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Wednesday, July 18, 2007

Handicapping the 2008 Presidential Election:

Democrats: Hilary brought in Bill far too early. She could very easily become the Howard Dean of this election cycle, a task made even easier by the widespread... hatred isn't too strong a term for the emotion engendered by the mention of her or her husband by those on both the left and the right. She's running this race as though it were a 400m sprint, but elections these days are more like an Ironman triathlon.. She's peaking far too early, and I predict she'll be out of this race in everything but name by January. I see it being between Obama and Edwards, and Obama has a decisive advantage. He has greater charisma, minimal baggage, and is generally far more likable than Edwards. Also, he would be far tougher to beat by a Republican because they wouldn't be able to successfully use a large number of Rove's dirty tricks. Prediction: Obama by a whisker.

Republicans: I agree that Fred Thompson is the 800-lb. gorilla in the mist for the GOP, though recent revelations hurt his chances of winning the GOP nomination. McCain's campaign is only waiting for a physician to call the time of death. Giuliani has done a fair impression of the Hindenberg. Romney isn't looking much better, and will continue to have trouble with the evangelical wing of the GOP because of his faith. Brownback's campaign is rotting so badly it's drawing flies, and the rest of the GOP field isn't worth mentioning. The hour groweth short if Thompson wants to enter the fray. Prediction: If Thompson enters, he still wins by a mile. If not, too close to call between Giuliani and Romney.

Wild Card: Mayor Bloomberg of NYC could be the spoiler for the Democrat candidate, perhaps this year's Ross Perot in reverse. However, this would be mitigated substantially if Obama gets the nod. He's a businessman first and foremost, and I don't see him entering if he doesn't think he has a real chance of winning. Prediction: He enters only if Hilary wins the Democratic Party nomination. I get the sense that he hates the Clintons as much as Perot hates the Bushes.

My thoughts on the GOP and politics in general: With Romney, I have little doubt that he may be a good father and husband. He certainly did good work as the governor of the state of Masochism, er, Massachusetts. If he were running on his record as governor, I would have absolutely no problem voting for him with a clear conscience. His latest move to the right, however, has left a very bitter taste in my mouth, and I'm not sure I like anyone running any better, certainly not among the front runners. Perhaps it's because I'm more of an anti-federalist than a classic libertarian, although I am very libertarian on social issues. Fiscally, I advocate the government pinching pennies so tight Lincoln's beard comes out the other side. The evidence is clear. The Emperor is bare-assed NEKKID, and if we don't financially clothe him (to abuse the metaphor even more), it will be our children, grandchildren, and great-grandchildren who will pay a terrible price.


Snave said...

Excellent points as always. I agree with your handicapping of the political races. While I cry about there being only two major political parties in the US, I nonetheless desperately hope Bloomberg won't run because I think it would help sweep into office a GOP candidate who would continue Bush's Iraq policy (that being Giuliani or Thompson). I could probably tolerate The Mayor if he didn't have such a hardcore stance on Iraq and if he wasn't shamelessly using "9-11" in his campaign. I don't think I will be casting a vote for anyone who says they will keep us in Iraq for as long as it takes... to... uh... whatever it is they think we are trying to accomplish by staying there. It is interesting that Romney has remained fairly popular as an elected GOP governor in a state as far to the left as Masochisetts. I'm not sure he would make a particularly good president, though. I think he might tend to suppress scientific research. I think McCain is done. I agree that if Thompson runs, he gets the GOP nomination, although the Republicans will think they're getting another Reagan while in reality they're getting more of what they have had for the last eight years.

On the Democrat side, I agree that Hillary Clinton is peaking way too early. Obama may be doing the same, although he is staying within striking distance in the polls and the media hasn't been stuck on him lately like they have Hillary. Some CNN roundtable I was watching on Sunday was discussing how Richardson still has lots of life left in his campaign and still has money coming in... I would still like to see him get the Dem's nomination, but a few of the others would probably have to flame out first in a major way.

Being of the political persuasion I am, I don't mind government entitlement programs if the incoming money is actually used to help those for whom it is intended. What I do mind is corporate welfare and tax breaks that only give $23 a year back to taxpayers at poverty level, and $500K or more to those at the higher end of the income range. Those kind of tax cuts, while two expensive wars are being waged is beyond my understanding, unless the purpose is to bankrupt social programs. Anyway, I would like to see the Iraq war end, I'd like less of our nation's budget spent on military and see the dollars go toward education, environmental matters and keeping Medicare and Social Security going.

It really gets me going when I think about how the Iraq war may have been Bush's choice rather than a necessary action. All the deaths, injuries and destruction are worst of all, and then when I take into account how badly that war is wearing down both our economy and our military, it just galls me.

While we may not agree on too many things when it comes to politics, I know we agree that things aren't going well, we would welcome some kind of change, and that Bush/Cheney needs to be replaced as soon as possible for the benefit of our country. I'll be actively campaigning for whoever the Dems run, even (GASP) Hillary Clinton... but if a Republican gets into the White House, I like to think that person won't be as anti-America as Bush. I like to think things won't be conducted under as much secrecy, and that decisions will be made after actual analysis of information instead of via "gut feelings".

1138 said...

Thompson has just started to get rid of his tobacco lobbyists and is bringing in Bush people.
I think we can see where this is going - they believe he is their new Ronald Reagan.
He's not, he's gonna scare the crap out of everyone once they hear his real mouth in operation.

Mandelbrot's Chaos said...

I will probably never vote for Hilary. I've learned my lesson from former Governor Siegelman and President Bush: Never vote for someone you have to hold your nose to support. That said, I may be forced to hold my nose if it comes down to her versus Thompson, because at least we know Hilary won't screw it up too much, and even that's an improvement. I agree that Thompson is a fucking nightmare. Honestly, of the three Republicans remaining, I find Romney the most likable, but I'm not sure that he's presidential material, and I differ with him substantially on many of his current stances.