Monday, February 27, 2006

The Politics of Hillary

It appears that many Democrats assume that Hillary Clinton will be the chosen Presidential Candidate for 2008.

It also appears that many Republicans assume that Hillary Clinton will be the chosen Presidential Candidate for 2008.

Or do they? My instincts tell me that Karl Rove has begun the GOP Campaign for 2008, and is trying to psychologically dictate the path of the election, including the Democratic nominee.

Think about it... is Ken Mehlman or Karl Rove talking about the Republican candidate for 2008? Nope. Instead you hear Mehlman calling Hillary "angry" and Rove speaking on her "brittleness."

Is Hillary SUCH a foregone conclusion that the strategic heads of the GOP feel it necessary to begin their attack on her already???

I don't think so. I know there are Deomcrats who felt it necessary to defend her during the whole "plantation" remark story. I didn't. And I know there were a whole lot of others who didn't, either.

Currently, there is just as strong an anti-Hillary swell amongst Democrats as there are amongst Republicans. Democrats fear another version of 2004 in 2008. Dick Harpootlian, former Chair of the South Carolina Democratic Party sums it up best:
“We all believe she’s wonderful,” said Dick Harpootlian, a former South Carolina Democratic Party chairman. “But we also believe that if she’s the nominee, it sets up perfectly for the Republicans to win the White House for another four years. … Do we really want to rehash Whitewater and all the stuff we had before?”
This weekend, as Hillary went to Florida for fundraising events, with Carville and Begala on board with her as well, she was followed by editorials such as the Open Letter published in the Tampa Tribune:
If you run for president, chances are good that you'll secure your party's nomination. But realistically, how do you think you can win the White House? You are the most polarizing figure in the Democratic Party, and your negatives among likely voters are prohibitively high. Many people simply don't trust you. You may share your husband's name, but what people liked about him is not transferable to you.
And yet, despite this clearly visible weakness, both Mehlman and Rove are still so threatened by Sen. Clinton that they feel they HAVE to attack?

Nope. I would assert that they are attacking in the hopes that Hillary rises to the challenge presented by the GOP, and giving her further visibility and less exposure to other potential candidates. In this way, they can choose the candidate that they'd LIKE to run against. And I see them all licking their chops over a 2008 Clinton Democratic nominee.

So, Rove comes out and says that Clinton is brittle. What's the response? Hillary says that Rove is "obsessed" with her. Rove then counters back to her comments, stating that "Senator Clinton would be better served if she spent less time flattering herself with perceived obsession and more time focusing on her job."

Rove sucks her in, and then lays the bait out once more.

I'm not falling for it. I'll just keep pushing everyone I know to support Russ Feingold, as I have for almost a year now. And once the groundswell gets beyond the blogosphere, he may get the traction he needs for a very successful campaign. Remember where Bill Clinton started out, in terms of exposure, in 1992.

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Posted by FleshPresser at 11:30 PM /


  • Blogger Meghan posted at 1:39 AM  
    As far as Feingold making it onto the ticket... it's all about how the Democratic spin machine pulls him in and spits him out for consumption of the ignorant.

    We shall see.

    Also, fab pics of Hillary. *snicker*

  • Blogger FleshPresser posted at 1:49 AM  
    I agree - and this isn't to say that it's not possible for Clinton to be the nominee (Kerry is the lesson here)... she's been through a million campaigns, knows the job, and has more money than anyone else right now.

    I think the way everyone is railing against the "status quo", though, allows this to be the perfect opportunity for someone from "outside" to come in and dazzle people.

    If you've seen Russ' campaign style, he could be JUST the person!

  • Blogger YurmaBoyBlue posted at 8:31 AM  
    As Russ slowly becomes the standard when it comes to outsiders penetrating Washington his netroots begin to grow. I think he is the most electable - unelectable democrat we have. Once the rest of the country finds out what WI already knows his popularity should flourish. He won his seat in 04 easily with over 300,000 prop bush supporters voting for him. That doesn't sound like someone that can't connect with the people.

  • Blogger Blue Gal posted at 11:14 AM  
    Russ doesn't have a chance (too liberal and his divorce is too recent). Too bad the blogosphere doesn't elect presidents, though.

    see here

    Hillary has one small problem. People hate her.

  • Blogger FleshPresser posted at 11:29 AM  
    Blue - it appears we agree in our analysis of Hillary. :)

    I'm not so sure about your take on Russ, though. Although it's hard to say for sure, because he hasn't been included in many nationwide MSM polls as of yet, I honestly believe that Americans are craving the well-reasoned thought and honest talk that Feingold provides.

    The article you linked to is the same one I linked to - written by the reporter from Wisconsin. I was in Milwaukee when he was first elected to the Senate, and his Campaign abilities are a thing to behold. Don't count him out. :) LOVE having you stop by, Blue! :)

  • Blogger Charlie posted at 10:44 PM  
    Both sides have begun getting information on people that are likely to be candidates for 2008. It isn't just Hillary that people are looking into already.
    Senator Feingold would be an interesting candidate indeed.

  • Blogger FleshPresser posted at 10:42 AM  
    You're right, Charlie. Certainly, people like McCain, Giuliani, and others have been knocked around. My point is that I think it's a bit early to be hitting a Democratic candidate like Clinton as being the presumptive candidate, and that folks like Mehlman and Rove (smart, intelligent, albeit evil men) are trying to influence who the candidate will be to their liking, by giving Clinton the "presumption" of being the candidate.

    If this isn't their intention, then it would be better for them, in my opinion, to be drawing distinctions between Bush (not terribly well liked even within his own party at this point) and some of the potential candidates for the Republicans in 2008.

    Good luck with your Hagel campaign! :)

  • Blogger SquirrelFan posted at 10:03 PM  
    I agree with your skepticism of Senator Clinton. Your theory about Rove is interesting.
    I just don't understand why so many seem to support Hillary. I've tried to think it through ...
    As a constituent of Feingold, I respect the man, and think he might be a good President. I don't think he has much chance, though, given his lonely stands on the "Patriot Act", perhaps the divorce, and it might be too easy to peg him as too liberal.
    Also, I've wondered: is there too much anti-Semitism AND too much fear of jihadist reaction TO a Jewish U.S. President for a Jewish candidate to win?

  • Blogger chico-towner posted at 9:53 PM  
    His Jewish faith, his divorce, his liberalism... none of these STAND a CHANCE of out-weighing his votes AGAINST the Patriot Act, against the War, his fight for Campaign Financing Reform, his fiscally conservative behavior (one of the senators who spends BELOW his budget and sends back the difference to the US Treasury), his solid support of civil liberties and our constitution, plus his great speeches.

    With Democrats averaging 49% of the vote nationally, we'll have enough Libertarians, Independants, and "old school" Republicans voting for Russ to push him over the top. After 8 years of the Bush Crime Family... He'd be the best choice to restore some balance and integrity to our government.

    We got 3 years to get the word out!

  • Blogger Oscar Wildebeest posted at 11:06 AM  
    Nice push for Feingold. I don't know much about him, but I've liked what I've read. The divorce and the liberalism will be easy pickings for Rove, however (just like divorce and cancer will probably sink McCain and Giuliani).

    As for Hillary, I'd be delighted to see her as President. But I agree - nominating her would be fatal.

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