Nate Silver thinks Pawlenty and Thune are overrated as presidential nominee contenders:
The other potential flaw in the analysis of candidates like Mr. Pawlenty and Mr. Thune is that some seem to think it an asset that they are bland and unobjectionable. In a primary election that isn’t an asset, but a liability. A primary election isn’t a reality show in which candidates are eliminated one at a time for failing some challenge. Instead, voters pick the one candidate whom they most like, rather than the one they most dislike; a candidate who has strong favorables and strong unfavorables is going to be more people’s first choice than one whom everyone feels indifferent about. Someone with a more distinct and provocative brand — like Gov. Chris Christie of New Jersey or Representative Paul Ryan of Wisconsin — might stand a better chance in an underdog role, although neither is likely to run for president in 2012.
Me, I’m a gut player, I rely on my instincts, and I just can’t imagine Palin as the nominee, no matter what Nate Silver’s crazy Monte Carlo models say. I’d like to see Romney win the nomination, because (a) I think he’d lose in the general and (b) I don’t think a Romney president would end life on this planet.
Silver’s certainly right that Pawlenty’s not going to get anyone fired up and ready to go. I’m afraid that Thune might, afraid both because he’s an idiot and because I think he might be a strong general election candidate.
I’m terrified Christie will run.
I don’t think he’s a viable 2012 candidate. He seems like Guiliani II, electric bugaloo to me.
Wait what? Isn’t that exactly how the presidential primaries work? Obviously losing one primary doesn’t automatically eliminate a candidate, but generally candidates drop off one by one after a poor showing.
omg … all bj’ers need to click on this link immediately: it’s poochies going crazy with the return of their soldier:
I think Nate’s models are right in that Palin could probably win the nomination, but I think she’s a lazy ass who wouldn’t be able to keep up with the rigors of campaigning and would drop out before New Hampshire. She’s the female Fred Thompson.
Yeah, Romney screams “typical politician” to me. He’s got that look and manner of speaking, not to mention a bucketload of flip-flops and broken promises. This is why I don’t think he’ll win the Republican nomination. Romney can speak well, and the one thread that connects all recent Republican nominees is a near-complete incompetence when it comes to public speaking (though Reagan is an exception here).
I’m not too worried about T-Paw or Thune because I’ve never seen either of them as particularly warm or likable, and to convince voters to dump Obama, they’d have to be. Only Huckabee really scares me, since he is likable, but I’m convinced that the money men in the Republican Party would never stand for it.
I don’t know if Palin can win the nomination, but I think it’ll come down to who else decides to step up. Romney or Jeb Bush would probably be able to beat her. What’s important though, is that the act of her running at all, whether or not she wins, will shift the entire debate within the Republican primary to the crazy far right (even crazier and more radical than it is at the moment, if you can believe it.) She’s a one trick pony, and “Crazier Than Thou” is her only trick.
I expect she will come out in favour of grizzly bear hunting any day now.
DugJayDougJ didn’t get the memo that Cole hates talking about the 2012 race so soon.
The thought of the 2012 Republican primary is what keeps me going. It’s going to be one of the greatest political events of our lifetime.
I’m betting on Perry. He seems to have batshit crazy old white guy that give him The Base Appeal(r) and the proven record of Corporate whore governance to get the nod from the Master of the Universe.
With a big IF
If it looks like things turn around for Obama, good economy and the like you’ll see the more viable Republicans drop out and save themselves for 2016 and some faceless drones like Pawlenty or Thune be the candidate.
Because the world will end, amirite?
Maybe, but what if both of them get in and hang on. In a winner take all contest, which is what they have, if she gets 35% and others get 10 and those two split, pretty soon noone can catch her.
Comrade Colette Collaboratrice
Well, MY gut says it’s going to be someone we’re barely aware of right now – à la Palin in 2008. All of the known potential candidates have negatives that are way too high: Romney=flipflop, Jeb Bush=Bush, Pawlenty=boring, Huckabee=crackpot Christian, etc. Like la Palin, the better they become known, the less people like them. It will be someone who comes into the game late enough that there won’t be time to find the basis for or create a negative image. And yes, it’s all about image.
I also suspect it will be someone from California, in part because that’s the last non-Texas thing that worked for the GOP and Texas is irredeemably tainted for this political generation with the stench of Bush. Being a limp-wristed liberal from San Francisco, I have no idea who among the California Republicans might play well out there in Real ‘Merka.
Davis X. Machina
The only questions any respectable entrail-reading haruspex needs to ask about any (not-gayer-than-a-French-tromonbone†) prospective 2012 GOP presidential candidate: “Does he or she piss liberals off? To what extent does he or she piss liberals off?”
There are no actual policy differences on the right worth fighting over. Everything, everything else has boiled away except ressentisment, spurred by blind rage that there’s a colored man in their White House.
They’re going to nominate their McGovern. Relax and enjoy the ride.
†Thank you for playing, Rick Perry
The words warm, likable and Pawlenty don’t belong in the same sentence. When he was MNGOP majority leader in 2001, he said regarding some type of aid to children that “children who are victims of failed responsibility are not my problem, nor are they the problem of our government”.
He’s real big on responsibility. He created an average of a whopping 624 jobs a year as governor while gutting funds from every place he could think of to “balance” the budget. With these creds, he should be a republican dream candidate.
No shit. Without a competing Democratic Candidate primary, they are going to be trying to outfreak one another and the spotlight will be heavily on all of them.
@Mnemosyne: Perhaps. I see her more as a McGovern, though. No offense to McGovern, who was (and is) an honorable and well-meaning man, but he had no business being the Dem nominee in 1972. Thanks to the small but fervid band of McGovern supporters, a large field of candidates, Nixon’s meddling and desperate and backfiring attempts by all the other candidates to kneecap him, he won the nomination in such an ugly way that he couldn’t help but lose. Then Nixon turned him into what John Q. Public was most afraid of–a revolutionary thug. Despite being right on Vietnam, despite the economy being not so great, McGovern lost because Nixon painted a picture and it set like concrete. With Palin, Obama would hardly even need to work to scare people. He wouldn’t even need to paint a picture. Palin does a good job of presenting herself a loon all on her own. I don’t think she could stop, either.
Okay, so maybe it’s not terribly likely. But if all the establishment guys dump on her and she provokes sympathy from Republicans over her treatment…
Davis X. Machina
@Larry Bird: If Christie runs, you’ll hear him before you see him, and you’ll feel him before you hear him,
I think Romney has a chance, but if he does win he’ll do it McCain- style, by winning the big Super Tuesday states over a divided opposition without a majority of votes in any of them. (Mind you, that’s Sarah Palin’s path to the White House, too.)
Having said that, I actually think there is a better chance of Utah going Democratic in the general than there is of Romney winning in 2012. If he loses on merit, fine, but I think the Republicans will have a real problem on their hands if he comes across as the best candidate in the field and loses to a demonstrably inferior candidate. Even discounting Sarah Palin, there are going to be a lot of those.
If Romney leaves Iowa and New Hampshire as the front-runner, everyone will be gunning for him, and it’s no secret what people are going to be using for ammunition. Of course the teabaggers could ignore his religion entirely and oppose him based on both sets of his policies, but that’s how Bob Inglis said the G.O.P. should oppose Obama and the teabaggers responded by primarying his sorry ass.
I think people tend to underestimate how dangerous people like Sharron Angle are to Mormons. The G.O.P. coalition only really works because it has a secular basis where different religious groups acknowledge their differences and rally around the issues they have in common. Christianists who think that the U.S. Constitution is founded in Biblical traditions (or to be more accurate, the Biblical traditions of one particular religious sect) are actually saying “No Mormons (among other people) in the government, ever”. Until this year, the Republicans had done pretty well at keeping those people under wraps. Now a whole bunch of them have national profiles and media access and are using it to attack the whole idea of secularism.
If Romney wins, the majority of Mormons will probably stay in the G.O.P. coalition. If he loses after months of hearing the Christine O’Donnells and Sharron Angles of the party telling the world how they really feel about the LDS church while endorsing Palin or Huckabee, I’d say all bets are off.
Mind you, this is just idle bloviating about a primary that is still over a year from beginning. Perhaps the moderates in the G.O.P. will take control of their party in the meantime and we will begin to see a Republican party that believes in electing serious people willing to deal with serious issues.
I can guarantee this won’t happen. In fact, let me give you a little sneak preview you haven’t heard yet: “Shit on California” is going to be a significant part of the the Republican agenda in the not too distant future.
Its governance has everything the GOP hates: out-of-control spending, public sector unions, overbearing greens, ethnic grievance mongering. And, due to these things, it needs money, that it can’t get itself. The only ones who have the money are the Feds, and the GOP controls Congress.
@Koz: I depends on how much influence Rove has. He really, really wanted Bush to win CA. Bush would love to run Arnold Vinick, ie, someone who could win California, appears moderate to make the village swoon, but still gets pushed around by ht people in charge of the GOP.
Anonymous At Work
The primaries are Palin’s to lose (and boy, if anyone can) because her core of supporters are the most die-hard and she can do no wrong in their eyes. Her support cannot go anywhere but up.
That being said, she knows she earns more now that she would as President, has an easier life, can avoid accountability, etc., so the question, in my mind, is whether she’ll drop out in time to avoid being the nominee.
Because the only way she keeps up the media rat-race she loves is to stay center of attention. Given that there is no Democratic primary in 2012, the GOP side will be the focus, and if she tried to play king-maker, she’d have her moment(s) and then fade away. Only by running can she *keep* the spotlight.
However, as she wins more and more primaries, other candidates drop out. So, again, will she leave “for her family’s sake” before she’s forced into the nomination? And what, if any, consequences will this have, especially down-ballot?
PS-Worst case scenario, for everyone, she’s on the ballot, but has dropped out and thus her personal VP pick is running on her name. If that happens, I’ll post a PO Box where people can send royalty checks.
@Comrade Colette Collaboratrice: If there were a right-winger who could win California, David Brooks would be giving him a foot massage right now. But there isn’t. California used to be a pretty Republican state, but then all the real right-wingers moved to places like Phoenix, Colorado Springs and Sun Valley, Idaho. And then the Republicans here decided to screw over Hispanics with Prop 187 and make them all Democrats, and finally they lost almost all their Asian support once the Cold War ended and all the educated people started becoming Democrats. They used to do well among Hispanics and Asians, but not no more. Reagan wouldn’t be able to win California today, but then again, with his issue set he wouldn’t be welcome in his own party today.
I still can’t believe people (e.g. Silver) are treating Haley Barbour as a viable candidate. Would there be any better symbol of the antiquity of the Republican party than Obama running against a fat, white Mississippi Governor?
If we’re lucky. And I really do mean if we’re lucky. Long emergencies aren’t emergencies if they’re long.
Rove has no influence. The idea that Rove was some genius evil Svengali was a self-delusion of the Left back in the day. Bush is gone. GOP voters might listen to Rove on Fox News but nobody does anything on his say-so.
@Davis X. Machina:
I stand corrected. Damn, closeted gay Republican. I am shocked!
If she stays in the race, maybe, but she only just barely got through the 2008 race without a meltdown and she only had to do it for a month and a half.
There is no way in hell — no way — that she could do a full presidential campaign. George W Bush worked on both of his father’s presidential campaigns and knew what a campaign consisted of and how to run one. Palin hasn’t got even the iota of a clue and she will not be able to handle the rigors of a real campaign.
Precisely, which is why I’m not really afraid of whoever emerges from the Lord of The Flies-esque carnage with the dubious distinction of 2012 Republican Presidential Nominee. They are all going to viciously and mercilessly eat each other alive and do their damnedest to destroy each other’s reputations for the rest of time. John Thune is grossly unprepared for The Great Republican Devouring; Pawlenty has already been consumed whole, as far as realistic chances of winning go; and Haley Barbour will be HILARIOUS as the token Old Racist Good Ol’ Boy From The South. I mean, who isn’t looking forward to day after day of this kind of absurdity:
That was Haley Barbour back in April defending Gov. Bob McDonnell’s (R-VA) omission of slavery from his proclamation on Confederate History Month.
It’s going to be absolutely amazing watching these clowns destroy each other. It would be even more amazing if we, their logical opposition, could exploit said discord to the fullest.
@Comrade Colette Collaboratrice:
There’s nobody for the California Republicans to run. Their last statewide office winner was Schwarzenegger, and they’ve drummed him out of the party. They couldn’t even find actual politicians who could win the nominations from Carly and eMeg.
Except for obstructing the state budget from their tiny desert enclaves, they’re pretty much done as far as statewide elections go, much less national. Even if they managed to get enough signatures together to recall Brown, who could they get to run against him?
In a republican primary that’s all that mattes. And he hates the teabaggers. He wants to be the face of “reasonable” republicans.
Don’t know why people have Rick Perry down so low. He’s got excellent fund raising skills and reminds the backwash why they loved George Bush so much without actually being George Bush.
I seriously doubt Palin or Gingrich will run, but thats mostly coming from my evaluation of their extreme venality. I have yet to take their egos into consideration, which may in fact supersede their desire for cash. If Romney runs, he won’t win for all the reasons he didn’t win in 2008.
You’re talking about Rove (not Romney) I take it.
The point being, he’s not the face of anything. He’s a studio analyst, not a player now. I haven’t seen anything that leads me to believe he wants to be a player again.
Just Some Fuckhead
I agree with this. Democrats got two years to register as Republicans to ensure Romney gets the nomination.
Comrade Colette Collaboratrice
@Lev: In the general election – I agree completely, but we’re talking about the Republican primaries. And I think that, although it’s unlikely even a California Republican would win California in the general election, nominating a Californian they could position as Reagan redux has got to be an attractive idea for GOP strategists. They know this state is blue on the outside and red on the inside, and they may be willing to gamble on that.
Well, this certainly is a list of almost everything the GOP hates, but except for the fact of public sector unions (which every state has), it sounds like a list of the imaginary beasts infesting their skulls. Who gets to define “out-of-control,” or “overbearing,” or “grievance mongering”? As for the last one, I submit that is simply another way of saying that liberals and brown people are the real racists.
For a whole multitude of reasons, I think Perry’s chances of ascending to the national stage are slim to begin with, mainly because of his connection to Bush and the fact that he’s run Texas the past decade in much the same manner that Bush ran the country. Texas is about to run smack-dab into a $25 billion deficit, which is going to lead to a fuckload of nightmares for Perry and his cohorts.
Additionally, there is the salient point that the supermajority of Republicans in the Texas Legislature have their sights set on creating an “immigration bill” similar to AB 1070 in Arizona:
Oh, and there is the fact that Texas is also facing 6.4 million Texans without health care, a dropout crisis, and a broken school finance system.
I wish so hard that Perry decides to make a run for the Presidency. I will most certainly be at the front of the charge to expose that know-nothing asshole for the fraud he’s always been.
“Who gets to define “out-of-control,” or “overbearing,” or “grievance mongering”?”
The Republicans in Congress, on account of the fact that the state of California is going to need a pile of money from the Feds to escape bankruptcy.
But I’m sorry. You were saying something about how there is nothing to indicate that Karl Rove still wants to be a power player in American politics?
@Koz: You’re wrong. Rove has a huge amount of influence. He’s a big Repub money man now, thanks to “American Crossroads”, his post-Citizens United laundering PAC.
Comrade Colette Collaboratrice
Ummm, I don’t think they’re the only ones who get to make a case for their definitions. There is no Republican supermajority in Congress. The state is painfully trying to balance the budget (despite the best blocking efforts of Republican state legislators) on the assumption that little money from the federal government will be forthcoming. It’s going to suck, and we’d be happy to take back some of the huge pile of wingnut welfare we donate to red states, courtesy of our Federal tax imbalance. Much as I hate earmarks, I don’t want to see them end until we get some of our own back.
Comrade Colette Collaboratrice
FYWP – of course the first non-block-quote sentence above is Koz’s.
Thune is NBC’s Brian Williams without the brains or personality.
Note: this is not a compliment.
Ok, what does this do for Rove except the ego value of doing it?
Btw, this last election was a message election, not a money election. I expect the next one will be as well. Times are rough, and the voters are willing to do a larger share of the campaign work for a candidate who’s perceived to be really good on message.
I can’t believe that no one has mentioned Rubio. Young, good looking, Latino, from Florida. Florida, people! FLORIDA!
Ok, well if the state doesn’t end up needing a huge bailout then the whole point is moot and I’m wrong.
But, if the state does need a bailout it will be very unpopular in the country yet Obama and Congressional Democrats will be forced to support it since California represents such a huge part of the Demo base. Therefore, the GOP can (and should) insist on the terms of the bailout to their liking. Mostly spending cuts in the state budget directed at liberal sacred cows.
Do you mean besides that fact that he has become the Big Money Guy for the Republican Party, and that his American Crossroads and Crossroads GPS have effectively supplanted the RNC as the de facto administrative and logistical body for Republican campaigns? Besides the fact that his organization will continue to play a major, if not THE major role, in shaping the Republican electoral strategy for 2012, especially issues like fundraising and coordinating attack ads?
Yeah, I can’t imagine how all of these empirically documented realities would serve to make Karl Rove a major player in Republican circles once again, in addition to feeding his ego, because they are not mutually exclusive things.
All those issues, and more, would be extensive liabilities in a general election. But we’re talking the Republican Primaries, here. Not just the Republican Primaries, but the 2012 Republican Primaries. Those liabilities you mentioned will be assets for him among the lunatic asylum.
On a state by state basis, Perry’s liabilities will depend on who he’s running against. And I personally don’t think anyone from 2008 will run against in 2012. At least none that matter, anyway. I could be wrong, most notably about Romney, but I think the dynamics for 2012 will be different, and therefor the candidates must be as well. And I think those dynamics will favor people like Perry or Barbour over people like Romney or Pawlenty.
You are absolutely correct. I think I was just getting ahead of myself thinking of all the delightful ways Perry could be taken down hard if he happened to slither away with the nomination. But most definitely, everything in the real world that would make a rational person loathe to support Perry, will be like nectar from the Gods in the 2012 Republican Presidential Primary (brought to you by The Mayans. The Mayans…predicting widespread Armageddon since before the birth of Christ).
You mean like when Schwarzenegger was planning to cut out funding for home care for disabled people until it was pointed out to him that it would mean we would end up spending twice as much to keep them in nursing homes instead because we were talking about a group of people who would literally die if left to fend for themselves?
Funny how those fiscal conservatives always end up actually costing the taxpayer more when they go on a hunt for sacred cows. See also Gov. Christie having to refund the money the feds already gave him for the tunnel he decided not to build, which will now cost the state more up-front than building the tunnel would have. Whoops!
The Republic of Stupidity
Christie isn’t going to run…
Seen a recent picture of the man?
He looks like he can barely walk…
Pretty much. She can sew up the loon vote easy, but campaigning more strenuously than Facebook postings and Twitter tweets would be too much work. As with Beck she likes the easy and big money in selling stupid.
I’m guessing it’ll be good ol Multiple Choice Mitt in 12. Depending on the economy, and if the Dems continue their brilliance in Congress, he could have a shot.
Coming down the pike later for the R-baggers will be Scott Brown and Marco Rubio. Rubio is already distancing himself from the baggers. Like Brown he’s fine with using them, but doesn’t want the full teabagger taint.
The Republic of Stupidity
Funny how that works…
my complaint about Tbag Pawlenty as my state’s
CEOGovernor is that he has approached the budget as if revenue was HIS MONEY. what a dick.
Felanius Kootea (formerly Salt and freshly ground black people)
I’m not worried about Thune or any of the other Republicans because more people pay attention to the presidential elections and many of the Democrats who didn’t go vote in the midterms because they didn’t think it was that important will vote in 2012. That said, I actually don’t mind Romney at all – I lived in Massachusetts when he was governor and he wasn’t half bad. He’ll never win the Republican primary if Palin is on the ballot though.
I know too many people who just assume that liberals are unwelcome here. I say being a liberal is not illegal…. until Sarah Palin’s president. and then they laugh. it’s not fk’n funny.
It sure as hell won’t help preserve it, though.
Huckabee is a proponent of the “Fair Tax,” aka “Make the tax code as punishingly regressive as possible.” Last time around, he took the Club for Growth’s no-tax pledge. He used a wedding registry to get around Arkansas’ law about giving gifts to elected officials. And to top it all off, he’s a fundamentalist Baptist who is demonstrably comfortable with repeatedly bearing false witness. I suspect the money men would not actually have a problem.
Fuck Ratface Pawlenty with a very rusty pitchfork. If he runs for president, I will actually get off my lazy ass and try to make his life a living hell.
@bkny: Great vid. My blood pressure thanks you.
I may get flack for the this, but if I had to pick a republican president I could most live with, it’d be Mitch Daniels. He publicly angered social-cons by saying their should be a truce on social issues, he said that defense cuts should be considered ( he would “ask questions about the extent of our commitments” abroad, which almost sounds like he was questioning the idea of an American Empire), and as governor he was willing to end a privatization scheme for health care in the state when it didn’t produce results.
These things make me think he wouldn’t stand a chance in the primary (and obviously he would be way, way worse than Obama), but he just seems to me like the least worst of a terrible field of republican candidates.
Anyone who paid the least attention to the mid-terms (a “shellacking” as Obama rightly put it) and thinks the Republicans will somehow “eat their own” during the 2012 primaries and end up with a non-viable presidential candidate who will then commence to surely lose against Obama, well, that’s just willful self-delusion.
Sure, the election is two years away (though the primaries start in a little more than a year) and a lot can happen in that time, but right now Obama, I’m very sorry to say, is looking like a one-term president, for all the reasons of the aforementioned “shellacking”.
The American electorate being what it is, if the “lot that can happen” doesn’t include a significant turnaround in the economy from the just-limping-by state we’re currently mired in (and I’m pessimistic about that) then Obama will take the fall, no matter who the Republicans choose to run against him.
Really, barring something truly major and unlikely on the foreign policy front, that’s all that will matter.
In the immortal words of Principal Skinner: “prove me wrong, children. Prove me wrong”. Believe me, I’d like nothing better.
The Republicans are so funny, when the economy is good you say let’s all celebrate “Cinco de Mayo, my brothers” but when the economy is down “it’s all your fault, you damn immigrant”.
The GOP has went on a nationwide rant in proposing and passing several anti-immigration legislation (that our US Courts continue to strike down) and have continue to blame the immigrant for the flat economy or worse.
Plus the more radical of the GOP are now attacking our Constitution (with all Amendments), and the Declaration of Independence, in their crazy notion of wanting to take away rights that all of us take for granted in their misguided attempt to garner some much needed votes (how is that working, of course I mean the Senate), they really are fools, and leading the GOP towards obscurity because they are no longer a party of ideas, just of empty suits.
When most Americans (of Latin America roots) went to the polls this November we all remembered who stood with us, our children, aunts and uncles, brothers and sisters, our parents and grandparents, in one word our families and who stood against us, so trying to make amends now is somewhat funny, but go ahead, you did not change our minds. Your hate made you do it, and you found out that you reap what you have sown. I wonder what Abraham Lincoln would say about todays GOP, he unlike the current GOP was a man of ideas.