Wednesday, November 15, 2006

Is Vilsack a Stalking Horse for Hillary?

Is Vilsack a Stalking Horse for Hillary?

So is TV really running for VP? Rolling Stone opines:
If you’re the DLC and you’ve got a great shot at another Clinton White House, why muck things up with a 1000-to-1 longshot bid like Vilsack? It makes little sense, unless Vilsack is a stalking horse for Hillary.

Iowa is hard to win. It requires time, and more time, and a degree of face-to-face human warmth and interaction to win. Politically interested people in Iowa expect to shake hands with the person they caucus for. Retail politics is not Hillary’s bag, to put it mildly.

If she can opt out of Iowa that allows her to plow her mass market media dolars into Las Vegas and the rest of Nevada (which is the number two race on the revamped primary schedule). If she takes the Silver State, she could roll into New Hampshire, where geography is already her friend, the prohibitive frontrunner.

Vilsack maybe raises his name recognition enough to be a viable veep candidate. Or at the very least sets himself up for a plum cabinet post in the second Clinton White House.

Sounds more plausible to me than President Vilsack. He boxed himself in with his self-term limit and now has nowhere else to go.

Way back in the bossed era of brokered conventions, candidates used to run as "favorite sons". The goal was to control the home state delegation and position yourself to Make The Deal. Maybe, just maybe, the convention would deadlock and lightning might strike...

Vilsack 08 is a glorified version of the old favorite son strategy. But odds are he won't even get to that "control the home state delegation" stage. Unlike Harkin in 1992, someone will take TV on in Iowa. People are excited about Obama and Edwards, waiting on Gore (Please God No), and checking out the others - the Bidens and the Bayhs. Kerry draws a crowd but the buzz is "had your chance." Hillary hovers over it all, probably with her solid 30 percent and no one's second choice.

I'm giving him Vilsack the same consideration I'm giving all the rest. The DLC thing is a big minus for me. Good governor, sure (I'm still pissed about English Only, though). But PRESIDENT? Not so much.

Speaking of new employment for job hunting Iowans, more buzz on Leach for UN:

Rep. Earl Blumenauer, D-Ore., and Rep. James Walsh, R-N.Y., are developing a letter to other members proposing that Leach be named U.N. ambassador.

Although President Bush has resubmitted John Bolton’s nomination, it’s not clear there will be enough votes in the Senate to confirm him.

Aides to Leach said that he had no immediate comment on the proposal.

Jerome Armstrong at MyDD says "the suggestion that Jim Leach be the UN Ambassador is probably the best idea to come out of the Republican Party this decade." I thought it was Carol deProsse's idea, though.

In that same post Jerome name-drops our House race:

Is part of the reason we won seats like IA 2nd just because the DCCC stayed out? It's worth thinking about, particularly having in mind that the '08 election for the DCCC will be about incumbent protection, that people-powered congressional campaigns should not count on the establishment, but instead to make it happen themselves.

E.J. Dionne at the Washington Post also mentions Our Man Dave, who seems to be rapidly emerging as one of the bright stars of the Class of `06:

The notion that this election produced a different kind of "conservative" majority is simply wrong. Yes, Democrats won in part by nominating moderate candidates in moderate areas. But every newly elected Democrat was, by any fair reckoning, somewhere to the left of the vanquished Republican, especially on Iraq and economic issues.

Moreover, voters on Tuesday sent to Congress a pack of unapologetic progressives, including Sherrod Brown of Ohio and Bernie Sanders of Vermont in the Senate, and such new House members as John Yarmuth of Kentucky, Carol Shea-Porter in New Hampshire and Dave Loebsack in Iowa, among many others.

Meanwhile Bruce Braley picks Hoyer over Murtha in the House Majority Leader race.

Christopher rants:

Republicans lost both the House and Senate in last week's election, largely by losing a string of very tight elections where the huge effort Democrats put into absentee and early voting provided the margin of victory.

"We were 1,471 votes away from staying in the majority," Rants said.

State and national GOP strategists have dismissed the focus on absentee voting, preferring to focus on delivering voters to the polls on election day. The result, Rants said, was a shelling in the midterm election.

"I think they've got their head in the sand," Rants said of GOP strategists.

"Danny Carroll had 1,000 votes against him before the polls opened," Rants said. "Republicans have got to change strategies and it has to be a party-wide effort."

Since it's not my place to offer the Other Party advice, I'll confine my comments to Nyah Nyah, Nyah Nyah Nyah and Neener Neener Neener. See, bloggers are capable of sophisticated political discourse.

But Rants' rant is a reminder of how last weeks' victory didn't just happen, of all the hard work that went into it, and just how narrow the margins are. Get out the vote is about the margins - the best GOTV in history couldn't have saved us in `94. But for Landslide Rich Olive, it makes the difference.

No comments: