Monday, January 23, 2006

Yes, That's Two Years From Now...

...but let's have some fun anyway.

I am going to post a list of names of possible presidential candidates from both parties. You, the reader, peruse them and then comment on your take on their possible candidacy, their stand on issues, why you think they are assholes, whatever. Also feel free to suggest other people. This is just a list of who I happen to think are possible contenders.

(the below are in alphabetical order)

Democrats
  • Sen. Evan Bayh (Indiana)
  • Sen. Joseph Biden (Delaware)
  • Gen. Wesley Clark
  • Sen. Hilary Rodham Clinton (New York)
  • Sen. John Edwards (North Carolina)
  • Sen. Russ Feingold (Wisconsin)
  • Sen. John Kerry (Massachusetts)
  • Gov. Bill Richardson (New Mexico)
  • Gov. Tom Vilsack (Iowa)
  • Gov. Mark Warner (Virginia)

Republicans

  • Sen. George Allen (Virginia)
  • Sen. Sam Brownback (Kansas)
  • Sen. Bill Frist (Tennessee)
  • Fmr. House Speaker Newt Gingrich (Georgia)
  • Fmr. New York City Mayor Rudy Giuliani
  • Sen. Chuck Hagel (Nebraska)
  • Gov. Mike Huckabee (Arkansas)
  • Sen. John McCain (Arizona)
  • Gov. George Pataki (New York)
  • Sec. of State Condoleeza Rice
  • Gov. Mitt Romney (Massachusetts)

I have put these names into totally unscientific poll form. Click here to take the poll.

When you are done, come back here and post your comments here, not at MisterPoll.com.

There we are, let's have some fun with electoral politics, my favorite public bloodsport. HST was right when he said it's better than sex.

As ever, the Good Doctor brings it all together.

3 comments:

Matthew G. Jenks said...

I'll just post what I think about a few of the more popular candidates (and my hopes for who runs and what).

Evan Bayh, I think, would be a decent president. He did a good job in Indiana and he also is one of those midwestern Conservative Democrats. He's rather shrewd with the money and how to spend it, and the state actually did get a little better under him. However, he was also one to cut funding to education (as did his followers, O'Bannon and Kernan...which is one big reason Mitch Daniels is the governor now). That all being said, I doubt he'd survive the loudest, shrillest part of the Democratic party. You know, the raving looney hippie crowd that infest the heart of North Carolina. They'd much prefer someone like John Edwards, who rather than pay his taxes, decides to set up fake companies, employ himself, and then take all the money he invested into said company and pay his lone employee...which would be him. He's also about one step above those classy lawyers who appear on billboards, the backs of phone books and thirty-second spots on the late evening news promising to get you millions for the pain and injury suffered when the kid next door threw a football in your groin. Lionel Hutz is in his same ilk. But he's pretty, and flashes a nice smile, and the gay folks all love him (no, seriously, the gay community LOVES John Edwards because of his important values: he's good-looking and has a nice smile).

I have a feeling that Hillary would polarize that already aisle-to-aisle fight seen between the donkeys and the elephants and might help to push one or two blue states red. Or more. I can't really see her pulling red states blue, even in closely contested places like Ohio and Iowa.

My hopes for the Republican party hang on McCain, whom I've seen as the voice of reason in the turbulent mess we call the GOP. Yes, I like Bush, but like Frank Caliendo so wisely puts it, Bush suffers from honesty turret's syndrome. "Oh crap, what did they tell me to say here...right, that's it." I also wouldn't mind seeing Bill Frist, only because I haven't looked into his past that much, but he seems like a nice guy. And he's got a nice smile. Er, something.

Giulianni seems to be the sort of sexy pick for the Republicans, yet I just can't get all excited about this idea. Sure, Giulianni guided the largest city in America through its most turbulent time in history, or at least recent history, and he did a damned good job of it. And I like Rudy. And he's a likable fellow. And I think he could handle all the bullshit that goes on in government. I would just rather see him as a running mate, perhaps help steal some votes away from the northeastern corner of the country. Maybe not switch the colors from blue to red, but maybe not polarize it so much.

As for red vs blue states, if it's someone like Biden vs. McCain, I really don't see the outcome being any different than it was in 2004. Maybe Wisconsin finally switches, maybe New Hampshire comes back to this side. McCain seems to be closer to that middle ground that, I think, a lot of America seems to like to identify itself with, and he'd appeal to both sides. Plus, the guy's been through a war and, though he's not been a big proponent of the quagmire in the middle east, I think he'd capably be able to pick up the fight and continue it on, but with a better vision of how to win and how to gracefully leave Iraq and let it take care of itself. In short, he doesn't have that sort of crass annoyance that Bush seems to have and therefore can help get people who don't agree with him to work with him.

But then, this is all the mad rambling of some guy who sits in a lab most of the day. Speaking of, I should down the rest of my coffee and head off that way. Those molecules don't make themselves.

Anonymous said...

Well, I would have to say that is an entirely uninspiring list for the Democrats. I really just don't see how any of these people win more votes than Gore or Kerry.

The only thing that I think they can do is to frankly reform their electoral strategy. Instead of going after the southern states, the DNC I think needs to start trying to pick off some Western states (Nevada, New Mexico, Arizona, Colorado). This though would require a reworking of their message. I do not think that just nominating a hispanic and saying "well if we can get 73% of hispanics, 92% of African Americans, 67% of under 24 years old, etc." will inspire anything. No, instead they have to go against the thrust of their policy for the past 40 years.

They really have the option to run an anti-government campaign. They are no longer in government. They could run against federal debt and wasteful programs, criticize Bush for perceived violations of constitutional rights, even follow an isolationist foreign policy. Really drum up a populist anti-government platform.

The problem here is obviously that they won't do this. For whatever reason the powers that be have decided it is better to blindly follow the kettel drum of Teacher's Union than look at how Federal money is spent on education and how it could be better spent; they have decided it is better to follow a government form of healthcare that will be inefficient and unworkable than more moderate reforms.

The fact of the matter is that demographics isn't a compelling platform, but that is all that is offered by the democratic party. No real message, but rather a cobbling together of disparate issues desgined to cobble together a larger percentage of the population.

I guess that probably it is best to nominate Richardson for them. He is a fiscal hawk, and has an inspiring life story (other than his rather uninispiring time in the Department of Energy) I would imagine it would help in all the states they won last go round, perhaps would help in Florida, perhaps in parts of the south (it certainly couldn't hurt them). The dems are in a world of hurt and need to figure out what to do if they want to seriously compete.

Aaron Cynic said...

Electoral politics are sport, and this is a perfect example of it. In the end, we're more concerened about our team winning than what our team can do. If our team isn't playing, then we pick the one that relates to us closely, or we cheer for the team we hate to lose. And this is why they get away with anything and everything they need to. We're too wrapped up in the spectacle.

With that said, a Giuliani\McCain ticket would be unstoppable. While it doesn't represent the ultimate in neocon ideology, Giuliani is still impressionable and shapeable, and McCain provides the stability that the far right desparately needs.

I think a possible Kerry run isn't out of the question, as he'd have a good chance of winning this time around. However he still has the charisma of a walnut and the larger "party" knows this. Same goes for Wesley Clark. The only thing he's got going for him is military history, and that's not enough to carry in this current economic climate. I hate to say, but my money is on Hilary. She appears on the surface to be the antithesis of the Bush regime, and the dems still have three years to grow a set of balls.