Wednesday, February 06, 2008

The morning after

Okay, now let's see how quickly I can reverse some of the things I wrote last night:

For starters, upon further review I don't think Huckabee's performance makes him the odds-on favorite for VP on McCain's ticket. McCain did really really well in all the states Huck showed any strength--except Arkansas. Is it worth "locking up" this state's recently-reliable red vote by putting Huck on the ticket vice putting on, say, Rudy Giuliani, who would help McCain actually compete in places like NJ, and hold strong in FL? I guess it all depends on who the Dems put forward, and that is far from decided at this stage.

Is it really a two-man race now, given Romney's abject failure in CA? No, it isn't. . .it's a one-man race. Face it, it's over. While I don't think Romney should necessarily pull out, I also don't think he should spend one more dime of his own money. Yes, it's suicide to his '08 campaign to stop self-funding--but that's the reality. My brother has some excellent ideas of what Romney could do from the formal end of this campaign until 2012 in order to further ingratiate himself with the party--a party that just didn't feel comfortable turning to him in this very important election year.

Wither talk radio, after the strong play made on Romney's behalf this past week? You know, I'll leave the debate about the medium's strength of "influence" to others--I don't listen to talk radio, so they don't "influence" me one way or the other. Heck, more often than not I get really irate listening to even Rush and Sean Hannity, so I am DEFINITELY not a good judge. But I do think there's a lesson here: it's much more influential to position yourself "FOR" somebody rather than "AGAINST" somebody. Rush waited 'til THIS WEEK to announce for Romney. And although he'd made his dislike of McCain and Huckabee clear well in advance of that time, not looking at a 3-man race that featured those two options and actually saying "I endorse Romney" hurts not only Romney, but also--and far more importantly--it hurts Rush's credibility to influence his audience. His audience was going to vote because they are a politically tuned populace, and Rush essentially didn't provide any reason to be listened to and allowed to influence the primaries until Monday. So I won't chalk up any of this as the "death" of conservative talk radio--but I do hope the talking heads learn a lesson. Running an Anything but (Insert Democrat name here) program well into November will not hold as much influence on moderates as actually running FOR McCain.

That's it for now.


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