Monday, August 13, 2007

What's going on here?

WASHINGTON (AP) - Looking past the presidential nomination fight, Democratic leaders quietly fret that Sen. Hillary Rodham Clinton at the top of their 2008 ticket could hurt candidates at the bottom.

They say the former first lady may be too polarizing for much of the country. She could jeopardize the party's standing with independent voters and give Republicans who otherwise might stay home on Election Day a reason to vote, they worry.

In more than 40 interviews, Democratic candidates, consultants and party chairs from every region pointed to internal polls that give Clinton strikingly high unfavorable ratings in places with key congressional and state races.

"I'm not sure it would be fatal in Indiana, but she would be a drag" on many candidates, said Democratic state Rep. Dave Crooks of Washington, Ind.

Unlike Crooks, most Democratic leaders agreed to talk frankly about Clinton's political coattails only if they remained anonymous, fearing reprisals from the New York senator's campaign. They all expressed admiration for Clinton, and some said they would publicly support her fierce fight for the nomination - despite privately held fears.

The chairman of a Midwest state party called Clinton a nightmare for congressional and state legislative candidates.

A Democratic congressman from the West, locked in a close re-election fight, said Clinton is the Democratic candidate most likely to cost him his seat.

A strategist with close ties to leaders in Congress said Democratic Senate candidates in competitive races would be strongly urged to distance themselves from Clinton.

"The argument with Hillary right now in some of these red states is she's so damn unpopular," said Andy Arnold, chairman of the Greenville, S.C., Democratic Party. "I think Hillary is someone who could drive folks on the other side out to vote who otherwise wouldn't."

Isn't it interesting how Mrs. Clinton remains both the least liked and most popular candidate on the Democrat side. I would attribute this to the "Marion Barry" effect where black residents of Washington DC re-elected as mayor Marion Barry after his conviction on drug charges (he was caught on video tape smoking crack in a hotel room with a prostitute and served 6 months in jail).

Black Washington did not elect Barry because they believed he would be the best mayor for their city. They put him back in office in order to force white America to endure the fact of such a man as mayor of the nation's capital. It was not an attempt to serve their own self interests or support for Barry, but a naked blast of hatred at the majority.

I am tempted to think that the left is trying to shove Hillary down Red State America's throat simply as revenge for impeaching Bill (who remains a demigod to them) and for electing George W Bush to two terms in the White House.

However something similar seems to be happening on the Republican side as well. Julie Annie remains out front in most credible polls (the online polls which ass-clown Ron Paul's pod people followers swarm over don't count). Yet Julie is the least conservative - the least Republican - of the candidates.

What is it that is causing both parties to think that their least liked candidate is their most electable candidate?