Election night 2006 was ugly for Republicans up and down the ballot, but it had some definite implications for the 2008 Presidential wannabees. Let's take a look at some winners and losers.Winners:
Rudy Giuliani- With an ugly environment, Rudy looks like a real uniter that can take the Party and the Country out of this funk and into the future. He had an aggressive campaigning session, picking up chits around the country. And spent election eve in Iowa which certainly will be remembered by those that attended. (Those events were spectacular according to all sources). Rudy also dipped his toe in the staffer waters while in town courting some high powered Iowans.
John McCain- Like Giuliani, McCain seems like the kind of candidate that can bridge the gap with the independents that have become disenfranchised from the GOP. McCain also campaigned heavily, picking up chits. And his main allies staved off defeat... i.e. Pawlenty, Crist, and Heather Wilson (maybe). McCain also got his wish with the resignation of Rumsfeld and got some good press over that.
One downside for McCain, the GOP losing the Senate means no Chairmanship of the "powerful" Armed Services Committee.Losers:
George Felix Allen- Exit, stage left.
Mitt Romney- In a year where the GOP lost anything, Mitt certainly is not to blame for the 6 Governorships the GOP lost and the "0" pickups. But it certainly didn't help him either. He also was unable to help his chosen successor Kerry Healy into the Governor's Mansion. On the other hand, Romney will be able to sell himself as a Washington "Outsider" which will benefit him given this environment.
Mike Huckabee- If your successor can't even muster a competitive race in a Red state, that's not a very good legacy to leave.Neutral
George Pataki- While he also was unable to get his successor elected, Pataki put a lot of effort into the Iowa GOTV program and that will be remembered by activists in Des Moines.
Note that our own Governor would be considered a winner on the Dem side, as he was able to get his chosen successor in office, in a landslide. And he was very active for Culver in the last two weeks of the campaign.
Unfortunately we won't be able to send the intern to Mt. Pleasant for the announcement today. More on Vilsack later.We apologize for the light coverage over the past week. Expect a reinvigorated Cooler Staff on Monday.