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Tuesday, December 05, 2006
2008 Candidate Watch

Hillary undertakes a listening telephone tour of Iowa:

Clinton spoke Monday with Des Moines Democrat Bonnie Campbell, who worked in the Department of Justice during the administration of President Bill Clinton, the senator's husband.

Campbell, a former Iowa attorney general, declined to discuss the details of her brief talk with Senator Clinton, except that it touched on her running for president and competing for the caucuses, scheduled to launch the 2008 nominating process.

"She is looking at the possibility of running for president and is looking for a read on Iowa," Campbell said.

However, there are some storm clouds:

A Register poll in June showed Clinton second to former North Carolina Sen. John Edwards among likely Democratic caucusgoers. In September, a Register poll of Iowa voters showed Clinton trailing all four Republicans listed in a hypothetical general election matchup.

Never underestimate the chances of the Democrats going for pretty boys.

Update: Check out also Pam Meister's article in the American Thinker on Hillary's prospects:

While Hillary is certainly not the only woman whose name comes up in discussions for the 2008 presidential run (Condoleezza Rice, for example), she is perhaps the most likely to throw her hat into the ring. Yet her name recognition, ability to raise huge sums of campaign money, and strong Washington D.C. connections can only get her so far. As a woman, she has to be tough - but not so tough that she turns people off. She also has to be able to appeal to liberals and conservatives alike, which is a difficult task in today's political climate. Some liberals say she doesn't go far enough to the left, while many conservatives don't trust her centrist appeals on the war and other issues.

Meanwhile, Barack Obama was in Hillary's neck of the woods shaking the money tree:

Amid intensifying presidential musings by Mr. Obama and Mrs. Clinton, Mr. Obama met with George Soros, the liberal billionaire philanthropist, and then some other donors last night at Mr. Soros’s offices.

One of the donors who met with Mr. Obama, and who spoke on condition of anonymity because he did not want to offend Mrs. Clinton, said that he and several others had supported Mrs. Clinton’s Senate campaigns but were not committed to her as a presidential candidate.

If Obama's smart, he'll play Mr Nice Guy this time around, hoping to get in everybody's good graces so that when he mounts a real effort (say in 2012 or 2016) he'll be the Golden Boy. He may be suitable for the bottom half of the ticket in 2008, but obviously not with Hillary. She'll be looking for somebody who can bring a marginal state into play, and that's not Illinois.

Obama does say something smart here:

“I think she is tough, I think she is disciplined, I think she is smart, and I’m not one of those people who believe she can’t win,” Mr. Obama said. “I recognize it’s fun to set these things up as a contest between the two of us. I would say half my colleagues in the Senate think they’re going to be the next president.”

If anything, that might be a little low.

And on a lighter note, the other mayor of NYC in this century is thinking of throwing his hat into the ring:

Soon enough, From found himself having supper at Steinhardt’s apartment on the Upper East Side with Bloomberg and his senior political adjutants: deputy mayors Patti Harris, Kevin Sheekey, and Ed Skyler. For the next couple of hours, From laid out his analysis of the political landscape and his views on the viability of an independent candidacy. He discussed DLC poll data concerning the alienation of voters from the two major parties. But he also argued that any mayor—and especially a mayor of New York—would face an uphill slog. Bloomberg listened closely but asked few questions, preferring to hold forth (at great length) about his record as mayor. Regarding his national aspirations, he adopted a posture of self-protective self-deprecation. “What chance does a five-foot-seven billionaire Jew who’s divorced really have of becoming president?” he asked.

Zero. Especially when he's the RINOest of the RINOs.
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