Tuesday, January 30, 2007


I plan on making this a semi-regular feature here at TPS. Maybe it'll get some decent convo going. Yes, I'm lifting the idea from Time Magazine. But since Time chose me (and you out there too!) as its 2006 "Person of the Year" for my contributions to the internet, I figured they won't mind.

For now, we'll look at the top 7 contenders for each party's nomination. The corresponding odds I assign will refer only to each candidate's current potential for winning the nomination. We all know that the general election will encompass much broader forces, so we'll save for a later day.

Pick your horse and bring on the disagreement!

THE DEMS: "A Top Heavy Field -- Trust Me, No Pun Intended, Ms. Clinton"

Hillary: 2-1 (Big time frontrunner here; I've believed that for years; she may end up raising more money than all other Democratic candidates combined; it's Hillary's race to lose both in the primary and the general; but that's still very possible; she's not the speaker, nor the campaigner, nor the politician that her husband was; capable of derailing her chances by f-ing up via foot-in-mouth disease)

John Edwards: 5-1 (Will become the standard bearer for the traditional FDR/LBJ Democratic interests; indicated as much by declaring his candidacy in New Orleans and it works well with his "Two Americas" theme; great speaker, he looks good, wife is a breast cancer survivor; last 3 Democratic presidents all came from the working poor the South like Edwards)

Barack Obama: 10-1 (Consensus is that he can't win, he's merely a media creation; well, I think he knows that and he also realizes that there's not a damn thing wrong with it in modern politics; the guy is running for a place on the ticket as vice-president; if he can show like-ability, strong oratory, and a positive personal background during a solid primary campaign, Hillary or Edwards will have no choice but to give the veep spot to him)

Al Gore: 15-1 (following the 2000 election, Gore only runs if he can win; in the current politcal climate, he cannot; but there's enough time for the unknown still to happen; so he sits back and waits to see if Hillary screws up; then he answers the call of his party if it comes)

Bill Richardson: 100-1 (Former Congressman, Secretary of Energy, US Representative to the United Nations, and the current Governor of New Mexico; by far the most qualified candidate on either side; too bad that's never determined our presidential elections!)

Joe Biden: 200-1 (first ran for president way back in 1988 but is still 6 years younger than McCain; perhaps the most appealing candidate to the Democratic base on Iraq; only a major negative development in the war could bolster his longshot chances)

Dennis Kucinich: 500-1 (Someone has got to be there to score the far-left votes; I'm sure he'll raise money from the internet and it'll be enough to keep Kucinch around for the debates; I read where his campaign bus in 2004 burned vegetable oil for fuel and thus he smelled like french fries wherever he went!)

Others: Tom Vilsack, Chris Dodd, Al Sharpton, John Kerry (says not running).

THE GOP: "Parity Is Not Necessarily A Good Thing"

John McCain: 3-1 (Fits the Republican tendency to reward the loyal party man who patiently waits his turn a la Bob Dole; a proven fundraiser who has already assembled a strong machine; voting record will appeal to social conservatives critical to key primaries; Iraq and age may not cause real damage till the general)

Mitt Romney: 7-1 (Perhaps the most dynamic Republican candidate; impressive background in private sector plus executive experience as a governor; has a small but natural GOP base in New England and Utah; social positions will hurt him in heartland primaries)

Rudy: 10-1 (Scores high on name recognition; certainly can raise money from his many strong supporters; but many skeletons reside in his closets; social liberalism will haunt him in primaries; I still don't see him running)

Newt: 20-1 (Ditto the Giuliani comments above, save the liberalism thing, of course!)

Sam Brownback: 25-1 (It's right there for him to be the conservative dark horse of the race; only problem is that he's not the roll-up-your-sleeves/fire-and-brimstone speaker one needs to be in this role a la Pat Buchanan or Howard Dean; will need to spend lots of that Dominos Pizza money of billionaire supporter Tom Monahan)

Mike Huckabee: 50-1 (Effective speaker; good track record; the Governor from Arkansas format has worked before; but will likely have money problems and has a lot of catching up to do quickly)

Jim Gilmore: 100-1 (Included Gilmore over other Republican contenders because he's from Virginia; this state will be critical if the GOP is to reverse the trend of recent failures; Gilmore is a former party insider and that always helps too)

Others: Tom Tancredo, Duncan Hunter, Chuck Hagel, Tommy Thompson, George Pataki, Ron Paul, Condi Rice (says not running), Jeb Bush (says not running).



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