Tsunami Tuesday is a mere seven months away, but it is forever is a political race. The horses have barely made the first turn, and it looks like we are down to five viable racers with the breakdowns of McCain and Edwards.

Richard Baehr of the American Thinker has a great piece on where he sees the race is at the moment, looking at the Dems, GOP and potential third party candidates.

Off the bat, he all but rules out a Michael Bloomberg run for the White House:

When you are 65, worth over $5 billion, and are term limited, something needs to motivate you. But running for President as a third party candidate is a fool’s mission, especially when you are a stultifyingly boring public speaker, who inspires almost nobody.

On the GOP side, Rudy still has the edge followed by Romney and the as-yet-unannounced Fred Thompson. Romney is doing very well in Iowa and New Hampshire, but the other two have yet to do much campaigning there. In fact, the others may not exert much effort in those two states:

With Romney running well in Iowa and New Hampshire, his rivals for the nomination have taken the tack of largely discounting both races. Giuliani and McCain are skipping the Ames straw poll this summer, and may not compete that hard in the Iowa caucuses next January. New Hampshire is characterized by the rival campaigns as home state (or neighboring state) turf for Romney, so of course he should do well there.

There is, of course, one potential problem with this. If Romney blows the doors of the others in the first two states, the momentum could carry him to better finishes in South Carolina and Florida. He does not have to win either, but if Giuliani or Thompson slip to third behind him in either of those states, it could spell the end to their campaign. All of a sudden, Romney faces either a Thompson who has not been in a campaign as long as him or a Giuliani who he can paint as liberal.

Now there is another scenario which would make for a great couple of weeks of posting on here and a great, big pile of horse pucks for the GOP. What if all three split up Tsunami Tuesday relatively equally? All of a sudden, there will be a mad scramble for gumbo, crab cakes, smoked ham, grunge music and Jesse Ventura. That list gives you hints as to where the next several primaries fall. (Extra points to those who can guess the states without looking it up!)

On the Democratic side, Baehr has it rightfully narrowed down to Hillary Clinton and Barack Obama. And in this case, he very interestingly points to Iowa as the key:

Obama needs to pull an upset in Iowa to catch fire, I think. Since the state’s Democratic caucus participants tend to be quite liberal in their politics, Obama has a shot at winning, especially given the odd way that caucus results are tallied (with some candidates eliminated and their voters getting to select a second choice)

If she wins in Iowa or at least runs second to Edwards, I think Hillary runs the table and wins the nomination.

So it’s all settled now, right?

Right?

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