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Saturday, December 29, 2007

Will Any Democrats Drop Out After Iowa?

With such an early and compressed primary schedule some Democrats running for President will see the handwriting on the wall and drop out after the Iowa caucuses. Or will some stay in due to the closeness of the primaries and try to play the spoiler in the race?

After the Iowa caucus next Thursday on January 3, 2008, New Hamsphire's primary will follow in less than a week on January 8, 2008. After the South Carolina primary on the 26th, close to half of the states will hold their primaries on February 5, 2008 - the new Super Tuesday.

Another unfortunate byproduct as a result of the closeness in the primaries is that these states will have already printed their ballots so even if a candidate drops out their name will still appear on the ballot.

Five weeks from now after the Super Tuesday vote many questions will have been answered as to which candidate the voters support. Will a clear leader emerge or will the Democrats be heading to a broker-ed convention?

Former Senator Mike Gravel (Alaska) has not raised any significant money and was not invited to participate in the last several Democratic Presidential debates so even when he drops out it will not have any impact on the other candidates in the race.

Senators Chris Dodd (Conn) and Joe Biden (Del) along with Congressman Dennis Kucinich (Oh) have all had lengthy and distinguished public service careers. Both Senators Biden and Dodd have served in the Senate for three decades. Congressman Kucinich began his political career becoming the youngest elected mayor of Cleveland, Ohio in 1972.

Governor Bill Richardson (NM) is polling in fourth place nationally and needs a solid showing in Iowa to boost his fund raising and further his campaign efforts. After serving for 14 years in Congress, he also was appointed Ambassador to the U.N. and Secretary of The Department of Energy.

After the results of the Iowa caucuses, it will be clear as to if they should continue in the race for the Democratic nomination. Unless there is a strong surprise showing by Senators Biden and Dodd look to see them both drop out if not after Iowa, certainly after New Hampshire.

They will both realize a continuation of their campaigns would be a foolish endeavor. Who they endorse will be interesting for their supporters could certainly aid the eventual Democratic nominee. It is also rumored that Biden would like to be considered as a Vice-President running mate or as Secretary of State.

Kucinich has principal positions on the issues he will want to continue to articulate even though he realizes he is not a serious candidate for the Democratic nomination. So look to see him stay in so he can use this exposure to express his positions.

Governor Richardson's fund raising has him fourth behind Senators Clinton (NY), Obama (Ill) and former Senator Edwards (NC) so anything but a finish in the top four in Iowa would be a major blow to his campaign. He will most likely stay in the race until Super Tuesday. Richardson is also rumored to be in consideration as a Vice-President running mate and Secretary of State. Should he drop out of the race, his endorsement will carry significant weight.

A longer and more evenly spread out primary calendar would favor more debate and an opportunity to get to know the candidates. But with a compressed and front loaded primary schedule, it is virtually impossible for eight candidates to effectively compete.

Although all of the Democrats running for President have strengths, some should drop out after Iowa and certainly after the New Hampshire primary.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

By whose decision is Kucinich not a serious candidate for the Democratic nomination? In my opinion, Clinton, Obama, and Edwards are not serious, because they are not very principled and not very bright. Bush conned them all on the Iraq war vote. If they cannot protect the United States against a known liar like Bush, how can anyone reasonably expect that they will be resistant to any other liars who wish to lead America astray? If the Democratic party will not support a serious, principled candidate, then I will not support the Democratic party.
I am not convinced that an inadequate Democrat is a better choice for president than a Republican.