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October 23, 2003

Too Much Time Before "Election 2004"

Robert Novak, a nationally syndicated columnist and CNN personality, is under the impression that the California gubernatorial election is foreshadowing what is likely to occur next year in the presidential election. His idea is that California is now in question as a Democratic state, and that without carrying California the Democrats do not stand a chance of winning.

I'm inclined to disagree with one important part of his opinion. I agree that as of right now the tide may have turned in California, and perhaps it is not the Democratic stronghold today it historically has been. I also agree that the Democrats are in desperate need of carrying that state if they plan on winning the presidential election of 2004. What I tend to disagree with is the idea that this gubernatorial election will have any significant effect when next Fall rolls around.

The American voting public has a notoriously short memory. What is popular today is destined to be out of style by next year, and the popularity one enjoys today will quite possibly be non-existent in a few months time. For example, those who suggest Bush has the election sewn up (Republicans, of course) could easily see the momentum turn 180 degrees in a year's time, and the more he opens his mouth, the more likely this scenario becomes. By the same token, while his approval rates are slipping now, they are quite capable of going back up, perhaps only needing to bring the heads of Saddam and Osama to the American people on a silver platter. I have heard suggestions that he parade them out in a cage during the Republican conventions of next year. Doing so will, no doubt, boost him back into an enviable position.

The point is that what the polls say now, or what the American public does today will most likely not matter in the least by the time the election comes around. I'm not sure that Americans forgive, but we damn sure do forget, always eager to move on to the next scandal and forget about lesser transgressions of the past. Good or bad, I don't know. I guess it depends on whether or not your guy is elected.

Posted by Woundwort at October 23, 2003 09:44 AM | TrackBack
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I agree 100% (well almost). Californians voted for Schwarzenegger because of their state's deficit problems, and a perception he could solve them. This doesn't convert them to instant Republicans. Of course it's too early to make serious predictions, so many things still to happen.... Haven't even had the first primary yet!! I'm not sure Novak has too much time on his hands, he's just selling news like an entertainment product. So, as consumers, it's our job to select something with more substance, or lap it up like mush headed fools.

Posted by: clnsmi at October 23, 2003 12:40 PM

I was not suggesting that Novak has too much time, but that there is too much time before the presidential election and that what is happening now may have little effect on that. That is where the "Too Much Time" came from.

Posted by: Woundwort at October 23, 2003 01:14 PM

Whoops! That's what I get for reading/writing before the first cup of coffee. Good thing I waited until now to start on my homework.

Posted by: clnsmi at October 23, 2003 03:22 PM

I did make it a bit confusing but hope to have corrected that by changing the title to be more descriptive.

Posted by: Woundwort at October 23, 2003 04:28 PM
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