Man Without Qualities

Friday, December 12, 2003

Gored Again V

If I understand John Ellis' answer correctly, he's discounting the possibility of a one-way Mount Fuji trip for the Democratic airliner with Howard Dean at the helm in 2004. But I'll stick to my belief that such a crack-up is a distinct possibility - perhaps the most likely probability. And I'm all the more cheeky in sticking to my position given this recent report from New Hampshire:

A stunning new poll shows President Bush would clobber Democratic front-runner Howard Dean by nearly 2-1 in politically potent New Hampshire - even though Dean has a giant lead over Democratic rivals in the state.
Bush gets 57 percent to Dean's 30 percent among registered voters in the American Research Group poll. In fact, Dean, from neighboring Vermont, does worse in the Granite State than a generic "Democratic Party nominee" who loses to Bush by 51 to 34 percent. Another ARG poll this month showed Dean with a 30-point lead over Sen. John Kerry (Mass.) for the Jan. 27 New Hampshire primary, the second test after the Jan. 19 Iowa caucuses.

New Hampshire is a swing state. So by John's calculations that 2-to-1 lead can't be happening - nothing like it can be happening. I admit that the 2-to-1 lead is very unlikely to hold in the general election. But if Dr. Dean loses to Mr. Bush by margins in the 10% range - a distinct possibility - there will be huge coat tails effects. If that were to happen, Congressional Democrats won't be able to hold their caucuses in a hall closet in 2005, but it would be close. And if that were to happen, I don't think they'd be chattering about how eager they are to have Al Gore or anyone else who got them there pick up the pieces.

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