My 2007 Predictions

Following up on the moderate success of my predictions for 2006 (which, as luck had it, were significantly closer to reality than my, in retrospect, completely off-base predictions on the eve of election day 2004), it's about time for me to offer some thoughts on the year to come.

  • 2007 will not be a year of transition in Iraq, despite the clear mandate of the electorate and the determination of many Democrats in Congress for it to be so. The level of American troops in Iraq at the end of 2007 will be similar to the level at the beginning of the year -- significantly more than 100,000 -- while, tragically, large numbers of Americans, as well as Iraqis, will continue to lose their lives in the course of the country's violence.
  • The economy, which grew in 2006 despite leaving many behind, will head towards recession, either settling on a rate of growth below 1 percent or actually retracting slightly while not technically attaining recession status (in terms of the duration of the downturn). And though the stock market might not reflect this situation, many Americans will feel the brunt of this economic malaise.
  • For the first time in more than a decade the Congress, now under Democratic control, will pass every requisite appropriations bill -- something the Republican Congress was never able to do. The Democratic Congress will also agree on a budget framework, which Republicans failed to several times in recent years.
  • A scandal brewing since at least 2006 -- Jack Abramoff, shady land deals, Brent Wilkes -- will nab at least one more Republican member of Congress before the year is out. In response, Republicans will point to minor ethics violations by Democrats in an attempt to shield themselves.
  • The Democrats will pass the bulk of, if not all of their 100 Hours program through the House, though find some difficulty in the Senate, where they would have trouble passing legislation even with eight Republican Senators voting at their side. The bills that do eventually make their way to the White House will have even more difficulty getting past the President's desk as George W. Bush finally finds the veto stamp that has been so notably missing throughout his tenure. Over the course of the year, President Bush will issue several veto threats, of which he will follow through on a number, perhaps as many as a dozen.
  • In terms of presidential politics, on the Republican side of the aisle, history will repeat itself as Rudy Giuliani, who for so long flirted with a Senate run against Hillary Clinton in 2000 only to drop out before actually getting in, opts not to run. Someone previously overlooked by the pundits -- perhaps Mike Huckabee, perhaps Sam Brownback but more likely Newt Gingrich -- will emerge as the more traditional conservative alternative to John McCain, who is not entirely trusted by the Republican base.
  • In the race for the Democratic presidential nomination, at least one candidate outside of the current leadership trifecta of Hillary Clinton, John Edwards and Barack Obama will break through the static and begin polling consistently in double digits in the key early states. This person might be Bill Richardson, Joe Biden or even Tom Vilsack. Towards the end of the year -- perhaps as late as Thanksgiving or even December -- a significant effort is mounted to recruit Al Gore to run. Regardless of his consistent demurring, Gore will have significant support in polling that includes his name.
What are your thoughts on the year to come? On my predictions?

Tags: predictions (all tags)

Comments

27 Comments

Re: My 2007 Predictions

I don't agree with your assessment that Al Gore will have significant support in polling, or that he'll be a factor in the race at all. Don't get me wrong, I love Al Gore and I know he'd be great, but that's not the point.

I deal with a lot of Democrats here where I live in Madison, Wisconsin and from what I've seen, Al Gore is respected for what he's done for global warming, but people are ready for the next generation of Dem leaders. In the netroots, sure Gore is popular, as some of his strongest supporters are regular bloggers here at Mydd. The candidate that has everyone I know excited, Dem activist or just loyal Dem voter, is Barack Obama.

by mihan 2006-12-31 08:34AM | 0 recs
Re: My 2007 Predictions

riiiight. So not one of them is worried that he's untested

by bruh21 2006-12-31 09:22AM | 0 recs
Re: My 2007 Predictions

I think that people who are skeptical of Obama here in the blogosphere have developed their own preconceived ideas about him and somehow think that everyone applies the same line of thinking. In this community you won't see a single Obama thread without a lot of people calling him untested, unprincipled or unwilling to say something substantial. I don't know why this is, and I don't care. But to assume that everyone should think the same way is downright foolish.

And yes, I've heard concern about Obama being untested, but generally the excitement over his vision and his ideas have outweighed concern about how he has been 'tested'. As far as I'm concerned, Howard Dean, Al Gore AND John Edwards have all been tested in the past, and have failed. The only passing grade that counts is a November victory. I'll sure I'll make a lot of friends here saying stuff like that.

by mihan 2006-12-31 09:59AM | 0 recs
Re: My 2007 Predictions

I think when people start off assuming that this is just the blogsphere, or for that matter, whenever I see that sort of statement- whether it's about Obama, Ford,  HRC, Edwards, or whoever, are starting from a bias not me. First, I know this because I am not just on the blogsphere. People I talk to off line say pretty much the same things I see here. It's like lead up to 2006's election- that too was framed by anyone with agenda according to "well its wht the blogs think" etc. Like there is a different constuency from blogs than there are offline. It's a false argument and a diversion.

by bruh21 2006-12-31 11:57AM | 0 recs
Re: My 2007 Predictions

second, I have noticed a prosecution complex among Obama supporters that you need to get rid of, that is if you want to win. When I disagreed with another one of you the other day- I was told that it was because I was being racist. Ironically, the person who made this comment didn't know that I am african american. The point is deal with the question rather than trying to blame the messengers for asking questions whith make you feel uncomfortable.

by bruh21 2006-12-31 12:00PM | 0 recs
Re: My 2007 Predictions

Hey, hold on there slick, you really shouldn't be so quick to apply labels. I am not an Obama supporter, yet. I know better than to support someone so early in the process, before all the horses are on the card and at the starting gate, to use a racing analogy. And secondly, I have NEVER used the race card as a way to discourage political debate. You're a little to quick to insinuate that one misguided Obama supporter makes all who don't bash him part of the same group. All politicians should be held accountable for their words and actions, and they should be forced to answer the tough questions. I have no problem with that. Are you just upset that I'm not openly hostile to Obama the way you obviously are? I suggest that Obama is gaining the most traction amongst political activists, and for that matter, casual followers of politics, and you suggest that I must be a supporter? I don't think I nor Obama supporters are the ones with the prosecutorial complex.

If a candidate for President wants to win the nomination, and then the office, the last thing they should do is listen to strategy from bruh21 on Mydd. Listen to people in general, blogosphere included, not just any one jerkoff know-it-all with an opinion and a keyboard.

by mihan 2006-12-31 01:03PM | 0 recs
Re: My 2007 Predictions

re read what I wrote, and tell me how your response makes sense

by bruh21 2006-12-31 02:42PM | 0 recs
Re: My 2007 Predictions

Its pretty apparent that even you don't really know what you wrote. I'll pass on further conversation with you, thanks.

by mihan 2006-12-31 02:46PM | 0 recs
Economy will be OK

is one area I think you might be off on.

Lot of structural long term issues (oil imports, trade deficits, budget deficits, health care costs) but short term, Japan's economy is out of recession, Europe is doing OK, China is booming.  A lot of other developing nations economies are doing well.

So world economy is looking OK and it will keep US chugging along.

The threat there would be...Iraq...if Bush Jr's disaster in Iraq ends up in cutting back Middle East oil exports, world economy goes down and US goes down with it.

by BrionLutz 2006-12-31 08:39AM | 0 recs
i'm not so sure

here is where i'm asking for a new approach to economic data in the blogosphere, along with the rest of my response to this post.

but as far as econ data goes: so much of it depends on to whom the prediction is addressed. working class people have a lot less to look forward to than many who make more.

by chicago dyke 2007-01-01 08:54AM | 0 recs
Re: i'm not so sure

"working class people have a lot less to look forward to than many who make more."

Which is like saying the sun rises in the East...or saying nothing at all.

Will GDP be increasing over the next two years, the answer is most likely yes so the environment in 2008 will be one of OK (and just OK) GDP growth.

Less than Clinton era so that will be the attack on the Republicans...the ran up $4T in new debt and got lower GDP growth than Clinton who ran up $1T in budget surpluses.

by BrionLutz 2007-01-12 04:20PM | 0 recs
Re: My 2007 Predictions

It won't be Joe Biden that breaks out of the pack.

by joeesha 2006-12-31 08:43AM | 0 recs
Two Things

1.

at least one candidate outside of the current leadership trifecta of Hillary Clinton, John Edwards and Barack Obama will break through the static and begin polling consistently in double digits in the key early states. This person might be Bill Richardson, Joe Biden or even Tom Vilsack.
It won't be Biden.

2. Generalissimo Franco will still be dead.

by Paul Rosenberg 2006-12-31 08:53AM | 0 recs
Re: My 2007 Predictions

The strutting peacocks will continue to regurjitate the "surge" talking point until it becomes glaringly obvious the escalation is escalating the conflict in the ME.

It will get worse, much worse.

Sorry to be such a downer, but you asked.

by Oilfieldguy 2006-12-31 08:56AM | 0 recs
My predictions

which, of course, means nothing, is that the rise of Obama and distressing poll numbers will deter Hillary from running, inspiring Mark Warner to get in and become the leading centrist, although there remains confusion about where Obama belongs on the spectrum. Concern about the lack of experience and foreign policy cred among the top three--Obama, Edwards, and Warner--add fuel to the draft-Gore movement, but he declines, not wanting to lose his double chin and knowing that he's a shitty candidate.

On the GOP side, the gaping hole on the rightside of the spectrum is filled by Frank Keating, former governor and conservative Catholic. His corrpupt-seeming lobbying actvities over the last several years give some in the GOP pause, but ultimately his conservative social views and opposition to McCain's crazy pro-war position win the support of Repubs ranging from Man On Dog to Chuck Hagel.

There's is increased focus on Gov. Sebelus as a potential VP candidate, forcing her to back away from her opposition to the death penalty, saying that she supports executing terrorists.

Jim Webb, due in part to he release of the antiwar movie he wrote--Whisky River--and his willingness to speak candidly and not take shit, emerges as a major force in American politics, and the candidates, Warner, Obama, and Edwards, battle mightily for his endorsement. Although still pissed at Edwards for voting for the IWR, Edwards's economic populism and his bring-the-toops home-now message (along with his secret promise to make him VP) win him over, and the Dems's ticket is Edwards and Webb.

But I'm getting ahead of myself.

by david mizner 2006-12-31 09:00AM | 0 recs
Al Gore

If enough people ask him to run, and show they are serious about supportin him, Al Gore will run. Otherwise he will not.

Al Gore will not come in at the last moment because people are not happy with the announced candidates, he has seen that game too many times.

Al Gore has a good life and he would need a reason to give it up.

I think Gore will wait for the Oscars and see where opinion is. He will announce to run before Labor Day 2007. If he has not announced by that time, he is not running.

Unless of course there is a real draft and Gore wins the Iowa caucuses without even having a campaign, but I don't think he is popular enough in Iowa for that.

by Alice Marshall 2006-12-31 09:09AM | 0 recs
The drumbeat to a Gore candidacy...

will begin the day after the Oscars. He will give an acceptance speech that will inspire the entire nation. The packed house will roar and cheer with a standing ovation. The next day the papers will ask Al Gore the next president? The country will beg for the leadership that Gore talks about on stage in front of a worldwide audience. We've had an actor as president(Ronnie Reagan) now we'll have an Oscar winner.

Talk radio will try to fear the country by smearing Gore. For the next two weeks they will do nothing but fear up talk about hollywood liberals(bwahh), how global warming doesn't exist(bwaaaaahhhh), and how we need more oil to survive(bbwwwaaaahhhhhhhh). The country will tune them out. They will talk about how he invented the internet(it's lie he never said it), Gore is a bore(after watching the movie and listening to his speech no one will believe it), and that he is a liar(we have debunked the numerous stories over the past 7 years).

Gore will style his campaign after Reagan's. It will becoem an idealogical battle for the soul of the Democratic party and our nation. He will rid america of the conservative and neocon influence that has torn apart our country for the hope of a making america one again. One defined by progressive ideals.

by Erik 2006-12-31 09:19AM | 0 recs
Gore can't win an Oscar

because he has not actually made (produced and/or directed) a movie, and documentary subjects are not eligible performers since the whole point is that what they're doing is real, not scripted.

If he's waiting for anything, it's to assess the impact of his new book-- if the idea that reason & critical thinking are being stamped out actually elicits a genuine response, he may be in.  But I don't think he'll run unless it looks like rational thinking (as opposed to emotionally-based rationalization) can make at least something of a comeback... any other scenario would just be a means of stalling our decline, not reversing it.

by latts 2006-12-31 09:27AM | 0 recs
Re: Gore can't win an Oscar

what? you think the producers/director will not invite gore up on stage with them? or perhaps 'cajole' him up there to speak? use your imagination!

by colorless green ideas 2006-12-31 10:44AM | 0 recs
Re: Gore can't win an Oscar

If he has any thoughts of running, he probably won't even be there... let's face it, the glitzy-celebrity thing is absolutely a political kiss of death for Democrats.  I'm just praying that Laurie David (should AIT win) doesn't decide to make an impassioned speech begging him to run, because it would work against him.

Yes, it's nice to fantasize about an entire nation swept away by a movie-star presidential candidate, complete with awards & couture gowns, but only Republicans can get away with that sort of thing, because they're about image, not governance.  Our people have to seem serious, not frivolous, and Hollywood's mostly about frivolity.  Besides, the whole point wrt Al Gore is that he's a serious man-- albeit with a strong sense of ironic humor, which is also Oscar-incompatible, btw-- who attends to serious issues, instead of some celebrity gadfly.

by latts 2006-12-31 11:20AM | 0 recs
Re: I hope Gore keeps giving his slide show.

I am from Iowa and have attended the caucuses since 1968 (and enjoy doing so) but it bothers me that anyone takes them seriously. Hog manure is a big deal in Iowa and it annoys me that a candidate for president has to have a hog manure policy. The local Iowa politicians love the caucus because they are courted by the big wigs, the folks who sell advertising and rent motels and meeting rooms like them and It provides part time work for students and retired political junkies.

I think there should be a lottery to select which caucus or primary is first and it should cost at least $1 million to buy a ticket.

I like Al Gore a lot but I would not lift a finger to help him in Iowa caucus because I think he is already providing a valuable service to the world by doing his slide show.

by JSN 2006-12-31 09:49AM | 0 recs
Global Warming

Any 2007 predictions that don't include catastrophic events due to global warming are missing out.

by The Cunctator 2006-12-31 12:46PM | 0 recs
Re: My 2007 Predictions

If someone breaks through on the Dem side it will be Richardson. But I doubt anyone breaks through. As for the GOP, I think Brownback will be the one to emerge as the "true conservative". He seems to be the only one in the race who understands the lessons of the Dean campaign and how they'd be applicable to Republican politics. But that's just a hunch.

by Gpack3 2006-12-31 01:54PM | 0 recs
Re: My 2007 Predictions

Wacky Political Predictions:

--Less than two months after launching her exploratory committee, Hillary Clinton, scared by early polling in IA & NH and rumors that Obama will outraise her in Q1 fundraising, announces that she's not running for President in mid-March.

--John McCain wins the Iowa Straw Poll in August. Shortly thereafter, Newt Gingrich launches his presidential campaign.

--Due to health complications and ferocious GOP efforts to create a scandal out of his Nevada financial dealings, Harry Reid steps down as Senate Majority Leader.

--Russ Feingold, John Kerry, and Jim Webb lead a surprise filibuster of a Defense Appropriations bill to pressure congressional leaders to support a senate resolution calling for the redeployment of troops from Iraq

--Shortly after the death of Fidel Castro, President Bush conducts the first presidential trip to Cuba in nearly a century. In the immediate  aftermath of the trip, Bush's poll numbers reach 45%.

by bi66er 2006-12-31 02:27PM | 0 recs
Re: My 2007 Predictions
I heard someone say that if no one emerges to defeat Hillary in the primaries then, maybe, gore will get in to save the party.  But only and maybe.
I think if it is this way and Gore gets in, the white house is his for the taking and he will choose Senator Obama for the vp.  This is the only vp spot he will accept.  With Gore.
If Hillary goes down in flames, as I hope, then I see the best man winning.  Gore's vp to be if the senario is different
I see Edwards unmasked for the lightweight he is and his phoneyness will show as well.
His supporters will dump him but, draft Elizabeth, the better one of the 2 to run.
by vwcat 2006-12-31 05:32PM | 0 recs
Re: My 2007 Predictions

I think you are pretty much on the money, but I seriously doubt that any candidate closely associated with the DLC like Vilsac or a Biden or Bayh type will break through to any serious support. Right now I see John Edwards as the most likely to seize the long term momentum in the marathon. Obama, Clark or Richardson are my prime candidates for VP, although Kathleen Sibelius intrigues me as well. Popcorn sales will skyrocket as the hearings seize the headlines from one side of the aisle to the other.

by Retired Catholic 2007-01-01 10:32AM | 0 recs
Re: My 2007 Predictions
Al Gore won't be running and I wish he would be upfront about it and stop changing the wording of his responses when he is asked the question.
If he cared about those who support him, he would be more honest with them.
He has also called a number of his main financial backers and told them to put their money behind other candidates.
He isn't running.
Goodby Al Gore.
by marycontrary 2007-01-09 08:01PM | 0 recs

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