Pardon Us Also — Correcting our Electoral College Projection; Plus — Mike Bloomberg, Wall Street Foe?
Author: Greg Valliere
February 19, 2020
A CORRECTION: With Washington buzzing about pardons, we ask our dear readers to pardon us for an error yesterday on possible Electoral College vote totals. We listed states that Bernie Sanders could win in the West, the Upper Midwest and the East — but, inexplicably, we omitted Illinois.
ILLINOIS HAS 20 ELECTORAL VOTES, and it is a likely pickup for the Democrats, even if the nominee is the socialist Sanders. That changes our math on how Sanders could get to 270 votes, and it reinforces our bottom line — Donald Trump may be the early favorite, but he’s not the certain winner. That’s because Sanders has an Electoral College base that should get him to at least 200 votes, which means the landslide Wall Street is expecting is unlikely.
WE WROTE YESTERDAY that a “generous” projection would give Sanders 212 votes, but then he would need Pennsylvania (20) and Virginia (13) to get to 245. Illinois could get him to 265, but winning the final five votes would be an uphill struggle.
SO PLEASE PARDON OUR ERROR — who could forget a state as dysfunctional and pivotal as Illinois? Our only excuse is that there are inevitable cobwebs when the 3:45 a.m. alarm rings.
THE TRUMP PARDONS: The message yesterday from Trump could not have been clearer — he’s totally unchecked, accountable to no one, views himself as the de facto Attorney General, and will pardon others (Paul Manafort, Roger Stone, etc.) with impunity because Republicans in Congress are too timid to stop him. Bill Barr will be gone by spring.
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MIKE BLOOMBERG, WALL STREET ENEMY? The widely held premise that Wall Street could live with a Mike Bloomberg presidency has taken a hit. In a dismaying attempt to pander to the party’s left, the former NYC Mayor unveiled a plan yesterday that includes a major theme from Sanders and Elizabeth Warren — a financial transaction tax, along with tougher regulatory oversight of the industry.
WHEN HE WAS REPUBLICAN Bloomberg was an outspoken critic of what he called excessive regulation of the financial services industry, but now he apparently has found religion. Like his abrupt reversal on “stop and frisk,” this looks like cynical opportunism; he’s worth nearly $60 billion after a lifetime in the heart of Wall Street, and now he seemingly repudiates the industry.
EVEN IF HE SOUNDS LIKE AN ANTI-WALL STREET CRUSADER TONIGHT, Bloomberg won’t win over the party’s left wing, which is horrified that he could essentially buy the nomination. We continue to believe that if Bloomberg is the nominee, a large percentage of Sanders supporters will stay at home in November.
TO BE BLUNT, there’s only one candidate Wall Street will be happy with — Trump, who is disliked by many professional investors, but they sure like the market’s
performance since his inauguration three years ago; the S&P is up by more than 50% since then. Bloomberg — with an agenda of higher taxes and tighter regulation — would generate apprehension on Wall Street.
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