2006 was supposed to where the Republicans were run out of the Northeast and it didn't quite materialize. Until you chance the tax structure in NH, (I'm deadly serious)...you will always have a good base for the GOP because it sits right outside Boston's economic engine yet is a much cheaper place to live and do business.
Nevada's relationship to California is sort of the same. Ditto Indiana to Illinois.
I'll understand if this thread is dead....but in case Matt comes back...
...it's not any type of leadership it's the type of leadership. You can say well Republicans love an authoritarian figure...but that's not really true.
What Republicans want is a strong leader to keep the streets clear and the markets open...to protect them FROM something and allow them to believe that this enables them to be otherwise independent and free of the state. That's why Giuliani has strong support so far: as the hero of 9-11-01 he appears "strong" on national defense...etc....and has personal gravitas. He can win the nomination if he is seen as not the MOST SOCIALLY LIBERAL choice...regardless of what the truth is.
Giuliani CAN win the nomination but I am not sold on it.
Sorry but this is a debate in August (low ratings here we come) which won't be the first one nor the last. Fox just wants to increase its stale ratings but this isn't going to be as bad as some of you think. In fact, it might be good to get in some jabs at Fox.
Clark's not running. He was the Clinton stalking horse. He doesn't have enough political contacts or mojo to do without help. The only way he gets in the race is if Gore tips it to him...but again...Gore liked Dean over Clark. Secondly, Clark's military experience is extensive but as Supreme Allied Commander of NATO you ain't fighting a war like Iraq.
As for Shinseki...what's he going to do? That's missing the real point. If he takes office there is likely to be a tremendous amount of support within the Armed Forces. Moreover, he'd probably annouce a succint endgame...something Bush won't do. Practically speaking, Hagel is just as likely to institute a "draft". But it's likely this time it would be a one-time thing for all men age 20-25 that would be a real "surge" of 1 to 2 million troops that would effectively end the insurgency. Why? Because even if it's unsustainable...Iran and rich Saudis can't risk funding the insurgency anymore if we have a free million men to march on Tehran or Riyadh.
Well the thing about Gingrich is, should he be "running" already...this is about as aggressive as his campaign is going to get. The real race is actually between only four guys...Brownback(as a real social conservative savior)....Romney as the rich guy with no message...Hagel as the "Only Nixon Can go to China" guy, and Rudy "Hillary Lite" Giuliani.
Al Gore: It's not that he's likely to, it's that Gore candidacy would be the ultimate "Back to the Future" moment in American politics. Plenty of candidates have run again after losing, but running again after winning?
Howard Dean: Yeah he's not running...but with Jerome and others like him twitching for a fight...imagine what would happen if People-powered Howard comes back? There's probably no Democrat or Republican that can touch him on the war.
Eric Shinseki: It's true...the general who was just honest with the Bush Administration about Iraq actually has considered going into politics into his native Hawai'i. He obviously isn't a career politican and might struggle with the basics. But forget Clark...Shinseki actually could end the war with victory...and actually would know how unlike pretty much anyone running in '08.
Chuck Hagel: McCain implodes, Iraq explodes. Hagel realises he doesn't want to burn brightly and then fade. He also wants to keep his wife happy.
The Vice President of the United States: I'm not really counting on it, but I have far too many liberal friends who think it possible Cheney may resign shortly so that Bush can groom a real successor. There are no shortage of now-unemployed Republican Senators...but I'd almost hazard the best pick would be none other than John Ellis Bush.
Ralph Nader: HE'S BACK. There's no candidate the Democrats can nominate, not even Al Sharpton, who won't turn Ralphie's stomach. He's not going to do anything until the fall, but I'd be surprised if he doesn't come back one last time.
Actually the most destructive outcome of loss in Iraq would be the collapse of the US dollar. Without our military muscle exerted both on the Iraqis themselves and Iran/Russia by extension oil bourses in Euros will start being opened around the world. That reduces the value of the dollar as a reserve currency and will cause the dollar to drop precipitously. In a way, that's not actually a bad thing....it will solve our trade deficit and a few other problems. Many US firms though may be casualties and leaping to your death on Wall Street may become a fad again. America's young and poor will survive though and rebuild the glory of our nation.
My understanding is that only the budget reconcilation bill (which occurs this time of year) cannot be filibustered because debate is capped at a certain number of hours. It would seem simplest to simply mail in the Pelosi-Murtha bill but....I think that's not actually going to work.
Instead I agree with Biden that the Congress should simply argue that the Baathist regime is over and that since there is no longer any claim or evidence of WMD the 2002 resolution has expired. And if the President demands more specifics...the attitude has to be (and I think this is more or less accurate) because Saddam Hussein is dead the 2002 resolution no longer applies and that the Congress has the prerogative to approve or disprove President Bush's future designs on Iraq.
Bush will squeal and squeal like a stuck pig...but then the Congress can say....failure to do so will require a suspension of funds.
This is the whole irony of the situation. Dems and GOP alike want to make cutting off funding the policy itself when in fact that suspending funding should be used as the inducement for the President and Congress to ennumerate a policy.
I was stunned recently about this for two reasons.
One, CNN is more than willing to have Richardson on about North Korea. But then when you figure there might be obligatory questions about his campaign, they stay away from it. Now perhaps you are more informed than I about just what complicity Richardson and others share in Wen Ho Lee's removal at Los Alamos. But the fact is, as a very successful governor of a swing state, he has plenty to add to the debate about effective policy both domestically and with arms control. I don't think he would win the nomination because he's fat (or looks fat on TV) but he's Veep material and could be as good as an executive as Obama.
As for Vilsack: Yes, the man has a true Midwestern personality. But people are overlooking the fact that Tom Harkin made Iowa a non-contest. With the calendar front loaded Vilsack could win the Caucus and hang on another month and add insight again on things like Medicaid. If he dies quick, then Hillary, Obama, and Edwards don't have to clarify themselves and will get beat up against the GOP attack machine.
A disclaimer: I was hoping for Feingold and Warner to run. I like Feingold's positiions almost in toto and Warner while not ideologically similar has the management skills to make George W. Bush look like a legacy admit for Harvard's Business School (oh wait....) Moreover, I think Dean is doing a good job running the DNC and helping to build our farm system at the state and local levels.
Also, I think the 2008 die is already cast. The GOP is undergoing a massive transformation right now and the fact is, it's easier for them to run on an Iraq-critic position than the Democrats. The only way the Dems win in 2008 is if the GOP sticks with a guy like McCain or Giuliani who won't moderate their positions on the war. Chuck Hagel and Mitt Romney meanwhile, can, and if the situation presents itself, will.
I appreciate your concerns about the caucus Chris, but my take is that actually the Democrats did a very bold move and actually won. You see, my understanding is only "Independent Democrat" Lieberman voted not for cloture. Otherwise you had 49 Dems and 7 Republicans voting this thing in. And even if Tim Johnson magically recovers next week, that would be two short still.
So why do I say the Dems actually won this round? One, the GOP is hiding behind the excuse they were not allowed to offer a "killer amendment". But the problem with that strategy is that on a nonbinding resolution that rings hollow to even the most casually informed American.
And also, I was struck by McCain's comments in Iowa. He ditches the vote and says it's meaningless. Well if so, why did the GOP try so hard to avoid the vote? Why did they actually get dressed and perfumed on a Saturday and not simply skip town like McCain? And if McCain represents the "War Party" faction with in the GOP...they look wounded after this. Chuck Hagel, Giuliani, and Romney must be chomping at the bit after this.
The Republican position on Iraq is in tatters even if they are too afraid to stand up and prove it in a vote. Now the challenge for Pelosi/Reid is how does an "activist" Congress remedy this? There's a reason the President is Commander in Chief.
With apologies to Chris, I had to chose as one of my favorites the "JPS" option.
Anyway I find it interesting that "Other" is still beating every candidate but Edwards and Obama. I only voted once...but I did pick "Other" first for one reason. Edwards and Obama want to run to the left of Hillary in the primaries. That's not particularly hard to do but Edwards and Obama are actually bad salesmen for the non Blue Dog Democrats/DLC types.
Yeah Obama is anti-war and half-black but this is only because he can still be ADM's coporate stooge doing so. Only in Illinois.
Edwards is a trial-laywer, pretty, and full of syrupy words. But he tried running to the right of Kerry and Dean in 2004 so the Swiftboaties had all the material they need to sink him ... already.
Meanwhile, Obama-Edwards-Clinton triumvirate all point to the same resume: Less than two terms experience in the US Senate, most of which was in the minority party. Hey now policy-niks don't get too excited.
More ominously though, the Democratic gubernatorial alumni who are declared are getting laughed out of the CNN studio too. And that's not good because you want a mix of voices and perspectives in the primary to keep the public intrigued and invested. At least the GOP field looks just as doomed.
Let's get something straight here...you are merging two totally separate issues. Right now, Obama is seen as the "outsider" and has sapped a lot of strength from Hillary from those who do not want Bush-Clinton-Bush-Clinton in the history books. So naturally, some of the new support from Obama came from Hillary defectors just as McCain's status in 2000 also had the same effect for George W. Bush. Notice...McCain didn't win in any case.
But in terms of progressive values, Obama and Hillary are both more of the same...business as usual. Hillary's soul is owned by various groups like Emily's List which want to push a specific agenda and the Jewish Caucus in the Democratic party that can't stomach getting out of Iraq. Come 2009, those aren't going to be the biggest problems the country faces...(or at least the toughest choices) and hence she's really just an extension of the Clinton Dynasty.
Barack Obama is a lot like George W. Bush...he's a likeable person who is simply too close to vested interests to really provide objective leadership. I read that Harper's article and was astounded how consistently he has supported Archer Daniels Midland and Illinois at the expense of the country. We moan about Halliburton and Betchel...yet Obama is an all too certain guarantee that the names will change but everything will stay the same.
I applaud Jonathan for cognently pointing out that it's not about the number of candidates in the race but the diversity of opinion available to the electorate. I don't care if my candidate looks like Elle Woods or Tiger Woods and much of the Obama-fever revolves around the fact that lots of young people in the country are of mixed race and like seeing a person they can "relate" to.
Please read his book "Dreams of My Father" as well as a recent "Harper's Weekly" article about him. Obama's biggest weakness is that he is really just as stealth candidate for the ethanol industry in politics but that he was also an overachiever in his personal life. I'm sure he's a nice guy in person...and his story a positive one. But I've already seen many US blacks chide Obama for being completely outside the pale on racial issues.
No the comment didn't come from Emmanuel but from Hillary's camp. She wants to have things work this way....she is Senate Majority Leader and Rahm (as her willing sycophant) is Speaker. But the original strategy was counting on this tandem being the minority party...and using the failure in '06 to discredit Dean and emphasize Rahm's good ideas.
Now the problem is Dean looks real vindicated because we have a great outlook at the state and local level and its reinforcing the federal picture. So the Hillarahm chimera has to figure some other hook...and lately it's been to assail Pelosi as some huge, nutjob liberal from San Francisco. Great idea since it's forwarded by a Chicago machine politician and an upstart woman from New York...
Humorously the conservative media has taken the bait...but nevermind the fact that the majority of the commitee assignments are still slated to go to warhorses like Barney Frank and Charlie Rangel.