Paul  Weyrich

Last week on my radio show Representative Mike Pence (R-IN) discussed the Fairness Doctrine, an important issue currently being debated in Congress. During the show Representative Pence mentioned that he and other Members of Congress were nervously awaiting my election predictions.

With little more than a year remaining before the next presidential election, I have some ideas about who will win and who will lose. My record to date has been remarkably accurate.

Years ago I believed that there was a silent majority in electoral politics. Thus, right before the 1964 election I disregarded all of the polls and instead let my heart speak. I truly believed that the silent majority would win and Barry Goldwater would be elected. Election night of 1964 quickly disabused me of this belief. I had the displeasure of reporting that all of my friends in Congress who were up for re-election had been defeated.

I vowed I would never have such an experience again. I had been too emotionally involved to make accurate predictions so close to Election Day. Instead I began making predictions a year prior to the election. This has worked well ever since.

In 1967 I predicted that former Vice President Richard M. Nixon would be the Republican nominee for President and then-Vice President Hubert H. Humphrey would be the Democratic nominee. There was talk of Governor George Wallace of Alabama running as a third-party nominee, which he did. Once Nixon and Humphrey received their respective parties' nominations, my prediction was that Nixon would win the presidency in a landslide. Nixon did win, but I had to stay up until 5:00 AM EST to hear the official announcement. Humphrey nearly beat him. The election was so close in part because of Wallace. He carried five states and took many votes from Nixon.

In 1971 I had no idea that George S. McGovern would be the Democratic nominee for President. I was sure of one thing: President Nixon would win re-election. I was correct.

Four years later Gerald R. Ford was President. He had pardoned Nixon in 1974, a pardon that proved controversial. At that point, I had not heard of Georgia Governor Jimmy Carter. However, it was clear that a Democrat would win control of the White House. That proved to be true.

By 1979 Carter was unpopular. Many pollsters said a one-term president would not be defeated. I believed otherwise, but I thought former Texas Governor John B. Connally, Jr. would be the Republican nominee. This was not the case, but I predicted the Republicans would win in 1980 and they did.


Paul Weyrich

Paul M. Weyrich is the late Chairman and CEO of the Free Congress Research and Education Foundation.
 
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