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The Friday Presidential Line: Obama & Clinton Tied

DES MOINES, Iowa -- Each week -- heck, each day -- is critical now in the race for the presidency. Voters in early states are paying close attention and campaigns have to be at their best. Some candidates are rising to the occasion, while others are stumbling.

A major unforced error by New Hampshire surrogate Billy Shaheen earlier in the week has put Sen. Hillary Rodham Clinton's team on the defensive -- not exactly where she wants to be with three weeks left before the Iowa caucuses. And Shaheen's resignation threatens to overshadow a solid, if not spectacular, debate performance by Clinton on Thursday.

Her campaign also continues to be dogged by news stories about considerable turmoil within its ranks -- allegations that campaign operatives deny but are corrosive nonetheless to overall morale.

Barack Obama
Obama looks strong in Iowa.

Given all of that, we are increasingly unsure whether Clinton will win the nomination -- an uncertainty reflected by our decision to move Clinton and Sen. Barack Obama (Ill.) into a first place tie in this week's Line.

Having spent the last few days on the ground in Iowa, one thing is clear: it is going to be REALLY close. The Obama campaign is the most outwardly confident about their momentum and the strength of their organization, but even they acknowledge that it's just too close to make predictions just yet.

Other Line Highlights

* Moving Off The Line: Ron Paul
* Moving On: Fred Thompson
* Moving Up: Barack Obama, Joe Biden
* Moving Down: Mike Huckabee, Bill Richardson

As always, the number one ranked candidate on the Line has the best chance at winning the nomination. Agree or disagree? The comments section is open for business.

To the Line!

DEMOCRATS

1. (tie) Hillary Rodham Clinton: The struggles of her campaign (see above) are well documented. But, anyone who counts Clinton out obviously doesn't know the woman (or her family) all that well. Hillary Clinton is nothing if not a resilient fighter and she knows her political career is on the line over the next three weeks. Witness her latest Iowa ad -- featuring her mother telling viewers that she would vote for Hillary "even if she wasn't my daughter." The ad, for the first time in a long time, effectively portrays a different side of Clinton: softer, warmer and more approachable. That seems to us a smart closing strategy for a candidate who voters in Iowa still feel like they don't know all that well. The more Clinton is seen as a mother, daughter and wife as opposed to simply an ambitious politician, the better chance she has at winning Iowa and the nomination. (Previous rank: 1)

1. (tie) Barack Obama: We've written extensively over the last few weeks that Obama has improved drastically as a candidate since the start of the race. He is a confident presence on the trail these days and that confidence has seeped down to his staff who now truly believe they can win. It's a remarkable achievement for a candidate who has only been on the national stage for the last three years or so. Who would have thought it would be Obama not Clinton who would be running the more disciplined and on-message campaign with just three weeks left before Iowa? Can he keep it up? We think so, and there is little question that the organization that Obama has built in Iowa is top notch. But, on caucus night, will Iowans have second thoughts? Will head (Clinton) win out over heart (Obama)? (Previous ranking: 2)

3. John Edwards: Many people within the Clinton and Obama campaigns never expected Edwards' support in Iowa to remain this strong. The fact that it has is a testament to the time he has spent in the state and the level of connection that many in the Hawkeye State feel toward him and his message of "the people versus the powerful." Could the 2008 race turn into a repeat of 2004 when Edwards (and Sen. John Kerry) shot the gap created by the bickering between one-time frontrunners Howard Dean and Dick Gephardt? Edwards is hoping so and has moved back to a largely positive message sprinkled with hefty doses of populism in the campaign's final weeks. The hardest thing for Edwards to fight is a media story line that seems to be moving more and more toward a two-person battle between Obama and Clinton. Of course, that has been the underlying narrative of the campaign for months now and Edwards has managed to persevere in Iowa. (Previous ranking: 3)

4. Joe Biden: After moving Biden down a slot last week, we have him back in fourth place following another stellar debate performance. People who know Iowa insist Biden could surprise in the caucuses and we tend to believe them. Why? Because Biden believes in his message of practicality and people sense that. Biden's people have long argued that if all of the candidates had an equal amount of money to spend, Biden would be in the top tier. They're right. But, of course, all of the candidates don't have an equal amount of money to spend. And Biden's long-standing struggles to raise campaign cash make him a fun dark horse pick rather than a serious contender. (Previous ranking: 5)

5. Bill Richardson: There doesn't seem to be much energy surrounding the New Mexico governor these days. After a brief bump over the summer, Richardson has stagnated in Iowa and New Hampshire as the race has become increasingly a three-person affair. As the best funded candidate of the second tier, Richardson should have a well-organized ground game in Iowa. But, without momentum, even the best ground game will struggle to turn out voters. Richardson needs a spark from somewhere over the next three weeks. It's hard to see where he gets it. (Previous ranking: 4)

REPUBLICANS

1. Rudy Giuliani: Giuliani remains at the top of the heap but the distance between him and second place is narrowing. Why? Because so much of Giuliani's "win" strategy is dependent on other candidates' splitting the vote. Giuliani needs (or at least hopes) former Arkansas Gov. Mike Huckabee knocks off former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney; then Giuliani needs a strong Sen. John McCain (Ariz.) in New Hampshire to make it a three-way race that produces a muddled result; in South Carolina Huckabee and former Sen. Fred Thompson (Tenn.) need to stay relevant to ensure that chaos reigns heading into Florida and February 5, where Hizzoner is undoubtedly strong. It's a plausible scenario but one that is largely out of Giuliani's control -- never a great place to be. (Previous ranking: 1)

2. Mitt Romney: Romney's debate performance this week -- and voters' reaction to it -- convinced us that it would be a mistake to write off his chances in Iowa. Romney looked and sounded presidential and, make no mistake, voters respond to his mix of private and public sector experience. And, while it's clear that Huckabee still has the momentum in Iowa, Romney has the money to make his attacks on Huckabee's immigration record stick and the organization to turn out voters on caucus day. And, even as Romney has lost his lead in Iowa, his New Hampshire numbers remain strong -- a very positive sign in terms of the depth of his support in the Granite State. (Previous ranking: Tied for 2nd)

3. Mike Huckabee: The Huckaboom is still in full effect; he remains the talk of the political class and seems to be the one candidate that Iowa Republicans are excited about at the moment. Amid all of that excitement, it's easy to lose sight of the fact that the underlying problems that have been with Huckabee since the start of the campaign remain. He isn't even close to some of his rivals in funding and his organization -- even here in Iowa -- is nowhere near the level of Romney's. Huckabee is riding a wave of momentum right now and, for all we know, it won't crest until after he is the nominee. But, if that wave starts to break, Huckabee could be headed for the bottom. (Previous ranking: Tied for 2nd)

4. John McCain: Good news first. Of the last three credible polls conducted in New Hampshire, McCain is in second or tied for second in two of them. Now the bad news. In each, he trails Romney by double digits; 31 percent to 19 percent in a Suffolk University poll and 32 percent to 19 percent in a CNN/WMUR/UNH survey. McCain needs to win New Hampshire to have a chance and, with just over three weeks before the primary, he needs to start closing the gap -- and fast. McCain's numbers should start feeling some boost from the Union-Leader endorsement and his television ad that touts it within a week or so but will it be enough? (Previous ranking: 4)

5. Fred Thompson: Just when we thought he was dead politically, Thompson decides to show signs of life in this week's Iowa debate. Thompson has the potential to be a very serious candidate; he conveys gravity and has a biting sense of humor that works well in debates. But, potential will never be enough to win you a presidential nomination. Sensing time is running out, Thompson is focusing his time and resources on Iowa where polling still shows him with growth potential. Thompson seems to have squandered his chances at being the party's nominee but his debate performance showed he still has a chance to have say on who that nominee will be. (Previous ranking: N/A)

By Chris Cillizza  |  December 14, 2007; 6:00 AM ET
Categories:  The Line  
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Next: Alaska: A Target-Rich Environment for Democrats?

Comments

Methinks it would have been smarter to wait until Monday to make the line. You dropped Ron Paul from the list right before he broke the all-time single-day fundraising record with over $6 million in a single day from over 50,000 individual donors.

On the other hand, Fred Thompson (who took Dr. Paul's place on the line) was able to get over 2400 individual donors in 24 hours, so he's pretty good too...

Posted by: Fred | December 18, 2007 10:09 AM | Report abuse

jmd52 you are so correct in believing that Obama has shown his ability to touch people that we haven't seen in years.

We need true leadership in our next president. We need someone who can work with both sides of Congress to influence them to pass legislation that benefits all Americans. He can do that because he knows the current system is broken and needs to be fixed and he is willing to fix it.

Clinton will be too polarizing like Bush and that would only continue the stalemate and bickering between the White House and Congress. The Republicans will find some problem with her like they did with White Water. We don't need a president who will be side tracked by investigations into personal dealings or illegal dealings by their staff. She's shown that she can't pick good people to be on her staff, which shows a flaw in her ability to judge people. It's important that presidents have the good sense and judgement to surround themselves with people of wisdom and integrity.

Posted by: Nevadaandy | December 15, 2007 2:09 PM | Report abuse

I have to say, as a democrat, that your republican rankings are pretty screwy. Huckabee is up in IA and SC by large margins. The latest poll shows him well up in Giuliani's must-have state of FL, and he is now tied with Giuliani nationally. Giuliani, #1, now has a 2% lead in MI and nothing else. Romney, #2, has what looks like a solid lead in NH and nothing else. How in the world does that equate to a 3rd-place ranking for Huck?

Posted by: Nissl | December 15, 2007 2:04 PM | Report abuse

a tie between Obama and Clinton...what a cop out!

Posted by: fulch | December 15, 2007 9:25 AM | Report abuse

rufus

I hesitate to respond to you but .. the Krauthammer column I referred to is a critique of Huckabee's pandering to religious prejudice. Krauthammer is the neo-con's neo-con and I agree with very few of his positions. However, he has been consistently critical of the religious right's influence over the Republican party.

legan00 - I agree that Clinton's candidacy could not survive losses in Iowa and New Hampshire. I believe that at least 50% of her support is based on her supposed inevitability. Puncture the inevitability aura and her candidacy collapses.

lyle - I disagree that Obama is unelectable. I believe he has shown an ability to touch people that we haven't seen in years.

Posted by: jimd52 | December 15, 2007 9:04 AM | Report abuse

I'm going to smoke another Newport in the stairwell.

Posted by: legan00 | December 15, 2007 5:37 AM | Report abuse

To the three or four posts prior to mine,


-Eugene Debs is what is known in American History as a perennial candidate. A William Jennings Bryan, or a Ralph Nader. They make history texts. That's what Eugene Debs' candidacies meant. Eugene Debs received over 1 million votes in 1920, while in prison (incarcerated). (Though more votes, less of the percentage of the total popular vote, 1912.)
Debs is supposed to be relevant in big elections, as such. That said, Republicans love their "HillaryCare" narrative. Socialism. AHHHH!!! All of our strongest allies, are quite socialistic.
Let's do it! Left vs. right. I think the left is louder in 2008. It always occurs during economic hardships or the threat thereof;

-Actually, I'm a Dennis Kucinich supporter, but I do hope Edwards wins. He could garner Lou Dobbs-type votes. That's critical.


-"But then Weary saw that he had an audience. Five German soldiers and a police dog on a leash were looking down into the bed of the creek. The soldiers' blue eyes were filled with a bleary civilian curiosity as to why one American would try to murder another one so far from home, and why the victim should laugh."*

*Kurt Vonnegut, "Slaughterhouse-Five or The Children's Crusade." (New York: Dell Books, 1969) 51.


I live in New York City. In Quebec, the state in which mine borders, they've been speaking French, and won't let up. More Americans need to understand internationalism. Did you know that New York City has the second-largest government bureau(cracy) in the nation. Second to California, where everyone speaks slowly and agrees too much. But America will prevail, and I'll tell you why, this second: Rock. Our bands rock. It's a bummer for every other country, because we always shred. Other countries have their claim, but ours is an impregnable assertion.

_Be afraid of Rudy Guiliani. Look him up, along with Benito Mussolini and Benjahmin Netanyahu (former Israeli Prime Min.), who is currently seeking that very same office. Go to: http://www.theamericancause.org Click on Archives and select "A Vote for Rudy Equals Endless War." If Pat Buchanan is afraid of a Rudy Guiliani presidency, what aren't you reading?


Eugene V. Debs 2008

Posted by: legan00 | December 15, 2007 5:04 AM | Report abuse

Thanks for the tip on "Now" Mark - usually watch Broncacio, but worked late toight - will have to tape.

I read through the comments about HRC's mother and it struck me - may seem obvious that her mother would "endorse" her - but what a stark contrast to Rudy - whose children don't seem similarly inclined.

Legan00 - just curious - do any of this year's crop of candidates remind you of Debs, or is this just wishful thinking? I can't see many similarities - unless maybe Edwards and his advocacy for workers, but IMHO, that's a bit of a stretch.

Posted by: -pamela | December 15, 2007 1:24 AM | Report abuse

McCain's scenario might be more feasible than you think. Michigan is an open primary state too and when you factor in independents, McCain is actually leading.
legan00, I won't vote for Rudy, but only because he left New York $4.5 billion in debt and increased spending 50%. I expect you to live up to your end. :) If it ends up Hillary and Romney, what is the point in even voting? I personally can't believe a word either one of them says. They both change positions daily it seems.

Posted by: donttreadonme | December 14, 2007 11:55 PM | Report abuse

legan00: Nice post. However, I disagree with each and every one of your four opinions/reasons. Repubs--Before Mike entered I had doubts any of them would win the nomination, now that Mike is soaring, I would not bet against him, but think the Repub nomination is still Iffy at best. Dems--Hillary is almost sure to have the Dem nomination locked up on Super Tuesday, despite the media love fest for Obama, who IMHO, has ZERO chance of winning in 08, and the Dems are hopefully going to wake up at least on 5 February.

Posted by: lylepink | December 14, 2007 11:38 PM | Report abuse

----
1. Barack Obama: He has become quite the opponent. I have denigrated Mr. Obama's candidacy for months, not because I disagreed with his positions, but because I felt it was too melodramatic. He has proved me wrong, which leads me to believe he could prove me wrong again, and win the nomination. I think he could win a general election, but not against McCain. Rudy Guiliani worries me some, too.
2. Hillary Rodham Clinton: Things just don't seem to be going her way, as of late. I think her candidacy is, in fact, coming undone. If she loses Iowa and New Hampshire, which I think she will, I'm not sure how she could ever recover --completely. It might be best that she just lose, I don't want to lose the White House again. Then again, she has the connections. It might be naive, for me, to even doubt her candidacy.
3. John Edwards: Honestly, I think his message might stick. Or, I think it could. I sort of hope it does. He's the maverick in this race. He could definitely win the general. If he wins Iowa, Democrats and Independents in N.H. might wake up. They might realize Hillary was never the optimal candidate for beating the Republicans. Plus, she's the establishmentarian candidate. Edwards: the maverick. Obama: The decoy --or, the movement candidate. Obama's potential escapes me at this point. But, Edwards must win Iowa in order to force a second guessing game among Democratic voters. If Hillary seems weak at that moment, which she will due to the congested scheduling of the primary calendar, Edwards could emerge as the REAL "head" candidate. Then he must beat Obama. I hope Edwards does win. I hope enough of you vote for him in your primaries.

----

1. Mitt Romney: I've said it since last spring, he'll be the nominee. The Republicans are old news, and their party is so fragmented that their nomination process will be ugly. It will inevitably defeat the Republicans bid to retain the White House. Good news for Americans. But Mitt Romney might be the only one they can all agree on.
2. Rudy Guiliani: Just don't vote for this guy. If you're a Republican on this blog, I won't vote for Hillary and I'll tell my friends not to, if you don't vote for Rudy Guiliani and you tell all your friends to do the same.
3. Mike Huckabee: He's just trying to make Republicans look relevant next year. He won't actually win anything.
4. John McCain: He & John Edwards are in similar positions. But I think Edwards' scenario is more plausible. Unless McCain can win New Hampshire and shut up everyone on the right*, he can't win at all.
*the right doesn't ever shut up. They eat their own.

----

Let's all hope for the worst, so the reality is somehow tolerable.
Suggested Reading: "Go Tell it on the Mountain." by James Baldwin; "A Confederacy of Dunces." by John Kennedy Toole; "The New Testament."; "Cat's Cradle." by Kurt Vonnegut; "The Moralist." by Andre Gide'; "The Pity of War." by Niall Ferguson; "The Communist Manifesto." by Karl Marx & Friedrich Engels;"Self-Reliance." by Ralph Waldo Emerson.

Eugene Debs '08

Posted by: legan00 | December 14, 2007 9:31 PM | Report abuse

We watched David Broncacio on PBS while we ate the delicious dinner my wife had prepared. He focused on the Ron Paul phenomenon.

It came clear to me - Ron Paul is the embodiment of the dreams of Main Street Rs - small gov, live-and-let live, no foreign entanglements - and it is a good thing that the generally libertarian, fiscally prudent, quasi-isolationist Main Streeters have a voice again.

I wish it were less uncompromising than Dr. Paul's, but if wishes were horses, beggars would ride.

Posted by: mark_in_austin | December 14, 2007 9:11 PM | Report abuse

like with the global warming gree push. Waht's the worse thing that could happen if we do NOT elect someone from yale. One time. See if the coutnry improves. Obviously they have been leading us down the wrong track. Obviously these people are linked by more than all being americans.

Posted by: JKrishnamurti | December 14, 2007 3:24 PM | Report abuse

I'll help those trying to filter

"Daniel Coit Gilman (1852), president of the University of California, Johns Hopkins University, and the Carnegie Institution[8]
Andrew Dickson White (1853), Co-founder and first President of Cornell University[citation needed]

William Howard Taft (Bones 1878), son of the society's co-founder and the first of three Bonesman to become US PresidentWilliam H. Welch (1870), dean of Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine[12]

William Howard Taft (1878), 27th President of the United States; Chief Justice of the United States; Secretary of War; son of Alphonso Taft[15]

[edit] 1880s
Walter Camp (1880), founder of American football[16]

Percy Rockefeller (1900), director of Brown Brothers Harriman, Standard Oil, and Remington Arms[13]

Harold Stanley (1908), founder of investment house Morgan Stanley[citation needed]

Senator Prescott Bush (Bones 1916) has long been rumored to have played a role in Skull and Bones' alleged theft of the skull of Native American leader Geronimo[24]George L. Harrison (1910), banker; president of the New York Federal Reserve[25


Artemus Gates (1918), president of New York Trust Company, Union Pacific Railroad, TIME-Life, and Boeing Company[citation needed]


Briton Hadden (1920), co-founder of Time-Life Enterprises[37]
Henry Luce (1920), co-founder of Time-Life Enterprises [38]

George Herbert Walker, Jr. (1927), financier and co-founder of the New York Mets; uncle to President George Herbert Walker Bush[41]
John Rockefeller Prentice (1928), Grandson of John D. Rockefeller; pioneer of artificial insemination[citation needed]

[edit] 1930s
H. J. Heinz II (1931), Heir to H. J. Heinz Company; father of H. John Heinz III[42] (relatives of John Kerry's wife)


William P. Bundy (1939), State Department liaison for the Bay of Pigs invasion, brother of McGeorge Bundy[45]

Dean Witter, Jr. (1944), son of the founder of investment house Dean Witter Reynolds[49]


William F. Buckley, Jr. (1950), founder of National Review[57]


Robert Gow (1955), business associate of George H. W. Bush; president of Bush's Zapata Oil[62]


John Kerry (Bones 1966) faced off against George W. Bush (Bones 1968) in the 2004 US presidential election, the first time two Bonesman had run against one another for that office


George W. Bush (1968), 43rd President of the United States; 47th Governor of Texas[75]
Robert McCallum, Jr (1968), Ambassador to Australia[76][77]

Dana Milbank (1990), political reporter for The Washington Post[85] [86] [87]

Of keith olberman fame


"Just because you are paranoid, doesn't mean they're not out to get you." :)

Posted by: JKrishnamurti | December 14, 2007 3:15 PM | Report abuse

I'm sorry I asked. I should really know better by now.

Posted by: Blarg | December 14, 2007 3:09 PM | Report abuse

**OFF TOPIC****

Here's another fun article on torture from the notoriously liberal armed forces journal condemning waterboarding.

http://www.armedforcesjournal.com/2007/12/3230108

Here's the text:

"Let AFJ be crystal clear on a subject where these men are opaque: Waterboarding is a torture technique that has its history rooted in the Spanish Inquisition. In 1947, the U.S. prosecuted a Japanese military officer for carrying out a form of waterboarding on a U.S. civilian during World War II.

Waterboarding inflicts on its victims the terror of imminent death. And as with all torture techniques, it is, therefore, an inherently flawed method for gaining reliable information. In short, it doesn't work. That blunt truth means all U.S. leaders, present and future, should be clear on the issue."


Posted by: _Colin | December 14, 2007 3:05 PM | Report abuse

Repubs have already figured it out, and I hope Dems start doing the same: a candidate's competitiveness in the national election means something. Dems cannot forget about the "Rove factor." Whoever gets the nomination will be the target of a barrage of negativity from the nefarious little GOP. Obama is probably the must Swiftboatable, followed by Hillary and thend Edwards. Obviously, Hillary has enough money to be competitive in a national election, but could she spend her way to victory in a national election? When it comes to electing a genuine maverick in national elections (i.e. woman or minority), you can throw the polls out the window. She's also the type of calculating politician that typically doesn't win in national elections. I don't think she'd flub up like Kerry and be caught in shots sailboating alone, or fail to spend every GD cent available in a close election.
But she'd certainly have some problems with the "Bubba" vote - notwithstanding her husband's, of course.

On the GOP side, I read an interesting article in "Time" lately, which noted that for the first time in decades, Repubs are being less Republicanesque, by not quickly coronating a candidate and then out fundraising the Dems. Ironically, the party of the people is raising more money than the party of the rich. That's a little bit funny. For some reason, each of the Repuglican candiates has some major liabilities that could keep them out of the White House. I mean, Fred Thompson proves that he's the most Reaganesque, by referring to a modern-day "Soviet Union."

Posted by: con_crusher | December 14, 2007 3:04 PM | Report abuse

Fear only has a hold of you if you let it jim.

It is an illusion, as is pain. Rise above it and it does not exist. Do not fear the gop fascists. If you expose and marginalize them they have zero power. No credibility. Remember when journalists spent decades building credibility. It was their life-blood. Credibility no longer exists in america. Only propoganda. It's like me saying at teh begining of the year the 49ers are going to win the superbowl. I may want it to happen. I may be rooting for it. But that doesn;t make it reality. That is why the gop is lying fascist propogandists. In a self-government we need all the real news we can get. With as little as the lies and propoganda Krauthammer novak rush o'reilly and so on provide.

Posted by: JKrishnamurti | December 14, 2007 3:04 PM | Report abuse

It's wrong to say that Clinton has the "head" and Obama has the "heart". It should be the other way around. Clinton's followers are following her because in their hearts they like Bill and that's the reason they are supporting her. In their hearts they think they are also getting Bill back. If they thought with their minds and not their hearts and made wise judgements, they would see she is a much different person than Bill. Do you really think that if she is elected, she would want to share the spotlight with Bill? Noooo! She would want the entire spotlight on her, except when there are negative ratings, then she'd turn the spotlight to Bill. Who is running for office Hillary or Bill?

Obama's supporters want him to be the next president because we've used the brains in our head and have determined that he is the candidate who makes sound and wise decisions, has a vision for the direction America needs to be headed towards and has sound plans to get us there. He doesn't have as many years in politics as Clinton, but it is a positive because he is not beholden to special interest groups and therefore will create policies and programs that will benefit the majority of Americans, not just the upper tier of our society. Clinton has been in politics for a long time and has many "friends" that she is beholden to and must "take care of" when elected at the expense of the ordinary citizens.

Also, one need look at all the politicians who have been in office for a long time. What has all their individual and combined experience done for the ordinary citizen? You would think with all the years in office that Reid, Dodd, Biden, Kerry, Kennedy, and Inouye have (to name a few), our country would be on a better track. All this "experience" has blinded them to the purpose of their positions - to create programs to sustain the economy, national defense, and to keep America and its citizens happy, secure and healthy. We need a fresh set of eyes who can really see the problems facing our nation. If voters used their heads, they would see the change we really need will come only when we get someone in office who has not been part of the political stalemate of the past decade.


Posted by: Nevadaandy | December 14, 2007 3:02 PM | Report abuse

"Yes, Ms. Noonan also has a good analysis of the problems the Republicans have with the disproportionate influence of the religious right. However, I have seen a number of similar analyses lately - look at Krauthammer's column in the Wapo today. I haven't seen anyone sum up Senator Clinton's weaknesses so succinctly. "

Krauthammer? You show yoru face. Try reading news from people not republvain stollie propogandsits. Start there. Start by getting real news from multiple sources. Your "Krauthammer" name drop shows yoru face.

Posted by: JKrishnamurti | December 14, 2007 3:01 PM | Report abuse

Walter Camp (1880), founder of American football[16]


In case you missed it :)

No mock and say I don't know what I'm talking aobut. It seems the old school people have been wrong aobut everything since I came here. While new school is discarding what we don't need from the past. This is america. Old folk need to step down and let the youth take over. Like your grandfathers did.

Posted by: JKrishnamurti | December 14, 2007 2:59 PM | Report abuse

"Rufus, could you explain what the Yale Plan actually is? Why are you so suspicious that many of our country's elite politicians all attended one of our country's elite universities? Do you think they were all in a secret society together, where they planned to do evil things? Do you think the Yale professors teach their students to be evil? How does Howard Dean fit into all of this?

Posted by: Blarg | December 14, 2007 02:40 PM
"

Not all teachers. Just the elites. They have more secret societies than any otehr school. In terms or this:
"All U.S. presidents since 1989 have been Yale graduates, namely George H. W. Bush, Bill Clinton (who attended the University's Law School along with his wife, New York Senator Hillary Clinton), and George W. Bush, and Vice President Dick Cheney, (although he did not graduate). Many of the 2004 presidential candidates attended Yale: Bush, John Kerry, Howard Dean, and Joe Lieberman.

Other Yale-educated presidents were William Howard Taft (B.A.) and Gerald Ford (LL.B). Alumni also include several Supreme Court justices, including current Justices Clarence Thomas and Samuel Alito.
"

Look at those names again. What would the gop be without clinton to bash for decades. How would they justify what they do with clinton. Cheaney goes without saying as do the bushs. John Kerry, folded for the gop. Howard dean, folded for the gop. Lierberman. These are democrats we are talking about.How the he*l did Justices Clarence Thomas and Samuel Alito get through confermation. But that is just politics. That is just the tip of the iceberg. You want to talk about the "vast right wing consiracy? look at these names and how it relates to he gop today.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_Skull_and_Bones_members

"William Huntington Russell (1832), Connecticut State Legislator[2]
Alphonso Taft (1832), U.S. Attorney General (1876-1877); Secretary of War (1876); Ambassador to Austria-Hungary (1882) and Russia (1884-1885); father of William Howard Taft[3]

[edit] 1830s
Henry Coit Kingsley (1834), Yale Treasurer 1862.1887; Daniel Coit Gilman's uncle[citation needed]
Morrison R. Waite (1837), U.S. Supreme Court Justice[4]
William Maxwell Evarts (1837), U.S. Secretary of State; Attorney General; Senator; grandson of Roger Sherman[5][6]

[edit] 1840s

Timothy Dwight (Bones 1849), President of Yale (1886-99) and one of a number of Bonesmen to go on to posts at the universityAugustus Brandegee (1849), Speaker of the Connecticut State Legislature in 1861[citation needed]
Timothy Dwight V (1849), Yale acting Treasurer 1887.1889, Yale President 1886.1899[7]

[edit] 1850s
Daniel Coit Gilman (1852), president of the University of California, Johns Hopkins University, and the Carnegie Institution[8]
Andrew Dickson White (1853), Co-founder and first President of Cornell University[citation needed]
William Henry Gleason (1853), Lt. Governor of Florida; founder of Eau Gallie, Florida; lawyer and land speculator[citation needed]
Chauncey Depew (1855), U.S. Senator (R-New York 1899.1911)[9]
John T. Croxton (1857), Union Army general during the American Civil War and later the U.S. Ambassador to Bolivia.
William Bissell, Governor of Illinois (1857.1860); brother of Richard M. Bissell, Jr.[citation needed]

[edit] 1860s
Simeon Eben Baldwin (1861), Governor and Chief Justice, State of Connecticut; son of Roger Sherman Baldwin[10]
Franklin MacVeagh (1862), US Secretary of the Treasury[11]
William Collins Whitney (1863), U.S. Secretary of the Navy; New York City financier[citation needed]

[edit] 1870s

William Howard Taft (Bones 1878), son of the society's co-founder and the first of three Bonesman to become US PresidentWilliam H. Welch (1870), dean of Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine[12]
Edwin F. Sweet (1871), Assistant Secretary of Commerce*[13]
Arthur T. Hadley (1876), Yale president 1899.1921[14]
Edward Baldwin Whitney (1878), New York Supreme Court Justice[citation needed]
William Howard Taft (1878), 27th President of the United States; Chief Justice of the United States; Secretary of War; son of Alphonso Taft[15]

[edit] 1880s
Walter Camp (1880), founder of American football[16]
Frank Bosworth Brandegee (1885), U.S. Representative (R-Connecticut 1902.1905); U.S. Senator (R-Connecticut 1905.1924)[citation needed]
Amos Alonzo Stagg (1888), college football coach[17][18]
Henry L. Stimson (1888), US Secretary of War[19]
George W. Woodruff (1889), College Hall of Fame football coach, Acting Secretary of the Interior and Pennsylvania state attorney-general[12]
Gifford Pinchot (1889), First Chief of U.S. Forest Service[citation needed]

[edit] 1890s
Evarts Tracy (1890), President of Tracy and Swartwout, architectural firm responsible for the cloister garden within the Skull & Bones Tomb. Nephew of Bonesman William Maxwell Evarts.[1]
Lee McClung (1892), Yale Treasurer 1904.1909; U.S. Treasurer 1909.1912[citation needed]
Pierre Jay (1892), first chairman of the Federal Reserve Bank of New York[20]
Henry Sloane Coffin, president of the Union Theological Seminary[21]
Harry Payne Whitney (1894), husband of Gertrude Vanderbilt Whitney; investment banker[22]
Frederick E. Weyerhaeuser (1896), heir to the Weyerhaeuser Paper Co.[citation needed]
Alfred Gwynne Vanderbilt (1898), son of Cornelius Vanderbilt II; brother of Gertude Vanderbilt Whitney[citation needed]

[edit] 1900s
Frederick Baldwin Adams (1900), chairman of the West Indies Sugar Corp.[citation needed]
Percy Rockefeller (1900), director of Brown Brothers Harriman, Standard Oil, and Remington Arms[13]
Charles Seymour (1908), President of Yale 1937.1951[23]
Harold Stanley (1908), founder of investment house Morgan Stanley[citation needed]

[edit] 1910s

Archibald MacLiesh (Bones 1915), poet, diplomat, three-time Pulitzer Prize winner, and Librarian of Congress
Senator Prescott Bush (Bones 1916) has long been rumored to have played a role in Skull and Bones' alleged theft of the skull of Native American leader Geronimo[24]George L. Harrison (1910), banker; president of the New York Federal Reserve[25]
Robert A. Taft (1910), U.S. Senator (R-Ohio 1939.1953)[25][26]
Alfred Cowles (1913), founder of the Cowles Commission[citation needed]
Averell Harriman (1913), U.S. Ambassador and Secretary of Commerce; Governor of New York; Chairman and CEO of the Union Pacific Railroad, Brown Brothers & Harriman, and the Southern Pacific Railroad[27]
Archibald MacLeish (1915), poet and diplomat[28]
Donald Ogden Stewart (1916), author and screenwriter, Academy Award winner for The Philadelphia Story[29]
Lawrence G. Tithe (1916), Yale Treasurer 1942.1954; director and partner, Brown Brothers Harriman[citation needed]
Prescott Bush (1916), U.S. Senator (R-Connecticut 1952.1963), Father of George H.W. Bush, grandfather of George W. Bush[30]
E. Roland Harriman (1917), businessman; railroad executive; president of American Red Cross[citation needed]
H. Neil Mallon (1917), CEO of Dresser Industries [31]
Artemus Gates (1918), president of New York Trust Company, Union Pacific Railroad, TIME-Life, and Boeing Company[citation needed]
F. Trubee Davison (1918), Director of Personnel at the CIA[32][33][34]
Howard M. Baldridge (1918) - U.S. Representative (R-Nebraska 1931.1933)[citation needed]
Robert A. Lovett (1918), US Secretary of Defense[35] [36]

[edit] 1920s
Briton Hadden (1920), co-founder of Time-Life Enterprises[37]
Henry Luce (1920), co-founder of Time-Life Enterprises [38]
Henry P. Davison Jr. (1920), senior partner at JP Morgan[citation needed]
John Sherman Cooper (1923), U.S. Senator (R-Kentucky 1946.1949, 1952.73); member of the Warren Commission[2]
Russell Davenport (1923), editor of Fortune magazine; created Fortune 500 list[39]
F. O. Matthiessen, historian, literary critic[40]
Charles Stafford Gage (1925), Yale Treasurer 1954.1966; Mathiesson Chemical[citation needed]
William Jorden (1925), U.S. Ambassador to Panama; National Security Council[citation needed]
George Herbert Walker, Jr. (1927), financier and co-founder of the New York Mets; uncle to President George Herbert Walker Bush[41]
John Rockefeller Prentice (1928), Grandson of John D. Rockefeller; pioneer of artificial insemination[citation needed]

[edit] 1930s
H. J. Heinz II (1931), Heir to H. J. Heinz Company; father of H. John Heinz III[42]
Amory Howe Bradford (1934), general manager for the New York Times[citation needed]
Hugh Cunningham (1934), Rhodes Scholar; CIA[citation needed]
Jonathan Brewster Bingham (1936), U.S. Representative (D-New York 1965.1983); Council on Foreign Relations[43]
Potter Stewart (1936), U.S. Supreme Court Justice[44]
Clint Frank (1938), 1937 Heisman Trophy winner[citation needed]
John E. Ecklund (1938), Yale treasurer 1966.1978; lawyer[citation needed]
William P. Bundy (1939), State Department liaison for the Bay of Pigs invasion, brother of McGeorge Bundy[45]

[edit] 1940s
McGeorge Bundy (1940), Special Assistant for National Security Affairs; National Security Advisor; Professor of History, brother of William Bundy [46]
James Whitmore, American actor.[citation needed]
Richard Dale Drain (1943), CIA; co-authored early paper proposing the Bay of Pigs invasion[47]
William Sloane Coffin, clergyman and peace activist[48]
Dean Witter, Jr. (1944), son of the founder of investment house Dean Witter Reynolds[49]
James L. Buckley (1944), U.S. Senator (R-New York 1971.1977)[50][51][52]
Howard Weaver (1945), CIA[citation needed]
John Chafee (1947), U.S. Senator; Secretary of the Navy and Governor of Rhode Island; father of Lincoln Chafee[53]
George H. W. Bush (1948), 41st President of the United States; 11th Director of Central Intelligence; son of Prescott Bush; father of George W. Bush[54]
Charles Edwin Lord (1949), U.S. Comptroller of the Currency[citation needed]

[edit] 1950s
Dino Pionzio (1950), CIA Deputy Chief of Station during Allende overthrow[citation needed]
Evan G. Galbraith (1950), US ambassador to France; managing director of Morgan Stanley[55][56]
William F. Buckley, Jr. (1950), founder of National Review[57]
William Henry Draper III (1950), Chair of United Nations Development Programme and Import-Export Bank of the United States[58]
William H. Donaldson (1953), former chairman of the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission; founding dean of Yale School of Management; co-founder of DLJ investment firm [59][60]
David McCullough (1955), U.S. historian; two-time Pulitzer Prize winner[61]
Robert Gow (1955), business associate of George H. W. Bush; president of Bush's Zapata Oil[62]
R. Inslee Clark, Jr. (1957), Director of Undergraduate Admissions who helped Yale become coeducational; former Headmaster of Horace Mann School[63]
Winston Lord (1959), Chairman of Council on Foreign Relations; Ambassador to China; Assistant U.S. Secretary of State [64][65]

[edit] 1960s

John Kerry (Bones 1966) faced off against George W. Bush (Bones 1968) in the 2004 US presidential election, the first time two Bonesman had run against one another for that office [66]David Boren (1963), Governor of Oklahoma, U.S. Senator, President of the University of Oklahoma[67][68]
Frederick W. Smith (1966), founder of FedEx[69][70]
John Kerry (1966), U.S. Senator (D-Massachusetts 1985.present); Lieutenant Governor of Massachusetts 1983.1985; 2004 Democratic Presidential nominee; married into H. J. Heinz family (see "H" above)[71]
Don Schollander Olympic Gold medal swimmer.[72]
Victor Ashe (1967), Tenn. State House (1968.1975); Tenn. State Senate (1976.1984); Mayor of Knoxville, Tenn. (1988.2003); appointed Ambassador to Poland (2004.Present) by George W. Bush[73][74]
George W. Bush (1968), 43rd President of the United States; 47th Governor of Texas[75]
Robert McCallum, Jr (1968), Ambassador to Australia[76][77]
Roy Leslie Austin (1968), appointed ambassador to Trinidad and Tobago by George W. Bush[78][79]
Stephen A. Schwarzman (1969), co-founder The Blackstone Group[80][81]

[edit] Since 1980
Earl G. Graves, Jr. (1984), president of Black Enterprise[82]
Edward S. Lampert (1984), founder of ESL Investments; chairman of Sears Holdings Corporation [83][84]
Paul Giamatti (1989), actor; son of former Major League Baseball Commissioner A. Bartlett Giamatti.[citation needed]
Dana Milbank (1990), political reporter for The Washington Post[85] [86] [87]
Rob Carr (2005), all-time Yale football rushing yards leader"

The fact that every president has been from yale, and many running dean lieberman kerry clinton speaks volumes. Not to mention where the country has headed since that time. Read deeper if you see nothign.

Posted by: JKrishnamurti | December 14, 2007 2:56 PM | Report abuse

zb95 wrote: "I suspect the next big event will be Mark Penns's resignation/firing. He looked and acted like a baffoon on Hardball yesterday."

I wonder if anyone else noted how AWFUL Penn was on Hardball yesterday; every time he appears in public, Hilary will lose support. Makes one wonder if he isn't secretly supporting another candidate.

This week -- the debate, Obama's great comeback about listening to Hilary when he is President, and the fiasco caused by the campaign's smear attempt -- was a VERY bad week for Hilary.

Posted by: ddozier | December 14, 2007 2:45 PM | Report abuse

Somehow the gop has invented an imaginary world where credibility doesn't matter. Where laws only apply to certain people (non-gop clones) Where you win debates by attacking whining and complaining, rather than making strong arguements and truthful points.

I don't live in that world. I live in the real world. Where the sky is blue. Up is up. And down is down.

You would have to ask the clones what planet they live on. "You can fool some of the people some of the time. But you can never fool all of the people all of the time"

The dittoheads are easliy herded. They are done

Posted by: JKrishnamurti | December 14, 2007 2:43 PM | Report abuse

MikeB

Yes, Ms. Noonan also has a good analysis of the problems the Republicans have with the disproportionate influence of the religious right. However, I have seen a number of similar analyses lately - look at Krauthammer's column in the Wapo today. I haven't seen anyone sum up Senator Clinton's weaknesses so succinctly.

By the way, I don't get the obsession with Yale. We've also had 7 presdidents with Harvard degrees including G W Bush. There were several who graduated from Willam and Mary and at least two from Princeton (Wilson was president of Princeton before entering politics). Is it so surprising that a lot of presidents attended elite universities?

Posted by: jimd52 | December 14, 2007 2:41 PM | Report abuse

Rufus, could you explain what the Yale Plan actually is? Why are you so suspicious that many of our country's elite politicians all attended one of our country's elite universities? Do you think they were all in a secret society together, where they planned to do evil things? Do you think the Yale professors teach their students to be evil? How does Howard Dean fit into all of this?

Posted by: Blarg | December 14, 2007 2:40 PM | Report abuse

2008 Presidential Election Weekly Poll

http://www.votenic.com

The Only Poll That Matters.
Results Posted Every Tuesday Evening.

Posted by: votenic | December 14, 2007 2:40 PM | Report abuse

Not from me 27. It takes more than jones effect mocking to win the debate. Those are gop debate rules. To win a real deabte you must make better points. Who here engages me on topics?

All they can do is talk about spelling or elementary school insults. The fact that no one calls me on my posts should show independant thinkers I am on point.

Where were all the obama supporters two months ago? Go look at the archieves. Has everything I have said will come to pass, is it happening? What have I lied about? I can give you countless exapmles of things other people here said that did not come to pass.

So those that are lying or propogating should lose all credibility. Those, liek me, that are telling you truths and what is happening should gain it. If you fear truth or change then ignore. If you want to know what time it is, realease you ego and fear. I am the biggest baddest blogger on the block. All the cowards can do to me is block me. Nobody I have met on the net can beat me, verbally.

they do not even try on this site anmore. elemetnary school kid games. Jones effect. The games you people play is only in your owns heads. "You have no power over me."

Posted by: JKrishnamurti | December 14, 2007 2:39 PM | Report abuse

judgeccrater: The Rasmussen Report usually favors Repubs 3 to 5%, so the latest would most likely favor Mike by about the same since he is considered, by many, as the most conservative.

Posted by: lylepink | December 14, 2007 2:17 PM | Report abuse

radicalpatriot | December 14, 2007 01:18 PM

Hillarious post! Two points!

Posted by: mibrooks27 | December 14, 2007 2:01 PM | Report abuse

I agree wiht all,thecrisis , other than your clinton line.

Fox and teh gop is attacking her as the enivetable candidate. Why? To make it not so? I don't think so.

Also she took money and had a fundraiser with Fox News (when all the other candidates are shunning them as right wing propoganda). Her husband touried the world with bush 41 for a couple years. Wrong combo, wrong time.

Her iran/iraq stance is the same as the moderate republcains, though the last debate seems to have her backing off a bit.

She made political micalculations, trying to get gop votes. In the process she sold out you and me. Not just the liberals but the coutnry. for votes.

i respect your opinion though. Great points. If she does win the nom I will still not vote for her. But if she wins i will hope for the best, and watch what she does and have her back. At first at least. I far the yale plan. I think she would continue down the path that the yale plan has created.

"All U.S. presidents since 1989 have been Yale graduates, namely George H. W. Bush, Bill Clinton (who attended the University's Law School along with his wife, New York Senator Hillary Clinton), and George W. Bush, and Vice President Dick Cheney, (although he did not graduate). Many of the 2004 presidential candidates attended Yale: Bush, John Kerry, Howard Dean, and Joe Lieberman.

Other Yale-educated presidents were William Howard Taft (B.A.) and Gerald Ford (LL.B). Alumni also include several Supreme Court justices, including current Justices Clarence Thomas and Samuel Alito.
"

Posted by: JKrishnamurti | December 14, 2007 1:56 PM | Report abuse

"I love Joe Biden but believe he made a fatal decision at the start of his campaign - refusing to call out Hillary Clinton on her claim of being the most experienced. Only very recently has he begun to point out the differences."

Biden thought hillary was going to be the nom. He was positioning himself for vp. Still is. I saw him speak, in reno. I was forcing the people there to appluade once and a while. Even though I feel as though he has not been tough enough on the criminality of the current gop.

Good guy. Made incorrect political calculations,like clinton (money from fox, backing bush in wot). I see the moderates as buffers. Without them, as much as a critisize, the old folk would never change.

Posted by: JKrishnamurti | December 14, 2007 1:45 PM | Report abuse

thecrisis: "Hillary Clinton would be a great president. What democrat could honestly deny that?"

I can. And I will: Hillary Clinton would not be a great president. I'm not even sure she'd be a good president.

I don't get the impression that Hillary believes in much. If she does, she certainly does her best to hide it. What's her Iraq plan? She'll make an effort to reduce troop presence, if possible. What's her Social Security plan? She'll convene a committee to look into it, once she's elected. She doesn't seem to really care about any of these issues, or about doing anything for the country. She either supported the war in Iraq or got tricked into voting for it, just like she's voting for war against Iran. Also, she's secretive, and doesn't like answering questions. None of that adds up to "great president" in my book.

You're right that Republicans hate Hillary, and we can't really hold that against her. But it's not just Republicans. Many Democrats and independents dislike her, or at least don't particularly like her. Her negative ratings are very high in general. That's more an issue for electability than fitness to govern, but this is an election, and electability is also an issue.

Posted by: Blarg | December 14, 2007 1:41 PM | Report abuse

My opinion on why Clinton and her campaign are a LOT worried: a large percentage of the electorate is frontrunners... they don't really make decisions for themselves, but follow what seems to be the popular pick. If the recent trend of polling and media coverage indicating that Obama is passing her continues, her support amongst the frontrunners may melt.

Posted by: steveboyington | December 14, 2007 1:37 PM | Report abuse

""radicalpatriot - If you haven't figured out JKrishnamurt/rufus by now, you have got to one of the densest people around. rufus is writing style is "stream of consciousness". Try to get past the, I am pretty sure purposeful, spelling and punctuation errors, and what he has to say it both valuable and pretty insightful, too. He is also a deeply spiritual guy, with a deep seated sense of right and wrong. If you want to have some fun, spend a bit of time thinking and exchange insults with him - He's very funny!

Posted by: mibrooks27 | December 14, 2007 12:54 PM
"

Ahh. your making me blush :)

Change cannot come without conflict. Mental change cannot come without mental conflict. The gop refuses to change. They are living in 1965. John wayne, elvis and such. Trying to do my small part to bring them into this decade.

Finally someone here gets it.

Thank you for the kind words. It is only an attack if you take it as one. Read deeper. If it does not apply, ignore.

Posted by: JKrishnamurti | December 14, 2007 1:30 PM | Report abuse

Oh, and Obama/Biden '08.

Posted by: thecrisis | December 14, 2007 1:29 PM | Report abuse

I think these comments point out something that is somewhat saddening.

Hillary Clinton would be a great president. What democrat could honestly deny that? However, the typical republican stonewalling strategy is working so well that we're actually blaming Clinton for her lack of electability, even though it's really only the republicans that don't like her. Don't blame Hillary that she drives republicans crazy...I think it's a good thing sometimes.

As far as momentum goes, most of you are forgetting about Super Tuesday. This day is the decider, not Iowa, not New Hampshire and not South Carolina. Sure those states are tremendously important, but with Clinton and Giuliani holding crushing leads in large places like Florida and California, don't undervalue their 20-30% margins.

I think after the bottom people drop off, here's what we can expect, though I'm not swearing oath to all of these people dropping off, necessarily.

Biden - his supporters will likely mostly go to Clinton.

Richardson - all supporters go to Obama for his more liberal domestic agenda and anti-hawkish positions.

Dodd - his go to Obama and Edwards.

Kucinich - Obama for his liberal domestic policies, Edwards for his working-class attitude.

Edwards (in a magic case where he isn't 2nd or 3rd) - Split between Obama and Clinton with more going to Obama for his firey "change" sentiment.

As you can see, I'm betting heavily that Obama will get huge residual support from dropped candidates. No other candidates, other than Biden, have been even nearly as hawkish as Clinton has when it comes to Middle-East policy, meaning Obama's anti-war stance should garner him plenty of leftover liberals who have to settle for the lesser of two evils (in their mind).

Edwards will gain slightly more than Clinton from the drop-off's supporters. Again, people supporting more extreme change (Kucinich, Richardson) are not going to lean toward anyone who seems inside-the-beltway or old news. They want fresh faces and though Obama will take the majority of their support, Edwards will see a slight jump after the second-tier candidates fall away.

Posted by: thecrisis | December 14, 2007 1:28 PM | Report abuse

GordonsGirl:

Your posting of 1:16 was the clearest, most concise, and most intelligent point I have read on this blog in ages. Thank you.

CC and all the Washington Post could take a lesson from you.

Posted by: radicalpatriot | December 14, 2007 1:22 PM | Report abuse

mibrooks27: yes, I understand stream-of-consciousness writing, and I figured it was really "zouk", although I was willing to play along with his latest moniker.

But stream of consciousness writing [a style of writing] does NOT mean that anything goes and never ever look at what you have written. It's mostly used as an excuse for those who want to seem profound but cannot think, or don't want to make the effort to do so. Like-minded lazy readers will also find something profound in that sort of writing.

By the way, I have a used pizza dish that I was about to put in the dishwasher, when I realized that, plain as day, clear as a bell, true as a cliche, the face of St. Thomas Aquinas was right there on the plate, formed out of the tomato sauce and sausage remains. For your valuable advice, in the way of friendship, I am willing to let you be the first to bid on it. I'm certain you will see it for its true value.

Some muddy streams are not worth wadding in.

Posted by: radicalpatriot | December 14, 2007 1:18 PM | Report abuse

I love Joe Biden but believe he made a fatal decision at the start of his campaign - refusing to call out Hillary Clinton on her claim of being the most experienced. Only very recently has he begun to point out the differences.

From the beginning, Clinton has infuriated me with her experience claim. How she has been able to stand amongst Sens. Biden and Dodd and Gov. Richardson and make that claim is proof of her arrogance and sense of entitlement. Meanwhile, these gentlemen have refused to stand up for themselves and clearly state that her claim is bogus.

It's been common knowledge for quite some time that Sen. Biden desired to be Secretary of State. That may be true but I believe Obama-Biden would be a formidable ticket.

Posted by: GordonsGirl | December 14, 2007 1:16 PM | Report abuse

Well, it was fun while it lasted being on The Line.

Apparently Fred Thompson's campaign is so filled with "growth potential" that it couldn't muster a mere 500 signatures to be on the ballot in Delaware. If it can't do that how is it supposed must the organization heavy-lifting to do well in Iowa? Hmmm? Because he a so-called "nice debate performance?" Hell Chris, you thought Ron Paul was a debate winner too!

Meanwhile the Ron Paul campaign submitted over 20,000 signatures to be on the Virginia. It garnered a good share of declared delegates to the West Virginia State GOP Convention on Feb. 5. He just cleared double digits in the latest CNN poll in South Carolina and leads in polls in Alaska. The blimp is in the air and good truckload of money, which would dwarf anything Thompson, Huckabee or McCain has raised, could be in RP's lap on Dec. 16.

These are facts Chris. They're not subject to interpretation like "having a good debate performance" in debate few will remember in a month. Fred Thompson basically has a one state campaign and so does John McCain. Ron Paul has a 50 state campaign and I think any objective political observer (which, when it comes to Ron Paul, you clearly are not) when presented these facts would take his campaign pretty seriously.

Hey, if you need any more such Ron Paul facts I'll be glad to help out.

Posted by: sean4 | December 14, 2007 1:00 PM | Report abuse

I was mistaken....

Original author was John Gillespie Magee.

Posted by: bsimon | December 14, 2007 12:56 PM | Report abuse

radicalpatriot - If you haven't figured out JKrishnamurt/rufus by now, you have got to one of the densest people around. rufus is writing style is "stream of consciousness". Try to get past the, I am pretty sure purposeful, spelling and punctuation errors, and what he has to say it both valuable and pretty insightful, too. He is also a deeply spiritual guy, with a deep seated sense of right and wrong. If you want to have some fun, spend a bit of time thinking and exchange insults with him - He's very funny!

Posted by: mibrooks27 | December 14, 2007 12:54 PM | Report abuse

It isn't the tie for 1st that we have a problem with where CC is concerned. It's the pathetic impression that he would consider Hillary's performance yesterday as "solid if not spectacular" that continues to allow us to question if there is insider partiality where the Post is concerned. In a word, LAUGHABLE. Later.

Posted by: Gharza | December 14, 2007 12:53 PM | Report abuse

Sorry for being late to the party, folks. Great work today -- close to 1 PM here and the thread has not gone into the dumper yet.

So is the most wide-open two-party nominating process in decades? Ever? Political science types will be studying this one for years to come.

Posted by: Spectator2 | December 14, 2007 12:52 PM | Report abuse

Giuliani should be ranked third not first. You are expecting him to lose all of these early states and then come back in Florida? Look at the last poll from FL it was just released today ( http://www.campaigndiaries.com/2007/12/morning-polls-nh-and-fl-shuffle-and.html ), Giuliani now trails both Romney and Huckabee! How could FL be in any way his firewall??

Posted by: campaigndiaries | December 14, 2007 12:49 PM | Report abuse

mibrooks27, what's so fun about the Republican race is that one could make a plausible case why each of the candidates couldn't possibly win. I used to think the nominee would likely be Fred, simply because he was less objectionable to GOP voters than the others, but he's run such a terrible candidate and makes such an uninspiring candidate that he's finished.

My most fervent hope is for a brokered GOP convention. We haven't had a convention fight since, what, Ford/Reagan in '76?

Posted by: novamatt | December 14, 2007 12:48 PM | Report abuse

mibrooks writes
" 'slipped the surly bonds of Earth' to 'touch the face of God."

That was a good speech, but its worth noting that Reagan was quoting; the original author, if I'm not mistaken, was French author Antoine de St Exupery.

Posted by: bsimon | December 14, 2007 12:47 PM | Report abuse

brooks: Their is nothing mean & nasty about Mitt Romney. He is a class act and a real gentleman. He will be our nominee: Just wait and see: And remember you heard it hear 1st.

Posted by: vbhoomes | December 14, 2007 12:44 PM | Report abuse

JKrishnamurti --

What is your point, if you have one? Through your gibberish English and your piles of cliches and [apparently] attempted insults to everyone, you are making not even a slight attempt at rational discourse here.

Why don't you start by saying clearly [you can try proofreading what you write] who or what you do or do not support. If you feel really bold and adventurous, you might even try giving something [we call them "reasons"] to support your position.

Try it! It might bring some fun into your life.

Posted by: radicalpatriot | December 14, 2007 12:43 PM | Report abuse

"Well, well. I was on this blog about 9 months ago (I check it all the time), and I was telling you, Chris, that you had better move Obama up or else you are going to look mighty stupid. It looks like you finally listened. Maybe we should trade jobs. Oh wait, you couldn't do my job either. Just kidding (about the last jab), Chris. Keep up the good work.

Go Barack!

Posted by: GoHuskies2004 | December 14, 2007 12:41 PM
"

Well said. Clinton clinton clinton.

What is a news person with no credibility? Are they then a propogandsit?

Posted by: JKrishnamurti | December 14, 2007 12:43 PM | Report abuse

Well, well. I was on this blog about 9 months ago (I check it all the time), and I was telling you, Chris, that you had better move Obama up or else you are going to look mighty stupid. It looks like you finally listened. Maybe we should trade jobs. Oh wait, you couldn't do my job either. Just kidding (about the last jab), Chris. Keep up the good work.

Go Barack!

Posted by: GoHuskies2004 | December 14, 2007 12:41 PM | Report abuse

jimd52 - But...don't forget, she also points out the weakness of the GOP, held hostage by the Fundimentalists. It is, an even handed and very good analysis. CC, *YOU* ed to read it!

Posted by: mibrooks27 | December 14, 2007 12:35 PM | Report abuse

Why is the gop scared to converse? Why? Why do we need fox news, when the other side does not have one, nor should they. Why do you people need "jones effect"?

Any salesmen out there? I was on ein a previous life. Anyone see the sales tactics? Jones effect, fear of loss. they are selling lies and fascism. Why does the gop need this? think on that, any independatn thinkers out there.

Posted by: JKrishnamurti | December 14, 2007 12:32 PM | Report abuse

MikeB

Thanks for the link, Ms. Noonan captures the essence of Ms. Clinton's problems with the electorate perfectly. I have not seen a better, more succinct analysis of Senator Clinton's weaknesses as a candidate.

Posted by: jimd52 | December 14, 2007 12:32 PM | Report abuse

that's right radicalpatriot. Fickin republcains. Go take your ball and go home. If you can't take the heat get out of the kitchen. Surrond yourself with like minded people that think exactly like you.

Nice and safe in a cave. Good luck with that.

Enjoy your irrlevance at you whine complain sessions.

Posted by: JKrishnamurti | December 14, 2007 12:30 PM | Report abuse

Chris: The head vs. heart metaphor does not work in this case. Clinton must have the highest negatives nationally of any candidate during a primary. She is less electable than Obama, who inspires many Republican and Independent voters. Please stop pushing that line; it sounds like a Clinton campaign official wrote it.

Posted by: matthews_greg | December 14, 2007 12:28 PM | Report abuse

The analysts are having a field day! Peggy Nonnan has written a great analysis of the Republican's being too close to the Fundimentalist right and a very insightful piece on the Clinton campaign - "The Pulpit and the Potemkin Village " : http://www.opinionjournal.com/columnists/pnoonan/

Agree or disagree with her politics, she is a wonderful writer. I still remember the speech she wrote for Reagan after the Challenger disaster: "We will never forget them, nor the last time we saw them, this morning, as they prepared for their journey and waved goodbye and 'slipped the surly bonds of Earth' to 'touch the face of God."

Posted by: mibrooks27 | December 14, 2007 12:24 PM | Report abuse

Hey Mark-in-A: I see that you, too, lurk around sometimes in the Register, in the city "of the monks." I hope you can do some good there as well. [You are so right about Texans' voices being muted in the primaries.] Do you ever visit the "Concord Monitor"? Or in the key third place, "The Greenville News"? I think one's efforts are better spent there than in this rag-blog [as it mostly has become].

Posted by: radicalpatriot | December 14, 2007 12:23 PM | Report abuse

i re-read cc's post.

He seems to be freaking out. As all our the beltway people that are used to forcing our hand and giving us our nom.

I'm glad to see the american people are in command of how washington is run again. As opposed to washington telling us how it's going to. That is what got us in this mess.

Posted by: JKrishnamurti | December 14, 2007 12:22 PM | Report abuse

But the question is whould you go, cluadia?

he he he

it's no fun to get bashed for having an opinion. Right zouk?

Posted by: JKrishnamurti | December 14, 2007 12:19 PM | Report abuse

why thank you, mike, but somehow I don't think zouk would agree with you, LOL

Posted by: drindl | December 14, 2007 12:14 PM | Report abuse

"The Rasmussen poll is so out of line with all the other recent polls that I would discount its results untill I see the others reflecting similar trends.
Posted by: jimd52 | December 14, 2007 11:23 AM"

Couldn't agree more, jimd in FL. Aggregate polls are the only ones worth watching. The Rasmussen outlier may well be the start of a more pronounced trend. Wait and see. The positive slope of Huckabee's poll numbers appears to be real.

Posted by: judgeccrater | December 14, 2007 12:12 PM | Report abuse

Rudy on meet the press, was quick to say, "Look at my florida numbers." i may be low iowa sc and NH, but look at florida.

Obviously florida rejected that premise.

Posted by: JKrishnamurti | December 14, 2007 12:10 PM | Report abuse

kingofzouk - Hvae you no sense of humor? Claudia's insult was classic! I laughed so hard I almost fell off my chair. Of the regulars on this forum, she and mark_from_austin are two that you just know would be fun to have as dinner guests.

Posted by: mibrooks27 | December 14, 2007 12:02 PM | Report abuse

Your palying by old rules zouk. The old rule sno longer apply.

Buying elections is sooo 20th century.

Clinton and rudy are dropping like rocks. The mvoement you are a part of that bush created is now being rejected by all. Rudy is done, has been. Thompson is done.

The gop feild now consistinst of huck and romney with mccainmaking a push.

The dem's are down to obama and clinton with clinton sinking like a rock.

You are losing any credibility you had here. Not sure you was with you rpropoganda here other than you rlying cult. But there it is.

Posted by: JKrishnamurti | December 14, 2007 11:58 AM | Report abuse

Everything I find despicable about President Bush-Cheney I find equally so in Hillary. To mention only three points:

Like Bush-Cheney, Hillary is the same viciously polarizing and divisive person, to the citizens at large as well as to non-Democrats (and even to innumerable Democrats), at a time when America needs a unifying leader who can work with both parties.

Like Bush-Cheney, Hillary has a proven record of secrecy, lies, and prevarication. Such deceit is natural to their characters. The determination of all of them is to put personal/partisan needs above all else, certainly above even the needs of America.

Like Bush-Cheney, Hillary is totally in the pockets of Corporate America, lobbyists, and special interest groups, more than any other candidate, and in the end will always put corporations ahead of the people.

Her claim of "experience" is even more phony than she is. Actually, there is little "job training" available for killer job of being POTUS. The quality of one's intelligence [beyond mere political cunning] and the quality of one's character [dare I even mention the fuddy-duddy old-fashioned word "virtue"?] are of the most crucial importance for being POTUS.

And now she says that her health care plan of government-mandated [I will make it the law that you must buy health insurance] is best for everyone. If you don't see the problem with that line of thought, ....

And it is bizarrely amusing that she can even mention the word "change" in reference to herself. Hillary is, above all, the same same old same old old.

Posted by: radicalpatriot | December 14, 2007 11:53 AM | Report abuse

the Exxon Weathernut Moonbat appears... expect to descend immeditately to monkey-throwing-feces environment.


spoken like a true howling moonbat. I believe shrinks have a word for this - projection.

drindl - you fool no one when declaring how wondeful you are and how despicable anyone who disagress with you is. you are the queen of mean, even before I showed up.

Posted by: kingofzouk | December 14, 2007 11:52 AM | Report abuse


In other news, the WP fronts word that the Office of the Special Inspector General for Iraq Reconstruction is under investigation from several fronts for allegations of mismanagement, financial wrongdoings, retaliatory firings, discrimination, and "sustained patterns of inappropriate behavior." Federal prosecutors have already presented evidence to a grand jury, a House committee is also investigating allegations, and so are oversight bodies of the Army as well as the executive branch. One of the main issues has to do with overtime pay that has allowed 10 SIGIR employees to earn more than $250,000 each, including one who claimed 1,200 hours of overtime and earned almost $350,000.

Posted by: drindl | December 14, 2007 11:47 AM | Report abuse


Anyone who actually thinks that hillary and rudy won't be the nominees are falling for the "news of the minute" phenomenon.

It is like observing a great river near the shore where some rather large rocks are and stating the eddies prove the river runs uphill.

If you want to know the answer, follow the money. then look at the endorsements. then calculate the polls in big states. the momentum factor is mostly obsolete with only a few days between and the market saturated with talking heads.

End result - no clinton rerun - 42 state sweep by Rudy (R). clinton at top of tix sends house and senate back to the good side of the force.

Posted by: kingofzouk | December 14, 2007 11:44 AM | Report abuse

vbhoomes - Then, who will the Republican's nominate? Romney? He's just as bad as Guliani. The Republican candidates that do best in the national polls are McCain (he either beats or ties every Democrat), Thompson (close, but looses), and Huckabee (wonderful VP under McCain but would loose in a general election to any of the front running Dem's). Now, McCain, for all of his too honest talk offending various nitwits, is one of the finest, most decent and honest people in the country, but his views are not what most voters want. Still, nationally, he pulls in a surprising amount of support from people who prize that honesty and decency over policy. Fortunately, we have Edwards and Biden, viewed by most voters almost as postive on chartacter.

Posted by: mibrooks27 | December 14, 2007 11:42 AM | Report abuse

Still grasping at straws, huh zouk. i guess without clinton to bash, what do you got? Right. He he he

your movement is passing you by. You would be smart to turn away from treason and fascism and work with those they to reunite the nation. Your grasping at straws. What you are crying about is histroy. Rush limbaugh lied to you. Get over it. If you are angry about that, get him off the air. Save the elderly. GEt you master off the air. Get those dividing us for profit off the air.

Wake-up zouk. Even your fascist movement is now disavowing people like you

Posted by: JKrishnamurti | December 14, 2007 11:40 AM | Report abuse

well there goes the neighborhood. even before noon today, the Exxon Weathernut Moonbat appears... expect to descend immeditately to monkey-throwing-feces environment.

Posted by: drindl | December 14, 2007 11:40 AM | Report abuse

mibrooks writes
"Anyone thinking that the ad by Hillary's mother will do anything but help is simply ignoring human nature. When Bush was in trouble, back in 2000 and 2004, those ads with his mother were worth plenty of points."


I don't think the ad will hurt Sen Clinton, but I don't see it helping much either. Equating Mrs Rodham with Barbara Bush does not compute.

Interesting point though, that GWB used the same tactic...

Posted by: bsimon | December 14, 2007 11:38 AM | Report abuse

"Sure the apology is the story but what resonates is - do they really believe that Jesus and the devil are brother???
"

A wise man past this on to us last week.

And yes


http://bestdocumentaries.blogspot.com/2007/04/mormons-and-illuminati.html

Posted by: JKrishnamurti | December 14, 2007 11:37 AM | Report abuse

For the Democrats, it's basically tied in Iowa, NH and perhaps SC. Everything is within the MOE. Clinton is leading in the Feb. 5 states if she can get that far. Still, I think Iowa will do one last reassessment of the candidates and we will perhaps see the voters shift one more time.

I really find it hard to believe that Huckabee is currently ranked third.

He is first in Iowa and SC. He is tied for first in Michigan, second or third in Nevada, and gaining in Florida. He is the momentum candidate. The formula for the Republicans has been that two candidates split Iowa and NH with South Carolina deciding the winner. Huckabee is currently that candidate.

Posted by: labrat94720 | December 14, 2007 11:37 AM | Report abuse

Liberal lies exposed:

An example of rampant misrepresentation of IPCC reports is the frequent assertion that 'hundreds of IPCC scientists' are known to support the following statement, arguably the most important of the WG I report, namely "Greenhouse gas forcing has very likely caused most of the observed global warming over the last 50 years."

In total, only 62 scientists reviewed the chapter in which this statement appears, the critical chapter 9, "Understanding and Attributing Climate Change". Of the comments received from the 62 reviewers of this critical chapter, almost 60% of them were rejected by IPCC editors. And of the 62 expert reviewers of this chapter, 55 had serious vested interest, leaving only seven expert reviewers who appear impartial.

Two of these seven were contacted by NRSP for the purposes of this article - Dr. Vincent Gray of New Zealand and Dr. Ross McKitrick of the University of Guelph, Canada. Concerning the "Greenhouse gas forcing ..." statement above, Professor McKitrick explained "A categorical summary statement like this is not supported by the evidence in the IPCC WG I report. Evidence shown in the report suggests that other factors play a major role in climate change, and the specific effects expected from greenhouse gases have not been observed."

Dr. Gray labeled the WG I statement as "Typical IPCC doubletalk" asserting "The text of the IPCC report shows that this is decided by a guess from persons with a conflict of interest, not from a tested model."

Determining the level of support expressed by reviewers' comments is subjective but a slightly generous evaluation indicates that just five reviewers endorsed the crucial ninth chapter. Four had vested interests and the other made only a single comment for the entire 11-chapter report. The claim that 2,500 independent scientist reviewers agreed with this, the most important statement of the UN climate reports released this year, or any other statement in the UN climate reports, is nonsense.

"The IPCC owe it to the world to explain who among their expert reviewers actually agree with their conclusions and who don't," says Natural Resources Stewardship Project Chair climatologist Dr. Timothy Ball. "Otherwise, their credibility, and the public's trust of science in general, will be even further eroded."

That the IPCC have let this deception continue for so long is a disgrace. Secretary General Ban Kai-Moon must instruct the UN climate body to either completely revise their operating procedures, welcoming dissenting input from scientist reviewers and indicating if reviewers have vested interests, or close the agency down completely. Until then, their conclusions, and any reached at the Bali conference based on IPCC conclusions, should be ignored entirely as politically skewed and dishonest.


http://canadafreepress.com/index.php/article/968

Posted by: kingofzouk | December 14, 2007 11:35 AM | Report abuse

There's a great analysis of the Shaheen mess by Tom Curry over on MSNBC - http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/22252546/

Mr. Curry thinks that Shaheen has painted Clinton into a corner. She cannot do more negative campaigning without appearing to be both a Washington insider and mean and she can't win without attacking Obama and Edwards. The bets are that Clinton's supporters will actually start going to Edwards and Biden, of all people, not to Obama.

Posted by: mibrooks27 | December 14, 2007 11:34 AM | Report abuse

Claudia you are not going to get an argument from me about Rudy. I agree he is an abrasive jerk with a mean streak but Republicans will not nominate him, so do not worry about him. Can I have the same assurance your party will not nominate Hillary Milhous Nixon/Clinton/Rodham.

Posted by: vbhoomes | December 14, 2007 11:31 AM | Report abuse

I think the calculus on the Dem side favors Obama. Hillary must sweep Iowa, NH & SC to avoid the inevitable. Same for Edwards, otherwise he is at a huge fundraising disadvantage. Even if Obama's first win is in SC after placing in IA & NH, the supporters of second tier candidates will coalesce around Obama. It's is pretty clear that Hillary's negatives will limit her appeal as consolidation occurs. Only Edwards is competition for Obama when we get to that phase and his financial weakness will help steer those voters Obama's way. The final dagger will be when Edwards decides he is no longer viable, probably after super-duper Tuesday, and makes a deal with Obama in exchange for his endorsement. That's how I see it playing out if Obama doesn't win IA & NH, but places well. If he does win the first caucus and primary, it will be a cakewalk.

Posted by: rich5 | December 14, 2007 11:31 AM | Report abuse

"I find the democratic "tie" highly questionable. Yes, Obama has been gaining, and yes, I would vote for him, but he's only tied in Iowa, still trailing in NH, and has half of Clinton's support nationwide. You really think he has an equal chance, today?

Posted by: notreal | December 14, 2007 11:15 AM
"

Read the polls again. He pasted in Iowa and SC. Tied in NH. And she's dropping like a rock due to panic. Negatives to high. Time to turn the page. Both on the clintons and divisaive politics. Alos, we can turn the page on racism in america, finally, and point out the racists for what they are. Change throguh that

Posted by: JKrishnamurti | December 14, 2007 11:29 AM | Report abuse

Clinton's numbers are sinking in Iowa. Edwards ranking should be at least 2 after his excellent performance at the Johnston debate (despite getting less time than Clinton and Obam).

CNN and Fox News focus groups of undecided Democrats thought Edwards won the debate and quite a few are considering caucusing for him.

Clinton will lose NH because of Bill Shaheen and Penn's continued narrative about his joke about Obama and bring up something Obama had disclosed years ago.

Posted by: becky | December 14, 2007 11:24 AM | Report abuse

The Rasmussen poll is so out of line with all the other recent polls that I would discount its results untill I see the others reflecting similar trends.

Posted by: jimd52 | December 14, 2007 11:23 AM | Report abuse

"Worse still, Reid is completely disregarding the "hold" placed by Chris Dodd on any amnesty bill -- simply refusing to honor it, even as he respectfully honors literally scores of "holds" from GOP Senators such as Tom Coburn. And while Dodd is interrupting his campaigning to fly to Washington to lead the filibuster he vowed, Reid has ensured with scheduling manuevers that the filibuster will take place only over the weekend -- when all of the members are away raising money anyway and journalists aren't paying attention -- with the intent to try to force cloture once everyone returns on Monday.

There are two key objectives for today: (1) do as much possible to pressure Reid to honor Dodd's hold and (2) do as much possible to encourage the presidential candidates and others to actively support Dodd's filibuster, not merely in a cursory way, but through authentic leadership. At least as of now, Reid is the clear villain here, doing everything possible to enable the Bush/Cheney FISA agenda on telecom amnesty and surveillance powers, and doing everything possible, yet again, to ensure that Senate Democrats stand up to nobody except their voters and their base who put them in power.


The criticism isn't that Harry Reid is being insufficiently aggressive in opposing the White House. It's that he's doing what he can to support the White House, serving as their key ally. I suppose one option is to cheer on Democrats anyway, no matter what they do. But I can't understand how anyone who actually believes in anything other than partisan power for its own sake would consider that option to be an attractive one.

-- Glenn Greenwald
"

http://www.salon.com/opinion/greenwald/

for those of you that were talking about Morons the other day. How 90% or mormons are republcains at that the senate democratic leader happens to be mormon.


Posted by: JKrishnamurti | December 14, 2007 11:21 AM | Report abuse

I hear that there will be a Rasmussen poll out of Florida that has Huckabee in first place, Romney in second and Giuliani in third. If this is true, Giuliani's firewall is gone and he definitely should not be ranked ahead of Huckabee.

Posted by: labrat94720 | December 14, 2007 11:21 AM | Report abuse

baseball_fan4life,

You said--
"Biden might be a fun, inside-the-beltway choice, but he has no practical governing experience and he offers very little to change the electoral college."

I disagree strongly. Some inside the beltway like him. And they don't like Clinton or Obama more? The fact is that I think Biden is kind of a blue-collar kind of guy that has the potential to do well in rural areas and the south. He's got the "average Joe" persona in some respects with his homespun sayings and tell it like it is approach. One of the knocks on Biden is that he says inappropriate things. Essentially, he can come off sounding politically incorrect. That sounds like a critique coming from inside the beltway and the elite to me. Most of middle America and stereotypical rural voters aren't bothered by that stuff and in fact would probably be reassured by it, however offensive it might seem to the elite. Biden has a bit of the folksy appeal that Bush did before everyone got tired of it because he's so incompetent. Biden is smart and competent.

If you look at past elections, the red/blue divide isn't as much North and South, as it is urban and rural. But take the South for a moment... if you take a look at one of the latest polls from S. Carolina he's doing 10% there and I don't think he's even campaigned there. I think Biden could have as great a chance at changing the electoral college patterns as any candidate.

As far as experience. He has relationships with the world leaders that the next president needs to coax and work with. He actually has VERY practical experience in diplomatic situations. Get the facts.

I can't disagree with you more.

Posted by: MNobserver | December 14, 2007 11:19 AM | Report abuse

I wonder if it is an unforced error of Shaheen. I mean, he gets to be the bad guy and Hillary still has the benefit of reminding everyone of Obama's drug use. I wouldn't put it past the Clinton's of being shrewd enough to think that one all the way through (although Shaheen probably wouldn't have been an intended patsy given his stature in NH). I think this is kind of aking to Huckabee telling people that mormons are the ones that believe Jesus and the devil are brothers and then apologizing for it. Sure the apology is the story but what resonates is - do they really believe that Jesus and the devil are brother???

Posted by: justj | December 14, 2007 11:17 AM | Report abuse

Anyone thinking that the ad by Hillary's mother will do anything but help is simply ignoring human nature. When Bush was in trouble, back in 2000 and 2004, those ads with his mother were worth plenty of points. People have been pointing out how brittle and mean Clinton appears and those ads soften that, make her appear human - 'she is this nice old womans little girl'. In fact, the recent, revampted Clinton campaign has dropped the negative campaigning, adopted a lot of the Edwards populist platform, and presents Clinton more as "Bill II' than as a crazy fanatical feminist. My bet is it work work, but we'll see.

I do expect Edwards to win both Iowa and NH. Biden will actually help Edwards as most primary voters see the two as interchangeable. People have underestimated the amount of grass roots support he has and the degree of worry people have. The MSM keeps talking to the same old tired party insiders or to the excited young Obama voters (which is too bad, becasue he is a pretty good candidate). In the past, the excited young voters simply don't show up while the insiders compose a pretty small constant number. The fallout of will be to project Edwards into a (temporary?) lead, making it a genine three way race between Edwards, Obama and Clinton (and pretty much in that order).

Posted by: mibrooks27 | December 14, 2007 11:15 AM | Report abuse

I find the democratic "tie" highly questionable. Yes, Obama has been gaining, and yes, I would vote for him, but he's only tied in Iowa, still trailing in NH, and has half of Clinton's support nationwide. You really think he has an equal chance, today?

Posted by: notreal | December 14, 2007 11:15 AM | Report abuse

I think Rudy and Hillary share the same advantage of name recognition and money, but also the same disadvantage: their support isn't very deep, once you learn more about them.

Huckabee has come a long way without many resources, but I don't know if his campaign has legs after Iowa. He could do well in SC if he spends time and money there. But there's so little time to do that. And his boom has some in the media starting to scrutinize his past a bit more and finding some scary skeletons.

I'm really dismayed by Obama's gaffe about young blacks in prison vs college. I'm sure it sounded great to black audiences, but it isn't even close to being true, according to WaPo. If he's got such a great organization, why didn't it do the homework?

I think Biden has finallly started his advertising in Iowa, so I'm hoping that moves his numbers there.

Posted by: orloski | December 14, 2007 11:06 AM | Report abuse

Obama biden 08

Posted by: JKrishnamurti | December 14, 2007 11:02 AM | Report abuse

Great entry CC and great comments from the readers. Nice to see little flaming and little conspiracy B.S.

I agree with the line, except I think Romney should be dropped down a bit. If you're using Giuliani's national support to justify him in the #1 position, then Romney's dismal national support should justify dropping him to #3 or so. I think Huckabee has a better chance than Romney does now.

The fact is that Romney hit his stride too soon and Huckabee is doing a great job at riding the wave, which is essentially going to permanently flip them in the rankings.

On the democratic side, I think it's pretty accurate, though I think Obama has a slight edge on Clinton because he's got the momentum rising and she's losing the wind in her sails, but just a bit. She's fanatically resilient and can always come stomping back with a slight adjustment of her navigation on the campaign trail.

I wish I could say Biden was higher but he just isn't. I hope he surprises us in Iowa because he's a phenomenal person and could do wonders for this country.

Obama/Biden '08

Posted by: thecrisis | December 14, 2007 10:50 AM | Report abuse

'I believe if elected,she would abuse the levers of govt., the same as Nixon did. '

You 'beleive' that -- but Guiliani has already proved he would abuse power, as Mayor of New York. He sued someone every five minutes, mostly in attempts to censor free speech. He alienated everyone he was supposed to work with. He was known for hostility, paranoia, abrasiveness, and petty vindictiveness. In other words, a whole lot like Nixon. He eben tried to have the mayoral election postponed, so he could stay in power indefinitely.

You have no idea how dangerous he is, what he is capable of.

And JimD, rudy has the neocons in HIS corner. Look at his advisors -- too loony even for GWBush. He IS a neocon, a founding father, from the Ford Administration, along with Cheney and Rumsfeld. His national security advisor, Podhoretz, says we should bomb Iran -- 'today'.

Posted by: drindl | December 14, 2007 10:49 AM | Report abuse

"Giuliani Shifts Tactics, Goes On Offensive... "

sounds a lot like what his republcain counter part, clinton, did after Obama swept by her. Clinton is a moderate republican. Fear teh yale plan.

Posted by: JKrishnamurti | December 14, 2007 10:46 AM | Report abuse

"RASMUSSEN Florida Primary polling data showing Rudy lost lead; now its Huckabee, Romney on top: Huckabee 27% Romney 23% Giuliani 19%... Developing... "

When it' on, it's on. they say. Great news for america. The worse possible outcome would be rudy vs hillary.

The best would be Obama vs Huckabee.

Great new for people trying o reunite this nation from the fascists who hijacked it.

Posted by: JKrishnamurti | December 14, 2007 10:44 AM | Report abuse

There are all kinds of question marks that CC left off here. Things like will the Orange Bowl depress turnout at the Iowa caucuses? How much of an effect will weather have on voter turnout? Will the first time caucus goers that Obama and Clinton need so badly really show up? Will the rules that inflate rural delegate numbers over urban numbers help Edwards and Richardson, at the cost of Obama and Clinton?

Biden might be a fun, inside-the-beltway choice, but he has no practical governing experience and he offers very little to change the electoral college.

Richardson has an organization in 35+ states that Biden lacks. He brings a large minority into the fold.

My buddy has just started paying attention to the race and listened to the debates yesterday.

He said, "Richardson clearly knows what he is doing. Obama's funny and Hillary sounds like my senator (Cantwell/Murray) and I wouldn't put them in the White House."

Posted by: baseball_fan4life | December 14, 2007 10:41 AM | Report abuse

lyle

One more thing, Jeb is quietly supporting Romney but it hasn't made Mitt register very strongly in the polls here. Many other Florida Republicans are supporting McCain and Giuliani.

Posted by: jimd52 | December 14, 2007 10:41 AM | Report abuse

lyle,

McCain became a Bush supporter after Bush became his party's president and beloved by the Republican base. McCain lost the 2000 race because he appealed far more to independents than to Republican base voters. He wanted to appeal to the base more strongly in 2008.

I am not necessarily saying McCain would endorse Rudy or anyone else if he drops out. I do think that McCain has the neo-cons and national security hardliners in his corner and these voters are more likely to go to Rudy than any other candidate if McCain drops out.

Posted by: jimd52 | December 14, 2007 10:39 AM | Report abuse

bryant_flier2006

A SC win would not propel Huckabee to the top in my state of Florida. Giuliani is tremendously popular with Northeastern transplants and the military (of which there are many here). Rudy is far ahead an likely to remain so in Florida. Romney, were he to win Iowa and NH would be more likely to be positioned to challenge Rudy here than Huckabee.

Posted by: jimd52 | December 14, 2007 10:29 AM | Report abuse

jimd52: McCain is a question mark at best as to where his support will go. Think of what GW did to him in 2000 and still he is one of GWs strongest supporters , now Jeb is an advisor to Mitt. Fred is going nowhere, so that leaves Mike, at this point in time looking pretty good despite some dumb statements. Rudy has a bunch of problems that are being ignored, for the most part, by the media for he is their favorite.

Posted by: lylepink | December 14, 2007 10:27 AM | Report abuse

"A liberal messege from Washington DC that would like to take away your guns, promote gay marriage & support abortion would hardly motivate the D's of Iowa."

Actually, Iowa Democratic caucus goers are among the most liberal in the country.

Posted by: jimd52 | December 14, 2007 10:24 AM | Report abuse

zb95 asks
"Why is an ad by Hillary's mother saying she is a nice person significant?"

It is patently absurd but the Clinton campaign is trying to humanize her. She does not exactly inspire warm feelings in people. It has the whiff of desperation to me.

Posted by: jimd52 | December 14, 2007 10:20 AM | Report abuse

zb95, an ad by Hillary's mother is significant in Iowa b/c of the folksy and personal side it show's of her. Iowa, like my home state of NC, likes a traditional conservative & folksy style of "caring about your fellow man." Now, Clinton is an aspiring politician who only cares about becoming President. A liberal messege from Washington DC that would like to take away your guns, promote gay marriage & support abortion would hardly motivate the D's of Iowa. A woman who is a wife, mother and who cares for her own elderly mother moves much better in the Hawkeye state.

On to The Line! I think Rudy & Clinton are still the front runners.

On the D side, Clinton is struggling a bit in Iowa, sure. But, her polling is right there at the top to win it. Remember, Clinton's de facto nominee label & invincibility package is on the line in Iowa. If Clinton wins Iowa, all the momentum is in her cornor and she will likely win over 40 states zooming into the nomination. If she loses Iowa, it will turn into a much nastier & closer race, but Clinton will have the organization, name recognition & money to recover so she could still win the nomination. Clinton has 2 shots, win Iowa and be the de facto nominee if she can, or lose Iowa & fight hard for the nomination if she must.

The road for Rudy is much tougher, but until Nov. 2 Rudy is still very much in the race. Sure, his chances at 1 of the conventional 4 are minimal. Iowa & South Carolina are out for him. New Hampshire will be very tough, looking at where Romney & McCain sit right now there. They are the definate front runners in NH. Nevada will also be very tough. The front 4 are not good openings for Guiliani. However, the day Florida & Michigan have primaries will tell a greater tail. Rudy must try to win one of these states. Rudy must hope that 3 different people win the first few contests. Huckabee-Iowa, McCain-NH, F. Thompson-SC. Now, this is very, very unlikely to happen. Guiliani should also be weary of Huckabee winning Iowa. If Huck wins Iowa, he also likely has South Carolina in the bag. He will rise to the top overnight in Florida as well, leaving Guiliani to head to Michigan to compete with the winner of New Hampshire, whether being Romney or McCain. That being said, Rudy has the most money, organization & electoral convention counts on Feb. 4 than any other candidate. He should be able to win in NY, Cali, NJ, ect. If that happens, his count just boomed and much needed momentum comes back to Rudy. Even as this is the situation, Rudy, right now, is still the front runner for the Republican nomination. That's just how unsettled the field is.

Posted by: bryant_flier2006 | December 14, 2007 10:20 AM | Report abuse

I agree with jimd52, except to say that Richardon in practice has not shown himself to be "a very experienced and savvy politician". On resume, it appeared he would be.

Posted by: MNobserver | December 14, 2007 10:18 AM | Report abuse

iowanic

I was initially inclined to be very favorable towards Richardson. He is almost a computer generated Democratic candidate - moderate Southwestern governor, former Congressman, diplomat, cabinet secretary and negotiator par excellence. He is a very experienced and savvy politician who could legitimately run as an outsider. To top it all off, he is an Hispanic with an Anglo name. BUT, he started to turn me off with his ridiculously simplistic Iraq plan and completely turned me off with his dismal performances in the debates. He is simply not ready for prime time.

Posted by: jimd52 | December 14, 2007 10:15 AM | Report abuse

iowanic,

"It's been disheartening to see the media coverage so thoroughly exclude Richardson"

I very much wanted to support Richardson in the early days, but from the beginning he struck me as a real disappointment. All resume and nothing else. His position on Iraq withdrawal has struck me as disingenuous. I've been very surprised at the support he HAS gotten. As I've followed Richardson and Biden, to me there's no comparison.

Posted by: MNobserver | December 14, 2007 10:15 AM | Report abuse

I recall that for much of 2007 Chris C. was blamed for having a pro-Clinton bias simply because he regarded her as the frontrunner. Now that he has elevated Obama to the same status in his latest "line", he's bashed for being pro-Obama.

I personally believe both attacks are and were baseless. Simply made by those who disagree with his line-up - being dissatisfied with their candidate's ranking.

I personally think his ranking was always fair-minded and had a reasonable rationale underlying it.

That said, I do disagree with his current Republican ranking. I think all three top candidates, Giuliani, Romney and Huckabee have severe vulnerabilities. I think they're all tied for first place.

Huckabee however might be my pick for first place. After all, he's not only surging in IA, but also in SC and nationally. That said, the pardon/parole/whatever matter and his odd 1992 stance on AIDS really is odd. Not sure what to make of it.

As for his tax and immigration record, well, I don't think it will hurt him - even among Republicans. He can convincingly make the case for both his stances.

Personally I think it'd be the smartest move for the Republicans to nominate him. He really does appeal to lots of people due to his fundamental decency and affability.

Compare that to Romney and Giuliani. Romney has very little to show in support considering his campaign expenditure. Just look at his national polling figures.

And Giuliani? Countless scandals... I don't see him being a teflon candidate in the general election.

Posted by: charlesf | December 14, 2007 10:13 AM | Report abuse

I'm an Iowan and a Richardson supporter. It's been disheartening to see the media coverage so thoroughly exclude Richardson--barely a mention, day after day. Anyway, here's my dream headline in the coming days: Al Gore endorses Bill Richardson. Truth is, Richardson's energy ideas are closest to Gore's. Energy policy--in its entirety, encompassing its national-security, economic, and environmental aspects--is why I was drawn to Richardson. So come on, Al, bring on the endorsement!

Posted by: iowanic | December 14, 2007 10:08 AM | Report abuse

zb95 asks
"Why is an ad by Hillary's mother saying she is a nice person significant?"

A good question. Is there a parent out there who wouldn't say "I'd vote for [insert name here] even if they weren't my [son or daugher]"?

If you can find such a parent - that would be newsworthy. Mrs Rodham is not.

Posted by: bsimon | December 14, 2007 10:08 AM | Report abuse

I'm a 100% Biden supporter. Decided that many months ago despite the fact that his odds don't look good. He's the only one in either party I actually LIKE. His chances of making at least a #3 showing in Iowa appear to be growing now.

I also supported Kerry in 2004 when no one gave him a chance. I see some parallels. But, I think Biden has a steeper climb. I thought Dean was a much more unrealistic candidate than either Clinton or Obama. His demise, in my mind, was just a matter of time. Neither Clinton nor Obama is as fallible, though Obama seems to resemble Dean most.

Also, my memory suggests that Kerry was getting a bigger fundraising boost in the couple of months leading up to Iowa even though his poll numbers weren't high yet. Biden hasn't turned the corner yet on fundraising, though in tracking his website it seems like fundraising has been going up slightly in the past week. This is a very unscientific observation.

These are just my realistic musings on Biden's chances vs. where Kerry was at last round. I would be elated by a #2 showing by Biden in Iowa. I agree with his campaign that a #3 showing in Iowa will keep him alive for another day. But, I think only a #2 showing will actually give him a shot at the nomination.

Posted by: MNobserver | December 14, 2007 10:08 AM | Report abuse

I do not think the drug use issue will hurt Obama all that much - most boomers and younger voters have tried pot, at least, or know many friends who did.

The selling issue could be a bit harder. I knew the drug scene in college circa 69-73, there is a major difference between a dealer and someone who sells a friend some of his extra stuff. Or maybe buys a little more from the dealer on behalf of him and some friends. However, that difference would get lost in a national campaign. He might be able to overcome that with a forthright admission and turn it into a redemption story. He certainly could not have been a hard core druggie if he ended up on the Harvard Law Review.

Posted by: jimd52 | December 14, 2007 10:05 AM | Report abuse

Why is an ad by Hillary's mother saying she is a nice person significant? Seems to me it is a sign of further desperation that she needs drag out her poor old mother to make these statements. I think Ms Clinton's ship is sinking and sinking fast. I suspect the next big event will be Mark Penns' resignation/firing. He looked and acted like a baffoon on Hardball yesterday.

Posted by: zb95 | December 14, 2007 10:01 AM | Report abuse

I think Chris generally has the Dem side down, though I think Sen Clinton will have a hard time recovering from what looks to be a definite loss in Iowa & a possible loss in NH. We should start seeing post-Oprah polls for SC soon (today? Monday?), which will be interesting, one way or another.

On the GOP side, like others, I have a hard time seeing Giuliani as 'most likely' to win the nomination. It just doesn't seem plausible that a guy can count on coming from behind when other candidates will have already built some momentum.

Posted by: bsimon | December 14, 2007 9:59 AM | Report abuse

Yes, Mark, I noticed your post. Thanks for clearing that up.

vbhoomes, I don't think Shaheen claimed that they actually have someone who bought cocaine from Obama. If the Clinton campaign had that information, they'd either use it or hide it, not allude vaguely to it.

And Bush did not admit to using cocaine, or even come close to admitting it. He denied having used cocaine within a certain time period, then refused to answer any further questions. There was very little coverage of any of Bush's drug use or past arrests. The media was worried about appearing biased, so they only attacked Gore and gave Bush a pass.

Posted by: Blarg | December 14, 2007 9:57 AM | Report abuse

"Obama has little or no chance of winning the Democratic nomination once the race moves beyond IA."

I could not disagree more. Senator Clinton is an extremely flawed candidate - she has the highest negatives of any one in the race and would not be the best standard bearer in an election that will be about change. Obama has the organization and the funding to carry his campaign well beyond Iowa. I believe that Mrs. Clinton's support is largely based on her supposed inevitability. Once she starts losing primaries, that image, and the support she gets from it, will crumble. Many Democrats in red and purple states are terrified of the effect she would have on down-ticket candidates should she win the nomination. I also believe that Obama has a message that resonates with people in a way that Senator Clinton cannot hope to match.

bhoomes - Giuliani is the leader in the national polls (which of course mean nothing in the early going). I think he can remain the front-runner going into Florida, where he will definitely win, as long as no other candidate runs the table in Iowa, NH and SC. The candidate with the best chance of winning two of those contests is probably Huckabee - and, unless he can attract the funding and organization to compete nationally, that need not be too great a threat. Romney needs to win both Iowa and New Hampshire. He will probably win in NH, but should he lose Iowa I think he will be in trouble. His whole strategy has been centered on winning those two states and thus breaking through nationally. McCain needs a NH win to survive and Thompson needs a good showing in Iowa plus a SC victory. Assuming, neither one of them attains those goals, they are both gone by Tsunami Tuesday.

If Romney and Huckabee are both viable heading into Tsunami Tuesday, Rudy probably wins. Huckabee will attract the hard core true believer social conservatives, many of whom are also receptive to his populism. Romney was depending on having that constituency to himself, expecting to be able to run to the right of McCain and Giuliani. I would expect the majority of McCain's support to go to Giuliani. I would not rule out McCain supporting Giuliani - he does not like Romney, to put it mildly, and I think he would gravitate to Giuliani, who is closest to him on national security issues.

To make my own biases clear, I am a centrist, swing voter - I have supported both D's and R's for president - frankly more R's than D's over the last 30 years. If I could pick one candidate from all the contenders of both parties, it would be Joe Biden, no one else is close IMHO.

Posted by: jimd52 | December 14, 2007 9:55 AM | Report abuse

vbhoomes -- I highly doubt that there is anything more to say about Obama's drug use. If there was evidence of him selling drugs the Clinton campaign would have gotten that to the press by now.

_________________________


More generally, looks like we should be looking forward to two pretty close races that may not be decided right away. I think Clinton and Rudy are both going to lose the early states, but retain enough money to bloody up their competition if they want to. It will be interesting to see how aggressive either one is if they don't get a win in one of the first three states. Crossing a certain line would damage them in the eyes of their party. NOt sure if either would care about that, however, if they think they retain even teh smallest chance of winning.

Posted by: _Colin | December 14, 2007 9:52 AM | Report abuse

markinaustin: Check prior thread for my suggestion. 26 mar 07 "The Fix" title "Bill Shaheen: Brokering Middle East Peace?". This will be quite informative to all.

Posted by: lylepink | December 14, 2007 9:50 AM | Report abuse

I am not sure about that Drindl, It's hard to judge your thesis about ambitious women with Hillary because she invokes such a strong negative reaction in so many people. She gives us so many reasons to dislike her. Like Richard Nixon, she must destroy her opponents. She scares me. I believe if elected,she would abuse the levers of govt., the same as Nixon did. One Nixon is enough in our lifetime.

Posted by: vbhoomes | December 14, 2007 9:49 AM | Report abuse

rdlingus: Obams'a use of Cocaine when he was in High School is not that big of a deal for most voters. GWB all but admitted to same. But if somebody comes out of the woodwook who is semi-credible and states Obama SOLD him Cocaine. Then I think he is in big trouble. The Clinton campaign is suggesting that's what they got on him. (see Bob Novack column)

Posted by: vbhoomes | December 14, 2007 9:41 AM | Report abuse

oops, post got manged--should have been in this order:

'Guess you also missed the focus groups on Fox after the last debate. I wasn't seeing a whole lot hands being raised for Hillary.'

why would anyone who watches FOX [the rudy channel] vote for Hillary?

Posted by: drindl | December 14, 2007 9:37 AM | Report abuse

bhoomes you didn't get the point. Nobody runs for higher office unless they are extraordinarily ambitious. But for women [in this country at least] that's considered a negative attribute.

And why did your party choose to run Rudy? Nobody can touch him for abrasiveness and nastiness. Nobody.

'Guess you also missed the focus groups on Fox after the last debate. I wasn't seeing a whole lot hands being raised for Hillary.'

'My own feeling is that if this is a negative for Obama it will be among older, more conservative voters who may not have been likely to vote for him anyway'

I agree. His supporters will most likely shrug it off. It was a long time ago, and it was something that he overcame and moved on from to become a success. He might be able to turn it into a positive.

Judge, you are very right about the 'framing' of narratives.I doubt if CC is even aware of it. There are just Beltway CWs that almost all of the journalistic establishment falls into--it's fascinating to parse closely the way they put things, that display their inherent assumptions and biases.

why would anyone who watches FOX [the rudy channel] vote for Hillary?

'I'll check in at noon or so before the thread degenerates. Happy posting.'

This is the sad truth of it, Mark. I wish CC would do sometning about the troll before he drives everyone away. it's amazing to watch how fast he turns a rational discussion into the equivalent of monkeys hurling feces at each other.

Posted by: drindl | December 14, 2007 9:35 AM | Report abuse

"Shaheen's resignation threatens to overshadow a solid, if not spectacular, debate performance by Clinton on Thursday" What in the hell is Cilliza talking about? Did he have his Hillary tshirt on and a Hillary button attached to his brain when he wrote that?

Posted by: fatboysez | December 14, 2007 9:34 AM | Report abuse

drindl, keen observation - I regret that it took a woman to make it.

judge, good points.

blarg, I never know what the pundits mean when they characterize voters as a collective sense or sensitivity group.
And I hope you caught my mea culpa.

lyle, your notion may be correct, but how can we know what is in the mind of the reporter who talks in gibberish simplifications?

bhoomes, any questions about HRC should be directed to femalenick and lyle, who both are prepared to defend HRC. Drindl was merely suggesting an obvious, once she pointed it out, gender bias in the public as represented by CC's report.

I'll check in at noon or so before the thread degenerates. Happy posting.

Posted by: mark_in_austin | December 14, 2007 9:24 AM | Report abuse

A serious question for the smart, insightful posters here--is there any sense that Obama could, in fact, have difficulty because of the drug (esp. the cocaine) past usage in a general election? The only time I've seen this touched on at all was in a Jan. 2007 column that Lois Romano of the Post speculated that it was unclear about how this would play out. My own feeling is that if this is a negative for Obama it will be among older, more conservative voters who may not have been likely to vote for him anyway. Any thoughts?

Posted by: rdklingus | December 14, 2007 9:16 AM | Report abuse

Drindl why doesn't your party run a woman who has really made it on their own talent as just marrying a President and then springboarding off her fame as 1st Lady. Your party has quite a few women to choose from: The Governor of Az, Diane Feinstein, or othet women who aren't as abraisve & nasty as Hillary. I would believe real feminist would be totally turned off on Hillary.

Posted by: vbhoomes | December 14, 2007 9:13 AM | Report abuse

Blarg: Although we disagree on our favorites--me, Hillary--You, Obama--. The "Heart and Head" you mention is something I would like to address. The "Head" is pretty well knowing it will happen. The "Heart" is what you would like, but know it won't happen. This stupid remark by Bill Shaheen about the "dealing/furnishing drugs" was way out of line. For someone with his experience should have know better. How this is going to play in Iowa is a guess at best, although I think it will help Edwards.

Posted by: lylepink | December 14, 2007 9:12 AM | Report abuse

Looking at the polling numbers again. In favoring Rudy, CC is basically saying that there will be no significant bounce for either Romney or Huckabee even if they split IA, NH and SC between them. That's an interesting perspective. How many initial states can you lose and still win the primary?

Posted by: judgeccrater | December 14, 2007 9:08 AM | Report abuse

Good point, Drindl. As we continue to point out whenever he writes about Rudy, CC needs to examine the assumptions inherent to his writing style.

"But, if that wave starts to break, Huckabee could be headed for the bottom. "

MH's demise is inevitable, eh? Then why is he second in national polling?
http://www.pollster.com/08-US-Rep-Pres-Primary.php
Is there some historical precedent for CC's prediction in the face of these polling numbers?

Yes, his campaign could implode due to lack of funding. But he's achieved prominence largely without it. Is it as critical to his campaign as you make it out to be? This sounds like the usual CW that never predicted Huckabee's rise in the first place. Romney has outspent him at least 100:1 in Iowa (anybody got the real numbers?) yet now lags in the polling. Another assumption that bears closer examination.

Posted by: judgeccrater | December 14, 2007 9:01 AM | Report abuse

Hmm, johnbsmrk, if you think the Shaheen comment did more harm to Obama than Clinton, then you haven't been paying attention.

Guess you also missed the focus groups on Fox after the last debate. I wasn't seeing a whole lot hands being raised for Hillary.

Being the wife of a fine President doesn't necessarily translate into "experience." This country has Bush *and* Clinton fatigue. It's time to turn the page, john--and I suspect you'll be the one sorely disappointed.

Posted by: elroy1 | December 14, 2007 8:54 AM | Report abuse

You need to stop with this "head vs. heart" nonsense. That narrative only works when there's a candidate who's clearly the best for definable reasons, but doesn't excite the voters. And Hillary Clinton is not that candidate. She doesn't have the most government experience, she doesn't poll better in head-to-head matchups, and she has the highest negatives of any candidate. Much of her support is based on her husband and the idea of a woman president. That makes her a "heart" candidate, not a "head".

Posted by: Blarg | December 14, 2007 8:50 AM | Report abuse

'The more Clinton is seen as a mother, daughter and wife as opposed to simply an ambitious politician, '

Imagine CC saying, 'the more McCain is seen as a father, son and husband, as opposed to simply an ambition politician'

Or a British paper saying, 'the more Thatcher is seen as a mother, daughter and wife, etc'

--and you can see a great deal of what Hillary is up against. This country still has a long way to go.

Posted by: drindl | December 14, 2007 8:36 AM | Report abuse

Mr Cillizza wants to take a look at some of the fundamentals in his own papers poll from earlier in the week. IA may be tight, it always was, but with numbers in single figures and the teens for such attributes as electability, leadership and experience Obama has little or no chance of winning the Democratic nomination once the race moves beyond IA. Cillizza has been playing up the horse race for months and magnifying every minor spat on the campaign trail, a good example being his magnification of the drug statement by Shaheen which will be forgotten in a day or two and if anything is likely to do more harm to Obama than Clinton, although not much. It's been clear for a long time where Cillizza's and the Wapo's sympathies lie but I have a feeling they are going to be disappointed. Democratic voters aren't quite as stupid as they take them for.

Posted by: johnbsmrk | December 14, 2007 8:05 AM | Report abuse

I agree with novarnett, Rudy is not in 1st place, as matter of fact, he's at the end of the pack. If he cannot win at least 1 contest early on, his candidacy is dead. NEWSFLASH: Hillary has secured the endorsement of her mother. Hillary trying to sell herself as a warm, decent human being? As Bill likes to say" THAT DOG DON'T HUNT"

Posted by: vbhoomes | December 14, 2007 8:03 AM | Report abuse

Again, how is Giuliani #1? In which of the pre-Feb. 5 states is he doing well? National numbers might be nice, but they're absolutely meaningless in a race as fluid as this and as driven by free media as this. And if you haven't noticed, his national numbers are declining too as Republicans start paying more attention.

After South Carolina, the attention of the local and national media and Republican voters (and donors) will be fixed for two and a half weeks on the candidates who have actually finished first or second in a state: Huckabee, Romney, and maybe McCain. Giuliani's strategy of ignoring the early states and hanging on for the low-information paid-media-influenced voters of the Feb. 5 states is a loser. No one who has done poorly in both Iowa and New Hampshire has ever won a nomination, and the compressed calendar makes that strategy even more difficult to pull off.

Giuliani's one and only chance of media attention between now and Feb. 5 (other than the "what happened to Rudy?" stories and perhaps more revelations of greed and graft and extramarital grunting) is the Florida primary on Jan. 29 that the GOP yanked half of the Sunshine State's delegates over. That's Giuliani's firewall now: the Florida beauty contest. Great strategy.

And yet he's still #1. Amazing.

Posted by: novamatt | December 14, 2007 7:53 AM | Report abuse

The boom is still booming for Huck! When people do drop out, I can easily see the Thompson peeps going to Huck, and the McCain peeps going to split between Rudy and Huck. Then when Huck and McCain decide to form a 1-2 ticket, watch out Dems, here comes the Huckabee-McCain straight-talk, Chuck Norris approved express!

Posted by: tonyjradco | December 14, 2007 7:36 AM | Report abuse

About two weeks left.

Posted by: MDLaxer | December 14, 2007 7:31 AM | Report abuse

One thing to consider is what happens when candidates start dropping out. Richardson and Biden's supporters will probably be split between Clinton and Obama based on the war. The liberals drawn in by Edwards and Dodd probably will head to Obama. For Republicans, once Thompson goes back to sleep his supporters will probably line up behind Huckabee.

Also... Huckaboom?

Posted by: riff_raff17 | December 14, 2007 6:38 AM | Report abuse

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