Let’s face it, the vaunted Clinton machine has shown complete fecklessness in the face of Obamania. The ways in which she has failed to make headway against this force of nature–the rhetoric of Obama–are countless. Its actually staggering the missed opportunities and the inability of her campaign to find weak points to harp on, especially considering the willingness of the Clintons to play dirty.
A new thought occurred to me this afternoon, though. Did Hillary just get unlucky? What if Obama had decided to wait until the next go ’round in ’12? How would the “inevitable candidate” fared in a race without the Illinois senator-cum-rock star/hope-monger/Presidential candidate?
For starters, she would have dispatched all the second-tier candidates with ease. John Edwards would have remained as her chief rival. I suspect that she would have become at some point the clear establishment candidate, meaning all the endorsements and money flowing to Obama would instead have been hers. She would in that case have been able to play by her own rules. She could have hit Edwards with more traditional attacks, since he would be a more symmetrical opponent. Without Obama, it is highly likely she would have all but wrapped up the nomination by now.
Then what? She would face McCain in the general election. Theoretically, she should win, because she would be the “change candidate.” In the general election, her more centrist foreign policy would dilute McCain’s biggest selling point, and she could probably demagogue her way to victory on domestic issues.
But this is 2008. Would the voters really go for the old Clinton tricks this time around? Cynicism directed toward Washington is high, as shown by not only President Bush’s perennially dreadful approval ratings but also the even worse approval rating for the Democratic Congress (which somehow has managed to do worse than the shamefully useless Repubican Congress before it). The Clintons of ’92 and ’96 got away with all manner of semantic gymnastics and fallacy, and developed evasion of tough questions into an art form. They played dirty but never got mud on their clothes. And somehow, they could connect with Americans, who were all too happy to overlook the closets in Arkansas bulging with skeletons.
Methinks today’s voter would be less apt to let them get away with it. The Clinton machine is a 20th century dinosaur that has proven itself inferior to better evolved species. Perhaps she was unlucky in that in her year to shine, Obama also rose. Perhaps, however, she was doomed anyway.
Your comments are appreciated.
Indeed, with the campaign season and the Christmas season coinciding this year, top greeting card producers have devised a way to make a buck off of rampant partisanship. The expanded greeting card racks at fine retailers everywhere have been spiced up with gems like the one with picture of Dubya on the cover exlaiming, “I’ve got three words for you!” The punch line inside? “Merry Christmas!”
Targeting the GOP demographic, on the other hand, is what you see above. Great, eh? Feel free to disseminate via email to your Republican friends. You can blame my Moto RazR for the poor picture quality.
My daily scanning of the airwaves yielded no mention today of the unflattering photo of Hillary that headlined the Drudge Report yesterday, but obviously in failing to tune into the EIB network I missed Rush’s treatment of the subject. See Rush’s transcript here.
Drudge Report is hailed/reviled for its alternative approach to the news. I hit it probably a hundred times a day myself. Some have accused it of leaning slightly to the right. Some have dissed its brashly unhip graphics. At any rate, the Drudge Report has led with mild sensationalism on occasion, but never has sunken to checkout-line tabloid-esque levels of cheapness to the best of my memory. Until now. What renders this truly a below-the-belt hit in the mind of americanrevolution is that the unflattering photo and caption are not even linked to a story.
Click the pic to link to Edwards’ Myspace blog, where he touts this clever political cartoon sent in from one of his operatives. Thomast Nast has nothing on this guy! Grab that public financing and run with it John! You could…go…all..the…WAY!!!!
In case you were somehow still unclear on Ron Paul’s Iraq policy, here it is in a no-frills message to New Hampshire voters:
To recap, Paul will end the war in Iraq and the war on terror immediately upon being sworn into office. That means he will withdraw (not redeploy, withdraw. No Clintonesque fun with semantics for Ron Paul!) all troops from Iraq. Nevermind the mass carnage that may ensue….
Anyway, in case you wondered, Paul is at 6.8 percent in NH right now, behind Romney, Giuliani, and McCain.
John McCain’s military credentials have been proven time and again, but what better way to remind people than to spend Thanksgiving with the troops in Iraq? He was joined by some fellow lawmakers: Joe Lieberman, I-Conn.; Lindsey Graham, R-S.C.; Saxby Chambliss, R-Ga.; and John Barrasso, R-Wyo. americanrevolution says kudos, McCain (and all the rest). It would be cynical to dismiss this as a publicity stunt, as such a trip comes not without a certain level of discomfort and risk. But it fits in nicely with McCain’s dogged fight to get back into the Presidential race. The Straight Talk Express rolls on albeit over very bumpy terrain.
Des Moine Register blogger Joel Veldkamp has shed light on another of brilliant plans that make John Edwards such an attractive Presidential candidate. Veldkamp quotes Edwards:
“What we would do is we would submit legislation saying if universal healthcare is not passed by this summer, that the Congress and members of the administration would lose their healthcare coverage.”
“In other words,” observes Veldkamp, “Edwards would ask Congress to deny themselves healthcare if they didn’t pass universal healthcare.”
Today’s Brian and the Judge radio show, co-host Brian Kilmeade reported that Fred Thompson–the Great Hope for Republicans disenchanted with 2008 Presidential race frontrunners Giuliani, McCain, and Romney–will indeed throw his hat into the ring later this year. Kilmeade claimed to have spoken to someone as “close to Thompson as his wife,” who said that Thompson “definitely will run,” but not until September. No reason was stated for the late entry, which provides a great source of speculation.
americanrevolution is most definitely in the business of speculation on such things, and sees things in the Thompson case thus: This is a risky move with potentially big payoffs. Why is it risky? Well, as the pundits quipped on Brian and the Judge, all the best campaign personnel will already have been snapped up by the frontrunners. Furthermore, to begin fundraising in the fall and well after many key contributors will already have made donations to the existing frontrunners will present a hurdle as Thompson begins filling the war chest. These are all valid concerns. However, a late entry in the race does offer several advantages. First, with the highly abbreviated attention span of the American public by way of the media, Thompson will present a somewhat fresh face at a point when the buzz surrounding the current crop of contenders will be fading somewhat. Furthermore, Thompson will have time to watch Giuliani, McCain, Romney, etc., and to craft his image to represent a strong alternative to those guys who disappoint so many conservatives. Furthermore, he will by entering the race immediataly gain the support of far-right conservatives who refuseto stomach the pro-abortion Giuliani, the Mormon Romney, and the confusing maverickishness of McCain.
So if he can overcome the aforementioned hurdles, which are rather substantial, he may just have something. americanrevolution is interested first to see if the report of Thompson’s September Splash is true, and if so how things will play out.
Check out John Edwards on ABC’s “This Week.” He shows clearly that he hasn’t put it all together just yet. Worse, he seems to have picked up a bad habit from his 2004 running mate John Kerry-the ‘ol flip flop. Just something to keep in mind as the race heats up.