Bell Curve The Law Talking Guy Raised by Republicans U.S. West
Well, he's kind of had it in for me ever since I accidentally ran over his dog. Actually, replace "accidentally" with "repeatedly," and replace "dog" with "son."

Tuesday, July 06, 2004

Kerry Picked Edwards

Hi Everyone,

You all may know that at least two of the Citizens were pulling for a Kerry-Vilsack ticket. But Kerry just announced that he has picked Edwards. Kerry hasn't found this website I guess.

Here are my views of the pros and cons of the choice:

PRO: Edwards is the kind of politician that people THINK they know even when they don't know him. Reagan, Clinton and Bush (2000) had that. That will help Kerry.

Edwards is Southern and while that may not be enough to get Southern Whites to vote for him in large numbers, it will send a "moderate" signal to independent voters in the Great Lakes region or Florida. I believe that many of the "undecided" voters were waiting to see if Kerry would pick someone like Hillary Clinton. The CNN-MSNBC-FOX crowd have encouraged this by mentioning Hillary every time they talk about VP candidates even though she was never really seriously considered. Edwards' populist tone will appeal to independent voters in swing states.

PRO: Edwards has already announced he is leaving the Senate so Democrats won't have the awkward situation imposed on them by Dukakis' running mate, Bentsen who had so much confidence in the ticket that he continued to run for his Texas Senate seat.

Edwards' record as a trial lawyer may appeal to the Nader Raider types. Edwards can realistically claim to have "stood up to corporate fat cats."

Edwards record as a trial lawyer will make the ticket vulnerable to predictable accusations of being the champions of "special interests" and "frivolous law suits."

CON: Edwards may be a bit of a lightweight. After insisting he was going to pick someone who was "ready to be President," Kerry may have picked the Democratic Dan Quayle (stupid pretty boy with good hair). We'll see if Edwards can "look presidential."

Kerry will have to work hard to avoid being upstaged by his running mate.

What do you think?


The Law Talking Guy said...

I was not thrilled with the choice of Edwards because he is a policy lightweight and a national security featherweight. His selection is an indication that Kerry intends to run on the economy, not foreign policy. At least that's the right signal. Perhaps he will be a good cheerleader for Kerry.

The other problem is that he is a Southerner. Dems are not competitive in the South. Why bother? The only thought I have here is that Edwards polled well in Ohio, and perhaps that is reason enough to grab him -- if he's worth a point or two in Ohio that could be the ballgame.

US West said...

I know you will all find this shocking, but I have just one question: Who cares?

VP picks don't really do much to affect how people vote and I am pretty cynical at the moment. People have pretty much made up their minds. I don't think there is any real positive passion for Kerry so much as an outpouring of distain for for Bush. And maybe that is what we need, just some gray guy that no one can really attack on a personal level, or hate too much. So far the worst thing I have heard about Kerry was that he threw dog tags over a fence and that he might be ex-communicated. Once again, I ask, "Who cares?" And if the worst we can do on Edwards is that he was a trial lawyer, then praise be, we might actually get a shot at getting something done other than character bashing for the first time in 12 years.

If Kerry's is sending a message, it is brief blip. I think it is more interesting that Kerry announce before the convention- just enough time to take advantage of Edward's ability to raise beaucoup bucks before the government funds take over. Edwards is a good fund raiser. It's all about money now. He who has the most wins.

Raised By Republicans said...

I agree that it is very easy to overestimate the importance of a VP pick. They rarely deliver a state. But VP picks can be disasterous if the top candidate appoints someone who is either too alienating or not on board for real (like Bentsen).

I don't think its right to say everyone has made up their minds. In many of the "swing" states the percentage of undecided voters is over 10%. Interestingly, North Carolina has about 10% undecideds as well (Bush leads in NC by considerably less than that).

My theory is that many of these undecided voters were waiting to see if Kerry would pick someone like Hillary Clinton or Howard Dean who are percieved to be from the far left. Now that he has officially picked "Not Hillary" we'll see alot of those undecided voters decide in favor of Kerry.

The Law Talking Guy said...

Don't be so cynical about the money. Clinton won twice with less money than his competitors. Once you've got enough money to be competitive, the excess isn't that important. This is the case today - both candidates have raised close to $200million. That GWB may be $30m ahead matters little. Money buys a microphone; but you still have to put together the right message.

As far as Edwards and "who cares?" - well true, there are more important things to think about. But it does indicate to those who are watching what kind of race he intends to run. And this message is all about domestic policy.

US West said...

I think I am cynical because I know that we, in this conversation, are not typical America. We are thinkers, people who reflect, consider, study. But we are controlled at the moment by feelers- like the lady in Moore's movie from Flint who was the flag waving "backbone" of America until her own son was killed in Iraq. Then the whole thing, according to her, was unjust. So in the end, I still contend that for most Americans, Edwards was a one day event that won't really change that much.

As for in indication about Kerry's campaign, he has little choice but to run on domestic policy because he voted for the war in Iraq - both times. So he can't legitimately take attack Bush on foreign policy. And he has to appeal to all those feelers that I mentioned above with a message about jobs, the economy, outsourcing abroad, etc.