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Tuesday, July 03, 2007

Clinton-Obama-Edwards: The Democratic Three-Way

So Obama's here to stay, huh?

And Edwards polls very well in early primary states.

And Clinton does have that political machine behind her, with Bill pulling the levers.

Ladies and gents, any of these three could be the next Democratic nominee, and the next President of the United States.

Heading into the close of the second fiscal quarter, most would have ranked Hillary Clinton as the favorite to win the Democratic nomination, with Barack Obama placing a strong second, and John Edwards with a ray of hope showing up third. (With one of these three being a lock for the nomination, this attracts even more funds in their direction, meaning the other handful of candidates, the second tier, are left with very little oxygen in the political sphere, and are effectively eliminated.)

I'm here to tell you that the

1. Clinton
2. Obama
----------
3. Edwards

list has to be completely thrown out the window.

Clinton's greatest advantage was her money... and now Barack Obama's shown he can not only match her fundraising capabilities, he can TOP it. His 32.5 million dollars in the second quarter obliterated all previous fundraising records. What's more is that he's doing it Howard Dean style. He's not getting it all from huge donors. He's tapping into the wallets of the entire nation and getting record amounts of 10, 20, 50, 100 dollar donations. Ultimately, remember, it's one vote per person. A large war chest is a colossal advantage when running for public office, but it's the ballot box that gets counted in the end. You could make the case that, with the revelation of Obama's eye-popping fundraising capability, it is he who is now the favorite to win the Democratic nomination. For all we know, we've just witness the turning point in the Democratic Primary.

But not so fast! To so readily knock Hillary Clinton off her perch as the favorite would be foolhardy. After all, she's raised 53 million dollars on the year, and has barely begun spending it. With the best campaign manager in the world at her side, we have to continue to remind ourselves that she hasn't even made her move yet. Believe it or not, this is cruise control for the Clinton campaign. They're making sure to keep plenty of fuel in the tank for the fourth quarter heading into Iowa in mid-January. For now, it's just important to them to keep their names on top of most national and state polls.

Speaking of polls, John Edwards leads most Iowa polls (cheap segue, I know). Moreover, in 2003, he was polling fourth there but made an enormous push in the closing days before the 2004 Iowa Caucus to finish a strong second to John Kerry. If you recall, Howard Dean, the Democratic frontrunner and leading fundraiser heading into Iowa last year, was passed by Kerry and Edwards. Dean, previously the leader in national polls AND most states, was subsequently never heard from again (ahem, except for a brief audible final moment). That's the consequence of a third place finish in Iowa, even for a frontrunner. It vaulted Kerry into the lead and he road that momentum into New Hampshire and Edwards rode his momentum into South Carolina. Those two battled (read: Edwards was a distant second) for the nomination while Howard Dean dropped out.

The point? Edwards has practically lived in Iowa since his loss as the Vice-Presidential nominee. If you ask me, the guy's going to win Iowa, bringing a lot of press and a lot of money into his campaign. Then Nevada's labor will love him, and after putting little resources into New Hampshire, letting Clinton and Obama duke it out up there, he'll get a head start and hang out in his back yard of South Carolina. Heading into February fifth's SuperDuper Tuesday, he could very well have two or three out of four states under his belt, and, if history holds, much of the country will follow the leader. And then John Edwards is your Democratic nominee.

It's crazy. It really is. And this is all operating under the assumption that Al Gore isn't running. If he does, all the money and poll numbers becomes momentarily irrelevant until we see which way the winds blow.

195 days until Iowa.

1 comment:

Arizona Insurance Broker / Arizona Insurance Company said...

I would have not believed my own mouth three years ago but out of those three I almost prefer Edwards.

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