Regardless of the events of any given week, the presidential race looks more and more likely to be a contest between the current president and his predecessor.

Whichever yardstick is employed—polls, fundraising, Republican delegate selection rules—none of the alternative GOP candidates look able to derail the Orange Locomotive. Sure, Trump could suffer an adverse health event, or he could decide he doesn’t want to do this anymore, but that’s increasingly unlikely because winning the presidency is the closest thing to a “get out of jail” card that he has.

That means that this race is very likely to be about Trump, Joe Biden—and little, if anything, else. Yes, Cornel West may be a candidate for the People’s Party and/or the Green Party, potentially siphoning a few points of support from Biden among younger and/or African American voters, and No Labels could nominate a moderate, independent alternative. Based on 2020 voting among independents and moderates, that is also far more likely to drain from the Biden column than from Trump.

But this election will not be about health care, immigration, monetary

More from the Cook Political Report

First Person
Cook Politcal Logo