Scott Hardie | January 16, 2004
Prediction: If Howard Dean can't have Wesley Clark as his VP running mate, he'll seek to make a splash by choosing Carol Moseley Braun instead.

Anna Gregoline | January 16, 2004
Blah. I hope not.

Jackie Mason | January 16, 2004
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Erik Bates | January 16, 2004
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Steve West | January 16, 2004
As misogynistic as that sounds, it's probably true. The real test of whether a woman has a chance to govern from the White House will come in the next election. And won't Bill's return to Capitol Hill be deliciously ironic.

Erik Bates | January 17, 2004
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Scott Hardie | January 17, 2004
I still expect Jeb Bush to be the Republican nominee in 2008. His wife Columba is Hispanic, if that pertains to the issue of the candidate's race. :-|

Steve Dunn | January 19, 2004
I think if Dean wins, he'll choose John Edwards as his running mate. I also think Dean WILL win the nomination, and it won't be as close as everyone is saying Iowa will be. He's had the organization and fundraising in place for months. He's got the fire-breathing base virtually locked up - I guarantee anyone who ever seriously uttered the phrases "selected not elected" and "Bush lied, people died" is a Dean supporter.

I think a Dean/Edwards ticket could present a serious challenge to Bush. Unlike virtually ever other pundit on Earth, I thought Dean's comment about wanting the votes of "guys with Confederate flags in their pickup trucks" was brilliant - if you want people to vote for you, you have to ask. Rural southern people have no great love for big corporations that ship their manufacturing jobs overseas - NAFTA has been brutal for the North Carolina textile industry, as just one example.

Dean's got a perfect rating with the NRA. Edwards sounds like he just stepped off the hog farm. Both can effectively portray themselves as champions of the common man. They can also run on fiscal responsibility, combined with some class warfare ("we'll raise taxes on rich people, but not you, and also try to balance the budget"). They'll have to dance around foreign policy (the conventional wisdom on Bush's decisions will continue to look better and better over the next 100 years, as people begin to realize radical Islam really DOES pose a threat to the way of life we take for granted). Dean/Edwards will also have to dance around social issues such as gay marriage (though I think supporting civil unions while opposing a constitutional amendment is a moderate position that could appear to swing voters).

It might be a close race.

If Kerry or Gephardt win the Democratic nomination, Bush will win the election in a landslide.

Worst case scenario for Democrats - Wesley Clark runs an independent Nader-style vote-splitting campaign. Siphon off 2-3% of the vote, and the Democrat is toast. If the conspiracy theories are true and Clark is a tool of the "Hillary in 2008 Campaign," this could happen.

But I don't believe in conspiracy theories.

Erik Bates | January 20, 2004
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Scott Hardie | January 20, 2004
So long, Gep. Don't let the screen door hit you or nothing.

Steve Dunn | January 20, 2004
Dayam - I was totally wrong about Iowa. I really thought Dean had it locked up up - turns out he got his ass kicked. WOW.

Jackie Mason | January 21, 2004
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Anna Gregoline | January 21, 2004
Dean is scary - there's just something about him that doesn't seem right to me. And he's a very angry man, which I'm not sure I'm comfortable having someone like that for President.

Jackie Mason | January 21, 2004
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Jeff Flom | January 21, 2004
Oh how the mighty have fallen.

What I like about Dean is the fact that he is a liberal. If Dean doesn't win the Democratic nomination, which now seems very possible, I fear the Democratic party will continue to give ground to the Republicans. It is entirely likely that in the next 12 or so years our government will become increasingly (read a heck of a lot) more conservative. The republicans under the leadership of Bush will pull the country to the right and the Democrats will do absolutely nothing to stop them. In short, if Dean loses, the Democratic party will move right to maintain its share of the votes and attempt to fool itself and its part y members into thinking its liberal.

If taken to far, which I fear it will, you will see a split in the Democratic party where the true liberals flee to the Green party or something else and the people like the Clinton's and Lieberman and Wesley Clark lead the Democratic party to the right. All the while our government will be changing under strong and organized Republican leadership.

Anna Gregoline | January 21, 2004
Back to our gun discussion though - Dean gets a perfect rating from the NRA. First thing I didn't like about him.

Denise Sawicki | January 21, 2004
Jeff, just a little while ago you were predicting that the *Republican* paty would soon disappear... what happened? :)

Jeff Flom | January 21, 2004
I'm not sure what you are referring to, Denise. I'm going to assume it was my outrageously funny joke that only middle aged white men who live in rural communities vote for republicans. Which is, generally speaking, true. This is not a good way to win elections, relying on one single electorate. However, as we are witnessing the disintigration of the Democratic party the Republicans have done well despite this handicap. (The way our electoral system works also favors the Republicans a little bit).

One example of how the lack of leadership in the Democratic Party is allowing Republican victories: Ralph Nader. At some point Ralph Nader came to the Clinton, Gore administration and wanted something. The response was essentially f you. This is not a smart thing to do to a politically active man like Ralph Nader. So what does he do, he runs against Gore, Lieberman in 2000 knowing full well that doing so may give the election to Bush, whom he undoubtedly likes less then Gore. When questioned by a reporter Nader said he owed Gore nothing because when he asked for help he got nothing.

Black voters -- for a long time the Democratic party has taken them for granted, thinking that they could do absolutely nothing for them and still count on their vote; this is why the Reverend Al Sharpton is running.

I could go on but I might hurt myself

Jackie Mason | January 21, 2004
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Steve Dunn | January 22, 2004
Democratic Party nightmare scenario - Wesley Clark pulls a Nader and runs as an independent or third party candidate after failing to win the Democratic nomination.

It's a far-fetched scenario, but Clark's not exactly a "party man" and while I don't personally believe it, there's been a lot of speculation that Clark's entire candidacy has been orchestrated to help pave the way for Hillary in 2008.

Just because I don't believe in conspiracy theories doesn't mean I don't love them!

Erik Bates | February 4, 2004
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Scott Hardie | February 4, 2004
It's a shame that a few state primaries get to decide a matter of national significance. I guess that's a major understatement, like saying it's a shame that the electoral college can sometimes put a candidate in office who got fewer votes than another candidate, but whattaya gonna do? Florida doesn't have its primary until March 9th, and by then it will too late for me to have a say in the Democratic candidate for president. Some of you have to wait even longer.

Scott Hardie | February 4, 2004
Btw: So long, Lieberman. Don't let the screen door hit you or nothing.


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