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Doug Kass: 15 Surprises for 2013

Surprise No. 3: A dysfunctional Washington, D.C., has profound political implications, and an influential third party (the People's Party) is formed.

  • A divorced Hillary Clinton officially bows out of the 2016 Presidential contest.
  • Michael Bloomberg becomes the leader of a new third party.
  • Senator Elizabeth Warren emerges as the Democratic presidential frontrunner.
  • Governor Scott Walker is the Republican presidential frontrunner.

Despite widespread expectations of a 1992 repeat of a Bush vs. Clinton presidential contest in 2016, the consensus is proven wrong.

Shortly after a successful recovery from a concussion and blood clot, Bill and Hillary Clinton announce that they will divorce. Soon thereafter, Hillary Clinton declares that she has no intention to run as the Democratic presidential nominee for 2016, setting the Democratic leadership in turmoil.

Alienated, saddened and disappointed by the current political alternatives and a dysfunctional Washington, D.C., a meaningful movement of Democratic and Republican moderates toward the creation of a new and independent third party, known as the People's Party, gains steam.

Although it is early in the process and despite being initially reluctant, New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg becomes the standard-bearer of the People's Party, and he announces his intention to run for president.

The People's Party is named after the short-lived political party with the same name that was established in the late 1890s during the populist movement in the U.S. Originally based among poor, white cotton farmers in the South and hard-pressed wheat farmers in the plains, it represented a radical crusading form of agrarianism that possessed a hostility toward banks, railroads and elites generally. Often it formed coalitions and was aligned with labor unions and generally was seen as anti-elitist and in opposition to established interests (in banking and railroads) and mainstream parties.

Several of the wealthiest Americans -- including Bill Gates, Warren Buffett and several well-known billionaire hedge fund managers -- commit huge amount of financial and intellectual support to Bloomberg and the People's Party.

Surprisingly, Senator Elizabeth Warren (not Joe Biden or Andrew Cuomo) is viewed as the leading Democratic presidential candidate by year-end 2013, and Wisconsin Governor Scott Walker (not Marco Rubio or Jeb Bush) becomes the frontrunner for the Republican Party's presidential nomination.

Strategy: None.

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