Baseball Crank
Covering the Front and Back Pages of the Newspaper
August 29, 2003
POLITICS: Is Kerry Toast?

Yes, it's too early to win a race like this -- but it's not too early to lose.

New polls showing Howard Dean with a commanding lead in New Hampshire have convinced me: John Kerry is toast. He's losing ground and losing press coverage and trailing badly in native-son territory. Kerry doesn't excite anybody; he had relied on the aura of a frontrunner, and that's history now.

This shocks me, since I have suspected for some time that Kerry would win the nomination by virtue of most nearly straddling the middle of his party. I still think that can be done, but not by a guy so obviously trying to do so. Maybe the Dems have learned something from the Gore fiasco.

Lieberman can't win the nomination, unless he gets a real miracle in support from African-Americans, because he's become the symbol for party activists of the DINO (Democrat in Name Only) on taxes, war, religion and business regulation. Dean, on the other hand, remains vulnerable because non-Chomskyite Democrats over the age of about 23 realize his stances on taxes and war and possibly his identification with gay marriage and general Vermontism would make him poison in a national election. That creates space in the middle, and Kerry's implosion and Bob Graham's dullness and ill health leave that field mostly to Edwards, Gephardt and now perhaps Wesley Clark.

But Edwards, who I predicted to win the nomination back in January, has been a disaster, running in fifth place at 4% (to Dean's 38%, Kerry's 17% and Gephardt's 11%) in New Hampshire and fifth place at 6% (to Dean's 25% and Gephardt's 21%) in Iowa, and (in a poll done about a month ago), tied for fourth with 5% (to 13% for Lieberman and 8% apiece for Gephardt and Al Sharpton) in neighboring South Carolina. The only obvious explanation for this is Edwards' obvious unreadiness to be commander-in-chief, even when compared to someone like Dean, who would be a foreign policy disaster but at least has strong opinions on the subject.

Posted by Baseball Crank at 6:21 AM | Politics 2002-03 | Comments (1) | TrackBack (0)
Comments

I think it's way too early to write off Kerry. He's one big Dean mis-step away from being the go-to candidate.

Posted by: KeithW at September 3, 2003 12:44 AM
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