Thursday, December 07, 2006

How Many Electoral Votes Does Oprah Have?

by Bernie Quigley for The Free Market News Network on 12/07/06

I see the life force rising in Virginia with Jim Webb. And it was announced this week that Wes Clark will publish a book called America's Son in the fall of 2007. He asks not to make too much of it. The book announcement isn't evidence that he'll run for President in 2008.

''I just want to participate in the American dialogue about where we are as a nation,'' he said.

I am all but certain that he will run in '08. He is an American for all seasons, and his candidacy will appeal to red and blue states alike. He is the rare, truly federal candidate and federal as Jefferson intended it to be. He belongs to Arkansas first and last as its native son. Like Jefferson, he is not made provincial by his native place but deepened and wizened by it.

In a way, Jim Webb, who just won election to the Senate in Virginia, is prelude to Clark. What voters sought and found in Webb lives in Clark as well. In Virginia today they are wearing bumper stickers which read, “My Senator is Fearless.” So is Wes Clark. And both are smart as paint. As an editor for the Fighting Dems News Service points out, “In opting for an all-encompassing “strategic” approach to Iraq and the Middle East, the Iraq Study Group (ISG) released recommendations that are far closer to those proposed by retired Gen. Wesley Clark than plans offered up by many other Democrats and Republicans.”

Nevertheless, the Democrats face chaos directly ahead, brought to you by the Senator from New York. Now this is federalism at its fullest in Hamilton’s corporate vision: the world is not made up of varied places and peoples, each with its own soul and distinct culture and sensibility, but of ideas and money. Somebody else’s ideas and somebody else’s money. When her undergraduate egotism crashes in '07 in blame and acrimony and she accepts the Chaired Professorship, Eric Massa might consider running for her Senate seat.

‘Tis the Hamiltonian curse that like the Dixie Chicks’ Queen of Whatever, many people today are not from actual places but from economic zones. They hesitate or have to think about it for a minute when you ask them where they are from. Or ask an advisor. But there are still New Yorkers who know how to find their way on the A train at 14th St. to the D train to Bensonhurst without getting shot and one of them is the mayor, Mike Bloomberg. “A great, visionary mayor,” says Deputy Mayor Dan Doctoroff in a cover story in New York Magazine this month. “There’s just no question,” says the investor Steve Rattner, “that he is the greatest mayor of New York since Fiorella La Guardia.” His approval numbers, which hovered around 70% for most of the past year, would suggest so.

The New York article reports that Bloomberg is serious about running for President in 2008. But he asks, "“What chance does a five-foot-seven billionaire Jew who’s divorced really have of becoming President?”

Every chance, as his imagination is as vast as his cash flow.

Bloomberg senses that if Senator Clinton runs it will mark a descent into mayhem and irresponsibility on behalf of the Democrats. He said long ago that he would put up a half billion of his own money to start a third Independent Party if the Democrats send up someone “unelectable.” But it appears that the Democrats, or some of them, are hell bent on doing so, and leading the pack today are Senator Clinton and Senator Barak Obama, the freshman Senator from Illinois. He came to the Senate almost in a walk, as he ran against the perennial pundit of the Has-Been Right, Alan Keyes. Yet he is today tied for first place in the first Daily Kos straw poll for 2008. To his credit? He’s got more “friends” on MySpace than any other politician, says Kos. And, he’s got Oprah.

How many electoral votes does Oprah have?

Across the river in Vermont, there is near hysterical pitch as he comes to visit this weekend: Obama is the new Howard Dean they are saying.

Last I checked, Howard Dean finished third in Iowa and that was largely the end of his political career. But Dr. Dean wasn’t looking to be President and he actually became terrified at the possibility when his popularity briefly rose in the New Hampshire primary. He had just lost his job and was looking for a new one and he got it. He was one of those who enter the Presidential race for other reasons, which is unfortunate. In years past, it has caused the Democrats to be called the Silly Party, and led them into derision. Obama says he hopes no one votes for him just because he's black. Would it be the legislative record then? As scholar/pundit Stanley Fish said, Liberals don’t take anything seriously.

It is the same impulse of "irrational exuberance" which calls forth Senators Clinton and Obama that sent this same generation to invest in undercapitalized but trendy stocks in the salad days of the Clinton Administration. Silicon Valley was sure to be the Yuppie nirvana before the crash. This is a political manifestation of this same, apparently inherent, immature and unchecked yearning.

Nature calls Bloomberg forth, and he is a right honorable American, even a patriot, to come forth. But a third party will bring disaster to our country. If a competent guy like Bloomberg runs it will divide the votes in '08 into three parts and the election will be thrown into the House. Bloomberg has no support in the House. As the House is controlled by Democrats as per the November election, the House will give it to Hillary. With Hillary as President with only 33% of the vote, the red states will buck, and rightly so.

The South will not tolerate governance by a Clinton with only 33% of the vote and one considered by many to be a Bitch on Wheels, Chopped and Channeled, Rolled and Pleated with Lakers and Moon Disks. Richard Viguerie of the Christian Coalition and Michael Hill of The League of the South could call for a Constitutional Convention – Robert Novak has already reported rumors of a Constitutional Convention. And if the South and the mid states wanted to secede today, who would stop them?

But as these modern-day Whigs spiral out of control and into the ozone, back in the Old Dominion comes a new awakening. Raising Kaine, the Virginia Governor’s blog, did a straw poll awhile back featuring ten potentials in 2008. Clark was the leader with 37% and John Edwards was next with 27%. Senator Clinton received 1.7%. They followed up this week with a new straw poll of only the top three: Clark received 61% and Edwards 30%. Barak Obama received 8%. Perhaps this is the way of all things: the first snake to shed its skin will survive and flourish.

Now that Rumsfeld is out, Gates in and the Iraq Study Group’s report is in the hands of the thoughtful, we can begin to look forward. Wes Clark is awakening in the heartland and the awakening begins in Virginia.

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