July 5, 2007

For Electability Fans Out There…

Carroll Andrew Morse

From Rasmussen’s latest head-to-head surveys (h/t Kathryn Jean Lopez)…

  • Fred Thompson 45%, Hillary Clinton 45% (survey conducted June 27-28).
  • Rudy Giuliani 46%, Hillary Clinton 45% (survey conducted June 20-21).
OK, partisans on the Republican side, it looks like it may be time to move beyond electability, and to start making the substantive case for your candidate!

Rasmussen’s most recent matchups involving Mitt Romney and Barack Obama are about a month old, so I’ll wait until a new set comes out before posting anything.

The John Edwards matchups are interesting, though…

  • Rudy Giuliani 45%, John Edwards 45% (survey conducted June 25-26).
  • Fred Thompson 41%, John Edwards 50% (survey conducted June 25-26).
If Edwards is the Democratic nominee, who are the voters that Republicans are losing if Thompson is their nominee? People who don’t know him? Or people who don’t like him?


Ooops. I did miss one recent Romney matchup...

  • Mitt Romney 42%, Hillary Clinton 46% (survey conducted June 27-28).

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A year and a half. A year and a half until the election. Why are we even having this national conversation yet? None of it means anything at all and anybody performing polls and releasing the data to the press is doing so solely to attempt to influence the exceptionally tiny segment of the populace that's even paying any level of attention to the race at this point.

Posted by: Greg at July 5, 2007 12:00 PM


With the accelerated primary schedule, it's really only 6/7 months before votes that count begin to be cast.

And you have to start early to have any hope of getting actual ideas injected to a campaign. As you get closer to election day, candidates trailing in the polls get more and more desperate, and the tone of the campaign gets inevitably dumber.

Posted by: Andrew at July 5, 2007 12:09 PM

Its distressing that Edwards polls as well as he does. His major accomplishment is relieving doctors' insurers of $50 million based on unproven scientific assertions re: difficult natural birth causing cerebral palsy. The hidden costs of that success include a higher rate of ceasareans with no drop in observed cerebral palsy rates. Where is any evidence of ability to lead and govern? What were his accomplishments in his abbreviated Senate career?

Posted by: chuckR at July 5, 2007 12:33 PM

Both Edwards and Thompson are southerners and that is most likely why Edwards draws some votes away from Thompson. But let's remember, Thompson is even a candidate yet and hasn't spent a dime to make an organized reach out to voters yet.

I find it funny that someone saw fit to do an Edwards/Thompson match up. Edwards is 25 points behind Hillary and 11 points behind Obama in the primary.

Edwards' strongest argument is that he can do a better job against an undeclared Republican candidate than Hillary or Obama.

I suppose Giuliani's people are pushing the Edwards survey as a way to show his strength. Giuliani has now fallen about 15 points from his previous high in March, so any positive news such as his fundraising numbers and the Edwards poll helps.

This primary may depend on what happens if McCain drops out.

Posted by: Anthony at July 5, 2007 12:59 PM

On a related note, Bob Shrum's book is worth reading (no, I didn't buy it, I reserved it at the library).

I'm in the middle of it, but his account of the Democratic nomination process in 1972, 1976, and 1980 demonstrates how very adept the Dems can be at choosing a candidate who minimizes their chances of winning in the general election.

I'm not sure which Dem is most electable in '08, but I see some of the same kind of forces at play now that led to the selection of the unelectable McGovern in 1972.

Posted by: brassband at July 5, 2007 1:20 PM

And another thing . . .

Bob Whitcomb's "Cape Wind" does not paint Mitt Romney in a very favorable light . . . determined to kill the wind turbine project because of his own fund raising connections (and possibly to make nice-nice with Sen. Kennedy).

Posted by: brassband at July 5, 2007 1:23 PM

I just wonder how much Edwards' strong showing is related to his current place at the top of Ann Coulter's s--- list.
I'm not a big Edwards fan, but damn, he must be doing something right.

Posted by: Rhody at July 5, 2007 1:38 PM

He must be doing something right to be able to afford $1200 haircuts.

Posted by: Greg at July 5, 2007 2:03 PM

Edwards is on Ann's list only because he is a liar and a hypocrite...a really good way to get on her list.

Posted by: Warbucks at July 5, 2007 2:33 PM

I think Edwards polls well because he has good name recognition as a former VP candidate, he's a very smooth talker, and he probably gets some residual sympathy as a result of his wife's health issues.

Posted by: brassband at July 5, 2007 4:09 PM

The Breck Girl has better hair than Fred Thompson; that must be it.

Posted by: Tom W at July 5, 2007 5:17 PM

It probably reflects Giuliani's strength with blue collar Democrats; people who don't want to vote for a Republican, but will make an exception for Giuliani.

Posted by: Mario at July 5, 2007 5:57 PM

The Democrats aren't smart enough to nominate Edwards.

Posted by: Mike at July 5, 2007 7:11 PM

"how much Edwards' strong showing is related to his current place at the top of Ann Coulter's s--- list."

Someone call and tell Ann. Rhody is saying she is a king maker.

Posted by: SusanD at July 5, 2007 9:23 PM

As long as national conservative groups invite Ann to their big events and put her on the same dais with presidential candidates, and she sells plenty of books, and Chris Matthews gives her air time, she's a kingmaker.

Posted by: Rhody at July 6, 2007 12:08 PM

Ann Coulter is nothing more than a smart businesswoman who uses conservative ideology and shock rhetoric to sell books. That's it.

Her books stay on the best seller list and her speaking fees stay high if she stays in the headlines. So she says whatever she needs to say to stay in the headlines. Got to pay the mortgage.

Coulter as kingmaker? Not exactly.

I don't think there is a "kingmaker" on the Republican side. If Reagan were alive and well, he might fill that role. Bush '41 fit the bill in 2000 when he lined up early political and financial support for George W. Bush. There isn't anyone on the Republican side this time around who is a kingmaker, which is why the GOP race has so many candidates.

I think the only kingmaker out there right now is Bill Clinton. OK, maybe queenmaker. His support for Hillary put her into the lead, secured strong backing from state political parties on her behalf and allowed her to raise millions of dollars.

The media is desperate to make it appear that Obama has a shot, but Bill has already crowned Hillary.

Posted by: Anthony at July 6, 2007 4:57 PM
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