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May 27, 2005

Hillary's Turn

A majority of Americans now say they're likely to vote for Hillary.  In the last year, her strong support has jumped by 8% and strong opposition has dropped by 5%.  This doesn't mean you should vote for her, but the whispers of giant anti-Hillary armies populating the heartland and preparing to take over the country come the kickoff of a Hillary candidacy are simply false.  She's legitimately well-liked now, with 53% saying they want to vote for her and only 39% saying they simply won't vote for her, which is about the same number that'd sooner push a Democrat off a cliff than hand him a favorable ballot. 

All of this means it's time to start evaluating a Hillary candidacy on its own merits rather than as a function of the enormous hatred we're certain she engenders.  Unlike us in Blogland or those signed to a Regnery publishing contract, few folks remain stepped in the passion of the Clinton years, and a fewer still have focused their long-term attentions on the then-First Lady.  All this means that my soon-to-be-editor Mike Tomasky would be wise to rerelease Hillary's Turn, his account of Hillary's senate race with a new afterword and a healthy markup.  I have a sneaking suspicion that, sooner than later, there's going to be quite a clamor for an account of how Hillary managed such a stunning turnaround, and whether her skills are likely to extend to presidential politics.

May 27, 2005 in Election 2008 | Permalink

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» The specter of Hillary from Dadahead
Everybody's talking about Hillary in '08 because of a new poll that says 53% of Americans would vote for her. There are several candidates I'd rather see get the nomination: Kerry, Edwards, Clark. [Read More]

Tracked on May 27, 2005 2:29:46 PM

Comments

You have to admit that she's been thoroughly vetted at this point. The dark side spent $72M of taxpayer money and who knows how much Scaife/Olin Foundation/Ahmanson money and nobody could find anything on her. I'd say she's clean and there won't be any surprises. Besides she's really, really smart and it's time for a woman anyway. I just cringe at having to listen to them bash her again, though.

Posted by: J Bean | May 27, 2005 1:30:22 PM

Aside from whatever other baggage she would bring to a campaign, I just have a hard time seeing what it is about her that should lead anyone to think she's qualified to be president. Now, I realize that in the context of the current regime, the concept of "qualified" has been a dumbed down a bit. But I think Democrats have many other candidates with more substantial qualifications and experience.

Posted by: Bulworth | May 27, 2005 2:01:02 PM

J Bean, wouldn't the breadth and depth of the bashing of any Democratic candidate be in direct proportion to the threat s/he poses to the Republican candidate? At least we know the form most of the Clinton bashing would take.

Posted by: tinman | May 27, 2005 2:21:53 PM

The GOP concentrates its considerable bashing power on the front runner. However, any Democrat who is running is going to be the object of an aggressive bashing campaign. They can't run on their policies because they have to hide their real beliefs or they'd lose every time. All they have to run on are flag waving and their contrast to the miserable, no-account Democratic rival. We can easily predict where they are going to attack, so we just need to find candidates who are going to be able to overcome the attacks. The Kerry method was not too successful.

Who is qualified to be president? It's kind of a unique job. The Clintons have spent their entire adult lives engaged in what they call "the conversation"; talking about what constitutes good government. She has only been a senator for a single term, but she's brilliant, she works hard, and she's spent most of her life involved more than just peripherally in state and federal government. Uncle Bill was a really smart guy, but he didn't do so well with the international side of his job at the beginning. It wasn't his interest or his area of expertise and he tried to just delegate the job off to Warren Christopher, et al. Hillary wouldn't make that mistake.

Posted by: J Bean | May 27, 2005 2:52:00 PM

They can't run on their policies because they have to hide their real beliefs or they'd lose every time.

That's exactly how the opposition feels about the Democrats as well. Who would vote for them if they told everyone they were for homosexuals, high taxes and revered socialism as a viable system?

Posted by: Robert Zimmerman | May 27, 2005 3:47:51 PM

Um, high taxes and socialism are inherently incompatible -- the point of socialism is that the state controls the means of production. Taxes are only meaningful in a system with private property.

Seriously, smarter monkeys.

Posted by: Kimmitt | May 27, 2005 5:27:41 PM

Are Hillary's good numbers just a product of anti-GOP sentiment? I'm pretty sure that a rising Democratic tide will lift all boats. No doubt her image slowly improves as time wears on, but I'd be interested in seeing how she compares to, say, Clark and Edwards in a similarly structured poll.

Posted by: Ethical Werewolf | May 27, 2005 5:50:21 PM

Um, high taxes and socialism are inherently incompatible -- the point of socialism is that the state controls the means of production. Taxes are only meaningful in a system with private property.

Ummm... NOT! (What a goober.)

Socialism is an ideology that, at its most elemental, is defined by the belief that a society could exist in which individuals control the means of power, and therefore the means of production, and are not subjected to the ownership, control, or power structures of others. In application, however, the de facto meaning of socialism has evolved and branched to a great degree, and though highly politicized, is strongly related to the establishment of an organized working class, created through either revolution or social evolution, with the purpose of building a classless society. It has also, increasingly, become concentrated on social reforms within modern democracies.
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Socialism

Hey, but thanks for playing the monkey!

Posted by: Robert Zimmerman | May 27, 2005 6:33:51 PM

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