The GOP is dispirited like nothing we have seen since Watergate. GOP primary voters are disgusted with just about everything from amnesty-for-illegals to the Iraq disaster to excessive federal spending under Bush and the GOP Congress. Bush's stance on amnesty for illegals has shattered the GOP - and the conservatives - and left the party in tatters. The 3 main '08 candidates have all failed to capture the imaginations of the GOP primary voters. Romney (too much flip-flopping/Mormonsim seen as a cult), Giuliani (too liberal on social issues/too many marriages), and McCain (author of amnesty for illegals and of McCain-Feingold/incredibly arrogant and sarcastic to many conservatives; and whose campaign is imploding on a daily basis)
The second-tier candidates haven't caught on either. Worried over 2008, and shell-shocked over Bush's demise and the '06 loss of Congress, the GOP wants a savior — another Reagan. Thus they have taken this so-far-undefined vessel called Fred Thompson and filled it with their hopes for the ideal candidate. Thus Fred Thompson's rise in the polls, so far. Thompson is, in fact, a total mediocrity. He is over-rated and uninspiring. He isn't a very good speaker. But he will keep doing well as long as he stays out of sight and remains a non-candidate.
The minute he announces and the tough scrutiny begins, he will meet the same fate as all the other GOP candidates: his flip-flopping, non-conservative and lobbying credentials will all hurt him. For example, the story came now out Saturday in the New York Times and LA Times: In 1991, he lobbied on behalf of an abortion rights group.
Five people confirm this, yet Thomspon denies it all. Why? Because he knows that this will kill him on the right. It will hurt him right in the heart of the GOP: Social conservatives who will see him as another flip-flopper who can't be trusted.
Indeed, the voters hate lobbyists; they see lobbyists as part of the problem in Washington, as dirty crooks who rig things in D.C. Thompson's 20 years in D.C. as a lobbyist are going to hurt him big time and make him seem as an insider when the nation wants an outsider to ride into D.C. and clean it up.
Fred Thompson is not the savior the GOP is looking for.
As long as he doesn't announce, he will suck up support and political oxygen. But by the fall, his descent is inevitable. The big question then is, Once Fred starts to go down, who will be seen as the savior then for the GOP?
Iraq and the Democratic Race: Seventy-two percent of the USA wants out of Iraq - and pronto; and of Democratic primary voters, that number is close to a whopping 90 percent!
Everyone these days is just assuming Hillary will be the nominee; I say hold on for a while — and here is why.
With the Democratic voters being so anti-war, why is it so inevitable that they would nominate the one candidate who was overly enthusiastic for the war, to prove her hawkishness as a woman, and still refuses to admit she was wrong?
In other words, does it make sense for the anti-war party to nominate an unapologetic supporter and advocate of the war?
National polls mean next to nada at this stage. More important is Iowa — where Edwards is very strong (big union state) — and thus her near-panic move of bringing her husband out there last week. Team Clinton knows this: if, as the prohibitive front-runner with all this "she is the inevitable nominee" banter, she loses in Iowa, she is automatically in big trouble. Plus, Obama is doing well in South Carolina, too, so she could lose two key races right off the bat to two different challengers. OK, maybe she survives, maybe not. Either way, 52 percent of voters say they would never vote for her in November. Are the Democrats stupid or what? The White House is so winnable next year and all they need is a bland, safe, moderate Democratic male candidate — and they are flirting with either Hillary or Obama? Crazy. (Next most unpopular? Romney with 50.9 percent who say they'll never vote for him. Clearly the Mormon thing is a big negative.)
Let's go back to 1992, the last race in which the electorate was so sour, surly, and ticked off at Washington D.C. In February of that year, with Bush 41 surviving a Buchanan challenge and Clinton winning the Democratic primaries, Ross Perot goes on "Larry King" and begins his odd little campaign.
By June, he was ahead of both Bush and Clinton! All without spending a dime. All fueled by free TV appearances. Why? Because Perot had an edge to him that matched the voters' anger.
He tapped into the discontent out there. After claiming the CIA interrupted his daughter's wedding, he dropped out, re-entered the race, and still ended up with 19 percent of the vote. But for a few months he was winning, and had he not been a loose cannon, he showed that under the right circumstances a third candidate could possibly win.
That brings us to Bloomberg: he does not tap into this anger. He doesn't get it at all; nor does he appear angry or anti-establishment. Yeah, he made a ton of dough and has been an efficient manager of New York City, but there is no way the grass-roots voters are going to see him as their sherrif-riding-into-town-to-clean-up D.C. He just doesn't fit. He is the establishment. Plus, he is boring on TV and doesn't have that special pizzaz that only Reagan and Bill Clinton have had recently. Yeah, the New York-D.C. political talking heads fall all over themselves over this Bloomberg-to-run as an Independent story, but out in America he doesn't turn anyone on at all. Prediction: If he runs in 2008 as a third party guy, he will be lucky to get 4 percent of the national vote. There could be another Independent third candidate, someone we aren't even thinking about today. There is still lots of time for all this to play out, with Iraq deteriorating and Bush refusing to budge, as the backdrop. And who wins the nominations, too, will determine if a third guy gets in, a guy who could win. Look for lots of twists and turns, and surprises too. The GOP is a mess and we don't have a clue who wins that nomination. And, with Bush and Cheney sitting in the White House and attending the GOP convention, these two are gigantic albatrosses for the GOP nominee.
If that nominee disagrees with Bush/Cheney on something (to curry favor with independent voters and moderate Democrats) then the remaining GOP base (26 percent of voters) will be ticked off; if the nominee agrees with the radioactive Bush, then independents go scurrying over to the Democrats or the third candidate, if there is one.
The media, pathetic as it is, ignores this huge factor.
Bush's presence — yeah, yeah, I know this Bush isn't on the ballot nonsense — is toxic to all GOP candidates next year. And he will be on TV as president every day! The GOP can't hide him or run away from him.
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