Presidential Campaign

Presidential Campaign

Presidential Missteps

Note to Fred Thompson: It isn't always a good thing to just tell it like it is.

I have to agree with Ron Christie today. I think the lapel-pin flap now consuming Sen. Barack Obama (D-Ill.) is much more of a problem than he realizes, and could dog him for a long time. He pretty much said he had to express his patriotism in other ways and took his flag pin off because he saw others acting unpatriotic. I wonder who that is going to fly with.

Conservatives Should Stay With the GOP

A group of social conservatives recently made headlines by suggesting they might abandon the GOP and run a third-party candidate for president if former New York Mayor Rudy Giuliani were nominated by the Republicans. Giuliani’s pro-choice views make him anathema for many social conservatives, and these leaders have been expressing the frustration of many who believe they do not have a natural candidate in the GOP field.

This course is a profoundly bad idea for the very cause that these conservatives are trying to advance. Let’s mention five reasons why this would set back the pro-life cause for years to come.

Obama’s Slap at the American Flag

I just saw the newswire report surrounding Sen. Obama’s removal of the American flag lapel from his jacket — and why he refuses to wear one now. This will go down as one of the worst political gaffes of the 2008 presidential election campaign. Don’t take my word for it — here’s what Sen. Obama said in his own words:

“The truth is that right after 9-11 I had a pin. Shortly after 9-11, particularly because as we’re talking about the Iraq war, that became a substitute for I think true patriotism, which is speaking out on issues that are of importance to our national security. I decided I won’t wear that pin on my chest. Instead, I’m going to try to tell the American people what I believe will make this country great, and hopefully that will be a testament to my patriotism.”

Rudy Making Nice

When did Rudy Giuliani think would be a good time to make nice with Dr. James Dobson? In the beginning, or at the eleventh hour, when he had already run out of patience?

Though he spoke at Regent University and was warmly received — big time — by Pat Robertson over the summer, and has also met with Jonathan Falwell (son of the late Rev. Jerry), Giuliani has circumvented the social conservative circuit for the most part, hoping ultimately the primary concern of primary voters would be terror and not abortion.


Newt Gingrich says he’s not running for president and he gives as a reason that he didn’t want to be subject to a legal bar against communicating with the new group called American Solutions he has been promoting. If he ran for president, he has suddenly discovered, he would be unable to communicate with this group because of the laws governing 527s.

I’m not buying it.

A Strange Scenario

Try this one on for size.

John McCain begins to move up in Iowa and comes in a decent third or even second.

Hillary wins Iowa and the train begins to leave the station OR Obama cleans up and leaves everyone else in the dust.

But then we come to New Hampshire, where the undeclared, independent vote has gone from less than 30 percent in 1996 to 45 percent in 2007.

Suddenly, the real focus is on the Republican contest.

The Ballgame

If you're a baseball fan, you know what a "Subway Series" is. That's a World Series played by two teams from New York. If the Mets had not utterly collapsed this year, they might have been playing the Yankees.

Well. If the leading presidential campaigns haven't collapsed, next year's championship game, meaning the election, could be that Subway Series — the Hillaries vs. the Rudies.

I'm not through torturing this analogy. This would definitely be hardball. The candidates would be accused of making their pitches underhanded.

Fred Thompson and Defeatocrats

In this week's Ask A.B., The Hill's A.B. Stoddard answers your questions on Fred Thompson and Democratic politics on the Iraq War.


Heaven's Slate

Is this a great idea or what? How about John McCain as a third-party candidate?

I mean, here he is, obviously doing everything he can to cater to Christian conservatives so they can resurrect his campaign (and yes, the pun was intentional).

His declaration that the United States is a Christian nation has been construed as the latest pandering to the fundamentalist right that did him in last time.

And now there are rumbles from some of those religious activists that they might abandon the Republicans and establish a third party if Rudy Giuliani or someone else unsuitable becomes the GOP candidate.