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Politicians to Watch For 2012, 2016


Jim Martin

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I had hopes for Jindal, until his response to the SOTU speech last year, in which he came off abysmally. Not much charisma happening there. I think Sarah Palin's carrying too much baggage. Huckabee is out-polling both her and Romney by a large margin, and he's no conservative, except maybe on a social basis. Who's the emerging threat on the right? Marco Rubio out of Florida is looking pretty decent as he comes out swinging against Charlie Crist. Young and attractive (believe you me, it counts when it comes to the woman vote. Sad to say), seems to be a good speaker, strong conservative credentials, plus he could attract the Hispanic vote to boot. What's not to love? Any others, or comments on the folks above? How valid a candidate could Rubio potentially be for national office? Granted he's running for Senate, and the White House has typically been populated by former Governors, but hey, it worked for Our Messiah!

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I had hopes for Jindal, until his response to the SOTU speech last year, in which he came off abysmally. Not much charisma happening there. I think Sarah Palin's carrying too much baggage. Huckabee is out-polling both her and Romney by a large margin, and he's no conservative, except maybe on a social basis. Who's the emerging threat on the right? Marco Rubio out of Florida is looking pretty decent as he comes out swinging against Charlie Crist. Young and attractive (believe you me, it counts when it comes to the woman vote. Sad to say), seems to be a good speaker, strong conservative credentials, plus he could attract the Hispanic vote to boot. What's not to love? Any others, or comments on the folks above? How valid a candidate could Rubio potentially be for national office? Granted he's running for Senate, and the White House has typically been populated by former Governors, but hey, it worked for Our Messiah!

 

The new Virginia governor, Bob McDonnell, apparently did pretty well in his response to this year's SOTU. He's probably too conservative for the country in general but I could see him as a VP candidate, or at least as an important voice in the RNC when it comes to platform.

 

On paper, Rubio ought to be a contender, but coming from Florida seems like a handicap. I'm skeptical that having street cred with the Cuban-American population, even being of Cuban ancestry, will resonate much with the Hispanic population west of the Mississippi. On the other hand, success in relating to Florida's retiree population may translate well with the aging Boomer population everywhere.

 

I guess he's too conservative for the Republican party, but Jim DeMint is saying a lot of good things.

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I honestly don't see anything good about Palin - well, except that she's a good marathon runner. She seems to have fairly good speechwriters but once the conversation deviates from whatever she was prepped on, she flounders. To me, that indicates that she doesn't have sufficient breadth of knowledge to go beyond immediate topics of conversation, and not enough smarts to improvise based on what she does know.

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Reality or not, there is a popular perception of Palin being an airhead. Polling indicates that if she got the nomination, a large number of Republican voters would vote Democrat. No joke. Her candidacy would drive voters from the party.

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You know what I think US could use? A version of ancient Romans' "Cursus Honorum". Basically, until the end of the Roman republic you had to jump through certain number of hoops go achieve each successive public office, which included winning the election for a preceding public office. The first step was to serve a military tribune for 10 years, which was basically an admin/staff position in a legion. Than, the applicant would have to win an election as a quaestor, who oversaw financial administration of a province or a legion. Then, he'd go on to serve as an aedile - a more political position, but also involving administrative responsibilities for city of Rome.

 

Long story short, by the time the person was serving in the Senate he would've served in the military, had good amount of experience with finance, administration, judicial system etc. When the system worked, it produced people with a broad base of experience in running of the government (which may be one of the reasons why Rome was so successful). Our system, on the other hand, seems stacked with people whose main qualification is to speak well and be able to raise money.

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Y'know... For Palin to be so ignorant and ineffective, she sure has a lot of people running scared.

 

When the White House press secretary seems to think that she's worth going after, that's a sign that they're more than a little worried about her. Who won the election, again? I don't seem to remember ever hearing the Bush White House going after Lieberman or Edwards, in any way, shape or form. I stand to be corrected, however...

 

Whether or not she'd be a good president, she didn't do a bad job in Alaska. Most of the destruction of the entrenched Republican oligarchy up there came at her hands. The woman is a lot more formidable than she's been given credit for, and I have to respect her willingness to take on the things in her own party she didn't like. I dare say there isn't a Democrat politician out there today who's done anything even remotely akin to that, within the Democratic party structure. Anywhere. You have to respect that, if nothing else.

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Y'know... For Palin to be so ignorant and ineffective, she sure has a lot of people running scared.

 

When the White House press secretary seems to think that she's worth going after, that's a sign that they're more than a little worried about her. Who won the election, again? I don't seem to remember ever hearing the Bush White House going after Lieberman or Edwards, in any way, shape or form. I stand to be corrected, however...

 

Whether or not she'd be a good president, she didn't do a bad job in Alaska. Most of the destruction of the entrenched Republican oligarchy up there came at her hands. The woman is a lot more formidable than she's been given credit for, and I have to respect her willingness to take on the things in her own party she didn't like. I dare say there isn't a Democrat politician out there today who's done anything even remotely akin to that, within the Democratic party structure. Anywhere. You have to respect that, if nothing else.

 

 

I managed to surprise friends and family by calling Palin for the Veep slot probably as early as Dec of 2007. But she got shredded by the press. I remain agnostic regarding her real abilities--she had an impressive anti-corruption record in AK, unafraid to take on the party leadership, high approval ratings, good energy policy, etc. But the facts on the ground show that the vast majority of the public sees her as the SNL caricature. The reality is that polls show a large segment of REPUBLICANS defecting to the Dems to vote against her in the event of her nomination. That fact right there puts the final nail in her coffin. The Republican Convention Delegates, the party leadership, will not allow the nomination of a person who would cause such a schism in the party.

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I managed to surprise friends and family by calling Palin for the Veep slot probably as early as Dec of 2007. But she got shredded by the press. I remain agnostic regarding her real abilities--she had an impressive anti-corruption record in AK, unafraid to take on the party leadership, high approval ratings, good energy policy, etc. But the facts on the ground show that the vast majority of the public sees her as the SNL caricature. The reality is that polls show a large segment of REPUBLICANS defecting to the Dems to vote against her in the event of her nomination. That fact right there puts the final nail in her coffin. The Republican Convention Delegates, the party leadership, will not allow the nomination of a person who would cause such a schism in the party.

 

What interests me is how this came to be. And, I'm not entirely sure that it's not something she can overcome. Reagan was seen as a joke within the Republican Party, nation-wide, for a long, long time. He managed to overcome that.

 

I think it's a mark of how threatening she is to the various groups that took part in her media lynching that they went as far overboard as they did. And, I further think that it's eventually going to turn on them, in terms of lost credibility. I think she's in this for the long haul, and it's entirely possible she'll overcome that initial poor impression. I do know this much: There are a lot of folks out there that are really, really angry at the dismissive way the "intelligentsia" ganged up on her.

 

I have a feeling that the Ivy League chattering class is going to wake up one morning, and find out that they've lost the nation to a bunch of state-university working-class insurgents that don't share any of their values or mores. The process is already starting, out there, and it's going to be interesting watching how the modern American aristocracy reacts to it.

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Y'know... For Palin to be so ignorant and ineffective, she sure has a lot of people running scared.

 

Well, after 8 years with George Bush, they have probably learned not to underestimate the stupidity and ignorance of the US voter and the ignorant nutjobs they are willing to vote for :P

 

cbo

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I have a feeling that the Ivy League chattering class is going to wake up one morning, and find out that they've lost the nation to a bunch of state-university working-class insurgents that don't share any of their values or mores. The process is already starting, out there, and it's going to be interesting watching how the modern American aristocracy reacts to it.

The regional/class resentment thing from the right is not itself part of conservatism but, done subtlely and with humor, in moderation, it can be effective. Reagan was good at that, and Bush II when you think of it was brilliant at it: went to Andover Prep, Yale, and Harvard B school and still ended up somewhat effectively tweaking Kerry and Gore as 'elite patricians', well done! But the Palin version of 'anti-elite' comes across to me heavy and feeling sorry for itself. Moreoever she's *not* obviously capable of outbraining the 'Ivy League shmoes' as the story is supposed to go. The faux rightwing class warfare thing is a spice in the GOP cabinet, but to be used sparingly, Palin dumps it on.

 

I think cultural-type anger about how Palin has been treated is all good to boost energy for the conservatives who also go for that sort of thing (me, if people look down on me, up on me, sideways?, hell if I care, and Sarah Palin is now extremely well paid to take a lot of crap from liberal media and entertainment). And a lot of moderates positively don't like that appeal. It's one reason *why* liberal media/entertainments taunts of her resonate so broadly IMO. So Palin is fine, and her unfair attackers are sh*tbags, OK, as long as the GOP doesn't take the Dem's bait and nominate her. Nominate a solid practical conservative, someone about whom nobody could possibly doubt competence or depth of understanding of issues, and let Obama's policies and lack of substance, and 'rarified eliteness' in the eye of the beholder, provide the energy.

 

Joe

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I managed to surprise friends and family by calling Palin for the Veep slot probably as early as Dec of 2007. But she got shredded by the press. I remain agnostic regarding her real abilities--she had an impressive anti-corruption record in AK, unafraid to take on the party leadership, high approval ratings, good energy policy, etc. But the facts on the ground show that the vast majority of the public sees her as the SNL caricature. The reality is that polls show a large segment of REPUBLICANS defecting to the Dems to vote against her in the event of her nomination. That fact right there puts the final nail in her coffin. The Republican Convention Delegates, the party leadership, will not allow the nomination of a person who would cause such a schism in the party.

 

I disagree. A large segment MAY stay home but a large segment voting Dem is pure propaganda IMHO. But OTOH I see many more Dems staying home than non-Dems in 2010-12 as it stands today.

 

The choices of Elitist Progressive Socialism vs. Mainstreet common-sense is an in your face reality at this point in time. Gibb's put down of Palin from the WH press corps rostrum is about as arrogantly Elitist as can be.

 

As to Palin's supposed demise , I'm way too old :o . I remember that in 1962 Tricky Dick was pronounced DEA in U.S. politics as he lost a run for Gov'r of California . But he came roaring back in 1968 because he appealed to Main Street. Anti-crime , anti-welfare and he roused the so called Silent majority calling the Dems Elitist Effete snobs.

 

The Tea Party and Palin appeal to todays Silent majority. The Tea Party is the new not so silent Silent majority .

 

However that said I would prefer a McDonnell , Brown type candidate and for sure one can classify Romney as an Elitist but I wouldn't quit the party over a Palin or Romney .

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The regional/class resentment thing from the right is not itself part of conservatism but, done subtlely and with humor, in moderation, it can be effective. Reagan was good at that, and Bush II when you think of it was brilliant at it: went to Andover Prep, Yale, and Harvard B school and still ended up somewhat effectively tweaking Kerry and Gore as 'elite patricians', well done! But the Palin version of 'anti-elite' comes across to me heavy and feeling sorry for itself. Moreoever she's *not* obviously capable of outbraining the 'Ivy League shmoes' as the story is supposed to go. The faux rightwing class warfare thing is a spice in the GOP cabinet, but to be used sparingly, Palin dumps it on.

 

Joe

 

 

My Big C conservative views were formed more from Elites like William F. Buckley and Az Elitist AUH2O.

 

Bush was an old East Coast moderate GOP Elitist wrapped in the mantra of the Bible Belt.

Remember he lost his first election as he was accused of being an East Coast Carpetbagging Elitist and he made sure that never happened again.

As Buckley called him a small "c" conservative...ie. social conservative not a big " C" Conservative/Libertarian .

 

Another Elitist I admire is Charles Krauthammer . The difference is the power to the people attitudes of a Buckley , AUH2O and Krauthammer.

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Regardless of past baggage it would be very hard for Palin to defend against the 'quitter' claim, that "as soon as you got a little media scrutiny into your personal life, you packed up and ran - you gonna do that in the white house too?"

Mark my words, it will kill her more than any of the 'Palin is an airhead' stuff.

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Regardless of past baggage it would be very hard for Palin to defend against the 'quitter' claim, that "as soon as you got a little media scrutiny into your personal life, you packed up and ran - you gonna do that in the white house too?"

Mark my words, it will kill her more than any of the 'Palin is an airhead' stuff.

This is the crux of the matter. If she was seriously interested in high public office, she would have stayed on as Governor of Alaska through at least one full term, and beyond, regardless of what kind, or how much, dirt was thrown at her.

 

But instead, she has cast her lot with those who make a lucrative career of cashing in on their past or current political notoriety. Successful candidates for high public office don't do this kind of thing before they get there. Maybe afterwards, but not before.

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This is the crux of the matter. If she was seriously interested in high public office, she would have stayed on as Governor of Alaska through at least one full term, and beyond, regardless of what kind, or how much, dirt was thrown at her.

 

But instead, she has cast her lot with those who make a lucrative career of cashing in on their past or current political notoriety. Successful candidates for high public office don't do this kind of thing before they get there. Maybe afterwards, but not before.

 

Palin serves as an interesting litmus test, if nothing else. Do you know what was going on in Alaska, that made her decide to leave the Governorship? Try running a state government when every time you turn around you're getting hit with "ethics probes", and having to spend the money to defend against it. It wasn't a simple matter of "dirt being thrown at her"; those were real charges that had to be answered, and that cost both her and the state money. I can understand entirely why she left office, since the constant barrage of attacks left her ineffective as a Governor.

 

I can't think of anyone who's received similar treatment on the national stage. The ferocity with which she was attacked, and over what she was attacked is truly disgusting. And, was any of it founded? Nope.

 

Palin ran for Vice President. And, for her temerity in doing so, from her background, the elite decided to destroy her. That's what I find the most disturbing about the whole situation. How do we expect to get good people into government, when they have this kind of thing as an example?

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Palin serves as an interesting litmus test, if nothing else. Do you know what was going on in Alaska, that made her decide to leave the Governorship? Try running a state government when every time you turn around you're getting hit with "ethics probes", and having to spend the money to defend against it. It wasn't a simple matter of "dirt being thrown at her"; those were real charges that had to be answered, and that cost both her and the state money. I can understand entirely why she left office, since the constant barrage of attacks left her ineffective as a Governor.

 

You're confusing reality with perceptions, a very dangerous thing.

Regardless of the truth, she isn't going to be able to shake the arguments of being a quitter, and if her defence is 'I was constantly getting ethical probes" once the sniggers die down, people will ask, why was she being probed?

 

But at the end of the day she will never shake the 'quitter' label.

 

And honestly, I don't think she cares because she's going to be too busy over the next few years counting her money as a media darling for the right, and good on her for it...

Edited by Luke Y
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.... I can understand entirely why she left office, since the constant barrage of attacks left her ineffective as a Governor.

 

How did it leave her ineffective as Governor? Alaska voters weren't politically astute enough to understand what was actually happening?

 

I can't think of anyone who's received similar treatment on the national stage. The ferocity with which she was attacked, and over what she was attacked is truly disgusting. And, was any of it founded? Nope.

 

And she wouldn't be the target of this kind of thing once again if she ran for President?

 

It goes with the territory of being a right-of-center politician. Why should the voting public take her seriously as a future candidate for President if she wasn't willing to deal with this kind of thing when she was Governor of Alaska?

 

If she had been truly interested in being a serious future national candidate, she would have stayed on as governor and fought those baseless charges -- and the people who were manufacturing those charges -- clear out to the end of her first term, regardless of what it cost the citizens of Alaska in time and money.

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Those writing Palin off are looking at old information, the polls have moved more in her favor since then. She trailed Obama by only two points in a recent poll. Remember Reagan was a dunce...only he wasn't and used that misconception to eat his opponents' lunches. Whether Palin is Reagan-like or not, not yet if ever but people here are looking at a picture of her that is now dated. There's no one on the Republican side that grabs me as a front runner. I'm not enthralled with any of the usual names being bandied about. But then that's why we have a primary system.

Edited by Jeff
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From David Broder of all people.

 

Broder: Sarah Palin -- take this populist with a pitch seriously

By David S. Broder

The Washington Post

Salt Lake Tribune

Updated:02/10/2010 05:17:06 PM MST

 

Washington » The snows that obliterated Washington last week interfered with many scheduled meetings, but they did not prevent the delivery of one important political message: Take Sarah Palin seriously.

 

Her lengthy Saturday night keynote address to the National Tea Party Convention in Nashville and her debut on the Sunday morning talk show circuit with Fox News' Chris Wallace showed off a public figure at the top of her game -- a politician who knows who she is and how to sell herself.

 

This was not the first time that Palin has impressed me. I gave her high marks for her vice presidential acceptance speech in St. Paul. But then, and always throughout that campaign, she was laboring to do more than establish her own place. She was selling a ticket headed by John McCain against formidable Democratic opposition and burdened by the legacy of the Bush administration.

 

Blessed with an enthusiastic audience of conservative activists, Palin used the Tea Party gathering and coverage on the cable networks to display the full repertoire she possesses, touching on national security, economics, fiscal and social policy and every other area where she could draw a contrast with Barack Obama and point up what Republicans see as vulnerabilities in Washington.

 

Her invocation of "conservative principles and common-sense solutions" was perfectly conventional. What stood out in the eyes of TV-watching pols of both parties was the skill with which she drew a self-portrait that fit not just the wishes of the immediate audience, but the mood of a significant slice of the broader electorate.

 

Freed of the responsibilities she carried as governor of Alaska, devoid of any official title but armed with regular gigs on Fox News Channel and more speaking invitations than she can fulfill, Palin is perhaps the most visible Republican in the land.

 

More important, she has locked herself firmly in the populist embrace that every skillful outsider candidate from George Wallace to Jimmy Carter to Ronald Reagan to Bill Clinton has utilized when running against "the political establishment."

 

It doesn't always win. There are more John Edwardses and Mike Huckabees than I can count. But it wins more often than you'd guess and for a greater variety of people, especially when things are not going well for the country.

 

Palin's final answer to Wallace showed how perfectly she has come to inhabit that part. When he asked her what role she wants to play in the country's future, she said: "First and foremost, I want to be a good mom and I want to raise happy, healthy, independent children. And I want them to be good citizens of this great country.

 

"And then I do want to be a voice for some common-sense solutions. I'm never going to pretend like I know more than the next person. I'm not going to pretend to be an elitist. In fact, I'm going to fight the elitist, because for too often and for too long now, I think the elitists have tried to make people like me and people in the heartland of America feel like we just don't get it, and big government's just going to have to take care of us.

 

"I want to speak up for the American people and say: No, we really do have some good common-sense solutions. I can be a messenger for that. Don't have to have a title to do it."

 

This is a pitch-perfect recital of the populist message that has worked in campaigns past. There are times when the American people are looking for something more: for an Eisenhower, who liberated Europe; an FDR or a Kennedy or a Bush, all unashamed aristocrats; or an Obama, with eloquence and brains. But in the present mood of the country, Palin is by all odds a threat to the more uptight Republican aspirants like Mitt Romney and Tim Pawlenty -- and potentially, to Obama as well.

 

Palin did not wear well in the last campaign, especially in the suburbs where populism has a limited appeal. But when Wallace asked her about resigning the governorship with 17 months left in her term and whether she let her opponents drive her from office, she said, "Hell, no."

 

Those who want to stop her will need more ammunition than deriding her habit of writing on her hand. The lady is good.

http://www.sltrib.com/opinion/ci_14375863

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