Saturday, January 20, 2007

Madame President?

Yes, I'm back. Not that I really went anyplace, but I just didn't get around to posting anything the last few days.

This post will of course hardly be the first, and far from the only one today on this subject: Hillary Clinton has announced her intention to run for US President. The obvious question is whether this will be a viable candidacy, or a trainwreck for the Democrats. If anything might swing some disenchanted voters back to the Republicans it's the idea of "Demon Hillary" getting (back) into the White House. More than any other potential candidate Senator Clinton has a boatload of baggage, both from Bill Clinton's presidency itself and the more general facts of their marriage given the emphasis many Americans place on issues of personal morality. Of course she actually has to make it to the nomination, and it's not hard to guess that many in the Democratic Party will not want to take the risk of losing all the moment they've picked up via the Bush administration's failings with Iraq by nominating a candidate likely to be subject to some very dirty negative campaigning based around Monica Lewinsky and Whitewater.

There's also a good chance Barack Obama may run for President, as he announced his intent this week to investigate whether he will run in 2008 via a "Presidential Exploratory Committee." A decision will apparently be made by February 10th. Personally I tend to think it's too soon for Obama to run. He needs more experience on the federal level, and needs more time in the public eye to become a completely familiar name to most Americans. Whether he'll have any chance of transcending the race issue in America of course remains to be seen. He'll need to think long and hard about running in 2008, because if it is too early he'll likely have blown his chance, as these days you only seem to get one real shot at the nomination.

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