Monday, March 05, 2007

Guiliani Surges

Reuters has this article.

Republican presidential hopeful Rudolph Giuliani, virtually tied with John McCain in a January poll, held a 25-point lead over the Arizona senator in a Newsweek magazine survey released on Saturday.

Among registered Republicans, 59 percent said they backed the former New York City mayor and 34 percent said they favored McCain, who announced on Wednesday he would seek the presidency in 2008, Newsweek said.


This is certainly not totally unexpected. But yet in some ways, I think it is. I wouldn't have guessed in a million years that Rudy would surge this quick. I actually thought it would have been tighter maybe right up to Iowa, mainly because McCain is the consensus "machine" candidate. Which means he supposed to have the kingmakers-of-the-party endorsments and access to all of the purse strings, early on. It was then, I expected to Rudy to surge, not now.

What is apparent to the political eye, are a number of points to consider. Here are just a few:

One thing is evident, the GOP voters that are being polled now are not going to fall behind the party "machine". They did that with Bush in 2000 and looking back, they may be disappointed in doing so.

The primary season is not far off, but too far to crown anyone the winner, just yet. Iowa is the biggest part of a year away. Traditionally, that is when and where the money starts to flow. But with Giuliani being so far ahead so soon, I would not be the least bit surprised if the money starts working its way to Rudy much sooner. And if this happens, it will put McCain at a sizable disadvantage early.

Why this is, is anyone's true guess. But there are some things that I believe to be true. One thing is, McCain has never been trusted by the GOP. I think the only reason McCain did as well as he did in 2000 ,was because the was the anti-Bush. At least he was the only one that had a snowball's chance in hell, in stopping the "machine".

In the grander scheme of things, I think the party is moving more toward the center. It's subtle, but sure. Center politics is where it's at and they are beginning to act like they know it. In fact, if Rudy is nominated, I would be willing to say that the GOP is less controlled by the hard right, than the Dems are currently with the hard left. The influence of the religious right will be greatly diminished, which is something the Dems would have hoped to exploit in their strategic plans.

But regardless of how we analyze it, this poll only gives a bigger lift than expected to the former mayor of New York City and solidifies him as an actual contender. That much we can say with certainty, but that's about all we can say with any level of confidence, right now. One thing it does not tell us is? The name of the eventual winner.

35 comments:

Mary Ellen said...

One thing it does not tell us is? The name of the eventual winner.

And the winner is......(drum roll)

Newt Gingrich will be the Republican Primary winner.


I'll lay odds that Newt jumps in the race. He even got more votes than McCain at the CPAC meeting this week. He's waiting like a vulture in the background for the debates when Giuliani can't hang on to his lead. Once Giulini starts to actually talk about ideas (which he has none) people will figure out he he hasn't got a clue, especially about foreign policy. If he manages to win the Primary, he will never get the Black vote and he certainly won't get the soccer mom vote. Soccer moms don't care too much for guys who tell their wives they are getting divorced on national television. Then again...in Newt's case, he left his first wife when she was fighting cancer to marry another woman he was having an affair with.

I would enjoy watching Rudy try to debate Hillary or Obama, though. It will be a lot of fun listening to his plan to straighten out Iraq like he straightened out New York. (I still can't believe he said that! :-D )

I also heard that Mitt Romney and McCain got booed at the CPAC meeting this week when they announced the percentages of votes for them. There was a Republican political pundit on MNBC who said that the younger crowd caught on to McCain and Romney's constant change of issues (flip-flops) and they want someone who could be straight with them, not just tell whatever crowd they are talking to, what they want to hear.

I also don't think that McCain helped himself making that announcement on the David Letterman show. He tried to be all cute and coy but he didn't pull it off. He's looking really old, too. I think he's way past his prime for running a campaign. He doesn't look in good health..kind of weak and tired compared to the other candidates.

beinghad said...

I personally am going Hillary all the way. But let me say this about these two men from the other side. I was in Manhattan on September 11th 2001 and I say Rudy is great. The guy had that martial scandal, he had prostate cancer, still did a hell of a job of holding New York together in a time of crisis. Fantastic job. Super job. However, I now reside in Belarus and therefore think that McCain should have terrorists steal a plane and fly into him. This loudmouth, blowhard, hawk is like the reincarnation of MacCarthy and nobody needed him either.

LASunsett said...

ME

//Newt Gingrich will be the Republican Primary winner.//

Newt is having a lot of trouble raising money. He can't win with out money. In the primaries or the general election.

//Once Giulini starts to actually talk about ideas (which he has none) people will figure out he he hasn't got a clue, especially about foreign policy.//

Obama hasn't put forth any ideas so far. Yet, he is gaining ground against Hillary. Most Dems I work with are supporting him over Hillary. Therefore, I wouldn't count Rudy out based on that alone, at least not at this juncture. But both are going to need to articulate some specific plans, if they expect their momentum to continue later on in the year.

//Soccer moms don't care too much for guys who tell their wives they are getting divorced on national television. Then again...in Newt's case, he left his first wife when she was fighting cancer to marry another woman he was having an affair with.//

I do not believe this is going to be much of a factor. People forgave Bill for his indiscretions. In fact, if he could run again, he'd win hands down.

The Dem strategists may be chomping at the bit to use this information against him, but in the end it will have little or no effect and it may outright backfire on them. I do not like the way these guys handled their situations either. But, there's a reason it's called a "personal" life.

All candidates, Dem and GOP, have some assets and all have some detractions. It will be interesting to see which ones will matter most to voters.

LASunsett said...

BH

//This loudmouth, blowhard, hawk is like the reincarnation of MacCarthy and nobody needed him either.//

The hard right doesn't like him because he flip-flops on social issues as well as others. The Dems do not like him because he is a hawk and a Republican. But, really, McCarthy? I do not see him as a McCarthy at all.

Mary Ellen said...

LA

Look at Obama's website

http://obama.senate.gov

and you will see what he does and what he wants to do for the US. He has talked about many things in his speeches about his platform. For one, he wants to phased troop withdrawal from Iraq. He's talked about healthcare, socicial security, medicare/medicaid, and education. You just have to listen to him.

Not to mention the fact that Obama is respected on both sides of the aisle. Unlike Giuiliani who may be respected as a Mayor, but everyone knows he is totally out of his league as a President who has to deal with foreign issues and diplomacy.

Now, try to find a site for Guiliani that discusses what he wants to do as President. Nothing. He talks about what a great job he did in New York to fight crime...I've heard little about his plans for Iraq. In fact, while interviewed on Iraq, he couldn't even get the names of the cities and sectors correct. He was clueless as to what was going on over there and said he wants to clean up Iraq like he cleaned up New York City. Good luck with that! He wants to keep going with the Iraq war just as it is, Bush style. Well, guess what...the majority of the American people don't want that. Not the majority of the Democrats...but the majority of the entire population of the US.

As far as comparing Rudy's divorces and Bill Clinton...not even a comparison. The reason why Americans forgave him was that, although his actions were hurtful to his family, he didn't insult or hurt Hillary by degrading her. He did everything he could do to keep his family together, marriage counciling, etc. He didn't go around making statements about her or blame her for his indiscretions.Not to mention the fact, the majority of Americans were really pissed at Ken Starr and the hatchet job they were doing on Clinton. They were especially unhappy with all the money spent on other investigations that were bogus.

I'll get back to you about Giuliani on a few other issues later...have to get some coffee and wake up.

LASunsett said...

ME

//he didn't insult or hurt Hillary by degrading her. //

Cheating on your spouse is not degrading? Come on now, ME. I do not believe that you believe that for one moment. It's evident that if it's a Dem doing the dirty deed, there's a valid explanation. If it's a Republican, there's no excuse.

I stand by my statement, both parties would do best to leave personal lives out of politics.

LASunsett said...

ME,

As for Obama's web site and Rudy's lack thereof:

1. He is a sitting US Senator, it stands to reason he would have a website. Rudy is not even an official candidate yet. Oh, he's running, you can bet on that. But until he officially announces, he will not have an official web site. But he will, and he will.

2. I glanced at a couple of things at Obama's site and the only thing that i saw that i can agree with him on is the elimination of weapon caches. He is working with Lugar on that, and Lugar has been doing this for years. I'll read the rest later, but what I read wasn't particularly specific to what approach he would take as President. Most of what i read was what he is doing as a Senator. Presidents and Senators have very different functions and a lot of what he is doing may not translate well into a new role.

But again, I will read it more thoroughly later. With an open mind.

Mary Ellen said...

LA

I never said that what Bill did by cheating on his wife was a good thing. I said that he didn't flaunt it in front of her or try to blame her for his discretions as Rudy did to his wife by having news conferences and telling everyone he is getting a divorce on tv before even telling her. Then, bringing out his marital problems and blaming her for his wanting to be with other women.

Let's talk about Mr. Braveheart Giuliani and his "heroism" during 911.

During the 911 Commission it was brought out that Rudy made the idiotic decision to build the Emergency Operations Center (EOC) on the 23rd floor of the 7 WTC Building. He was warned that this would be a bad idea and that he should have it built underground in a bunker like they did in LA. No, he decided to put it in a "skybox bunker" instead. Idiot. When planning this, it was brought up that if the power went out in that building during an emergency, they would be trapped on the 23rd floor. So what did he order? He order fuel tanks to be stored in the basement. These tanks leaked and caught fire on the day of 911 which caused the building to collapse.

Everyone was evacuated from the EOC on 911, on a day that it was needed the most. Good planning.

Also, he claimed at the 911 Commission that the reason they didn't have radios that could work on the same frequency for the firefighters and police officers was because that technology wasn't available. Another lie. It was brought out in that commission that it did, indeed, exist and that the Military was using them so they can communicate with Army, Navy, or Marines at any time on the same frequency. They didn't push him on that issue because...well, gee, they wouldn't want to tear into the paper hero they made for themselves.

The only reason you saw film of Rudy G. walking around on 911 (funny how he managed to have a crew of camera men with him), was because he wasn't able to be in the EOC at the time that he SHOULD have.

Certainly Mayor Giuliani offered charismatic leadership after 9/11. But his judgments leading up to that day – as well as the actions of his administration in the immediate aftermath – should be questioned.

Greg said...

It's all about money in the primaries, as LAS points out. Romney and Guiliani seem to have the most. M-E is right about Newt being a great conservative candidate, but he's too late, don't you think? The others have been raising money for months now. How would he catch up? Same problem for Al Gore on the other side.

As for the foreign policy thing, it's pretty obvious that people don't vote on that in the presidential election. GW had no experience in 2000. Clinton had none in 1990. But their opponents had a lot.

In the primaries especially, the party faithful are voting on their core issues, like abortion, unions, gay rights and immigration. That's where I think Guiliani and Hillary have problems; and where I think Romnney and Obama are stronger.

LASunsett said...

ME,

//Certainly Mayor Giuliani offered charismatic leadership after 9/11. But his judgments leading up to that day – as well as the actions of his administration in the immediate aftermath – should be questioned.//

Like I have said in the past, politics relies heavily on perception. The perception of many is that he did a great job. When asking my Democratic co-workers that are supporting Obama, most of them say they could live with Rudy. Only a small handful have said they are excited about Hillary.

Mary Ellen said...

LA

Here is Barack Obama's Presidential Campaign site. It might be better than the other one since it addresses the issues of his campaign.

http://www.barackobama.com/

Greg

I don't know about Gingrich and his money issues in running. I just have to wonder if the other candidates really bomb and it doesn't look like they can beat any of the Democratic candidates, the GOP may pour money into his coffers to get him elected. I personally think the guy is dispicable, but he is just what the extreme right wing likes...nasty and corrupt.

I'm not sure what the core Republicans are looking at in a candidate. I know the core Democrats are looking for a candidate that will get us out of Iraq and will fix all the messes that Bush made, i.e. health care, prescription drug costs, etc. (kitchen table issues).

I'm still not sure who I'm backing in the Primary. I'm watching Hillary and Barack very closely. I see things I like in both of them, so either one that wins will get my vote. I think Barack Obama will be embraced by a lot of the Conservatives who are leaving the Republican party because of what Bush has done to destroy it...those Conservatives who don't like to run with the Evangelical crowd. I'm not so sure those same Conservatives would be so willing to embrace and vote for Hillary in a Presidential election.

I still say the Hillary/Barack or visa versa will be a good ticket. That's why they have to be careful not to tear into each other too much. If they keep their campaign on issues and not personal attacks they can still come together on one ticket.

I like Edwards as a person, but don't think he will be a strong leader. He's very nice and I have no doubt that he is sincere in his wish to bring the "two America's" together, but like Jimmy Carter who is a very sweet man, he wouldn't be a good President. That said, if he were to win the Primary...I'd still back him over any Republican on the ticket. I think Republican...and I see Corruption.

LASunsett said...

Greg,

You are right about the money thing being the biggest hurdle for Newt. But in addition to that, there's this stigma attached to him - that he was the man that got into a pissing contest with an extremely popular president, and shut the government down. I do not think he could overcome that, despite the fact that he would be the best conservative candidate. I like many of his ideas - many of which have been in direct contrast to those of GWB.

Mary Ellen said...

LA

Good point on Gingrich and the government shutdown, I forgot about that.

Here is one reason that Republicans think Giuliani is a good candidate. They have no clue for what he stands for because they believe everything they hear from the GOP propaganda machine. Case in point...

In its cover story for the March 12 issue of the magazine, Newsweek asserted that former New York City Mayor Rudy Giuliani's (R) candidacy has been gaining support "thanks in part to former front runner [Sen.] John McCain's [R-AZ] staunch advocacy for escalating the troop presence in Iraq," suggesting that Giuliani has not been a "staunch advoca[te]" of a troop increase, despite reports that, "[i]n every speech he makes," Giuliani "endors[es] the war and the deployment of 21,500 more troops." Similarly, in his March 4 column (subscription required), New York Times op-ed columnist Frank Rich asserted that Giuliani had not been a "cheerleader" for President Bush's decision to invade Iraq. Rich did not define what he meant by "cheerleader," but in 2002, Giuliani repeatedly called for regime change in Iraq "earlier" rather than "later." Rich also suggested that "[t]o voters, [Giuliani's] war history begins and ends with the war against the enemy that actually attacked America on 9/11," even though Giuliani has, over the last five years, repeatedly tied the Iraq war to the terrorist attacks of September 11, 2001.

Maybe some people should start reading some of the stuff that Rudy says and get their collective heads out of the clouds where they see nothing but some kind of hero. Rudy is no hero....

Mary Ellen said...

Ok...last comment for the morning, I have to go do my Therapy Dog work.

Here's a cute picture, thought you might like it. You know things are getting bad when the dogs have to beg in the street.

http://tinyurl.com/2u6g99

Greg said...

Mary-Ellen: 'm not sure what the core Republicans are looking at in a candidate

Sure you do! They want someone who will say "No new taxes" or at least promise not to raise them. Who will not expand abortion rights (or preferably says they want to overturn Roe even though they don't mean it). Who is against gay marriage. Who is "tough on immigration" (i.e., against "amnesty"). Who will reduce gov't spending, except when it concerns defense spending. And who will promise to bring the troops home from Iraq "with honor."

The core Dems want someone who preferably was never for the war in Iraq, which is hard to find, so at least someone who will promise to bring the troops home "now." Who promises a whole slew of "necessary gov't programs." Who promises to "repeal the Bush tax cuts." Who is solidly pro-choice, even if their sincere religious belief is that abortion is murder.

The best guy then for the Republican core is Romney, though he is mormon, which is apparently an issue. Also, he's only recently come over to their side on abortion and gay rights.

The best person for the Democrat core is Obama, though he's young and inexperienced comparatively.

All_I_Can_Stands said...

Greg,

At this point I am inclined to agree with you about Romney. I don't think Newt can pull it off. Of the remaining viable candidates Romney seems least likely to disappoint.

There are too many skeletons in Guliani's closet. I am sure the media is sitting on them until after he wins the nomination. That is their m.o.

I don't really think this Mormon thing is as big a deal as they are making. I am as conservative Christian as you will find and I don't have an issue with his religion. Seeing how the media continually hypes Bush's faith, it may be strategic to have a non-Christian in the WH next go around. As I understand it Harry Reid is also a Mormon, but they don't seem to be concerned about that.

There are others I would prefer over Romney, but from the viable list he is my current choice.

Let Guliani surge for now. It is usually not sustainable unless you are so far above the others. He is not.

All_I_Can_Stands said...

Oops. Missed an 'i' in Guiliani. Sigh. Already my clean slate for a new day is marred with a spelling error. Maybe tomorrow.

Greg said...

allIcanstands: I don't really think this Mormon thing is as big a deal as they are making.... Seeing how the media continually hypes Bush's faith, it may be strategic to have a non-Christian in the WH next go around.

I don't mean to pick on you, or pick apart your post, but could this indicate that perhaps you do have a problem with his faith? Mormons consider themselves Christian....

All_I_Can_Stands said...

I don't mean to pick on you, or pick apart your post, but could this indicate that perhaps you do have a problem with his faith? Mormons consider themselves Christian....

Fair point. I would say there is a difference between "I disagree with his faith" and "I have a problem with his faith". My comment exposes that I disagree with Mormonism and don't consciously put them in the Christian category. I don't have a problem with his being a Mormon on a personal level or on the level of his running for president.

There are some that believe their faith is the only truth and there are those who think there are many paths to God. I think that conversation would be more appropriate in LA's religious blog.

LASunsett said...

ME

//Maybe some people should start reading some of the stuff that Rudy says and get their collective heads out of the clouds where they see nothing but some kind of hero. Rudy is no hero....//

He was for it before he was against it?

beinghad said...

I see that you are bringing back up the cheating issue here. I want to say something about this. Perhaps this is a local perspective as well: That issue was dealt with by Hillary and as far as I can see, the issue was hers and hers alone. That we live in an age when the press has these sort of rights is fine but this business with Lewinski (Her father was from Belarus by the way, but obviously this didn't sway Bills opinion on us) had nothing to do with foreign policy, the debt, health care or any of the serious business at hand. Hillary was the first one to say that it had nothing to do with the business of running the country and was the first one to stand by Bill and say that he was in fact doing his Job. Bill never said that this had anything to do with his wife or their relationship. And when he said that had not humiliated her, I think that we should say this as that "he had no intensions of hurting her".

I don't want to pontificate on legal theory but there is a difference between a crime, where there is intention to do harm, and a tort in which damage is done and perhaps the more reasonable and prudent man could have avoided this.

Did he have sex with Lewinski to Piss off his wife? I don't think anyone on the planet thinks so. I say he had sex with Lewinski because Lewinski wanted to have sex with him. And I want to add that that $40 million or billion or whatever was spent on the Star investigation was the biggest waste of the tax payers money since the $10,000 army toilet seat. And the question should never have been "Did he lie?" The question at all times was supposed to be was he doing his job to the best of his abilities?" Or Was he doing a good job I helping the USA?" And I have always felt and I am I no way alone that the answers to these last two questions were YES!

Now as far as I can they are still married despite the scandal. And really, we all know they were the quintessential "power couple" of the 90's. They were about their work and their commitment to doing what they thought was right. Hillary could have simply opened a law office. Bill could have too. But he has been working with the UN and she has been doing a more than reasonable job in New York. I think when you look at the bottom line, these folks are still at the same job they agreed to do from the beginning. I for one respect the hell out of that.

By the way, could I get an e-mail?

LASunsett said...

BH,

//I see that you are bringing back up the cheating issue here.//

I didn't bring it up. ME did, when mentioning Newt and Rudy's indiscretions. I do not think it has any bearing on the issues that surround us today. It certainly has no place as part of a Democratic strategy against Rudy or Newt.

I agree with you almost completely on the Starr investigation, I was a vocal critic of the entire thing, albeit I didn't have a blog at the time to pontificate on it.

Anonim said...

Dan Gilgoff, a journalist who wrote a book on James Dobson, was on Fresh Air yesterday. He said that evangelical Christians (he said, some 25% of the electorate! Wow!) are pondering to lend their support to Romney. The below excerpt is from the NPR site; the interview can be listened to thru the link.

--------------------------
'The Jesus Machine' Tracks James Dobson's Rise

Fresh Air from WHYY, March 5, 2007 -- Journalist Dan Gilgoff is the author of the new book The Jesus Machine: How James Dobson, Focus on the Family, and Evangelical America Are Winning the Culture War.

Gilgoff --a senior writer at U.S. News & World Report-- gained rare access for a reporter to the Focus on the Family organization. He writes about how Dobson's group became the most powerful group in the Christian Right.

LASunsett said...

Anonim,

It would appear that Dobson has replaced Falwell and Robertson as the most influential evangelical Christian leader, in the political arena. As a profound believer in the separation of church and state, I do not support any religious organization trying to infuse their specific belief systems on society, as a whole. None, whatsoever.

With that said, I do not support the demonization of those same groups for their beliefs, as many in the media attempt to do.

Anonim said...

Yeah, the author said the same thing regarding Dobson's becoming more influential than Falwell and Robertson.

I don't think any differently than you do on church & state. I brought up the interview to point to the likely evangelical support for Romney. His Mormon religion may not be a big issue for him as AICS hinted.

LASunsett said...

Anonim,

//His Mormon religion may not be a big issue for him as AICS hinted.//

I am not a Mormon. I disagree with a good bit of their doctrine. But overall, they are certainly good people. Nevertheless, I cannot help but wonder if there are some very staunch evangelicals that will not support him. I could be wrong though (as many of you, often tell me here)

;)

Anonim said...

LA, you're wrong again, but I don't know where... ;)

Is there really any truth in evangelical votes amounting to something like 25% of the overall votes?

LASunsett said...

Anonim,

//Is there really any truth in evangelical votes amounting to something like 25% of the overall votes?//

In 2004, CNN put the number at 23%.

Anonim said...

Thanks for the link, LA.

Did you do something to the font-size settings? Fonts are bigger now (too much scrolling), and inconsistently so. (Ah, that's probably where you were wrong!)

LASunsett said...

//Did you do something to the font-size settings?//

Not that I am aware of, they look normal to me. Hmmmm. (Cue: Twilight Zone Music)

Mary Ellen said...

Wow

I missed a lot while I was gone today...

anonim: font size could be adjusted on your computer at any time. I do it every once in awhile if I'm really tired and the print looks blurry. Maybe you accidently adjusted it or someone else who uses your computer did?

BeingHad

I don't want to pontificate on legal theory but there is a difference between a crime, where there is intention to do harm, and a tort in which damage is done and perhaps the more reasonable and prudent man could have avoided this.

As always, I agree with you 100%.

beinghad said...

Mary Ellen, You also have an open invitation to come for a visit to the beautiful and interesting Republic of Belarus!
Go Sox!

Mary Ellen said...

Thanks BH! I've never been invited to Belarus before, then again, I've never even talked to anyone from Belarus!

Mary Ellen said...

LA

See...this is a big factor in Giuliani's race. A story on CNN:

Richard Land, head of public policy for the Southern Baptist Convention, told The Associated Press that evangelicals believe the former New York City mayor showed a lack of character during his divorce from his second wife, television personality Donna Hanover.

"I mean, this is divorce on steroids," Land said. "To publicly humiliate your wife in that way, and your children. That's rough. I think that's going to be an awfully hard sell, even if he weren't pro-choice and pro-gun control."


It isn't just the fact that he is divorced, it's HOW he did it.

USpace said...

Great one, it's in, thanks! RUDY! RUDY RUDY...

absurd thought -
God of the Universe
is not moderate

always rigid in thinking
won't compromise for real gain
.