12/30/2011 01:11 pm ET | Updated Feb 28, 2012

Tarot Politico's 2012 Predictions


In this overview spread for 2012, the card in the center signifies the general theme of the upcoming year. The World card is auspicious, representing happiness, wholeness, consummate success, fulfillment, and attainment. It is a card of dreams coming true, and it speaks to the completion of a cycle or culmination of a phase. In the wake of all the protests that occurred around the globe in 2011, it's hard not to read this card as an indication that we have witnessed a watershed moment for human rights.

Moving from the sublime to the ridiculous, how will the 2012 presidential race unfold? The spread above is laid out like a clock, with the 1 position representing January. The Ten of Pentacles points to some positive economic influences in 2012 that could help President Obama's bid for re-election. I'm not predicting a full economic recovery -- I'm still seeing changes shaking things up, and one could be dramatic. However, there will be genuine economic bright spots too this year, and that should lift people's spirits.

The Six of Wands could spell a victory in February for Obama if the GOP once again holds the payroll tax holiday extension hostage.

The Hanged Man and the Death card indicate that the Republican race for the nomination will continue to careen through a series of reversals and transformations right up until August, when restless, reckless Republicans will grudgingly get in line behind their nominee. The Four of Swords in October points to a lack of enthusiasm among the electorate as they prepare to go to the polls in early November.


Will there be a third-party candidate? I don't know that he'll actually take the plunge, but the cards above point to a ready and willing Ron Paul. Rep. Paul is represented here by the King of Swords, and his son, Sen. Rand Paul, by the inverted Knight of Swords. These cards indicate that Paul's son, Rand, might be among some key players discouraging his father from running as a third-party candidate. The inverted Fool card covering Ron Paul indicates that the Republican establishment would view his potential third-party candidacy as extremely reckless and threatening to the GOP's chances of taking the White House. The Ten of Cups in the Outcome position says that Ron Paul will probably forgo a third-party run in order to keep peace in the Republican family.


Will Romney be the Republican nominee? Romney is often described as the "inevitable" nominee, yet "inevitability"seems ironically elusive, always just out of reach. We've all heard the theories about why Romney can't seal the deal: he's a flip-flopper; Republican primary voters are skeptical of his conservative credentials and suspicious of his Mormon faith; not only is Romneycare too much like Obamacare, but Romney's moderate temperament is too much like Obama's. Those are the standard theories, but the cards offer an alternative theory with a surprising psychological twist. The Four of Cups says that, although Romney gives every appearance of wanting desperately to be president, he is actually more conflicted than he looks.

Romney is not just your average family man. While many politicians pay lip service to the idea that "family is my first priority," for Romney those words are true in a profound way, the cards indicate. Deep down, Romney has serious concerns about how his potential presidency could affect his family. But, even if he is a bit conflicted, what Romney has going for him is the money and organization to outlast this weak Republican field. If current trends continue, it may take Romney until August, but he will probably eventually grind out a victory and become the Republican nominee.

Will Obama win re-election in 2012? Since early September, when I did my first reading on what Americans want in a leader in 2012, the King of Cups has been coming up. Scroll back up to the photo at the top of this post and notice how the King of Cups makes his appearance in September in the 2012 overview spread I began with. The King of Cups card continually points to the voters' wish for a leader who is "all heart." They want someone who feels their pain and, most of all, they want a champion of the middle class in the White House. I got this intuitive sense of the electorate's hopes early in September and it was soon confirmed by the the birth of the Occupy Wall Street movement a couple weeks later. The electorate is sending a message; let those who have ears hear.

If President Obama wholeheartedly champions the middle class, I believe he will win the 2012 election, but I see his victory hinging entirely on his ability to come across as fighting for average Americans. The tone he struck with his speech in Kansas earlier this month showed that he can craft a message that positions him as a patriotic uniter and not a "class warfare" divider. His message in Kansas needs to be the message of his campaign: "I believe that this country succeeds when everyone gets a fair shot, when everyone does their fair share, and when everyone plays by the same rules. Those aren't Democratic or Republican values; 1% values or 99% values. They're American values, and we have to reclaim them." Look to hear more of that kind of talk from President Obama in 2012...

Key to the cards:

Photo #1 - 2012 Overview
January - Ten of Pentacles
February - Six of Wands
March - Ace of Wands
April - The Hanged Man
May - Eight of Wands
June - Ace of Pentacles
July - Death
August - Nine of Cups
September - King of Cups
October - Four of Swords
November - Three of Pentacles
December - Eight of Cups
Year's Theme - The World

Photo #2 - Will there be a third party candidate?
Subject - King of Swords
Environment - The Fool, Reversed
Obstacle - King of Wands
Ideal - The Wheel
Foundation, The Emperor, Reversed
Past - Three of Swords
Future - Four of Swords, Reversed
Attitude - Page of Pentacles
Influences - Knight of Swords, Reversed
Hopes/Fears - Six of Pentacles, Reversed
Outcome - Ten of Cups

Photo #3 - Will Romney be the nominee?
Subject - Eight of Cups, Reversed
Environment - Star, Reversed
Obstacle - Hermit
Ideal - Queen of Wands
Foundation - Seven of Wands
Past - Wheel, Reversed
Future - Page of Pentacles
Attitude - Ten of Wands, Reversed
Influences - Six of Swords, Reversed
Hopes/Fears - Ten of Cups
Outcome - Four of Cups