If it is Gephardt, it is a bad move. I don't need to list the reasons for people who read and post here. This choice goes counter to the oft repeated VP pick advice: first do no harm. Choosing Gephardt does harm and I cannot believe that Kerry and his people don't know that.
If the only objections were that Gephardt is represents the old, tired, loser wing of the Democratic Party, I wouldn't hate this pick so much. Even if we add the manner in which he conducted himself and his campaign in Iowa against Dean, I'd let that go because all's fair.
What I cannot let go, and what a lot of voters will never let go, is the Rose Garden endorsement of Bush's War, which operated with voters as a public repudiation of members of his own party who were running for election/re-election. There were Democrats who were either outright opposed to the war or trying to slow down the mad rush. That took courage on their part. Given the press/media full court press for war, it was a risky move. Gephardt betrayed those members of his own party who were trying to do their constitutional duty. Gephardt showed he cannot lead, but only follow, submit and lose.
Name me one, just one, political victory in Gephardt's career as party leader.
Side note: If Kerry is all about the secrecy of his selection process, why the leaks about a private plane, be ready for new assignments, etc. coming from his supposed VP's staff?
Glad you signed up for the e-mail. Sure, there's always going to be that shadow because of Iowa, and we're never going to know the answer to the question, what if?
We have to stop looking back and, like the Good Governor, and jump on the team for the big win.
Me? I've got my orange hat and I'm pretty fucking proud of it, to be honest. I know I don't owe anyone an apology. Come November, I am not going to be wearing Nader's jacket. I'm right back where I was the day before I heard Gov. Dean's speech in California March 2003, I'm committed to getting rid of George W. Bush and his entire team of anti-American jackasses.
This is a great move. Build the relationship with supporters. This is one of several things that drew and held people to the Dean campaign. The candidate talking to his supporters on important matters.
I will light a small votive that it is not Gephardt or Biden.
Kerry needs to keep hammering his bio into the mind of the American electorate. But then, I also like pie.
It would be nice if we could get more than a 30 second overview. While the factoids are nice, there isn't a lot to take home and talk about in those ads. That's why you are right, the earlier ads were a bit better. People who know John Kerry telling us what kind of person John Kerry is with a specific moment in his life used to illustrate. Perfecto.
Did Durbin serve in the military? He is the right age to be Vietnam draft eligible. Picking him would take the questions of Bush & Cheney's Vietnam era conduct off the table. Is that a good idea?
I know it's stupid to say that a candidate should have military service, I know it doesn't have an real bearing on a candidate's qualifications for office. But I also know that it matters to a lot of voters.
Although I know this is an overstatement, I will say again that there is no Democratic Party. This story confirms that there isn't a Pennsylvania State Democratic Party.
There is nothing one can do about local and even somewhat congressional elections when it comes to nominating worthy candidates. But for statewide office there is no excuse. If the candidate for US Effing Senate was such a zero, if it turns out that he wasn't sufficiently committed to the loosely progressive, job and family-centered policies that Democrats generally promote, if it turns out that he will support Republicans for re-election, then every official of the state party should resign. They are disasters.
This is the kind of shit that could cost Kerry the state.
I can think of a lot of negative things to say about John Kerry, but dumbass doesn't come to mind. I cannot think of a more divisive choice for VP, nor a less appropriate one considering that the dominant issues, that is the reasons Americans will throw Bush out, are terrorism, war and foreign policy.
2004 is the reverse of 1992: It's Not The Economy, Stupid.
My understanding of the question posed was, Why Not Edwards? I thought of it as an exercise. It makes sense to consider anyone's negatives and shortcomings. That doesn't mean that it's necessarily a bad choice. I would have no problem with a Kerry/Edwards ticket. I just like Clark better.
On the plus side for Edwards, we should all remember that he got 32% in Iowa. I think Iowa results are the most useful because they pre-date the media rush plus voter inclination to go with the frontrunner. He got that 32% without having the military credentials that many thought essential, and he got it without the money or media attention that Dean, Kerry and Gephardt had.
When I was campaigning for Dean in Iowa, I was surprised at the widespread support for Edwards who was not really showing up much in national polls. In the areas I canvassed, different candidates were No. 1, but Edwards always seemed to be the second choice.
I figure he got that because he earned it and we shouldn't discount that. We should also remember that he became a millionaire not by inheriting it or inventing something, but by convincing people, twelve at a time, to trust him and take action based on what he said.
Even taking all of Edwards's good points into consideration, what does he bring to the ticket that John Kerry is not already going to get. Is his appeal amongst white working class voters really any larger than Democrats in general?
Just because he is a southerner, I do not see him gathering much in the Confederacy either. As a white southern Democrat, he is a turncoat, no doubt suspect on such burning issues as guns, the Confederate flag, affirmative action, prayer in schools, gay marriage and the like. To be honest, I am not sure where he stands on all of those, but the impression I get is that he is not a True Son of the South in the minds of southern voters. They certainly did nothing for him in the primaries outside of SC, and he didn't exactly landslide there.
Edwards's negatives are few, but that's because he is still an unknown to most Americans. But his negatives are worrisome in this election year: lack of experience, no foreign policy/military cred and trial lawyer.
The Democrats voting/caucusing in primaries this year (apparently) believed that we needed the top of the ticket to have military cred. Upon reflection, I think they were right and I was wrong (Dean supporter). I think the VP is going to have to be some one who has the foreign policy and military nuts to completely shut down that end of the arguments. That is why I think it should be Clark.
We will never know, but I always will wonder how things might have been different if Clark had declared earlier and gone at Iowa with everything he had. Edwards might not have made it beyond South Carolina.
None of this is a slam on Edwards. I really like him and wish he would be running for re-election.
The key to getting through August for Kerry is to have the events lined up that get news, aka free advertising. This is where the campaign staff either does or does not win the campaign.
The key to getting through August for the rest of us is to pour the money into the 527s and hope that they can hold the line.
If events in Iraq and/or the economy do not improve significantly, Bush will be behind until the Republican convention. At that time, it will be up to him to either close the gap or push ahead. Unless events outside of anyone's control change the battlefield significantly, the week after the Republican convention will be Bush's peak, which I expect to be below 54%.
With Kerry coming out even or better than Bush on votes/support, it is curious that 51% of the respondents say they voted for Bush in 2000, 41% say they voted for Gore. One would infer that Bush has lost some people who voted for him in 2000. It seems to me that, since he lost that election, he needs to get those people back somehow.
O/T but related. In 2000 Americans tolerated a popular vote loser being installed in the White House. The gap was 500,000 or so. What if it were over a million? Would everyone still go along with it? Or is the scenario not likely given that a million vote difference would have to pull some states over the line?