So why, in poll after poll, including the new TIME poll, does that advantage seem to disappear whenever voters are asked to pick a president in hypothetical head-to-head match-ups among front-runners with solid name recognition. In our poll, Hillary Clinton loses to John McCain, 42-48%, and to Rudy Giuliani 41-50%. Even though Clinton maintains a 7% edge over Obama among Democratic respondents, Obama fares better in the general election match-ups. It’s so close that it’s a statistical dead-heat, but Obama still loses: 43-45% to McCain, 44-45% to Giuliani.
I don’t know why no one else seems willing to admit this, but Hillary Clinton and Barack Obama are novelty candidates. (I’d probably add Edwards to that list now that he’s got a cancer wife.) Now, no one is saying that Clinton and Obama aren’t capable Senators — to the contrary, novelty candidates often appeal to a niche segment of the populace and represent them ably. They are even likely to capture headlines and “imaginations,” but come January 20th, 2009, headlines and imaginations will not be enough to say “Suck it, Karol.”
And really, what I want most is to say “suck it, Karol.”
In 1984 we could afford to go the fashionable “ooh look what the Democrats have got here” route — nobody could beat Reagan, so might as well make a statement about our party’s values while we’ve got the cameras pointed at us for a couple of months, but now?? Now — when the Democrats are poised to retake the White House and hold two branches of government, plus a majority of governships around the country, would we decide to go the carnival freak route?
Hillary is not going to win the presidency. She’s just not. Not in 2008 anyway.
Barack Obama is not going to win the presidency. I’d add ever here.
Why can’t we just do what’s done, find some stately white dude that wears a suit well (nb: not you Wesley Clark), teach him how to say quagmire, stick Bill Clinton by his side and watch Florida and Ohio roll in? Heck, if we pick the right stately white dude, you may even be able to give him a novelty V.P….Vice President Clinton would probably work(Although, even that Geena Davis show where she played a female Vice President didn’t finish out the season.)
Oh, I know why, because we’re Democrats and we always have to find some new and innovative way to snatch defeat from the jaws of victory.