First, in a piece by AP writer Mike Glover, Glover tells us that, "Kerry faces hard road in presidential bid."
Kerry's allies acknowledge the struggle but are unwilling to give up the cause.
"Historically, the Democratic Party has tended to shoot its wounded," said former New Hampshire Democratic Chairman Joe Keefe. "John Kerry has done everything within his power to rewrite that chapter."
The Massachusetts senator has raised nearly $9 million for candidates and the party and has campaigned actively across the country...
Kerry has made three trips to Iowa. The state's caucuses launch the nominating season and Kerry's surprising victory in January 2004 propelled him to the nomination.
Former Sen. Max Cleland of Georgia wisely notes, "He has grown from the devastation of the last election. A lot of people who are reacting to Kerry are reacting to the Kerry of '04."
And, John Norris, "who managed Kerry's campaign in Iowa and ran his field operations in the general election, said candidates learn valuable lessons in a national campaign that could be put to use in a second bid. Sadly, he said, voters do not see it that way."
"That sentiment you talked about is really strong out there," Norris said. "You know, 'He's had his chance.' I think that's shortsighted."
It is shortsighted, given Kerry's continued to efforts to reach out on issues that are important to activists while Hillary continues to ignore those issues. No potential '08 candidate brings as much experience to the table as Kerry does in my opinion. Nor does any potential '08 candidate have the established netroots base that Kerry has -- a 3 million strong email list. Hillary may have scooped herself former Kerry Blogger Peter Daou, but the core Kerry supporters I know on the net won't soon be flocking to follow.
Next, the WaPo's puff piece today from James Carville and Mark J. Penn about "The Power of Hillary," is a bit over the top. There's some sad irony that Hillary, who consistently fails to reach out and or listen to party activists, is seen as having "power" by Carville and Penn, yet in the same news cycle, Kerry is said to be facing a "hard road." My take is the exact opposite -- Kerry has the "power," Hillary is facing a "hard road."
Interesting, too is the fact that Carville and Penn have come to the rescue in the wake of National Journal's Hotline piece that just pegged Kerry as Up and Clinton as down, in their "End-Of-The-Half-Year Spotlight." One can't help but wonder if the Clintonista's are busy trying to do some damage control after Hillary's disasterous showing at Take Back America.
Carville and Penn insist that "One thing we know about Clinton campaigns: Nobody gets Swift Boated." Really?? The Clinton campaigns were pre-Swiftboating. We've all seen plenty of instances since '04 that anyone can be Swiftboated -- including Hillary, in my opinion. Contrary to what Carville and Penn would like us to believe, the woman carries a lot of baggage.
Another point that Carville and Penn make is that "the difference with Hillary is the intensity of her support." They share this interesting notion...
Pundits and fundraisers and activists may be unsure of whether Hillary can get elected president, but Democratic voters, particularly Democratic women and even independent women, are thrilled with the idea.
I'm one woman who doesn't share that view. And 99.9% percent of the women I know and talk with, share the same view as I do. In fact, I hear a resounding echo of "don't run Hillary." Hillary Clinton, at this point will be a tough sell to the women voters and in my opinion, she hasn't got a snow ball's chance of picking up any conservative red states that Kerry didn't pick up in '04. It's not that women wouldn't like to see a woman president, but the consensus seems to be not now, America isn't ready for it and please, anybody but Hillary.
It's all well and good talking about '08, but some of us are wondering about '06 -- we need to take back Congress. We can go round and round on who the best choice is for '08, but the pundits who shill for the Dem party would serve the party better if they focused on the now, in my opinion. Let's worry about '08 after we regain the seats we need in the House and the Senate.