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Ahh, the caucus page hadn't been updated when I posted it above - thanks. Still though - fantastic showing for Dr. Paul!

I'm an advocate of election reform, but I don't feel we need the UN or some other NGO election observers. I feel others can be just as crooked as people in our system, and our elections are a national matter, not an international matter.

In the end, considering how close our past elections have been, those "tiny states" do matter.

I was being somewhat sarcastic when I mentioned the UN etc - nevertheless both our lands need election reform. Can you be more specific as to what kind of reforms you advocate?

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As for Paul-- he tied for second in Nevada with McCain-- and Romney won with 52% compared to Paul's and McCain's 13%. If anyone is toast, it's Paul.
Paul did well in Nevada for the same reason Romney did well there:
Romney also benefited from his Mormon religion, the poll results show. Romney captured 94 percent of the voters who identified themselves as Mormon, which made up 25 percent of all Republicans participating in the GOP caucuses.
CNN

IOW, a small concentrated, organized group can take control of the caucus process.

Given that all GOP campaigns except Romney's are short of funds, I think Giuliani was smart to sit out the New Hampshires and Iowas. Those are media fests but very small states.
The money rolls in when a campaign is successful. Call it "spend as you go". BTW, Americans are generally not comfortable with a candidate who tries to buy an election with his own money. (eg. Perot, Forbes, Rockefeller)
To repeat, Giuliani isn't campaigning in states that have few delegates. When it comes to conventions, it's delegates, not poll numbers in tiny states that matter.
Misses the point of the primaries. NH and Iowa and SC may be small in delegate numbers but they loom large in how they influence the outcome in larger states.

Giuliani is taking a big risk in Florida and even if he wins there, I don't think that it will translate into a big win on Super Tuesday. The strategy is too smart by half.

You could have time stamped him wrong when he made the prediction. Bill Clinton was the 42nd president.
Hee-hee. Jerry is one of those big thinkers. Not a detail kindaguy. Edited by August1991
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I watched the Dems debate tonight. At the beginning, Hillary and Barack threw barbs at each other then it suddenly turned into a love-in. Edwards seemed like a bump on a log as he watched it unfold. Personally, I did not learn anything new from a policy viewpoint. It looks to me like a contest between gender and race as the white guy watches the goings on. Could this work in Edwards' favour?

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I watched the Dems debate tonight. At the beginning, Hillary and Barack threw barbs at each other then it suddenly turned into a love-in. Edwards seemed like a bump on a log as he watched it unfold. Personally, I did not learn anything new from a policy viewpoint. It looks to me like a contest between gender and race as the white guy watches the goings on. Could this work in Edwards' favour?

No...Edwards is toast already, and primping for a VP ballot at the convention. He can wait for Hillary to grow old without Botox.

Edited by bush_cheney2004
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It looks to me like a contest between gender and race as the white guy watches the goings on. Could this work in Edwards' favour?
No. It works in the GOP's favor as the majority who is utterly bereft and unrepresented by the Democrats switches allegiances.
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I watched the Dems debate tonight. At the beginning, Hillary and Barack threw barbs at each other then it suddenly turned into a love-in.
The last thing these two want is for the Democrat primaries to turn into a white woman vs. a black man.

IOW, they both know that they will never become president if they play the "identity" card. And yet, that's exactly what both of them are doing because that's what the Deomcratic Party has been reduced to. It's rather sad to see in a way.

Margaret Thatcher became PM of Great Britain but she never ran as a woman. That's the only way a woman or a black will ever become president.

No. It works in the GOP's favor as the majority who is utterly bereft and unrepresented by the Democrats switches allegiances.
Exactly. My point above.
No...Edwards is toast already, and primping for a VP ballot at the convention. He can wait for Hillary to grow old without Botox.
Agreed. If Edward's is really, really (impossibly) lucky, President Clinton will name him Ambassador to Canada.

----

The only race worth watching now is the Republicans and specifically Florida. It'll be between Giuliani, McCain, Romney and Huckabee. (Thompson will fold before the vote.) Florida does not allow independents to vote in the primaries and there's no crossovers. This will work against McCain. Giuliani will do well among Hispanics. Huckabee has no money and he can't campaign well in a place like Florida. He'll get something and then fold. Romney has the money for the ads and his helmut-haired glibness might work. I can see an even three way (30%) split occurring with Huckabee getting 10%. Florida's a mess and I don't think it'll decide much except to finish off Huckabee.

Even if Giuliani does well in Florida, McCain will do better on Super Tuesday.

Geographically, Florida is a series of mini-nations. Giuliani hopes to capitalize on retirees from the Northeast who now live in South Florida. Huckabee will look to the Panhandle and its Southern complexion for the votes of religious and social conservatives, but McCain sees significant potential support there as well because of the concentration of military veterans.

The main battleground is likely to be the corridor between Tampa-St. Petersburg and Orlando, which all candidates will be plying over the next nine days.

...

Recent polls have shown McCain with a slender lead over Giuliani, followed closely by Romney and Huckabee. But the campaigns expect to reassess the state of play over the next few days as the effects of South Carolina and, to a lesser extent, Nevada are felt in the Sunshine State.

Washington Post

The Republican debate is scheduled for Thursday 24 Jan at 9 pm. I hope they exclude Paul and Thompson.

The only question now is whether McCain, Giuliani or Romney will be able to get the Republican base on track. Given that the alternative will be either a President Clinton (redux) or a President Obama, I reckon that the Republicans could nominate Bozo the Clown and the base would rally around.

Edited by August1991
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It has been announced the Fred Thompson is pulling out of the race.

Edit: Here is the link now.

http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/22786860/

Republican Fred Thompson has quit the presidential race, according to a statement.

"Today I have withdrawn my candidacy for President of the United States," Thompson said. "I hope that my country and my party have benefited from our having made this effort. Jeri and I will always be grateful for the encouragement and friendship of so many wonderful people."

Edited by jdobbin
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IOW, they both know that they will never become president if they play the "identity" card. And yet, that's exactly what both of them are doing because that's what the Deomcratic Party has been reduced to. It's rather sad to see in a way.

What are you talking about?

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Even if Giuliani does well in Florida, McCain will do better on Super Tuesday.
I agree with everything in your brilliant post except this observation. Giuliani has a built-in lead in New York (a winner-take-all state) and New Jersey (not sure on rules there). Delegate-wise February 5 will be a great day for Rudy unless he implodes in Florida (unlikely).
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It appears the Republican strategy is to try to reduce Obama and Hillary to racial/gender caricatures, but I don't think their campaigns have been "reduced" to this. Obama's support crossed gender and racial lines in Iowa, and his campaign is completely different than more racially centred campaigns like those of Al Sharpton and Jesse Jackson in the past. It just shows how many on the right are reluctant to accept that anybody but a white dude can be taken seriously.

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I agree with everything in your brilliant post except this observation. Giuliani has a built-in lead in New York (a winner-take-all state) and New Jersey (not sure on rules there). Delegate-wise February 5 will be a great day for Rudy unless he implodes in Florida (unlikely).

Giuliani has lost his lead in New York.

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2008/01/19/p...ad_n_82304.html

His lead is also gone in Florida. His strategy seems to have focused on the importance of the delegate counts in larger states but completely ignored the importance of early momentum. People vote for who they think is going to win, and Rudy's poor early showing has given McCain the aura of inevitability.

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It appears the Republican strategy is to try to reduce Obama and Hillary to racial/gender caricatures, but I don't think their campaigns have been "reduced" to this. Obama's support crossed gender and racial lines in Iowa, and his campaign is completely different than more racially centred campaigns like those of Al Sharpton and Jesse Jackson in the past. It just shows how many on the right are reluctant to accept that anybody but a white dude can be taken seriously.
You're anticipating the Republican strategy, because so far the Republicans are running against each other, not Hilary and Barak. The Democrats themselves are doing a fine job of reducing themselves to charicatures.
His lead is also gone in Florida. His strategy seems to have focused on the importance of the delegate counts in larger states but completely ignored the importance of early momentum. People vote for who they think is going to win, and Rudy's poor early showing has given McCain the aura of inevitability.
That's a good point and a real problem.
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How is Obama running as a racial caricature?
By allowing Jesse Jackson to play a pivotal role in his campaign. Jesse Jackson and Barak Obama are part of a heavily allied Illinois contingent, and Jesse Jackson is turning him into a charicature.
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By allowing Jesse Jackson to play a pivotal role in his campaign. Jesse Jackson and Barak Obama are part of a heavily allied Illinois contingent, and Jesse Jackson is turning him into a charicature.

It's not only Jesse Jackson, there's Bill Clinton jabbering away:

"This is crazy. This rhetoric is getting a little carried away here," the former president said.

"She did not play the race card, but (Obama's campaign) did. They are feeding you this, because they know this is what you want to cover. This is what you live for ... Shame on you. Shame on you."

Only moments before, Clinton told a crowd of about 100 people that the criticisms of Obama were a healthy part of a competitive election.

"It is wrong to accuse somebody who has a disagreement with Senator Obama of being a racist," Clinton said.

"That doesn't mean you are against Obama. Most of the white people who support Hillary like Obama. This is not about liking or disliking."

He attributed the heightened sensitivity about race to voter surprise at the likelihood that a woman or black man will be the Democratic nominee.

"It's almost like an embarrassment of riches. Couldn't we have done this in some order?" Clinton said.

CanWest

Embarrassment of riches?

----

Obama will win SC and that's why Hillary has left to campaign for Super Tuesday. (The liberal media will go nuts with Obama's win but then Hillary will win Florida.)

Meanwhile, Florida is still a toss-up between McCain and Romney. (The Florida polls aren't good for Giuliani and anything less than a spectacular win will be a loss for him. Huckabee will fold after Florida.)

Between Romney and McCain, I think there's a way to make a prediction. Both Bush Snr and Jnr ran initially on the "compassionate conservative" angle. Reagan was hard on defence and government but accepted to live with social liberal ideas. Dole too was like this. These are more or less the same ideas that McCain espouses.

I'll admit though that many hard Republicans will hold their nose in November when they vote.

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Jesse Jackson is turning him into a charicature.

Really? You don't think it's just your perception? Many people have had a very difficult time getting past the fact that he's a black man and that Hillary's a woman. It has been a dominant theme among the pundits. But I don't see either of them focusing on it. In fact, they're both talking about actual relevant issues far more than the Republicans, who mostly seem to be centred on who looks the most like Reagan. Talk about caricatures.

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I can't believe what I'm seeing in the dem debates - they're getting so ugly, it's unbelievable. Hillary has been swatting at Obama for a while but he was a gentleman till recently. Now he seems to have jumped on the nasty train too. What happened, they both used to talk about their own policies, now they've turned into typical dirty politicians who can only discredit their opponent's character instead of discussing their own merits. It's a shame.

And dont even get me started on Bill Clinton's campaign. WT... is he running for a third term??? I used to like him, and it was one thing to show his face here and there in support for his wife. But it seems to me that she realised she's nothing without him she's not going anywhere without him (really, she's smart and very successful but let's face it, without the Clinton name... would she have the lead as the dem candidate in the primaries??). Now he's joined in on the Obama-bashing and I've lost all respect for him too.

In one word - slimy. I'd hoped Obama could've just retorted as a gentleman and if anything call her on her personal attacks instead of joining her, but alas, I guess he could only handle it for so long too.

These guys are being totally selfish and short-sighted. They have to know that the repub candidate is going to be using these exact smears against the winning dem candidate during election time. They're only thinking of themselves instead of what's good for their party or even what's good for the country if they are so strongly against the republican ideals.

Edited by BC_chick
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....These guys are being totally selfish and short-sighted. They have to know that the repub candidate is going to be using these exact smears against the winning dem candidate during election time. They're only thinking of themselves instead of what's good for their party or even what's good for the country if they are so strongly against the republican ideals.

The show is not for you...hell, it's not even for me. The show is for faithful party hacks, Democratic voters, indies, and super delegates who will determine a party nominee this summer. It's about fierce competition for support and dollars for the nominee battles to come.

American politics at this level is a contact sport...the objective is to WIN.

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In one word - slimy. I'd hoped Obama could've just retorted as a gentleman and if anything call her on her personal attacks instead of joining her, but alas, I guess he could only handle it for so long too.

These guys are being totally selfish and short-sighted. They have to know that the repub candidate is going to be using these exact smears against the winning dem candidate during election time. They're only thinking of themselves instead of what's good for their party or even what's good for the country if they are so strongly against the republican ideals.

The latest polls on ABC tonight shows that Clinton has made a huge impact with the pointed comments on Obama. People might not like it but it seems to have worked in South Carolina.

However, you are right. The remarks now are exactly what the Republicans will use in the national election later on. We saw the same thing in Canada when the Tories used comments in the Liberal leadership convention in their ads against the Liberals in ads in 2007.

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Contact sport?

Look. To become US president in the modern world, a person has to survive a relentless obstacle course. Maybe that's a good thing because to be US president, one has to suffer even worse. I'll agree with Alan Greenspan however when he wrote in his recent autobiography that modern politics attracts a strange kind of person that is not always the kind of person we'd want as a leader.

Unfortunately, no one has yet devised a better way to do this. The American method ensures whoever is chosen can manage extreme stress in public, and is only there for four years anyway, and can't really do much because of a Constitution, the US Congress, a Supreme Court and 50 state governments - each with their own set of egomaniacs.

I can't believe what I'm seeing in the dem debates - they're getting so And dont even get me started on Bill Clinton's campaign. WT... is he running for a third term??? I used to like him, and it was one thing to show his face here and there in support for his wife. But it seems to me that she realised she's nothing without him she's not going anywhere without him (really, she's smart and very successful but let's face it, without the Clinton name... would she have the lead as the dem candidate in the primaries??). Now he's joined in on the Obama-bashing and I've lost all respect for him too.
Hillary left Bill in South Carolina because he plays well to the black vote - particularly the south black vote. Hillary wisely went off to seek votes in the upcoming primaries - she's not good with southern blacks.

So of course, Clinton (époux) is going to go after Obama and the black vote - in a smart way - in South Carolina. That's what Bill did and the strategy may even work. The Clintons are "no holds barred" politicians. Without South Carolina, Hillary will still win the nomination but she wants SC too. They want it all. And that's the only way to play the political game. No mistakes whatsoever. None.

-----

Unfortunately, I didn't get to watch the Republican debate in Florida last night and only saw Internet clips and read reports. From what I can gather, it was a snooze fest with sporadic moments of Clinton-bashing. (Why are Republicans in heaven? They pull each other up. Why are the Democrats in hell? They pull each other down.)

Romney had the chance to show that he's the only "young" and articulate candidate. Unfortunately for Romney, I don't think Americans want now a well-spoken robot for president. This is not the 1960s, and Americans prefer "folksy" to "precise". (Mitt Romney is no Robert McNamara.)

IMV, Romney moves around too much too. But I'll admit that he's survived the process and he's still standing. Like Ron Paul, he certainly has an organization of Internet-boosters who post "GO MITT GO" everywhere.

Florida only matters now because it will finish off Huckabee and, let's be honest, Giuliani. Pundits will mistakenly focus on whether McCain or Romney came first in Florida. (BTW, Florida's a winner-take-all primary.)

First or second, for Romney and McCain, Florida doesn't matter anymore. It's Super Tuesday.

Perhaps...but seldom boring.....like you know where. Yawn.
I prefer by far federal Canadian politics.

Around the world, few countries have such complicated politics as Canada. Example? Stephen Harper - an anglophone - has to speak in French to become PM.

If conflict is the basis of drama, federal politics in Canada are filled with drama in a way that is unlike few other countries.

Edited by August1991
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