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POLITICS: Strategic Decisions to Come Behind Battling Bush

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posted on Feb, 12 2004 @ 10:25 AM
With more than three-quarters of the delegates for the nomination yet to be awarded, Democratic presidential front-runner John Kerry must already be turning a strategic eye to some important choices in his battle for the White House; namely, where to battle President Bush and who to battle him with in the Democratic nominee for Vice President.

National candidate or not as far as the Democratic primary goes, Kerry faces a daunting task if he looks south for success against President Bush next fall, according to strategists in his own party. "I think it still has to be considered part of the Bush base," said Jim Duffy, a Democratic consultant with long experience in southern campaigns. While there may be one or two states where Kerry may be able to compete, he added, "It is overwhelmingly Republican and I think probably will stay that way." Several strategists pointed to Arkansas, Louisiana and possibly Tennessee as places where Kerry may look for opportunity in the South outside once hotly contested Florida.

If he wins the nomination, one of Kerry's biggest decisions will be the choice of a running mate. Advisers say there have been no official talks, but conversations always seem to come back to Edwards of North Carolina and Missouri Rep. Dick Gephardt, who dropped out of the race after a poor showing in Iowa last month. One veteran of Democratic campaigns, Dane Strother, said Kerry should pick a running mate from the all important South. "He ought to get a Southerner, get someone who understands the language. ... John Edwards has really shined," he said.

Edwards would give the ticket regional diversity, but some say the Midwest is more important to Kerry than the GOP-dominated South. Calculating that the race will be won or lost in the industrial Midwest, some counter that Kerry needs a running mate from that part of the country, possibly former presidential rival Dick Gephardt or Iowa's Governor Tom Vilsack.

Other considerations for Vice President most likely include Gov. Bill Richardson of New Mexico to appeal to important southwestern and Hispanic voters, Sen. Hillary Clinton who's broad appeal covers New York to Arkansas and Sen. Dianne Feinstein of the important state of California. Also, Sen. Bob Graham of decisive Florida and decorated veteran and former Georgia Senator Max Cleland both offer important southern appeal.

While armchair strategists may hope and pray for their own dream tickets to include Kerry rivals Dean, Edwards, Kucinich, Sharpton or former combatant Clark, such may in fact be among the least likely of hopefuls in the strategic mission to unseat an incumbent Republican as the very race for the Democratic nominee heats up.

The President himself may also be making changes to his reelection ticket as speculated by ATSNN, with the rumor of increasingly controversial Vice President Dick Cheney to succumb to "health problems" prior to the 2004 election.

Related ATSNN links:
Rumor Central: Cheney Dropping Out
Kerry Wins Big in South

Related ATS Discussions:
Secret Society the Ties Bush and Kerry

[Edited on 12-2-2004 by RANT]

posted on Feb, 12 2004 @ 11:18 AM
The decisions all change depending on who wins the actual Democratic nomination.

With Kerry the far and away frontrunner, contenders Dean and Edwards have been making some strange strategic moves lately... namely, Dean has recently gone on record stating John Edwards would be a better candidate to battle Bush than Kerry citing 'once the voters have a more liesurely pace to compare and contrast Bush and Kerry, they'll see they are one in the same.'

Edwards, of course, agreed with Dean completely. I also noticed an Edwards/Dean moment after the SC debate with Edwards seemingly mouthing the words "call me" (which Edwards staffers have since denied happening), but some form of alliance is definitley brewing with Dean's psuedo endorsement.

Would an Edwards/Dean rally the anti-Kerry vote outstripping the newly challenged frontrunner, charged by Matt Drudge with adultery? Would it be the best South/North "outsider" ticket with a compelling difference to beat George Bush?

I'd vote Edwards/Dean in a New York or Hotlanta minute.


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