Friday, February 02, 2007

Line Change!




The much anticipated line change is finally upon us. Regular readers of the Cooler know that we like to keep our posts short. Given the time we've allowed to elapse between line changes that will not be possible today. So refill your cup of coffee, make sure your boss isn't looking over your shoulder and dig in.

MITT ROMNEY is where we start, he's held strong at the top of the Cooler line. Those of us in the blogosphere have been complimenting his Iowa organization for sometime and last week he finally had the chance to show it off. Big crowds followed him in Eastern Iowa, 12 months from the caucus, on a weekday. Don't believe Romney can turn people out to a straw poll? Guess again. He also added Brian Kennedy and former house speaker Brent Siegrist to his team. Romney solidifies himself as a top tier condenter. The Cooler's known that for a while though and the line has reflected it, so we'll keep him right where he is. Romney stays at 3-1.

JOHN MCCAIN also has a budding Iowa organization, though they haven't had a chance to show it off just yet, as it's been a couple months since we've seen McCain in the Hawkeye State. Nonetheless they have added just about every relevant part of the BC04 Iowa organization to their team and have made some inroads with social conservatives as well. Marlys Popma and Maxine Sieleman were already on board and this morning the Note noted that northern Iowa soco De Byerly would be with McCain as well. McCain and Giuliani both showed the strength they have in numbers as well. A recent three way Time magazine poll with McCain, Rudy, and Romney showed the Massachusettes Governor far behind. That led us at the Cooler to believe that maybe the anti-Rudy/McCain vote isn't as big of constituency as we might have originally believed. For all those reasons, McCain moves back to 3-1 and rejoins Romney at the top of the line.

RUDY GIULIANI... He brought on the dynamic duo of Jim Nussle and Steve Greiner to oversee the Iowa operation. But other than that the Iowa additions have been minimal. We've heard rumblings that the Giuliani camp has reached out to Iowa operatives but nothing yet has come of it. That being said, Rudy did hire a reputable polling firm yesterday further signaling his intentions. We've all seen his poll numbers that are through the roof, including leading the pack in a recent Iowa poll. The Big 3 has solidified itself and its time for Rudy's spot on the line to reflect that, Rudy moves to 5-1.
SAM BROWNBACK- Still the Cooler's CCA thanks to his great inroads with the pro-life community in Iowa. But Huckabee is fast on his heels and eating into his constituency. Brownback drops to 14-1.

FIELD BET- The Field seems pretty set to us at the Cooler. There isn't much to make us think that Jeb Bush or Condi or Tommy Franks or Mark Sanford are getting in. So the field bet drops from 20-1 to 40-1.

MIKE HUCKABEE- Hopefully for all the Hucksters out in Cooler Country it wasn't too late. But Mike Huckabee finally started making some moves. He had a successful 2 day trip through the Hawkeye State and gave good interviews to Mike Glover, Kay Henderson, and Jan Mickelson. At the moment he seems to have some of the juice that Brownback had last month. Huckabee also added Bob Vander Plaats and his statewide grassroots organization. So Huckabee's shooting back up the line from 23-1 to 16-1. He stands alone with Brownback on the 2nd tier when it comes to Iowa. If one of the Big 3 stumble look to Huckabee to try and take advantage.

NEWT- Frankly we just don't think Newt is going to run. It's almost comical to think you can enter this Presidential race in September 2007. While Newt will tell you that John Kennedy entered the race in January 1960, the Cooler reminds you what happened to Wesley Clark in 2004- which is a much more apt comparison. Is it remotely possible that Iowa caucus goers are so disenchanted with the Big 3 by September that Newt could jump in and save the day?? Maybe... But given the organization you have to put in place to turn out people to a caucus...Not likely. At all. Frankly it's just as possible that Jeb Bush gets in the race in September. So Newt is joining the field bet at 40-1.

JIM GILMORE- WTF??? He comes to the state 3 times in a month, puts together some staff and then vanishes into the air. Our first instinct was right about Jim. Non factor. Gilmore drops to 60-1.

GEORGE PATAKI- He's not running. We promise. 99-1

TOM TANCREDO- He's visiting the state. He's got Bill Salier on board. He has an issue constituency. His moves are making sense. So, Tancredo's moving up the line, 45-1.

CHUCK HAGEL- He's got center stage on this war thing. Getting a lot of press. If the war becomes a complete mess, maybe, possibly, he's a factor. We're putting Hagel at 98-1.

The one big change to note with the new Cooler line is that as of right now there are only 5 candidates that matter. That can all change if Newt were to get in early enough or if Tommy Thompson keeps doing the right things...But at this stage in the game it's a 5 way race for the top prize in the Hawkeye State. Let's get it on.
Whew, if you made it through all of that you've really got some endurance. Check back over the weekend for some more Cooler content and enjoy those Super Bowl parties.

42 Comments:

Anonymous Anonymous said...

I love this blog. The last two posts have been fantastic. Keep it up!

9:38 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Da Bears!

9:43 AM  
Blogger Yoda said...

Hmmm.... You may want to adjust that line a little bit more:

http://www.newsday.com/news/printedition/stories/nyusrudy025076775feb02,0,4517658,print.story

Rudy has failed to declare himself a republican candidate, so it would seem.....

10:53 AM  
Blogger Mitt Flopper said...

Hmmm... you may want to adjust that line a little bit more:

The old Mitt said, "I respect and will protect a woman's right to choose." The new Mitt says, "I'm committed to promoting the culture of life."

The old Mitt wanted emergency contraception to be more readily available. The new Mitt vetoed a bill to have it sold over the counter.

The old Mitt promised "more effective leadership" toward "full equality" for gays and lesbians. The new Mitt is dining out on his opposition to gay marriage and adoption.

The old Mitt was in favor of embryonic stem cell research. The new Mitt is boasting of his leadership in the fight against "human cloning."

That's just the beginning. In any flip-flop contest, Romney makes Kerry look like he wears Timberlands.

...

The old Mitt story line for supporting abortion rights was that a member of his family died of an illegal abortion. His support for stem cell research came partially from his wife's expressed hope that it would cure her disease, multiple sclerosis.

The new Mitt story line is that after talking to a stem cell researcher, he had an epiphany. He saw "where the harsh logic of abortion can lead -- to the view of innocent new life as nothing more than research material or a commodity to be exploited."

If you have trouble believing that he suddenly found stem cells more sympathetic than a dead relative or a sick wife, you are left with two options now facing spurned Bay Staters: Was he lying to us then or lying to you now?

http://www.boston.com/news/globe/editorial_opinion/oped/articles/2007/02/02/mitts_turnaround/

11:33 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I think the line is pretty accurate, except for the Giuliani line.

He will be exposed by every special interest group in the nation. The NRA will eat him alive. The Pro-lifers will have more passion against him than for Brownback or Huckabee. The far right will never ever vote for him. And I think they turn out to caucus more than moderates.

If this were a straw poll line, it would be more accurate. Rudy's money will buy him a decent showing in the straw poll. But cooler, do you really think he's top three in Iowa? And please don't site the Iowa Poll, because I hate the Iowa Poll. One year out and it's all name recognition.

11:40 AM  
Anonymous I'm not Yoda, but I gave Miller a wedgie said...

Miller, you'll never be as funny as Yoda. :P

11:42 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

But Miller at least has a job!

12:14 PM  
Blogger murphy said...

Nice catch Yoda.

This wasn't an accident like when Rudy lost his 140 page campaign strategy plan.

Rudy is intentionally distancing his paper trail from the Republican party to leave open the possibility of an Indy run.

1:56 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I wonder how much team McCain pays their Mittflop researcher?

Wouldn't it be better to just start with a good candidate instead of an ancient lifelong government employee who has been on more sides of every issue than anyone, ever?

2:08 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Murph,

Nice catch?

You gotta surf this "intranet" thing. It's called Drudge.

Hey everyone, I have found this great brown carbonated drink. It is really refreshing when it is cold. It's called Pepsi. You all should try it.

2:11 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Rudy running as a Republican dirties our image. Guys like that are supposed to be DEmocrats!

2:30 PM  
Blogger Yoda said...

Hmmmmm...... Where I found it, Drudge it was.... Check ou the last two sentences, you should.....


"The ex-mayor still is holding back from submitting the simple one-page form declaring himself a possible candidate, despite raising $1.4 million to run. And asked what party he belongs to on a different form, Giuliani didn't say - he left the answer blank... Giuliani's campaign confirmed that leaving off the Republican designation wasn't a typo."

Said a campaign lawyer: "It was the campaign's judgment that we didn't have to fill in that box."

No wonder everyone is turning down Rudy in Iowa right now.....

2:31 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Yoda, I don't live in Iowa-but what do people think of him there?

3:03 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Wake up! What the hell did staunch/social conservatism get us in the last election? Our Asses kicked!

I'm very conservative, but when I read these posts, I hope to God that my fellow Republicans aren't truly this ridiculous. I want nothing more than to have a strong conservative president elected, but let's realize that following the 06 election, we became the "enemy" to the majority of this country.

My point is this. After all that happened, are we even going to attempt to open our eyes and suck it up? We are going to have to show the people someone who is a bit more toward the middle than an all out conservative. It sucks, but that doesn't mean we must compromise our own personal beliefs does it?

No matter what happens in Iowa, the country as a whole will NEVER elect the likes of Huckabee, Brownback, or even Romney. Ask yourselves who of all the candidates with an R behind their name could stand a chance of beating Hillary? It's simple.

RUDY!

3:33 PM  
Blogger murphy said...

anon 3:33,

Conservatives got clobbered when they focus on social policy to the exclusion of the other party planks.

Removing the pro-life plank (as Rudy wants to do) will not win the election. It will lose by evicting a different demographic from our big tent party.

As for looking over the candidates with an R next to their name, do you appreciate the delicious irony of that sentence given Rudy's lack of party affiliation which Yoda pointed to?

3:52 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Ummm not so simple... apparently RUDY! doesn't have an R behind his name.

I'm a conservative and not ashamed of it, neither should our choice of a candidate.

3:54 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Yeah, and the vitriol that social conservatives have against them now is unprecedented. They got us Bush, and they got their two Supreme Court justices, while the rest of the country got hosed and we are stuck in a quagmire known as Iraq. During this same amount of time in WWII, we had already toppled the German army, krushed the eastern European bloc, beat Russia back to oblivion, took out dictator after dictator, and destroyed Japan.

As for Iraq, yeah...

Right, let's talk about government spending. And ethics. And the list goes on and on...

So, thanks social conservatives, way to go. Enjoy your 2 judges while the rest of us feel the burn.

4:36 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Dude - you are RIGHT ON!

4:41 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Oh yea? Rudy's name starts with a R.

4:41 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Rudy is not running and couldn't win if he did. Having him in the top three makes this a bush league blog.

4:53 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

it wasnt our social conservatism that lost the last election is was the lack there of. May we remind you of Delay, Ney, Cunningham, and foley. C'mon where are the values and integrity that we cherish.

Ps. most political hacks don't have them either.

6:03 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

3:33:

You have bought the drive by media's storyline hook, line and sinker.

If there is anything that Republicans have learned in the last 30 years it is that they need to stick to conservative principles in elections or the Dems will beat them everytime.

Now, that doesn't mean we run around with a bible and only campaign on social issues but it certaintly doesn't mean that we hide, cloak or mute our support for traditional family values and pro-life legislation.

It's when we water ourselves down that we run the risk of not presenting the electorate with a clear alternative that we run the risk of alienating voters. Why elect a linquine spined Republican-lite candidate when you can have a moderate Democrat?

What we certainly need to do is get back to strong fiscal conservatism and winning the war in Iraq, not pulling out like some high school after the prom.

The Republicans in Congress, yesterday voted with Dems for one of the biggest pork laden spending bills in a long time. WTF?

And you know what? Who is actually standing up now that we are in the minority for conservative principles and kicking ass in Iraq? John McCain and VP wannabe Graham, while all other GOP Senators are scurrying for cover. They are still calling for fiscal conservatism and winning the war.

Say what you want about the 20% of the whackjob stuff you don't agree with them on but the other 80% is rock solid and they are about the only ones out there advocating for it.

8:35 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

8:35-

Anon 3:33 here; First of all, let me start by asking everyone to please not misunderstand me. Secondly, 8:35, I couldn't agree with you more.

I truly AM a conservative and don't think we should abandon our beliefs and values. By pointing out that Rudy may be our only shot right now at a Rebublican victory, I am in no way saying that I agree with his social stances on certain issues. While I realize scandals played a huge part in our "ass-kicking," I also know that was not the sole factor.

I have to laugh when you imply "chasing people around with the Bible." Believe me, often times I'd like to and there are even some R's who need it. However, the common voters are not differentiating between good traditional family values/pro-life conservatives like us and the likes of radical nut-jobs. As far as the media is concerned, if we are church-going, pro-life, traditional marriage, anti embryonic stem cell research conservatives, then we must be in the KKK too! It's as if we're "guilty by association," so to speak. It seems to be the truth that we have in fact now become the "enemy" or the "nut-jobs" in which to stay away from.

I'm not saying we should run from our core beliefs nor should we hide from them. I'm saying perhaps we could use them to our benefit in 08. By putting a more moderate Republican like Rudy in the White House, we still have our fiscal and economic conservatism; the social issues we can work on and also work on taking back control of Congress, which may be the key to advancing our social conservative issues.

I knew the posts would start coming at me in response to my first, but please make no mistake. I am a true conservative and I'm not advocating running or hiding from core social beliefs. My main concern is trying to get this party back and if it means putting a more moderate in office to gain back the trust of the American people, then so be it. Anon 8:35, you made note of all the scandals and hinted that it led to our destruction. If that is truly the case, then we must regain trust and integrity for our party.

The only way that is going to happen and still have a Republican in the White House is by people voting for Rudy.

10:22 PM  
Anonymous Captain Corn said...

10:22
Far too lucid.

Go stand with your nose in the corner!!!

12:57 AM  
Anonymous the one is here now bow down said...

10:22:

Therein lies the problem. You are so concerned with the welfare of the "Party" at the expense of what would be beneficial to the country.

Rudy would be an unmitigated disaster. What has he really done anyway besides seize guns, violate federal immigration laws by refusing to cooperate with the INS, dress in drag, and kick a few prostitutes out of Times Square?

That is not a conservative (or even a "Republican") record of achievement. Hell, Bush had a better record than Rudy and look where that has landed us.

If Rudy gets the nomination, there will be a credible conservative third party. I welcome it.

7:58 AM  
Anonymous the one is here now bow down said...

I just noticed something...

Number Seven on the bench is named "Clymer."

8:02 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I'm 8:35 said:

Rudy refused to put his party affiliation on his candidacy declaration form. Sure his lawyers says it's not required and they are correct, but: WTF?

This guy just refuses to take a stand on anything even what party he belongs to it. Sure it may be a ploy to look like the next TR but we already have the TR wannabe candidate in this race already ala McCain and the electorate already identifies him as such.

I like Rudy because he's a stand up guy and doesn't take shit, but he's only good on fighting crime and winning the war, by far the two most important issues in the race.

But we are not electing a President just for just 4 years. What the president does impacts us generations down the road. That's why I need to have a candidate who can WIN and comes as close as possible to all of the things that I as a member of the GOP believe in.

Right now that guy is McCain. He's rock solid on the war and fiscal policy and trade and a whole host of other non-social issues (if there is such thing). And sure I think his style of campaign finance reform violates the 1st amendment...so he's not good on everything but he's so much more credible on the social issues than Romney or Guilliani even though he may not fit the Limbaugh Litmus Test.

8:13 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

8:13,

I was with you right up until your last paragragh. Then I went out to the garage to get a shovel so I could scoop some of the bullshit off my screen.

8:57 AM  
Anonymous the one is here now bow down said...

Right now that guy is McCain.

ROFLMAO!!

McCain? Are you serious?

John McCain would LOSE the war.

9:42 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

3:33/10:22 here again-

Anon 8:13, again, I think we have a great deal in common as I, once again, couldn't agree more with your post.

I actually think McCain is a great candidate and stands firm on many fronts in which I believe he should as a conservative; even aside from the campaign finance issue. I would love to see him win so long as the voters are ready to put him there.

Also, I appreciate you pointing out that while Rudy is not necessarily right on most issues with you, he is at least right on the "the two most important" issues in this election. This will help him and despite the slamming from fellow bloggers, Rudy is a Republican and will have the votes to actually win. Granted, they may come from Independants and even some Democrats, he will still have the votes to win.

That was all I was trying to say, but some choose to blast away rather than discuss like you. They hate to hear that Romney CANNOT win a general versus the Democrats.

Thanks for the civil discussion and have a good one 8:13!

3:49 PM  
Anonymous Give me a break said...

I love the McCainiac argument: I know he kinda sucks, but he can win in the general election.

Well if the GOP co-nominates Hillary she can win the general election too.

Hell, why not nominate Peyton Manning? He's popular with the press and makes funny comercials. I don't know if he's a conservative, but I do know that McCain is not.

In fact, what conservatives in Iowa support McAmnesty that are not currently on the payroll? I can't wait till there is an event like the straw poll or even the caucus where McAmnesty has to actually get non-paid supporters to stand and be counted for him. Of course he will just call everything a "sham" and hope the other 49 states believe him. Then it will be off to New Hampshire to appeal to the independent and democratic voters in the GOP PRIMARY!

Give me a break.

4:41 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Said like a true Mittsfit!

Like Romney is a conservative? Hell, he doesn't know what he is half of the damn time!

I'd respond more, but I'm afraid I'm going to laugh myself into a coma.

6:46 PM  
Blogger Logan said...

Hagel deserves a higher spot. He continues to gain popularity and publicity with his stances, and time will only be good to him.

8:52 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

If we're going to nominate Giuliani, why not nominate Hillary instead, just to be on the safe side.

9:13 PM  
Blogger Mittreport.com said...

One of the best sites on the web for information about Mitt Romney and the 2008 presidential election:

http://www.mittreport.com

-MR
Together, we can find the truth...
http://www.mittreport.com

10:15 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Right 10:15; I see you posted the same message on that site as well there post number 22. Do you really call that crap the "best information on Mitt" out there? It is absolute garbage and a site completely dedicated to Romney!

You either must be joking or you're a complete wack-job. I actually encourage people to visit the site because 9 out of 10 of all the posts are all negative about Romney.

You're obviously a Mittsfit/Romney supporter, so why in the hell would you point people to this website?

I don't care what sites you point out, arguments you make, or how much you all bash me on this blog. The painful truth is that no matter what you think or what happens in the Iowa caucuses, the voters of the USA will NEVER elect Mitt Romney as their president. Hell will freeze over first and you know it.

12:04 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

mittreport:

I checked it out for myself too and I have to say it brings up a good point. Anon 12:04 is right on and you must be a tool bag.

12:38 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

give me a break:

You sound like a Grey's Anatomy episode! Perhaps you need to like give us a Mcbreak from your McCrap and get a McLife McLoser?

12:50 AM  
Anonymous Is there anything McCain won't say or do to win? said...

New York Times
February 4, 2007
McCain’s Advisers Once Made Ads That Drew His Ire
By JIM RUTENBERG

WASHINGTON, Feb. 2 — Senator John McCain, intent on succeeding where his freewheeling presidential campaign of 2000 failed, is assembling a team of political bruisers for 2008. And it includes advisers who once sought to skewer him and whose work he has criticized as stepping over the line in the past.

In 2000, Mr. McCain, Republican of Arizona, said the advertisements run against him by George W. Bush, then the governor of Texas, distorted his record. But he has hired three members of the team that made those commercials — Mark McKinnon, Russell Schriefer and Stuart Stevens — to work on his presidential campaign.

In 2004, Mr. McCain said the Swift Boat Veterans for Truth advertisement asserting that Senator John Kerry of Massachusetts had not properly earned his medals from the Vietnam War was “dishonest and dishonorable.” Nonetheless, he has hired the firm that made the spots, Stevens Reed Curcio & Potholm, which worked on his 2000 campaign, to work for him again this year.

In October, Mr. McCain’s top adviser expressed public displeasure with an advertisement against former Representative Harold E. Ford Jr., Democrat of Tennessee, that some saw as having racist overtones for suggesting a flirtation between Mr. Ford, who is black, and a young, bare-shouldered white woman, played by a blond actress.

The Republican committee that sponsored the spot had as its leader Terry Nelson, a former Bush campaign strategist whom Mr. McCain hired as an adviser last spring. In December, just weeks after the Ford controversy broke, Mr. McCain elevated Mr. Nelson to the position of national campaign manager.

Taken together, the moves provide the strongest indication yet that Mr. McCain intends to run a far tougher campaign than the one he ran in the 2000 primary. And they come as he transitions from being a onetime maverick to a candidate seeking to gather his party around him and create an air of inevitability about his prospects for winning nomination.

As Mr. McCain assembles his team, he is also making it that much harder for his Republican challengers by scooping up a significant circle of the party’s top talent.

In recent years, Mr. McCain has made a concerted effort to mend fences with Mr. Bush and reassure the Republican base that he is a reliable conservative. But his moves have focused new attention on the extent to which he may risk sacrificing the image he has long cultivated of being his own man, driven by principle rather than partisan politics.

Mr. McCain’s advisers said he was not changing. But they were unapologetic about putting together a group dedicated to doing what it takes to reach the White House and employing lessons from his defeat at the hands of Mr. Bush in 2000.

“This is about winning at the end of the day,” said John Weaver, Mr. McCain’s longtime senior strategist. “I don’t want to be in a knife fight ever again, but if I am, we’re going to win it.”

Mr. McCain’s representatives said he would not provide an interview.

Seven years ago, Mr. McCain charmed the news media and the public with his Straight Talk Express bus tour. He had a lean operation befitting an upstart candidacy, and he regularly spoke out against attack advertising, a quaint notion in retrospect.

In the end, he ran his share of confrontational advertisements, once even leveling the ultimate Republican-to-Republican insult: that Mr. Bush was as dishonest as Bill Clinton. But he was perceived as having been knocked back on his heels by the rougher, tougher Bush campaign.

Now Mr. McCain is building a larger organization, bringing together the heart of the bare-knuckled Bush crew once overseen by Karl Rove while keeping most of the advisers who ran his shoestring effort of 2000.

“It’s like an all-star World Wrestling Federation cage match, except that instead of fighting one another, all of the brawlers are on the same team,” said Steve McMahon, a strategist for the Democratic National Committee. “There are very few people who play this game at the highest level, and on the Republican side these guys are among the best.”

Mr. McCain has also hired Brian Jones, an adviser to Mr. Bush’s 2004 campaign; Fred Davis, a media consultant for Mr. Bush in 2004; and Steve Schmidt, who oversaw Mr. Bush’s 2004 war room, exploiting any tidbit that could help paint Mr. Kerry as a “flip-flopper.”

The hires are another signal that the 2008 primary campaign could be a combative one all around.

On the Democratic side, John Edwards, the former senator from North Carolina, has wasted no time attacking Senator Hillary Rodham Clinton’s position on Iraq. And Mrs. Clinton’s team includes strategists who invented the concept of the modern campaign war room for her husband 15 years ago. But Senator Barack Obama of Illinois drew cheers at a party gathering on Friday when he warned his fellow candidates against attacking one another.

Mitt Romney, a Republican and the former governor of Massachusetts, has hired Alex Castellanos, a onetime Bush strategist who also famously produced the 1990 commercial for Jesse Helms, the former North Carolina senator, in which a pair of white hands crumpled a rejection letter as a narrator said, “You needed that job and you were the best qualified, but it had to go to a minority because of a racial quota.”

Given Mr. McCain’s history with some of the people on his team, the evolution of his staff may present an early challenge: How does he stay true to the “Straight Talk” spirit of his 2000 campaign, which helped him win the stature he has now, while also engaging in the political brinkmanship it can take to win?

The Democratic National Committee is already criticizing Mr. McCain for his hires, issuing a statement this week calling them “a testament to how far he’s gone down the do-anything-to-win path.”

Tony Fabrizio, a Republican pollster who is not yet allied with a candidate, said Mr. McCain was running the risk of looking “politically expedient” and of blunting his brand as “Senator Straight Talk.” He said the risk was highlighted by Mr. McCain’s recent suggestions that he may not use the campaign finance system he has long championed.

In 2000, Mr. McCain received money from the system, which gives public financing to candidates who agree to strict spending limits. Mr. Weaver, the senior strategist, said Mr. McCain was keeping his options open because others, including Mrs. Clinton, were planning to work around the system.

As Mr. McCain’s aides often point out, for all its appeal, the McCain 2000 campaign was a losing one. And they said it would be unfair to suggest that because Mr. McCain was augmenting his team he was somehow preparing to change who he was.

“There are no negotiations regarding his principles,” Mr. Weaver said.

In an interview on Friday, Mr. Jones, the campaign communications director, said Mr. McCain was not allowing his distaste over the Swift Boat commercials to interfere with his relationship with Stevens Reed Curcio & Potholm, with whom Mr. McCain has his own decade-long association. In addition, he said, Mr. McCain hired Mr. Nelson because of his breadth of experience in national campaigns. “The campaign,” Mr. Jones said, “is not going to let past contests on the battlefield limit how it’s going to go after talent.”

Presidential politics are rich in fungible allegiances. James A. Baker III ran the primary campaigns of Gerald Ford and the elder George Bush against Ronald Reagan, only to become Mr. Reagan’s chief of staff. This year, David Axelrod is serving as a senior strategist for Mr. Obama; he was a senior strategist to Mr. Edwards in his 2004 campaign.

“You could dissect any campaign this way: this guy did this ad this one time,” said Mr. Schriefer, the former Bush media strategist, who will run Mr. McCain’s advertising team. “There’s a tremendous history of foes becoming allies.”

Mr. McKinnon, who led Mr. Bush’s advertising group in 2004, said he saw no inconsistency in working for Mr. McCain. Mr. Bush was right for 2000, he said, and Mr. McCain is right for 2008. “At the end of the day, the campaign will be won or lost on the character of the candidate and his or her core message,” Mr. McKinnon said. “Of course, I believe that will be John McCain.”

Asked if the senator would avoid the attacks he criticized in 2000, Mr. Jones said that while Mr. McCain had yet to declare his candidacy, any campaign he ran would be “consistent with his beliefs and values.”

6:21 AM  
Anonymous Sore/Losermann 2008 said...

"My days of seeking national office are over."

-- Sen. Joe Lieberman (I), quoted by the Hartford Courant, in a direct question about possibly being Sen. John McCain's (R-AZ) running mate in 2008.


What really scares me is the fact that questions even had to be asked. It was a good question too.

7:17 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Was there any credible evidence that McCain was actually thinking about Joe as a mate?

2:06 PM  
Blogger Alex said...

Hagel is more conservative than McCain, Guiliani, and Romney on all the issues. Right now, he's known only for taking on Bush's war policies, which much of the GOP despises, but with which 70% of the nation agrees. Once Hagel lets it be known that he's a social and fiscal conservative, while simultaneously being an Eisenhower realist in foreign policy, Hagel will be a force.

Electablility is always, perhaps, the biggest issue in a primary. Hagel is the most electable of the bunch, once he is well known. He can distance himself from Bush's unpopular war policies, while simultaneously being conservative on those issues the GOP base is passionate about (abortion, taxes, smaller government, etc.)

Hagel is the GOP's best chance. And, as the GOP slowly discovers that, Hagel's chances will rise.

So, who do I contact to place a bet on the 98-1 odds? I'll take that bet any day of the week. Hagel should be more at 20-1 now.

10:43 AM  

Post a Comment

<< Home

  • Caucus Coolerisms
  • The Cooler Line

    Mike Huckabee 10-9
    Mitt Romney 3-1
    Fred Thompson 9-1
    John McCain 9-1
    Rudy Giuliani 12-1
    Ron Paul 12-1
    Duncan Hunter 98-1
    The Cooler line is an exclusive creation of Caucus Cooler and will be updated as the political environment changes.
    It is an unscientific assessment of the Iowa Caucus (not the Presidential race as a whole) from an insiders view at the given time. The line IS NOW mathematically accurate but is NOT intended for gambling purposes. Information may only be reproduced with credit to the Caucus Cooler.