Election Watch 2008

Focusing On The 2008 Presidential Campaign

Sunday, February 27, 2005

Bayh's Mass Appeal in '08

With the Democratic Party suffering from what is perceived as too much cultural liberalism, Indiana Sen. Evan Bayh could have a legitamite shot at being the first presidential nominee from Indiana since 1940. Bayh's name keeps surfacing in national political commentary about who can lead the party out of its post-election blues.

Bayh's credentials include his moderate to conservative views as well as a record of election success in a Republican-dominated Midwestern state. He won his recent Senate race by a record-setting 1,496,512 votes. Republican George Bush carried the state by a few less than that, 1,477,704 votes. Democrats are puzzled over why they can't win the red, or conservative, sections of the country. They are likely to take note of how Bayh has never lost a race in a very red state that last went for a Democrat for president in the Lyndon Johnson landslide of 1964.

The hardest part of a presidential run for Bayh, however, could be his party's primaries. The primaries tend to attract liberal activists, screening out centrist candidates like Bayh. But he could gain an advantage in a field of more liberal candidates if he is the only moderate to conservative.

Bayh's path to victory could be to say, 'Are you tired of losing?' . Evan Bayh likely will not scare anyone. A lot of Democrats do that. They scare people across the country in red states on the social and cultural issues. Those Democrats represent to them too much change in a liberal direction. Political figures in both parties in Indiana think Bayh could be the nominee if he wants to pursue it.

Another potential centrist candidate is Sen. John Edwards, the losing vice presidential candidate. But he has two handicaps, he lost his own state and He's a trial lawyer, and that's something he will be beat over the head about.

Further, results of the 2004 election mayl favor Bayh. Between now and 2008 that there's going to be a recognition in the party that we don't need to put an Eastern establishment liberal on the ticket, the candidate has to appeal to people in the red states."
Republicans from his home state of Indiana also see strengths in Bayh. He's well spoken, andunliek other Senatorial turner Presidential candidate's, he was a successful two-term governor. Personally, I think Bayh would be a stronger candidate than the more liberal Democrat who leads in the polls, Sen. Hillary Clinton of New York.

Bayh has said that it is too soon for him to decide whether he would seek his party's nomination in the 2008 race. He skipped the 2004 race because of his two young sons, and he is young enough to wait and still run in 2012 or 2016. But in terms of opportunity in his own party, the year 2008 may be Bayh's last, best chance for the presidential nomination. If Democrats are looking for a centrist candidate who has a formidable background with personality and wider appeal to Independents and cross over Republicans, I think Bayh might very well be their man.

Wednesday, February 23, 2005

Guiliani Or Rice? I Don't See It

From CNSNews.com:

"Conservatives gathered in Washington, D.C., for a political action conference predicted that former New York Mayor Rudy Giuliani will win the Republican nomination for president in 2008.Giuliani received 19 percent of the vote in a straw poll conducted over the weekend at the 32nd annual Conservative Political Action Conference (CPAC).

Giuliani narrowly edged Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice, who earned 18 percent of the vote after intensive campaigning by her supporters, who donned "Draft Rice in 2008" buttons and stickers.Senate Majority Leader Bill Frist (R-Tenn.), tied for third place with Sens. George Allen of Virginia and John McCain of Arizona; they all received 11 percent of the vote."

I dont see either Guiliania or Rice. In Guiliani's case, although I like him, I believe as a Northeastern candidate he will have trouble convincing Southerners that he is their candidate. As for Rice, well I think she has far to many negatives for all but the extreme right to support. Guiliani is certainly positioning himself for something, wether it is President, US Senator or Governor of New York is yet to be determined.

Monday, February 21, 2005

Edwards Keeping His Options Open

From the Associated Press:

"Former vice presidential candidate John Edwards will not talk about whether he plans to run for the White House in 2008, but he is not pledging to stand aside if running mate John Kerry tries again. Edwards said in an interview aired Sunday on ABC's "This Week" that he and Kerry have talked often since they lost in November to President George W. Bush and Vice President Dick Cheney. He would not say if he'll follow the example set by Connecticut Sen. Joe Lieberman, who was chosen by Al Gore as the Democratic candidate for vice president in 2000. Lieberman said he would not run in 2004 if Gore wanted to seek the presidency again. Gore did not, and Lieberman campaigned for the Democratic nomination. "Not only are John Kerry and I friends, our families are close," Edwards said. "I have enormous respect for him. But I'll decide what's the right thing to do based on what's going on with my own family."

Edwards said while his faith seeps into every part of his life, he is reluctant to make it part of campaigning. "I think it looks political. It looks like you're just moving around for politics' sake," he said. He applauded Iraqis for braving terrorist threats and voting for a national assembly last month, but said Bush administration policies have had a mixed effect in the Middle East. "There are some things that are happening that are positive, and there are some things that are happening that are not positive. I mean, there is an entire generation of people growing up in the Muslim world who are faced with poverty and despair. And they're blaming us. I mean, we are a natural target. And George Bush has helped make us a natural target," Edwards said. Rather than allow Americans to create private accounts with part of their Social Security contributions, as Bush proposes, Edwards said he would roll back tax cuts for the wealthiest 1 percent of households and put that money into the Social Security system."

Ya know the old saying, if it looks like a dog and barks like a dog, it's a dog!

John Edwards is in the dog race folks. This guy is not going to fade away into the night. He is young, energetic and has real vision. This is a man who wants to be President, and as along as he can keep his name and face in the public forum, he will have a real shot in 2008.

Friday, February 18, 2005

Huckabee For President?

According to this week's "US News & World Report", there's already another contender for the next Presidential race: Arkansas Governor Mike Huckabee, who is much like Bill Clinton, except he's a Republican. His background as a former Baptist Minister may appeal to Christian voters and his Southern heritage certainly could play well in the heart of the south and west. I don't know much about him yet, but he could be an interesting candidate.

Tuesday, February 15, 2005

Feingold Discusses 2008 Plans

In an interview with the Milwaukee Journal-Sentinel, Sen. Russ Feingold "said he would consider running for president in 2008 if there is enough encouragement and interest from Democrats and if he thinks he has a real shot at winning the nomination.""Feingold, who plans to step up his national travel and speaking, said his goal for now is to influence the direction of the party and help it rebound from its losses."

Oh yeah, he's definitely running. He would be one of the first ones out of the gate along with Bayh.

Kenneth Blackwell's Rising Star

One of the rising GOP stars is Ohio Secretary of State Kenneth Blackwell. Recently in the national news due to his place in charge of the Ohio vote, Blackwell is also a man who has it all - with the added strength of being a solid conservative who will play well outside the urban, liberal enclaves. As Ohio Secretary of State he doesn't yet have the political stature necessary to run for national office, but as he's planning on running for Governor of Ohio in 2006, the sky is the limit if he can win that election. 2008 would be too soon for a Presidential run - and probably also too soon for a VP slot, but you can never tell. But a 2006 governorship opens up a 2012 Presidential run (if the GOP loses in 2008), or 2016 (if the GOP wins in 2008). However, campaigns are full of surprises and you knever know what could occur between now and 2008 to put him in favorable position for the coming Presidential campaign.

Kudos To DemWatch

I want to pay homage to DemWatch creator Scott. He inspired me to not only create this blog to track the 2008 Presidential election, but keep a more open mind to views on both sides. What I am truly pleased by is how Scott, a Democrat and myself a Republican, can so easily converse and agree on a host of issues and respectfully do the same on issues we differ on. It is to me a great example of bipartisanship and just illustrates that we have more in common than we all believe. If we work together on addressing those issues and ironing out differences, we can work to elect a candidate in 2008 whom will best serve all the people.

Thanks Scott, please keep up the great work at DemWatch!

Chuck Hagel

I dont think there is any doubt that Nebraska Senator Chuck Hagel (R) is considering a run in 2008. Prior to November 2004, you would have been hard pressed to find Hagel anywhere. However since Bush's re-election, Hagel has been making appearances at a dizzying rate, including those of televised events on C-Span.

Hagel is an outspoken moderate, who like McCain, does and says what is on his mind regardless of whom (the GOP leadership) he ticks off. He has been on occassion, critical of the administration on a number of issues, most notably Iraq.

Now for sure, he has a lot of work to do in gaining name recognition and putting himself in a position to attract big donors, but, his maverick persona may play well will moderates and independents who are yearning for someone who doesn't always play along with the leadership establishment in Washington. Keep your eyes on him and see how often his face and name keep popping up in the media. He certainly bears watching.

Monday, February 14, 2005

Red And Blue America

Here is the final election map from 2004. It sets the stage for 2008.

Eyeing The Presidential Election Of 2008

This blog is dedicated to the 2008 Presidential election. We will track, follow, analyze the potential candidates all along the way, providing insight and analysis. Although I am a republican, this is neither a Republican nor a Democratic blog, but rather an objective look at the possible and eventual candidates. We will also touch on issues that will potentially affect the election and the candidates themselves.

All are welcome as long as we adhere to the idea of mutual respect for each other along the way.