According to The Huffington Post, New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg and MSNBC host Joe Scarborough "have begun trying to figure out whether they could be an independent presidential ticket in 2012." Here's how they could win.

Howard Fineman has a terrific, hard-hitting report in The Huffington Post: Michael Bloomberg and Joe Scarborough have had conversations, before. About running for office together! You see, they love each other, and Joe Scarborough says that people have discussed such a run "in his sphere." Which is more than enough evidence for an 800-word piece!

Yes, there is nothing at all embarrassing about this smart, substantive article—not the assertion that Bloomberg and Scarborough are an "Odd Couple of Guys Outside the System"; not the idea that this ticket would ever actually happen, in the real universe; and definitely not this paragraph:

Of course, this may all be an act of spectacular Manhattan vanity, but the sense that our politics is broken is so widespread that the breakfast talk at the Regency and the lunch talk at Michael's can't be dismissed.

But! As much as you and I and every real American are desperate for a vaguely pro-business third party headed by an autocratic, impersonal New York City billionaire with political views more or less indistinguishable to those of the current president and supported by an anti-choice, pro-gun conservative, the question remains: Could a Bloomberg/Scarborough ticket win? You bet! Here's how.

  • Partisanship increases. Two years of a deeply divided Congress could lead to a desire for a centrist "fixer" type.
  • The economy continues to slump. High unemployment and slow economic growth would likely open doors for a proven business-savvy leader like Bloomberg.
  • Literally every single person on the planet except for Mike Bloomberg and Joe Scarborough dies. Paving the way for a landslide victory for the Bloomberg/Scarborough ticket.

[HuffPo; photo via Getty ]