Below we show a smoothed histogram of the 114th House (red and blue) and Senate (dark red and dark blue) using our Constant-Space DW-NOMINATE Scores. In the graph we show the current contenders for the Democrat and Republican Presidential Nomination along with some other legislators and President Obama (as a Senator) for reference. We cannot show Donald Trump, Ben Carson, Chris Christie, or Carly Fiorina because they never served in Congress.
Bob Dole, who was the Republican nominee in 1996, is almost at the same location as John Kasich who served in the House from 1983-2001. Both were moderates compared to current Republicans in both Chambers. Ted Cruz is very extreme and unless there was a multi-candidate election it is hard to see how he could win nationally.
On the Democratic side, Hillary Clinton (as a Senator), Joe Biden (as a Senator), and President Obama (as a Senator) are practically indistinguishable. To their left is Bernie Sanders but anchoring the far Left of the Democrats is Elizabeth Warren.
If Hillary Clinton were to exit the race, despite the enthusiasm of the Democratic base for Elizabeth Warren and Bernie Sanders, clearly Vice President Biden would be more competitive nationally. But this is a strange year and we are a long way from November.