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."

Sunday, January 21, 2007

It's never too early to prognosticate!

Well, OK, maybe it is too early... But it's never too early to bloviate on a blog! So far, nine Democrats and ten Republicans have declared they will run. Here is the list, organized by the percentages from the latest Gallup poll (Jan. 12-14, 2007). Note that this poll came out before Clinton, Obama, and Richardson declared their candidacies last week.

Democrats:
29% - Sen. Hillary Rodham Clinton (New York)
18% - Sen. Barack Obama (Illinois)
13% - (Former) Sen. John Edwards (North Carolina)
5% - Sen. Joe Biden (Delaware)
3% - Gov. Bill Richardson (New Mexico)
1% - Sen. Christopher Dodd (Connecticut)
<1% - Rep. Dennis Kucinich (Ohio)
<1% - (Former) Gov. Tom Vilsack (Iowa)
<1% - (Former) Sen. Mike Gravel (Alaska)

Republicans:
31% - (Former) Mayor Rudy Giuliani (New York City)
27% - Sen. John McCain (Arizona)
7% - (Former) Gov. Mitt Romney (Massachusetts)
2% - (Former) Gov. Tommy Thompson (Wisconsin)
2% - (Former) Gov. Jim Gilmore (Virginia)
1% - Sen. Sam Brownback (Kansas)
<1% - Rep. Duncan Hunter (California)
<1% - John H. Cox (Illinois)
<1% - Michael Charles (Oregon)
<1% - Rep. Ron Paul (Texas)
<1% - Rep. Tom Tancredo (Colorado)

It should also be noted that a few undeclared candidates appeared in the poll:
Unannounced Democrats
11% - (Former) Vice President Al Gore (Tennessee)
8% - Sen. John Kerry (Massachusetts)
2% - (Former) Gen. Wesley Clark (Arkansas)
1% - Rev. Al Sharpton (New York)
Unannounced Republicans
10% - (Former) House Speaker Newt Gingrich (Georgia)
3% - (Former) Gov. George Pataki (New York)

And here is a matchup chart, from a few days later (Jan. 17) looking at head-to-head races in the general election:
Clinton ~ McCain (48-47... dead heat)
Obama ~ McCain (46-44... dead heat)
Guiliani ~ Clinton (47-48... dead heat)
Guiliani ~ Obama (47-45... dead heat)
Edwards > McCain (48-43)
Edwards ~ Giuliani (48-45... dead heat)

My predictions are, as they have been for the past few months, the pedestrian ones: Clinton for the Democrats, McCain for the Republicans. And I am predicting Clinton takes the Presidency in 2008.

21 comments:

Anonymous said...

Clinton takes it unless there is fishy business at the polls again, or unless some unforseen event happens that blows the whole thing out of the water. 

// posted by USWest

Anonymous said...

Hillary could have won an election in November 2006. No doubt about it. And in the post-2006 atmosphere, 2008 feels good. But I am very skeptical of her chances. Her support base is limited and tapped out. Her negatives are high, even among Democrats. Independent voters will be looking for an alternative. If Republicans can put up someone (Mitt Romney?) who seems cleaner and more principled, plus is a centrist, they can win.  

// posted by LTG

Anonymous said...

LTG says, "Her support base is limited and tapped out." I have not heard that before. Could you explain? At least insofar as financial concerns go, I keep reading that the Clinton fundraising network is the best in the Democratic party, if not the nation.

Anonymous said...

Correct me if I'm wrong, but I think LTG may be referring to her high negatives. That is such a large portion of Americans would NEVER support her that her apeal is limited to those remaining people who would consider voting for her. That wouldn't be a problem if her negatives were in the neighborhood of 20-30% but Clinton's numbers range from 40% to 50%.

This also means that a relatively high percentage of the people who would consider supporting her already do. So she can't improve her support levels as much as someone like Romney who is completely unknown to 49% of potential voters (see pollingreport.com). 

// posted by RBR

Anonymous said...

Thanks, RBR. 

// posted by LTG

Anonymous said...

I still think it is way too early to tell.

They haven't had enough time to dish the dirt and trust me, all the old Clinton scandals like Whitewater will be front and center.

They will find ways to tear Obama apart, which will be a sad thing to see.

I still see Clinton as very devisive. On the other hand, after 8 years of Bush, I hear more love for Bill Clinton. So he could prove to be an asset for her. It will be interesting to see what African American voters do for Hiliary if Obama is in the race. Will their love of Bill transfer to the wife? I somehow doubt it. 

// posted by USwest

Anonymous said...

Now, I have no idea who's more likely to win (partly because I still  don't quite understand your system), so the question I keep asking myself is who would be more significant?

By which I mean would it be more significant to have the first black (or whatever the current PC term is, apologies to anyone who doesn't like 'black') President, or the first woman?

I know that, really, in a truly equal society, it shouldn't matter what sex/race a leader is, but the first always does for some reason, doesn't it...

So, any thoughts on that one, or do the Citizens find it irrelevant at the moment (or irrelevant full stop) ? 

// posted by Pombat

Anonymous said...

I think having a black President would be more significant, for the simple reason that they are a smaller minority, and have in many ways a stronger history of oppression. Insofar as one can weigh such things.

In an ABC News poll back in May, HRC (as they call Hillary Rodham Clinton on some of the blogs) has her strongest positives in the responses to these two statements: "She is a strong leader" (68%) and "She has strong family values" (65%). This confirms, at least somewhat, my view that she is viewed as Presidential material even by those who dislike her. Everyone knows she is tough... and that, I think, puts her ahead of Obama. For many voters, smiling, hopeful Mr. Obama may seem too nice for the post-9/11 era.

Anonymous said...

Pombat, I think that people notice that we have a woman and an African American, but in the end, I don't think that matters in their final decision to vote, at least not in California, and I am going to bet the same hold true for Urban areas across the country. And I don't think it matters to younger people that much at all (I have no numbers to back this claim up and haven’t been able to locate any. It is a hunch). Other Citizens may have a different view.

I for one am not giving my vote to HRC just because she is a woman. I want someone who can actually win the White House and who has policies that I approve of. And I will look closely at who the candidate is likely to bring into the Administration, the type of company he/she will keep. I don't think African Americans will vote for Obama just because he is black any more that all homosexuals vote democrat.

A reminder: in 2004, we had two black candidates, Carol Moseley Braun (also a woman) and Al Sharpton for the Democrats. In past elections we had Jesse Jackson. Everyone found Sharpton amusing and witty, Braun never distinguished herself. Before this, Elizabeth Dole made an attempt for the Republicans.

Obama is not your typical African American, any more than is Colin Powell and to some extent Condi Rice (which no one really likes regardless of the color of their skin). I don't know how to say this any more PC than I am about to but, these people talk and walk white, in public at least. So they don't "threaten" the white majority with their "differentness". They are part of burgeoning upper middle class African American group. There was a time in the US, and perhaps this attitude still prevails in some quarters, when people like Powell and Obama would not have been accepted in the Black community because they are deemed "too white". The real test of color blindness will be if someone like Jesse Jackson or Al Sharpton were to run and win.
 

// posted by USWest

Anonymous said...

I've heard that many African Americans don't neccessarily identify with Obama because he is first generation African. That is, his family/ancestors were not in North America during slavery/Jim Crow etc. It's a strange attitude to have - as if people in British East Africa were living the good life in the 19th and early 20 centuries.

My personal view on race, gender and voting is that Bush has been such a disaster that the stakes are too high to be thinking in terms of having a first fill-in-the-blank President just for the sake of doing it. That said, I think both Clinton and Obama are capable of doing the job better than Bush did so I'd gladly vote for either one of them. That doesn't mean Joe Sixpack would though.

I fear that there is a bloc of votes out there that would not vote for a woman or a non-white candidate under any circumstances. It may not be a huge bloc of votes but it doesn't have to be. With our country being so narrowly divided ideologically, even a small racially/gender motivated shift against a non-white male candidate could be enough to end their chances.

I'll conclude by saying that race and gender may not be Clinton and Obama's biggest problems. It may be that the being Senators rather than governors is the biggest challenge both Clinton and Obama face. Governors have fewer complicated votes to be beaten over the head with.  

// posted by RBR

Anonymous said...

The question is whether the bloc of votes that would not vote for a woman or a black man contains any significant number of votes that were ever available for a Democratic candidate to win. In Obama's case, I suggest the surge in black turnout will more than balance the loss of the small cadre of bigoted Democrats.

For Hillary, it's not so clear. Turnout among women is not much lower than men, and would likely not increase for her. If it did, it might not matter. While few blacks would vote against a black man on the basis of race (so we assume higher black turnout benefits a black candidate), there are many women in this country who might think a woman should not be president, negating the effects of higher female turnout.

Also, many African American men, who vote for Democrats, also have very traditional views on women, and might not be inclined to vote for Hillary. 

// posted by LTG

Anonymous said...

I have often wondered why a sizable chunk of conservatives hate HRC so much. My personal theory is fear. They know she has the drive and organization to win, and they don't want 8 more years of Clintonism. Fortunately, I think most of the country would be happy for 8 more years of Clintonism. Regardless, liberals should not be afraid that conservatives hate her. They weren't going to vote for her anyhow.

She's a middle-of-the-roader, perceived as strong and tough. She knows how to run a national campaign, knows how to conduct herself on the national stage, and I think any dirt they have on her has already come out. Her favorables continue to outweigh her favorables, with remarkably little "undecided" in many polls... I think that's a strong sign.

Of all the Democrats running, I think she has the best chance of winning the general election (seriously... Obama? Come on...) and regardless of whether you think she is "liberal enough" for your taste, if you think as RbR does that the stakes are high enough, then I think rallying around Hillary is the way to go.

Anonymous said...

My concern isn't for hard core conservative, Southern types. I'm concerned about what all those voters in the Moutain West who just started voting for Democrats would do. They can be surprising progressive at times but thinking about how they would react is worth a few wrings of the hands.

Like US West said, it's way too early to talk about rallying around ANYONE right now. 

// posted by RBR

Anonymous said...

Dr.S. writes of HRC, "She's a middle-of-the-roader, perceived as strong and tough." Really? I think she's perceived as either an opportunist or an insincere closet leftist. Her suggestion to start a "chat" with the American public made me want to puke, because it was so arrogant. Wow, she'll talk to us. What's next, listening? 

// posted by LTG

Anonymous said...

I think you misread the polls, LTG. Is she seen as an opportunist? Perhaps... but I think "ambitious" is more accurate, and that is a charge that can be levied against almost any politician. Is she seen as a closet leftist? No, I have seen no evidence of that.

She is seen by some as somewhat insincere and opportunist... but she is also seen, by the same folks, as being a tough competitor who knows how to get what she wants. As far as I can tell, few people believe she is a wimp or a pushover.

Anonymous said...

Take a look at this video.  from Saturday Night Live last week. I think it captures my criticism of Hillary extremely well, and in a very funny way.  

// posted by LTG

Anonymous said...

I heard about this one... it's funny! It shows both sides of what LTG and I are saying. HRC was portrayed as insincere--yes--but also as someone who plays rough.

In the climax of the skit, she yells and swears... She sure doesn't cry! There is nothing "womanly" about her performance, nothing wimpy. People have a grudging respect for her strength of will, even when they mock her for being an opportunist.

She has worked hard on her public image, and I think she has been successful. Simply put, Hillary doesn't bake cookies--she's one tough cookie.

Anonymous said...

Where's Barbara Bush when you need her ("rhymes with witch..."). 

// posted by LTG

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