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2008 Speculation: The Democrats

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The 2006 elections are fast approaching, but mid-term elections are rarely as interesting as presidential races, so let’s take a look at what’s on deck for 2008. For this column, we look at the Democrats.

Given that the nomination process consists of multi-candidate primaries and caucuses where it is only necessary to win a plurality of the vote in order to “win,” the candidate with the organized support of the radical, Internet-centric “new left” will have a big head start over the competition.

If the radical left can gin up interest among its adherents for a US Senate primary in a state like Connecticut on behalf of a no-name guy like Ned Lamont and deny the nomination to an incumbent Senator, then doing the same to help get a plurality of the vote in a few states early in the nomination process won’t be a stretch.

I think it’s fair to say that in 2004 Howard Dean only scratched the surface of what was possible in terms of marshalling such support and focusing it in targeted states via the Internet. Now imagine the same scenario, but on behalf of a politician that has more established credentials, or who is already accepted by more segments of the party base as well as the national media.

Also, as Dean proved, they can be an invaluable source of money, no small fact when one considers the cost of being competitive in the rush of early primaries where it’s likely a majority of delegates will be chosen in the first six weeks or so. To say nothing of having “momentum," or “Big Mo”, as George Bush, Sr. once referred to it.

Yes, Hillary has a lot of money and a lot of support, both in the Democrat party and in the press, but does that mean she will be the nominee? Especially when you consider that she’s extremely polarizing, with a pre-existing national image that gives moderate Democrats the willies (no pun intended). And she also has problems with the Democrat base, specifically the “new left” variety that provided the muscle to beat Joe Lieberman in Connecticut. They don’t like her stance on the war in Iraq, or her overtures to moderates on some issues, such as abortion.

So how about the rest of the field? Al Gore’s a no-go. He’s seen as even more liberal than Hillary by the general public as well as a bit of a sore loser. John Kerry’s just a loser, and not well liked by the Democratic base (that used Dean as their vehicle against him), or the financial base (such as the Hollywood types) that feel their 2004 investment in him was wasted.

Then there’s former VP candidate and NC Senator John Edwards, who’s seen as somewhat of a moderate. He’s also a southerner with enough mainstream appeal that he may do better in the south in a general election. Ditto that for former Virginia Governor Mark Warner. Very similar are Indiana Senator Evan Bayh and Iowa Governor Tom Vilsack. These four will essentially be competing for the mantle of the “moderate who can win.”

There’s Joe Biden, the Democrats most prominent voice on foreign policy, but who loves the sound of his own voice a little too much, has a bad comb-over and keeps getting caught suggesting that the Democrats should write off the south – and then denies he suggested it.

Finally, there’s Russ Feingold, a real liberal’s liberal. He’s the anti-war guy, the reform guy, liked by big labor, the enviro-radicals and anti-capitalists. And unlike Howard Dean, he’s managed to win a general election in a state that doesn’t elect socialists.

So how do things shake out? I see a showdown looming between the new left and the hopeful moderates, which will ultimately have the effect of squeezing Hillary out of the race. (Memo to Harry Reid: your days leading Senate Dems may be numbered.)

This presupposes that one of the moderates can raise enough money to be competitive but, granted that, the Democrats could have a real knock-down, drag-out fight for control of the party. And not just among competing personalities, but between competing visions.

Get out the popcorn, this will be entertaining.

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About Drew McKissick

Drew McKissick is a political consultant with over twenty-five years of experience specializing in political strategy, planning and organization as well as the development of grassroots related political action programs. He has worked as a political activist at the local, state and national levels, and has served in elected and appointed positions at all levels of the Republican Party, including serving as a member of the Republican National Committee. He also writes a regular column providing analysis and commentary on current events.
  • http://dumpsterbust.blogspot.com/ Eric Berlin

    I’m not familiar with the term “new left” in this context, Drew. Do you mean left-leaning candidates who “get” technology and use the Internet to raise money and gather support in the blogosphere?

  • http://biggesttent.blogspot.com/ Silas Kain

    Screw ‘em all. I’m about ready to support Oprah.

  • Nancy

    Me, too: what’s the “new left”?

    The DNC running Hillary would be a huge mistake. Unless they’re on drugs, they won’t. They have other candidates who have less baggage & less accumulated hostility from conservatives. She will, OTOH, make a terrific senate party leader (replacing Reid), IMO: strong & takes no crap from anybody.

    Edwards will be fine in about 8-12 years, with a little more experience & more of a record to judge him on. He’s excellent human material: the poor boy who put himself thru school & made a million tilting at evil corporate conglomerates.

    I like both Warner & Feingold, m’self, but there’s Barack Obama to consider. By 2008 he’ll have a little more time in office under his belt, and I suspect he’ll be a major contender at least as a VP nominee, if not THE nominee. By 2012, if Ellison of Minnesota gets elected, I can forsee him running as well. I look forward to that. It’s about time we get someone running (and winning) besides a whitebread Old-Boys’-Network male. I wish Shirley Chisholm were still alive, well, & young. She was presidential material, IMO, but born too soon. It will be interesting to see if any ethnic Arabs or asians make it into congress. We’ll see, I guess, but it puzzles me why, as far as I can tell, no one of Arab or Chinese-Japanese-other Asian descent has ever run or made it in, except Dan Inouye of Hawaii.

  • http://musical-guru.blogspot.com/ Michael J. West

    I don’t mind the “new left” coinage, but it bugs me that people so misuse the term “radical left,” such as this:

    If the radical left can gin up interest among its adherents for a US Senate primary in a state like Connecticut on behalf of a no-name guy like Ned Lamont

    Lamont’s supporters were NOT the radical left and suggesting they were is a gross misunderstanding of the word “radical.” The Radical Left wouldn’t be caught dead in any involvement with the Democratic Party. Feingold is probably the most liberal figure of any prominence in the Democratic Party and he’s NO kind of radical.

  • Nancy

    This is true: the ‘radical left’ is waaaaaaay left, past even the leftist Dems. They’re so left, they’re on the far right.

  • http://www.blogger.com Georgio

    hahahaha NANCY always gets it right..My choice for President would be Finegold with Obama as VP

  • http://musical-guru.blogspot.com/ Michael J. West

    Oh, Lord. Enough already with talk of Obama as VP. He’s not even been a Senator for two years yet, for Christ’s sake. Talking about him for higher office at this point is nothing but tokenism and a bow to his charisma; it has little-to-nothing to do with his actual national political record. And Hell, he doesn’t even WANT to run in ’08.

    Obama is a legislator. How about if we actually LET HIM LEGISLATE for a while before promoting him to executive?

  • JustOneMan

    FindGold and Osama…what a great team that would be! I support it 100%….

  • Nancy

    Michael, I SAID in a few years – like 6 or 10 years from now. At the moment, any fresh face is welcome – plus he’s not bad looking, and he has a rep of being somewhat honest & intelligent. We’ll see if that pans out. If so, more power to him, especially if he can keep honest. Besides, I don’t see any women anywhere in the forseeable chute – at least that the party heads would consider grooming, backwards, sexist farts that they all are.

  • http://musical-guru.blogspot.com/ Michael J. West

    Nancy, what you said was “By 2008 he’ll have a little more time in office under his belt, and I suspect he’ll be a major contender at least as a VP nominee, if not THE nominee.

    Which is two years from now. And I’m just saying, why don’t we wait and see? He could turn out to be a lousy, do-nothing senator like John Edwards. (And I say that as a Democrat from North Carolina.)

  • JustOneMan

    Nancy you racist troll

    “plus he’s not bad looking, and he has a rep of being somewhat honest & intelligent” its obvious what you are saying here – for a Black Guy hes “good looking, intelligent and honest” Its clear that you are suggesting that other “black males” are not!

    Wake up minorities this is a classic example of how the left really views you..

  • http://musical-guru.blogspot.com/ Michael J. West

    That wasn’t obvious to me, JustOneMan. I’m sure that’s what you WANT her to have said, but frankly I think you’re making shit up.

  • JustOneMan

    Mikey..I am not making it up..its pretty clear within the conetext she would not use these to describe a white male candidate…

  • http://musical-guru.blogspot.com/ Michael J. West

    It’s not at all clear to me. Where are you seeing that?

  • Nancy

    Perhaps I should in fairness have added of Edwards that he’s got a cute tush. I’m an equal-opportunity sexist troll.

  • IgnatiusReilly

    Ever since Kennedy v Nixon and the influence of TV, good-looking becomes an asset in politics. Some people find being honest and intelligent positive attributes. Not always found in politicians of all stripes, but it appears not to be as much of a concern from voters on the right. Nancy didn’t say he was, but that it was his rep, and that we would have to see if it would pan out.

    Considering she was talking about Obama, it would be tough to use those terms for a white man. The problem is JOM sees him as a black man while Nancy sees him as a man. The true racists always reveal themselves.

  • JustOneMan

    IgnatiusReilly – hmm lets see –

    1. “Alleged” female liberal makes a racist inuendo

    2. White conservative calls her on it

    3. Liberal loon brands conservative a racist!

    Guess what! I dont fall for the liberal PC crap..its clear where Nancy is coming from – she may not believe but its clear limousine liberal crap….

  • Nancy

    As usual JOM is doing his best to emulate his favorite neocon chickenshit hawk, Karl Rove, and cause trouble and plant innuendo & false meaning where none was intended except a straightforward admiration of specific male attributes of specific political males. Basta.

  • JustOneMan

    Thanks Nancy…you have just proved my point…by evoking Karl Rove…you had to distract from the fact that liberals like you are pure racists — Democrats want a certain type of look for their – using Ted Rall of the Washington Post and a fellow democrats terms a “house N——” (the term he used for Ms. Rice)

  • zingzing

    jom–where was this example of “racist innuendo?” no one sees it except for you…

  • JustOneMan

    please zing must you beat a dead horse…why cant she just apologize and lets move on…

  • zingzing

    APOLOGIZE? for what? please. show us this “innuendo.” if it’s there, she should be sorry for what she said, but i don’t see any. neither does mike, neither does IgnatiusReilly… it’s just a question, so why not answer it? if it’s there, it will be acknowledged.

  • IgnatiusReilly

    JOM, you’re funny. It’s now obvious you are a liberal, pretending to be a conservative just to make them look bad. Glad someone is caring on in Phil Hendrie’s name.

  • JustOneMan

    Due to your liberal blindness you guys are incapable of seeing Nancys condecending attitude concerning a black politician…

  • http://musical-guru.blogspot.com/ Michael J. West

    Due to your liberal blindness you guys are incapable of seeing Nancys condecending attitude concerning a black politician…

    I’ve gotta hand it to you, JOM, you’re tenacious. If it was me, I don’t know how long I’d be able to keep up pretending something was there and getting annoyed when other people don’t see it.

  • IgnatiusReilly

    nice try, comrade. you won’t get me to bite any more. you are too over the top, which makes your act obvious. you need to tone it down if you want people to engage with you. the reverse racial stuff is good to play up and does make conservatives look bad, but now you are forcing it and no one is buying it.

  • http://blueneworleans.blogspot.com blueman08

    Very interesting…. I personally think Warner will come out on top. However, I am also under the impression that it is too early to tell. Microwave, popcorn and tin foil at the ready!!

  • http://jpsgoddamnblog.blogspot.com JP

    This whole thread and no-one mentions Wes Clark, who has one of the most loyal and largest internet followings? Who’s a centrist with plenty of exposure to Fox News viewers, who could be just as “Electable” as Warner if he puts up a better campaign than he did in 2004?

    Wow!

  • JustOneMan

    Wes Clarke….lollollollollollollollollollollol

  • Nancy

    I had forgotten about Wes. That may be the problem: for some reason he doesn’t exactly stick in my mind – and I’m pretty politically oriented. By all means, if he can distinguish himself from the pack, he’s worth a look. From what little I remember, he had a good record, but he got buried somehow in the Dean-Kerry MSM hoo-hah. Not sensational or controversial enough to make good copy, obviously.

  • JustOneMan

    More proof of Nancys Liberal Racism – See #52 Thank-you Hugo

    “If these ‘poor’ nations would stop breeding like uncontrolled rats, they wouldn’t be so poor because they’d be better able to direct their resources”

    Hmmmm gee arent those poor nations filled with people of color? Equating them to vermin is so PC. Could you imagine if Bush said this on the floor of the UN Nancy would be leading the call for impeachment…its good to see that Nancy has such a big liberal heart….so do you guys see the pattern?

  • IgnatiusReilly

    I do see a pattern: a straight, unwavering line on a graph of JOM’s higher brain functions.

    Do the poor nations not have a problem with population growth that they can’t afford? Did Nancy make any mention this was due to their race?

    by the way, you must be a racist as well according to your uninformed opinions.

    Fom “Hugo Chavez – One Man Axis of Crazy” comment #76

    “Mexico is a poverty factory with no one caring to lift their citizens out of poverty”

    Isn’t Mexico filled with brown people? Your problem is that you see eveyone’s actions through your hood-covered glasses. Be glad there’s no IQ test to get on the Internet or you’d have to go back to breaking windows for fun, simpleton.

  • JustOneMan

    Ignats please let the “racists” defend herself…
    hmmmm poverty factory vs rats
    you be the judge….
    So only conservatives are racists please….PC crap doesnt work with me fool

    PS Please crawl back under your rock!

  • http://www.elitistpig.com Dave Nalle

    Wow that’s an unappealing field of candidates you throw out there, Drew. I bet the Dems can do better if they try just a little bit.

    As for Wes Clark, he’s less articulate than Bush and more boring than Al Gore. By all means nominate him and watch the electorate go to sleep.

    Dave

  • http://www.roblogpolitics.blogspot.com RJ Elliott

    “By 2012, if Ellison of Minnesota gets elected, I can forsee him running as well. I look forward to that. It’s about time we get someone running (and winning) besides a whitebread Old-Boys’-Network male.”

    Yeah, it’s about time we get a Muslim black dude who hates white people elected to the Presidency…

  • http://www.roblogpolitics.blogspot.com RJ Elliott

    “Edwards will be fine in about 8-12 years, with a little more experience & more of a record to judge him on.”

    Uh…he doesn’t currently hold any elective office. What additional “record” will be accumulate in the next decade? Do you think he’ll run for the Senate again? Or maybe a Governorship?

  • Nancy

    That’s probably why I can’t remember him very well, Dave. He just sort of blends with the background. As for the entire roster being unappealing, well…I suspect the GOP roster will be just as unappealing to half the electorate, only instead of boring, we’ll have corruption. Maybe boring would be better.

    We NEED a third party. How’s that Libertarian Texan you interviewed doing so far? What do the polls show, if anything?

  • http://www.roblogpolitics.blogspot.com RJ Elliott

    “I wish Shirley Chisholm were still alive, well, & young. She was presidential material, IMO, but born too soon.”

    And a borderline communist…

  • JustOneMan

    “I wish Mao,Stalin and Pol Pot were still alive, well, & young. They were real Democrat presidential material, IMO, but born too soon.”

  • http://www.elitistpig.com Dave Nalle

    As for the entire roster being unappealing, well…I suspect the GOP roster will be just as unappealing to half the electorate, only instead of boring, we’ll have corruption. Maybe boring would be better.

    The GOP already has McCain and Giuliani who are both more interesting and more appealing than anything the Dems are likely to come up with.

    We NEED a third party. How’s that Libertarian Texan you interviewed doing so far? What do the polls show, if anything?

    I think he’ll do well for a Libertarian, but he’s not going to win despite that. I’m hoping to interview the Democrat in the race this week. We’ll see if he has anything to offer.

    Dave

  • Nancy

    Ha-! My taste is vindicated: “O” Magazine has just named Barak Obama as one of the top 10 sexiest men in politics today.

  • http://markgriggs.blogspot.com/ ModerateTruth

    It’s not just looks with Obama and he has not been on the national scene very long. The other day, I was driving and flipped over to CNN on XM. They were interviewing someone and I was instantly engaged.

    This interviewee had a strong voice, he was knowledgeable on a range of issues and he had my full attention. Only after a few minutes of listening was he identified as Obama. He is definitely going to be a contender down the road. Just One are you a shut in craving contact? Please man just give it a rest!

  • JustOneMan

    “o” magazine…..gee a black magazine names a two bit do nothing (Name one piece of legislations) this nice non-offensive, white looking, black man has sponsored? Hellooooo…NONE

    You Dems are really over the top with this idiot…

  • JustOneMan

    Nancy,

    Its is well document that a certain race of men like….. shall we say Big Women…so I can undestand your “taste is vindicated”

    Nuff said

  • http://www.elitistpig.com Dave Nalle

    Obama would be a hell of a lot better than the people speculated on in the article. He’s more interesting and has marginally more sensible views on a lot of issues.

    Dave

  • zingzing

    jom… what the hell was that?

  • http://www.elitistpig.com Dave Nalle

    I believe that was the non-rap version of the Sir Mix-a-lot classic “Baby Got Back”.

    Dave

  • zingzing

    so, what was he saying, exactly?

  • Nancy

    Zing, JOM is a juvenile minded-pervert with a gutter mentality and a potty mouth, because he has no capabilites of actually fielding any arguments. Ignore him; I do. He’s not worth your time or efforts, nor mine, and acknowledging his crudities only encourages him.

  • zingzing

    i know it… I KNOW IT! but i can’t help myself sometimes. maybe i’m just waiting for him to blow up and say something really stupid… but that’s always. i sometimes just want to push him to the next level (i.e.-the handjob and my mom comment not too long ago), just because i think it’s really funny stuff. maybe i’m just as much an asshole as he is, the little prick.

  • Nancy

    No, he’s just pathetic & offensive. I mean, consider what he thinks are witty comebacks, like the comment about your mom. He’s like the jerkoff that exposes himself at a church service because he likes to shock people & he thinks of it as humorous, like a 3-year-old. Potty humor. It’s all they understand, scatology.

  • Arch Conservative

    You moonbats think you dislike/hate George Bush?

    Well I’m here to tell you that you aint seen nothing yet.

    Just wait until Hillary runs in 2008.

    We’re going to make all of the Bush bashing that you moonbats have been doing for the past six years look like a sunday picnic in the park.

    It’s going to be nothing but Hillary hate 24-7. A constant unrelenting barrage of pointing out what a total lack of humanity, sincerity, and integrity that the bitch possesses. Every mistep she’s ever made or makes will be brought to light time and time again. Every opportunity to attack her will be siezed upon ferociously.

    We will pull no punches, show no mercy, stop at absolutely nothing to ensure that the miserable bitch becomes nothing but a footnote in the annals of US presidential history. One way or the other!

  • zingzing

    oh no, hurt… me? us? her? wait.

    meh.

    no one’s really been bashing on bush much here. and hillary hasn’t been mentioned much at all.

    so what are you babbling about?

    and who says that most (any?) of us really want hillary to run?

  • http://victorplenty.blogspot.com Victor Plenty

    Don’t worry, Arch. We all know the mouth-foaming psychopathic hatred certain crazy people feel toward Hillary Clinton.

    Being neither a Democrat nor a Republican myself, my suspicion is reserved for those who would ask me to cast my vote based on the wishes of the craziest, nuttiest, and most hateful portion of the electorate.

    I’ve never been a particular partisan of Ms. Clinton’s, but if y’all aren’t careful, I might go ahead and vote for her just to piss you off.

  • Nancy

    So what’s new? You neonazi moonbats have been bashing Hilary since before Bill was elected & you had any reasons except she was married to him. I’m sure she’ll just faint with anxiety when she hears you’re on the warpath.

  • Arch Conservative

    That’s right……

    Come 2008 we’re gonna bring the pain…..

    The bitch is going down one way or another…..

    The Clintons won’t be allowed anywhere near the white house ever again….

    VIVE MITT ROMNEY 2008!!!!

  • mara

    I fully support the moderate Democratic candidates for 08. Bayh and Warner top that list. This does not mean I don’t support other candidates but Bayh and Warner are closer to my personal political ideology, although on some issues I do lean farther left.

    What’s interesting is Bayh and Obama are both in Iowa this weekend. :)

  • Nancy

    Oh, Arch – you’ve been drinking again. You swore you were off the sauce….

  • Donnie Marler

    Three potential candidate profiles you will NOT see inhabit Pennsylvania Avenue any time soon.
    Female. Hillary Clinton is, as mentioned, far too polarizing to be a successful candidate. No other female could even win the nomination.
    Muslim. You’ll see a Wiccan president before you see this.
    Minority. O’Bama? Not yet. Who else you got? Al Sharpton? Jesse Jackson? Didn’t think so. (One potential exception: Colin Powell. Highly respected by a lot of people.)
    You won’t see the rabid fringe of either party win the nomination for one simple reason. The people that do most of the voting don’t like them. They scare them. There’s no way in hell Russ Feingold could win an election for the presidency. Anyone who thinks he could is not lucid.
    O’Bama has to be given time to prove himself. Just because he’s black and ‘cute’ doesn’t make him presidential material.
    Wes Clark? I have friends who served under him. If he wins, it won’t be because they voted for him.
    Both parties will, as always, elect a candidate they HOPE can appeal to enough uncommitted voters to win. You’re not going to see any earthshaking nominations for the 2008 election.

  • zed

    Donnie Marler:

    You are probably right about your speculation about the three groups who wont be represented in the White House any time soon.

    What is funny is that it is not because there are smarter, more talented and more deserving white males. Its just that you have to walk on water basically to outseat a white male in our present culture.

    Either of the candidates that you mentioned would make a better president than our current fearless leader.

  • steve

    anybody but hillary. I dont want my tax dollars paying for another oval office carpet cleaning courtesy of slick willie!