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Republican Challengers to Trump in 2020

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    There are at least three names being bandied about as potential Republican challengers to Trump in 202: former Ohio governor John Kasich, Maryland Governor Larry Hogan, and Bill Weld, former governor of Massachusetts. In viewing where they stand on the issues they could all be classified as moderate Republicans. On an issue by issue basis, many of them align with moderate Democrats.

    If these potential candidates (and none have declared yet) enter the primaries, they could affect the Democratic primaries in those 22 states with open primaries...that is voters in open primaries can decide to vote in either the Democratic or Republican primary ballot but not both. Party cross-over votes in open primaries generally have a spoiler motive...voting for the opposing party's nominee that is the most likely to be defeated in the general election.

    It is hard to guess at this early stage the potential effect of cross-over votes. If Republicans have a legitimate candidate to beat Trump they might stay in party and vote. But if they want to act as a spoiler, then a cross-over vote to help select the least electable Democratic candidate could be a factor.

    On another point to consider, according to Gallup polling, 47 percent of Democrats identify as either conservative or moderate, while 51 percent identify as liberal. And 26 percent of Republicans consider themselves as moderate or liberal.

    While the media keeps talking about how the Democratic Party appears to be shifting far left to Bernie, the facts do not support it. A moderate Democrat who could pull from the moderates in the Republican Party might be a better bet than a Bernie Sanders or Elizabet Warren.

    Just thinking out loud...