Sunday :: Nov 7, 2004
Hillary in '08?
That didn't take long. As we've long expected, Hillary is already gearing up for a '08 run:
Friends of Sen. Hillary Rodham Clinton tell us that the New York Democrat is set to begin the hard work of running for president in 2008. Associates say that she already has organized a team to target fundraising prospects, create voter lists, and draw up a campaign agenda. The presidential effort will run in tandem with Clinton's 2006 senatorial re-election bid.
Like many of you, I think Hillary would be a terrible choice for 2008 for any number of reasons, but I am willing to listen to opposing arguments. Fire away.
UPDATE: Just to be perfectly clear, here are my arguments against a Hillary candidacy, in descending order of importance.
1. Everyone's going to immediately say that Hillary won't stand a chance in the South, which is true. However, the real prize in '08 is the Southwest (NM, CO, AZ, and NV). Frankly, I don't see how Hillary can carry any appeal in this region, even if she picks someone like Napolitano or Richardson for VP.
2. I'm seriously concerned about her ability to attract white working class men/union members in states like Michigan, Pennsylvania, and New Jersey (the "Reagan Democrats" of yore). We cannot afford any disgruntlement within this voting bloc.
3. There's still a considerable amount of resentment within the progressive wing of the party against the DLC and Bill Clinton's "triangulation." Now, both Gore and Kerry deflated this resentment somewhat by running more-or-less progressive campaigns. However, I seriously worry that Hillary's campaign will trigger significant disillusionment within the Dean faction, not to mention the (dare I say it?) Naderites.
4. The "Hitlery" Factor--IMO, this is the least important factor, as the Republican Noise Machine will be cranking up for whoever the Dems nominate. However, the incredible revulsion (whether it's fair or not) that Hillary inspires cannot be dismissed. As a result, I think there will be a "Stop Hillary" movement within the party that will be even more ferocious than the anti-Dean movement. It goes without saying that this is not what we need in the 2008 primaries.
UPDATE 2: Josh Marshall has more.