Category Archives: Hillary Clinton

Big Tent Republicanism and Looking Ahead to 2016

Former Secretary of State Condi Rice was on CBS this morning to talk election aftermath and where the GOP goes from here.

“Right now, for me the most powerful argument is that the changing demographics in the country really necessitates an even bigger tent for the Republican Party. I also think that many of the things for which the party stands are broadly popular with the American people — fiscal responsibility, a chance to educate your children in the way that you think best, the possibility of strong national defense — these are all things I think that can unite us,” Rice said.

She continued: “But when you look at the composition of the electorate, clearly, we are losing important segments of that electorate and what we have to do is to appeal to those people not as identity groups but understanding that if you can get the identity issue out of the way, then you can appeal on the broader issues that all Americans share a concern for.”

If you listened to Condi’s speech at the GOP Convention, she talked about this…about how the message of the Republican Party is to give the people opportunity to advance. We need to become a bigger, more inclusive party, pushing a message of freedom, opportunity, individual liberty, and social advancement through personal ambition.

Condi, who is in favor of civil unions and a comprehensive immigration reform, is the right speaker for our party. Strong on national defense and security and where our party needs to go on social issues. She’s an advocate for school choice and will make a great spokesperson for our party.

Moving forward, the path to the 2016 nomination looks twofold: for the Democrats, it goes through Hillary Clinton. According to PPP, in Iowa, New Hampshire, and Florida, Hillary races out of the pack and would be the clear favorite to succeed President Obama. If she chooses not to run, it looks like a knock down, drag out fight between Vice President Biden, NY Governor Andrew Cuomo, and MD Governor Martin O’Malley, with others sprinkled in.

For the Republicans, there is no clear favorite. In Iowa, Mike Huckabee; in New Hampshire, Chris Christie; in Florida, Jeb Bush. Paul Ryan, Condi Rice, and Rick Santorum are in the mix as well. Personally, I do not think Jeb will run, he knows he missed his chance and his mentee, Marco Rubio, will be one of the hot names. Jeb will be Education Secretary in a future administration or a viable candidate against Bill Nelson in 2018. Sarah Palin will not run and I encourage her to run for Senate in 2014. Rick Santorum’s time has come and gone, as has Mike Huckabee’s. I think Chris Christie is viable if he wins the governorship in 2013 again; if he loses, he might need to redeem himself with a Senate race in 2014. I wish wish wish wish wish Condi Rice will run but I think her path is the 2014 California Governor’s Race and she will win it.

The Buck Stops With Me; Polls; Ohio

So says Hillary Clinton. “I take full responsibility.” She threw herself under the Obama bus. As Newt said last night, she’s lost the 2016 primary and she lost the presidency yesterday. No Hill-Billy 2016 I guess…


  • That Gallup/USA Today poll from yesterday has Obama +3 (51-48) in favorability and Romney +8 (52-44). 10 point swing since August!
  • PPP/Daily Kos/SEIU has Romney up 50-46 nationally. That’s a Democratic pollster with Romney at 50%.
  • AMA (American Medical Association) endorses Ryan-style Medicare reform. Take that, Joe Biden.
  • Could Pennsylvania be in play? This is ALWAYS the “gotcha” state for GOP every presidential cycle. Quinnipiac has Obama up 4, 50-46; Muhlenberg has Obama up 4, 49-45. If Romney can force Obama to spend money in the Keystone State and if it goes red on November 6, it’ll be a landslide for Romney.
  • New Hampshire poll from last night has it 47/47 in the presidential race. Not surprising.

Updated 2012 Map:

  • Florida, Virginia, North Carolina, Colorado move into the Romney camp. 257
  • Nevada, Michigan, Pennsylvania move into the Obama camp. 243
  • Iowa (6), Ohio (18), Wisconsin (10), and New Hampshire (4) are toss-up.

Why is Ohio so hard to figure out?

  • Exit polls in 2008 showed 39/33/30 DRI…based on actual results (Obama 51.5-46.9), actual party breakdown was 36.5/32.5/30 DRI…D+5, not D+8. Exit polls are the definition of inexact science. Almost every poll to date has a D+4 or higher, which ASSUMES higher Democratic turnout than 2008.
  • Romney is up with independents in every poll. Obama CANNOT win Ohio without winning independents, not if turnout is D+5 or lower.
  • One cannot assume D+5 turnout or higher, because: Romney is and has more money to spend on ads compared to McCain; Romney rallies are infinitely higher than McCain or even Palin rallies in 2008. Enthusiasm + money on the GOP side = win.

Second Presidential Debate tonight. I’ll have more on that later and a recap afterwards.

Comparing the Benches

So with the Republican National Conference over and the Democratic National Convention starting, one only has to look at the speakers to see who the rising stars (“the benches”) are for each party. Let’s put them in a depth chart


  • First String: VA Gov. Bob McDonnell; WI Gov. Scott Walker; SC Gov. Nikki Haley; NJ Gov. Chris Christie; LA Gov. Bobby Jindal; SD Sen. John Thune; Former Sec. of State Condoleezza Rice; WI  Rep. Paul Ryan; FL Sen. Marco Rubio
  • Second String: NH Sen. Kelly Ayotte; OK Gov. Mary Fallin; NV Gov. Brian Sandoval; KY Sen. Rand Paul; OH Sen. Rob Portman; PR Gov. Luis Fortuño; NM Gov. Susana Martinez; Former FL Gov. Jeb Bush; TX Sen. Ted Cruz
  • Third String: ND Sen. John Hoeven; TN Rep. Marsha Blackburn; WA Rep. Cathy McMorris-Rodgers; Saratoga Springs Mayor Mia Love; OH Gov. John Kasich; Former MN Gov. Tim Pawlenty


  • First String: CO Gov. John Hickenlooper; Former VA Gov. Tim Kaine; MD Gov. Martin O’Malley; Secretary of State Hillary Clinton; MT Gov. Brian Schweitzer; MA Senate Candidate Elizabeth Warren
  • Second String: Newark Mayor Corey Booker; San Antonio Mayor Julian Castro; Chicago Mayor Rahm Emmanuel; Charlotte Mayor Anthony Foxx; NC Sen. Kay Hagan; Philadelphia Mayor Michael Nutter; Vice President Joe Biden; MN Senator Amy Klobuchar; Los Angeles Mayor Antonio Vilagarossa
  • Third String: WI Senate Candidate Tammy Baldwin; House of Representatives Candidate Joaquin Castro; MA Gov. Deval Patrick; Former OH Gov. Ted Strickland; Houston Mayor Annisse Parker

Compelling Television?

If you’ve been paying attention to the TV the past six weeks, you know Political Animals ended on Sunday with a thrilling slightly-longer-than-an-hour finale to its inaugural six-episode miniseries. Is there anything that can’t be condensed and solved in a six-episode miniseries? I think not.

Political Animals was the story of Elaine Barrish, former First Lady-turned Governor-turned Presidential Candidate-turned Secretary of State (huh, that sounds really familiar), who deals with the stress of being the nation’s top diplomat for her rival, and the drama of being the former First Family after divorcing her husband, former President Bud Barrish.

The show started off strong. Elaine’s oldest son is her chief of staff and her youngest son, who came out of the closet while the family was in the White House, still struggles with a drug addiction. Elaine clashes with President Garcetti (the Italian-American Barack Obama), Vice President Fred Collier (a more folksy, asshole version of Joe Biden), and Elaine’s former campaign manager-turned Garcetti’s Chief of Staff Barry Harris.

In all this is Elaine and the Barrish family’s relationship with Susan Berg, a reporter who won a Pulitzer for her work on Bud’s sex scandal while in office. At first thoroughly disliked by Elaine, Susan comes to earn her respect and becomes integral as the series progresses.

Elaine decides she is going to challenge Garcetti in his re-election attempt, despite some members of her family less than thrilled. To head her off, Garcetti offers her (again) to be his running mate. While she decides whether to run with him or against him, on a trip to France, Air Force One, with the President, crashes. VP Collier assumes the temporary duties of the President (after Elaine convinced him to assume the duties under Section 4 of the 25th Amendment — he initially wants to be sworn in as President, which would pose a Constitutional crisis should Garcetti still be alive, effectively giving the US two Presidents). The series ends ambiguous to whether Elaine will run again or allow Collier to run in Garcetti’s place (assuming he is deceased, the series does not confirm at the end).

Political Animal was a great show capitalizing on the phenomenon of Hillary Clinton and Barack Obama, with a backstory that mirrored Hillary and the 2008 campaign and rumors of her challenging President Obama in 2012. Whether or not the show will be picked up for a full season (or another small miniseries) has not been decided, but seeing as how most “progressive” political dramas have died, I am not hopeful.

I speak, of course, of Commander in Chief. President Teddy Bridges dies and Independent Vice President Mackenzie Allen becomes the nation’s first female president. Commander in Chief was a show ahead of its time, as it aired on ABC before Hillary Clinton ran for President in 2008. TV shows depicting female Commanders in Chief/Presidents rarely get rave reviews. These female leaders are too weak, too unable to separate personal lives from their jobs, etc. They did it to Geena Davis in Commander in Chief; they did it to Mary McDowell in Battlestar Galactica (42nd in line of succession after a nuclear attack). Surprisingly, the only one that I’ve heard get good reviews: Cherry Jones as President Allison Taylor in 24 (defeated incumbent President in the serious, the only one of the 4 mentioned to have won on her own).

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