Well, a few of my pals on the left are using this as an opportunity to beat up on Reagan and the right in general, but I'm not going to do that.
I'm not a fan of Reagan's politics, but I am a fan of his skills and style. His battle with Alzheimer's was incredibly sad and had to have been hard on his family. I don't need to add to that on the day of his passing with any partisan BS.
Do I have any political statement on the occasion of his death? Of course I do.
When compared to the current crop of conservatives and neoconservatives, despite all of their supposed worshipping of the man, Reagan looks like the New Deal Democrat he once was.
posted by Scott |
| Friday, June 04, 2004
Well, how I missed it doesn't really matter now. All that matters is that Dennis Kucinich has lost the backing of one of his most faithful supporters. Willie Nelson has flown the Kucinich coop. A Kerry fundraiser will be held on Monday in LA featuring Barbra Streisand, Neil Diamond, Billy Crystal, and the flip-flopping Nelson.
First of all, in regards to this fundraiser, one of these things is seriously not like the others. Second of all, what gives Willie? Were you afraid of losing your political cred by backing a losing candidate?
Willie's site still says that he supports Kucinich for President. Maybe they should add the caveat, "...but not exclusively." No word from the Kucinich camp though, who still have their Willie Nelson endorsement page up.
Kerry / McCain. Kerry / Zinni. Bush / McCain. Bush / Giuliani. Kerry / Edwards. Kerry / Clark. Kerry / Kerrey. Kerry / Santa Claus.
I love it when guessing games erupt in the public forum. Everyone falls all over themselves in a desperate attempt to pick the winner and then for all times be known as the Grand Poobah of Political Punditry. Hell, I'm guilty of it myself.
But it's time to get a grip. Seriously.
The chatter regarding Cheney's job stability has recently picked up, probably in large part due to the uncovering of a secret memo that implicates him in awarding a sweetheart contract to his former employer Halliburton. (HA! Are they considered 'former' when they keep you on the payroll?)
Let's not forget, however, that the 'will W dump Cheney' question has been on the table from day one. The man gets too close to a microwave and he's in deep trouble. That's not exactly the ideal situation now, is it? In light of recent revelations, the odds have gotten slightly better (I still don't think they're good) that Dick and Dubya could part ways pre-November.
So that would leave us with not one, but TWO veep spots to speculate on. And what better story is there than the two top guys, Bush and Kerry, fighting over one maverick moderate, John McCain?
Village Voice Mondo Washington columnist James Ridgeway isn't the first to put that idea out there, but he is the most recent. He's also the most lazy in his argument. Ridgeway's logic is basically that the war is a mess and Bush can't do enough to satisfy the Christian Right or the fiscal conservatives in his own party, so he might as well make McCain his number two and run for the middle.
That's an interesting perspective, but it's pretty skewed. Bush's approval ratings are hovering right around 40% right now. The last thing he needs is to lose his base. If they're energized and the GOP focuses most of its attention on GOTV, there's a good chance Bush will win in November. If he were to snub the right, dump Cheney, pick McCain (or a real liberal like Giuliani), and head for the middle, we could expect to see a whole lot more "Roy Moore in '04" bumper stickers on the highways.
Long story short, there's almost no chance Bush will dump Cheney (unless Cheney runs into some serious legal troubles pre-November). His whole 'stay the course' message would be totally derailed and he'd lose in a landslide.
So back to Kerry...
One reader thought my analysis of Clark's VP chances was dumb, but I thought she was misreading what I wrote, blah, blah, blah... we've agreed to disagree. For what it's worth, just because I'm a known Clark fan doesn't mean that I definitely think that Clark should be VP. I just think he could be.
There's now another ex-general showing up on the 'possible VP' radar. Former Middle East envoy, recent Bush critic and registered Republican Anthony Zinni is being mentioned as a veep material. The MSNBC report says that "[s]ome Washington insiders applaud [the] idea of Kerry picking [the] retired Marine general." Yeah, and some 'Washington insiders' thought that Joe Lieberman could win the Democratic nomination. Still other 'Washington insiders' probably pick their nose and eat it. I live in frickin' New Jersey and I've been referred to by one or two people as 'a Washington insider.'
The best argument for why this idea is even dumber than McCain as Kerry's VP is in the article itself. Zinni has said, "as recently as last week," the piece tells us, "that he would 'probably' vote for Bush again." Would John Edwards probably vote for Bush? No. How about Wes Clark? No. Bill Richardson? No. Hell, it's my bet that McCain isn't even 'probably' going to vote for Bush again!
Point being, all of the talk about the Democratic vice presidential nomination is just that -- talk. The waters are pretty murky right now and there are a lot of names being floated. The only thing I can say with any sort of confidence is that the pick is likely to be made at some point before the official general election ballots have to be turned into the printers. Beyond that? Anyone's guess.
posted by Scott |