Monthly Archives: September 2007

Sizing up the Democrat Race: It’s Already Over

Well, we are now well into September and the political races are heating up…or so we should think.  However, on the Democratic side of the house it appears to me that things are at a low simmer.  Over the Summer, the race was brought to a boil and now the cook has turned down the heat.  Strange thing for this to happen when no one has even voted yet and certainly many people would completely disagree with this assessment; especially Edwards, Obama, and Richardson.  But ultimately, Hillary has already won the nomination.  While Barack Obama is still extremely exciting and popular and has the backing of a strong group of individuals, his hayday was July and August.  He has faded and will continue to.

You see, the Democratic race (and one may be able to argue the GOP at a lesser level) is dying because voters feel that Hillary is unavoidable candidate to represent their party in the General.  As a result, people are going to be less inclined to support the other candidates.  It seems to me that Obama has some extremely strong backing, perhaps the strongest in the entire race for both parties, however more and more big names are turning to Hillary.  I believe that most of those Hillary supporters, or at least the recent converts, like Obama more and believe that he would be a better president.  There are probably a lot of voters that feel the same way.  But because people want to back the eventual winner, most of those endorsements and votes will ultimately go to Clinton; despite the fact that if they all voted for whom they actually liked best, Obama would win.  

The only state that is remotely competitive right now is Iowa.  There is a solid race and if the winner is anyone but Hillary, that candidate may have a small chance to really use that as momentum.  But most likely, there will not be a quick enough turn over and bumb before New Hampshire, where Hillary currently leads by 20.  Once Hillary wins New Hampshire, the ball will be in her court and the nomination will be hers.  So here is my prediction, you already know that I am picking Hillary for the nomination, but I will predict that she will win 48 states.  She will lose Illinois and New Mexico, and New Mexico is just a shot in the dark, I think the ever popular Richardson can pull that out.  This prediction of course is assuming that both Obama and Richardson are still in the race come Feb. 5th.  If one or both drops out before then, that respective state will go to Hillary.  It is well within the realm of possibility that Clinton could win all 50 states and DC. 

 What this does for Clinton is it allows her to save her money for the general election, where she already has a much larger war chest than any GOPer.  She can do a minimum of campaigning now, for she is the most well known of the candidates and she has the media to give her free positive advertising.  If I were Obama, I would quickly realize that the race is all but over and hold off until 2012 or 2016.  If he plays his cards right he will be a perfect Dem candidate.  He is still young enough for the wait to not matter too much. 

This win by Hillary in such a manner ultimately establishes her as the de facto incumbent candidate.  With this status, the money, and the fact that the GOP are eating themselves alive in an extremely close race, Hillary not only holds the advantage in the primary, but also in the general.  Much to my chagrin.

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Filed under Barack Obama, Bill Richardson, Conservative, Democracy, Democrats, Election 2008, Hillary Clinton, John Edwards, Media, Politics, Progress, Progressive, Republicans

The Media on Hillary v. Barack, Romney v. GOP, & the Primaries

Ocassionally while flipping through the channels on TV I stop on cnn or foxnews or any other news program out there.   As a rule of thumb, I do not watch partisan news shows (e.g. Hannity & Colmes, Olbermann, etc), however if there is a topic that interests me I will stop and try to last as long as possible without throwing my shoe through the TV.  I have always paid attention to politics and the goings on in the world, I have always had an opinion about everything, but it was not until I started blogging that I realized how much information the media leaves out or fails to cover.  I have also noticed that they push things they want to be true regardeless of if they are more than I ever anticipated.  This is especially true of the ’08 election.

First, the media gives predominant coverage to the Democratic race, despite the fact the GOP race is ridiculously tighter.  It would be comparable to sports writers constantly writing about an AL East race where the Red Sox are up by 7 games on the Yankees in mid-September, but it is reported like it is neck and neck.  The reason for this coverage seems to be 2-fold.  First, the media wants a Dem victory in ’08 and they think it is inevitable.  Second, the media seems to have (on average) a fascination and crush on Barack Obama.  So regardless of how large Hillary’s lead gets, the media will continue say the race is closer than it looks.  The media needs to clue in to the fact that Hillary is the nominee for the Dems. Period.

The close race, despite a fairly large lead nationally, really resides in the GOP.  We’ve got Giuliani with about a 10 point lead nationally on Thompson and a twenty point lead on Romney.  Looking purely at this, it seems that Giuliani is a near lock.  However, Romney has a huge lead in Iowa and a solid lead in New Hampshire.  Additionally, he leads in Wyoming, Nevada, and Michigan, all comprising  the first five contests– and Thompson leads in South Carolina.  So Giuliani doesn’t really lead the race.  No one leads the race.  Despite this all we hear about is the democratic contest. 

This leads to my next piece of evidence.  It appears that the media (mainstream and otherwise) is fairly anti-Romney and it baffles me.  He certainly has been raked over the coals more than other candidates and is the primary target of other GOP attacks.  Usually, this is a sign that he is the biggest threat among GOP candidates, something that I believe is accurate.  However, whenever I watch news shows or go to MSM websites they always tout Giuliani, Thompson, and McCain.  They fail to recognize that Romney is a legitimate candidate and is running no worse than a solid second, or even tied for first in the race.  And McCain is all but dead (despite a slight resurrection of late).  So not only does Romney get the most negative coverage, he also gets treated like a second tier candidate.  Something is not adding up, second tier candidates are not the target of negative media attention (unless your Ron Paul).

Finally, (and this expands on some comments above) whenever media folk are summing up the race for the GOP they say something along the lines of this, “While Giuliani leads nationally, Romney leads in the early states of Iowa and New Hampshire, and Thompson in South Carolina.”  And then they proceed to act like the order of the primaries are IA, NH, SC, FL, then super-duper Tuesday in February.  By only mentioning those select states, they act like a Romney win in IA and NH would be fairly easy to overcome.   Which, if this were the actual order, it would be in the realm of possibility with SC going to Thompson and FL likely going to Giuliani.  It would be wide open in February.  However this is not the schedule.  The schedule is/will likely be IA, NH, WY, MI, NV, SC, FL, ME, then super-duper Tuesday.   So looking at this, Romney is not only ahead in the first two states, he is ahead in the first 5.  A Romney sweep of those first five states would be near impossible to overcome.   But, probably to keep people interested, we never hear about that.  It is a slight to not only the true status of the race but also to Wyoming, Nevada, and Michigan that they are rarely mentioned. 

(Side note, we never hear anything about Wyoming.  I don’t even think a poll has been done there.  How strange.  I know that it is largelt inconsequential, but considering there are reports about polls in PA and OH, two states that vote later, one would think that at least an occasional story or poll would come out of Wyoming.  I would think that they would have at least some sway in the momentum of the race, being so early and all.) 

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Filed under Barack Obama, Bill Richardson, Brownback, Bush, Conservative, Democracy, Democrats, Election 2008, Fred Thompson, Hillary Clinton, John Edwards, John McCain, Liberal, Liberalism, McCain, Media, Mike Huckabee, Mitt Romney, People, Politics, Progress, Progressive, Republicans, Romney, Ron Paul, Rudy Giuliani, Sam Brownback, Senate

Petraus and Congress

Yesterday, General Petraus presented his long awaited report on progress of the surge in Iraq. All in all his report was positive regarding how things have gone. As I watched (some) of the coverage I was greatly impressed by the General and the his understanding of the realities of the War and the way in which he handled the congressmen. I am very impressed by the General, but more on that in a minute.

I have a really big problem watching our public officials or candidates on T.V. I am not a fan of most speeches by the President, I can only watch debates for at a maximum of 30 second intervals without gouging my eyes out, trying to watch congress or senate on CSPAN is as enjoyable as a root canal, and even political shows on CNN, Fox News, MSNBC, etc. drive me crazy. About the only political organization that I actually enjoy watching is British parliament, great fun. (Wouldn’t it be great to see the President (Bush or otherwise) have to constantly defend his positions against progress in the manner that the British PM does, fantastic). Anyway, the point is, is that as I was watching the coverage of the report yesterday, I was sucked in by General Petraus and completely repelled by the congressmen. Politicians drive me nuts. Every one of the congressmen questioning Petraus loves the sound of their voice. They wouldn’t shut up. It would be their turn, so they would go off on some partisan diatribe about whatever they thought about the war or Bush or whatever, they would talk for a good 10 -15 minutes then some of them would just defer their time to someone else and not ask a question. And if they did ask a question it usually had to do with political policy rather than military tactics and strategy. If I were in Petraus’s shoes I would have blown up. I would have said that they are all complete idiots, they have no idea about anything going on in Iraq, told them they were playing politics with peoples lives, and that he is the commander of American forces in Iraq, not the President.

We need to realize that most congressmen are no different than you or I, most of them are not children of privilege and many had regular jobs before getting into politics. They certainly don’t have any greater understanding of history, international affairs, or public policy than most of you who browse and read political blogs regularly. That fact is never more apparant to me than when I am watching our congressmen at work, some of them are dumb, dumb, dumb.

Anyway, let me go back to Petraus. I am convinced he is our Eisenhower, he is absolutely the right man to be in charge. In fact, I could see him running for President in 2012. I don’t know if he is GOP or a Democrat. I assume GOP because I like him and hope that’s what he is, so I would expect that if Hillary wins the presidency that the good General may well be in the thick of it in 5 years. If he is a Democrat and a GOPer (other than Romney or Huckabee) is in office, I would likely vote for Petraus and give my vote to a Democrat for the first time. He is impressive.

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Filed under Afghanistan, Air Force, American History, Anti-War, Army, Congress, Conservative, Democracy, Democrats, Election 2008, Iraq, Iraq / Military, Liberal, Liberalism, Marines, Mike Huckabee, Mitt Romney, Republicans, Romney, Terror, terrorism, War

Romney Opens Huge Lead in Michigan…Maybe

Great news for the Romney camp today.  According to an ARG poll,  Mitt has opened up a 26 point lead in Michigan!  Who would have thought? 

 While this is great for the campaign and demonstrates Romney’s continued claim of being the GOP front runner, let’s not get too excited yet.  I get the sense this could be another “California blunder” from when Datamar gave Romney a 17 point lead there.    First, ARG is notoriously out of step with the other polling agencies.   A couple of weeks ago in both New Hampshire and Iowa, ARG reported that Giuliani took a one point lead, while every other previously released poll by other pollsters were giving Mitt a solid 9-10 point lead.  After that ARG poll was released, those other polls showed Mitt jumping to a 13-20 point lead.  So ARG is sketchy at best. 

Despite this I have the utmost confidence that Mitt will win Michigan and win it big.  He grew up there, his father was a popular governor there, and he has the best organization in the state.  So, as of now, revel in this poll, but be skeptical.  I would bet that in the next poll by some other pollster, Romney will have around a 3-7 point lead.  Nothing comfortable yet, but getting there.  But I’ll settle for a 26 point lead for now.

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Filed under Barack Obama, Bill Richardson, Brownback, Conservative, Democracy, Election 2008, Fred Thompson, McCain, Mitt Romney, Politics, Romney, Rudy Giuliani, Sam Brownback

The Gettysburg of the Iraq War

Every war has one battle, one location, one incident that is a turning point one way or another. Arguably , the most famous of these for our country was the Battle of Gettysburg, and the subsequent Gettysburg Address by President Lincoln in the Civil War. In today’s environment, we have been waiting for such an event in Iraq, something that will hopefully lead to victory. That event may have occured this weekend in Anbar when President Bush and nearly his entire war cabinet met with members of the Iraqi government, all of this following Iraq’s success in pacifying Anbar last year. Frederick Kagan wrote about this on National Review, it is a MUST read. I’d love to hear your comments about it.

The Gettysburg of this War

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Filed under 9/11, Afghanistan, Anti-War, Congress, History, International Affairs, Iraq, Iraq / Military, Media, Military, Navy, Politics, Terror, terrorism, War