Release Kerry's Military Records?
Plus--How could the Bush campaign have already spent $39 million?
Kool Kids for Edwards: Two good Noam Scheiber items. 1) He argues Edwards should go negative on Kerry--in a slag-off Edwards wins due to his comparative sunniness advantage. (I know all about this advantage from the disadvantaged side. In debates on welfare, Charles Murray used to get away with saying the nastiest things--and people in the audience would say "what a nice fellow." When I'd say something half as nasty, people would go "what an a------e." Murray-like talent is real and not to be pooh-poohed.) Also, voters may not mind it if Edwards shows a little toughness. The main worry about him is that he's a lightweight and not tough enough to fight a war on terror, right? P.S.: I suspect Edwards may be waiting to Kerry to go negative first, though--which might be even better for Edwards. 2) In a much-linked item, Scheiber draws a hard-to-phrase, invidious conclusion from exit polls showing that "sophisticated" Democrats voted for Edwards while ill-informed and clueless ... sorry, I mean "less sophisticated" voters supported Kerry. That will change, Scheiber speculates:
It's a phenomenon that's actually very similar to what goes on in the stock market. Less sophisticated investors just pick the stocks whose prices they've heard are going up. More sophisticated investors actually do some research about the companies they plan to invest in. Up until yesterday, Kerry was that tech stock that the girlfriend of the cousin of the guy down the street said was a can't-miss opportunity, while Edwards was the unheralded stock of a company with a little-known but solid product.
Affluent and well-educated voters--the "sophisticates" here--can be bad political investors. Many were for Adlai Stevenson over JFK in 1960, right? But in this case, where the egghead/nonegghead social divide wouldn't seem to naturally favor one candidate or the other, I think there's something to Scheiber's analysis. ... 3:52 P.M.
The blogging Deanies, as predicted, do not seem eager to support Kerry. Or Edwards, for that matter. Powerline has a selection of bitter vows of non-support from the Dean blog. Of course, that's the way we McCarthy supporters felt about Hubert Humphrey in 1968. In the end, we came home and Humphrey pulled it out. ... [Fact checker?--ed. What do they know about Humphrey in the newBangalore research center? I say run with it.] ... The Deans all look prettier at closing time: Wonkette worries how Deanists will now 'hook up.' ...3:30 P.M.
Wednesday, February 18, 2004
Spinning for Kerry II: I was worried that I'd misheard NBC's Tim Russert condescendingly dismissing John Edwards' candidacy last night. I hadn't. Here is what Russert said (from NEXIS) even before the polls closed:
Look for John Edwards to focus on Ohio, Georgia and upstate New York. He cannot win enough delegates to become the nominee but he can become a strong second, is his hope, which will position himself perhaps for vice president or to run for the nomination in a future cycle.
Such a nice young man. We have a pleasant future all figured out for you. ... P.S.: Russert's Beltway decree was repeated in the West Coast edition of the news, after the polls closed. ...12:48 P.M.
Maybe Kerry is winning!12:28 P.M.
Good Safire column except that his main thesis--that Dean ex-chair Steven Grossman was tacitly working for Edwards against Kerry--is insane. ... 4:42 A.M.
"Once he starts losing, he's a loser." John Ellis makes several powerful points about the Kerry campaign. Especially #3! ... Update: More bubble-bursting signs. ...P.S.: Will Kerry try to seize on Edwards' mild debate criticism as an "attack" and thus an excuse for self-defense in the form of the negative anti-Edwards ad campaign Ellis thinks is necessary (as part of a "Kill Edwards Off Now" strategy). ... 4:18 A.M.
Photograph of Howard Dean on the Slate home page by Jim Bourg/Reuters.