Saturday, July 21, 2007

US Politics

Both President George W Bush and Vice President Cheney are beset by health problems. This will sap the energy of an administration already under pressure on Iraq. George Bush -at record levels of unpopularity in the opinion polls-needs to develop a coherent strategy for disengagement from Iraq. Bush is correct not to set an exact date for withdrawal.
Hillary Clinton appears to have the edge so far on Barack Obama in the race for the Democratic nomination for 2008. Obama is charismatic but lacks depth in policy matters. John Edwards is seen as well meaning but rich and out of touch with the general body of the electorate. So far the Democtats have the edge in fund raising.
On the Republican side Rudolf Giuliani is now the front runner. But Giuliani is pro abortion. McCains campaign seems to have bombed. It is doubtful if either could defeat Clinton. Mitt Romney who was formerly pro abortion has now adopted a pro life stance. He is distrusted by conservatives. However waiting in the wings is former Senator Fred Thompson. Over 50,000 Americans have signed an online petition urging him to stand. The race for the Republican nomination is wide open.
Thompson could be a dark horse. He is conservative and seen as anti abortion. This would weld together many strands in the Republican Party. Thompson however has critics also within the Republican Party. Age could also pose problems.

The Republicans could win the Presidency in 2008 with a Thompson like candidate .
  • Clinton is vulnerable on Iraq having flip flopped on several occasions.
  • Clinton is pro abortion.
  • A Thompson like candidate would be seen as pro life. This would galvanise conservatives
  • Ralph Nader may run, siphoning off mainly Democrat votes.
  • Michael Bloomberg mayor of New York has resigned from the Republican Party and may run as an Independent. He is pro abortion and would seriously damage Clinton. He would take some Liberal Republican votes also.
  • Democrats in the House have shot themselves in the foot having voted down the John Doe amendment. This would protect the public from being sued for reporting suspicious behaviour that may lead to a terrorist attack. The Republicans can now paint the Democrats as soft on terrorism.
It is possible that a younger conservative candidate than Thompson could yet emerge for the GOP. It is early days yet.

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