The smears didn't work because the GOP never figured out how to hit Obama. Hitting Obama for on his "unamericanness" was never going to work because Obama has spent his entire career dealing with that issue. Moreover, he's a black guy with a Muslim-sounding name, so the hits aren't shocking to anyone.
Take that in contrast to 2000 and 2004, where Gore and Kerry were attacked in ways that they never were attacked before. Gore got hit with the exaggerator thing, and he never saw it coming. Kerry got hit with the Swiftboaters and the flipflopping, neither of which he had ever been hit on before. When it happened, Kerry didn't have a response. Obama did.
Great. . .next thing we know, the Dems have a delegate fight at the convention. At this point, there is no conceivable way for Clinton to take over the pledged delegate lead. Her only hope for the nomination is a delegate fight at the convention.
Remember, it all comes down to the second choice voting. Clinton has run as the incumbent, and so those who vote for someone else are likely to also be voting against Clinton. So, Clinton won't go much higher than the 36 claimed. Obama and Edwards will probably draw a much larger percentage of the second-vote (particularly Obama), so their percentages are probably floors not ceilings.
Another issue, in my estimation, is where the polling is taking place. Edwards' strength is outside of the urban areas, so this poll may understate his support.
On the GOP side. . .ouch Romney. And if McCain isn't in 3rd, do we really talk about a comeback?
Guiliani looks like he's toast at this point. I know that he's looking at the Feb. 5 primaries as his back-up plan, but there's no way that'll work. He's not going to pull the kind of numbers he needs from South Carolina with Thompson in the race.
Instead, we're looking at all Romney all the time. It's my bet that he's the nominee.
Huckabee is everything that Bush pretends to be. He's a honest-to-God Southerner, who really believes the pro-life agenda, and really makes policy that can sometimes be described as "compassionate." He can show up on the "Daily Show" and look reasonable. Hell, he's even pretty good in the debates.
In short, Huckabee scares the hell out of me. Imagine if its Huckabee v. Hillary for the presidency. Suddenly, Huckabee veers to the left on Iraq, and demands the troops out immediately. Hillary will still support the Iraq policy she has now. . .that's my nightmare scenario. He has the ability, as crazy as he is, to outflank Clinton on her right and left.
Luckily for us, the man can't fundraise to save his life.
Actually, this is the one area where I kind of agree with the GOP spin. Guiliani's candidacy would threaten the Democratic hold on New Jersey, as his actions as mayor of NYC were viewed positively in New Jersey (unlike in New York, where the feeling was Guiliani went too far). Of course, the polls in New Jersey are, for whatever reason, off by ten points in favor of the GOP, so who can predict what will happen.
That said, Guiliani will end up splitting the GOP even further than Bush has done. Not only will the libertarians avoid Rudy, but also, the evangelicals will split from the GOP as well.
So, Guiliani may win New Jersey, but he loses the GOP the Mountain West and probably the South.
Regardless of where Obama stands, he needs to lead - even if he leads people out of the Senate to not vote on this thing, he needs to lead. Sometimes I feel like Democratic Party activists are like the partisans of Stalingrad - we're fighting tooth and nail on the ground while we're waiting for someone to step in and lead our frantic efforts.
I'm not saying that Obama can't do that, but he hasn't done it yet. Nor has Clinton, for that matter. For goodness sakes, step up and lead.
You know, we should really try to tie the timetables to something Dems don't care about passing - like "abstinence-only" sex ed, or Bush's salary, etc. Outflank the bastards on Iraq so that the vote on timetables becomes a win-win. And since the House is the originator of all spending bills, the Dems can attach amendments without fear of filibuster.
Wow. . .Grandpa Fred is toast. Fox News is the mouthpiece of the GOP leadership to the grassroots. The relationship, I think, works both ways - with the grassroots affecting the leadership (i. e., the immigration bill).
But that said, once the leadership steps in like this, its pretty much over. Thompson doesn't have the support to overcome Fox, or even to change its mind. Very interesting tidings indeed.
Okay, I get that. But if most of these polls are at +/- 3-5% in margin of error. That explains some difference: for instance, some polls put Bush at 30% approval, some have 25%, others may have 35%. I get that.
But Rasmussen is at 38% which is way, way, above everyone else. If the trend is 28-29%, which is where Pollster.com puts the trend, then Rasmussen is 10% than the trend. Moreover, Rasmussen is consistently higher than everyone else -- Bush hasn't left the high thirties. If this were a case of margin of error, you'd see a swing pattern up and down. That's not what's going on.
No, this seems like a methodology issue. Certainly robo-calls are part of the issue. Though, these polls tend to be accurate during elections. Perhaps the problem is the wording of the questions, or the order of the questions.
All this begs the question: who's the best polling outfit on the issue of Presidential Approval?