidates? Mississippians have much to think about this year with the Presidential race. One thing we have already seen in this election cycle is that it is lining up to be a very unique year and that means anything is possible. In closing, on March 4, 5 and 6, the grand opening of the GRAMMY Museum Mississippi will take place in Cleveland. We at the DBJ encourage you to attend and take part of this historic event as this museum will be a great asset to the region and the entire state.