Saturday, July 29, 2006

Today's Must-Read

Anne Kornblut has an interesting article in today's NYTimes that's worth a read. She covers the unlikely friendship that's sprung up between Senators McCain and Clinton as they've worked together on the Senate Armed Forces Committee and other matters ... and the ways in which that friendship may impact the prospective 2008 campaign season. Kornblut comments "the interplay between the two senators, both well known and both with compelling personal narratives and a knack for infuriating their own parties’ bases, could determine the tone of the 2008 presidential race and make it less personally vicious than the last two campaigns."

The article goes on to note that the two senators share a basic approach to politics, as both "strive to be seen as willing to break with ideological orthodoxy from time to time and to work across the aisle." Marshall Wittman (aka the Bull Moose) is quoted as well, saying "They would run a completely different campaign than we’ve seen in recent memory. Both of them realize there is a desire in the country for a different politics of national unity that transcends the current polarization."

Presuming that McCain and Clinton are in fact the major party nominees for 2008 (and that is a huge presumption at this point in the game), I think it's true that the candidates themselves would strive for a higher tone and a less-polarized dynamic. However, the parties, the surrogates, the interest groups will almost certainly continue to engage in the same kind of attack politics and smear games we've seen over the last several election cycles. It would take a heruclean effort by the candidates to quell those tactics; an effort, I fear, that would require their constant attention and prevent them from ever actually campaigning for anything.

There are a whole lot of "we'll see" moments between now and a McCain-Clinton race in 2008. But I think Kornblut and Wittman are right - such a race might have the best chance of looking different from any we've seen in a long time.


At 9:48 AM, Blogger Chris said...

I hope they're the 1008 candidtaes, both are my favorite senators!

At 6:53 PM, Blogger Carol Gee said...

Thanks for this post. I had never thought thoroughly about such a possibility. Could we hope that the candidates would actually be in charge of their own campaigns?

At 11:27 AM, Blogger The Truffle said...

Please. I don't want La Hill to run and I'm sick of McCain. Neither has given me a single reason to support them. Get someone from outside the Beltway, preferably a governor or mayor.

At 11:31 AM, Blogger JBD said...

truffle, who do you like? Warner? Bloomberg? Giuliani? Pataki? Vilsack? Romney? Others, feel free to chime in too.

At 4:07 AM, Blogger RealRepublican1854 said...

JBD makes a strong point relative to Truffle being "sick" of McCain. I believe JBD would agree with me and is eluding to this notion, that McCain is the only nationally popular enough Republican left anymore who could win the General election.

Who else could? George Allen? His dead dad, Hall of Famer coach Allen is more popular in Virginia than he is. Santorum is so conservative he makes John Birch look like a communist. Besides, he’ll be lucky to get re-elected in PA. Romney won't win re-election in MA. plus the country isn't ready for their President to give half the federal budget to the Mormon church. Huckabee can’t win, no Governor of Arkansas can get elected President (we can’t say "what about Bill?"— Bill was an extraordinarily special case. While I don’t support his politics, I must give him the credit of being a masterful politican on the same level as Reagan. Gingrich burned too many bridges and finally, among those also mentioned as true GOP contenders, there’s Condi and the country isn’t ready for a black woman President. Besides, I’m afraid there are still too many hillbilly’s in Northern MI or Idaho or wherever, a black person, if elected Prez, would never make it to Jan 20th.

I'd have to say, so I will, that '08 is the EASIEST election year to know prior to the first announced candidate who the nominees of the two parties will be, those being McCain and Clinton.

This is not going to be an election period, due to the state of affairs, where an unknown, fresh from some backwater second tier state will emerge and save us from ourselves. The country already went through that with the last 2 Presidents and another one (Carter) 2 Presidents before them.

Expect to be using the term "President McCain" pretty soon.


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