Best-selling author and veteran journalist Jonathan Alter tells Newsmax that 2014 will be a "big year for Republicans" as Americans go to the polls to vote in congressional midterm elections.
Republicans "have a good chance of winning back the Senate," says Alter, author of the new book "The Center Holds: Obama and His Enemies."
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"They almost certainly will hold the House. It's very, very tough in a midterm election for the president to gain seats in the sixth year of his presidency. Bill Clinton, because of the backlash against impeachment, was the only one in the whole 20th century who managed to do that. Franklin Roosevelt didn’t do it. None of them did it.
"Also, Republicans vote more in midterm elections than Democrats do. And the Democratic base that elected and re-elected [President Barack] Obama, a lot of them aren’t going to vote. So 2014, no matter how the economy is doing, will be a big year for Republicans. If it's a bad economy, it could be a very big year for Republicans."
Asked who in the GOP could defeat Hillary Clinton in a White House race in 2016, Alter tells Newsmax TV: "Anybody who's nominated by a major party has a very good chance of being elected president. You immediately have 45 percent just by being nominated.
"So there's a number of Republicans who would have a very good chance of beating Hillary Clinton. Anyone who says that she's a shoo-in hasn’t been covering American politics as long as I have."
As for who he thinks should get the Republican nomination, Alter says: "I'd like to see Chris Christie run because he's a very interesting character. I like the more brainy, more untethered candidates. I'd like to see John Kasich run; Jeb Bush, a very smart guy.
"Maybe it's the bias of somebody who writes books, but I like politicians who are also thinkers. You want some of that in the presidency.
"I'm very open to a lot of other people. Somebody who's very, very smart, off the charts smart, is Ted Cruz, but I wouldn't favor him running because I don't think he has enough experience yet."
In his Newsmax interview, Alter also talks about a secret meeting where leading conservatives tried to convince New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie to run for the White House. See related story, Jonathan Alter: Limbaugh, Ailes Tried to Recruit Christie for Presidential Run in '12.
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