John Kerry makes the right call. As I see it, this is good for three reasons. One, it makes it more likely that starting in 2005, George W. Bush will no longer be in office. Two, VP nominees have a way of becoming presidential candidates down the road, and Edwards would be a better president than Dick Gephardt. Three, and
most least importantly, I'd gone way out on a limb with the Gephardt-bashing and wasn't looking forward to needing to defend him after all once he got the nomination. All in all, A Good Thing.
UPDATE: Well, that'll teach me to ever write a joke.
July 6, 2004 | Permalink
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» Intellectual honesty from Signifying Nothing
Well, you’ve got to concede that at least Matthew Yglesias freely acknowledges his newfound status as a Democratic party hack: Three, and most least importantly, I’d gone way out on a limb with the Gephardt-bashing and wasn’t looking ... [Read More]
Tracked on Jul 6, 2004 9:32:15 AM
Plus, Edwards will make mincemeat of Cheney at the VP debates. Don't know if that will impact the election, but it should be fun to watch!
Posted by: anonymous | Jul 6, 2004 9:00:23 AM
I am not entirely displeased, which is as much exuberience as you can get out of me at 7:30 a.m.
I am very happy. I love this guy.
Posted by: Slothrop in Boulder | Jul 6, 2004 9:12:53 AM
Nicely done. Edwards is a little right for some of the base, but by talking up Gep for a few weeks they would be willing to take DeLay if they had to to avoid the Gep. Also, Edwards seems like a good choice.
Posted by: Alan.B. | Jul 6, 2004 9:15:46 AM
Excellent choice. The one thing that worries me is Rove getting Bush to drop Cheney. I really want to see Edwards flay him in a debate.
Posted by: Michael | Jul 6, 2004 9:18:28 AM
I am SO HAPPY.
I'm more worried about Cheney dropping Bush.
As for Edwards vs. Major League F*bomb -- don't forget about the advantage of low expectations. The SCLM will probably run with the theme that Edwards the charming trial lawyer should trounce F*bomb, meaning the latter will only have to avoid blowing another gasket on camera.
Posted by: Bragan | Jul 6, 2004 9:26:37 AM
I've been predicting for awhile that Bush will find a way to weasel out of debates. He has little to gain from them and a lot to lose.
Look for some kind of national security excuse for no debates.
Posted by: wvmcl | Jul 6, 2004 9:38:46 AM
It would not lower my opinion of Bush if he were to fake a national security emergency in a debate (making it seem just like 24), but the media at this point might need to see some corroboration. F9/11 may have done some good by bringing back the concept of skepticism.
Either way, Edwards is a great pick, and as far as I can tell the Kerry team has handled this very well -- all good signs.We should look for a 5 point bounce from the pick - probably another bounce from the convention, and it may be enough of a bounce to scare the GOP into panic mode.
Posted by: theCoach | Jul 6, 2004 9:49:52 AM
Let's hope that one of Kerry's first acts is to fix the Endangered Species Act....
But Bragan has a good point -- now would be a good time for the prominent bloggers, Atrios, MY, Josh Marshall, et. al., to begin demanding that pundits hold high expectations of George Bush -- after all, with four years of experience, two wars, and 800+ deaths behind him why should any pundit hold low expectations of the man?
Posted by: jerry | Jul 6, 2004 9:50:53 AM
>>The one thing that worries me is Rove getting Bush to drop Cheney
As Saturday-Night-Live-Clinton said on Weekend Update, "Bush firing Cheney would be like Paula Abdul firing Simon Cowell."
Bush weaselling out of debates would be a major political blunder. Aside from making him look weak, it would be an opportunity to bring up the fact that he weaselled out of his guard service the same way.
The Bush administration can no more dump Cheney than you or I get a brain transplant. Stop worrying about it.
Posted by: jimBOB | Jul 6, 2004 9:52:34 AM
I'm actually worried abotu Edwards v. Cheney.
The GOP meme on Edwards is that is insubstantial and inexperienced. Look back at how Kerry beat him in the primary debate - Kerry knew his shit, Edwards just looked nice.
Cheney might outwonk him. That'll be the objective anyways.
Posted by: Andrew Edwards | Jul 6, 2004 10:01:50 AM
I think that Edwards was probably the best choice. It's just really annoying to see Matt get his way. Gephardt wouldn't have been the best candidate, but there are more important things than just winning elections.
Posted by: Zizka | Jul 6, 2004 10:02:00 AM
Gephardt wouldn't have been the best candidate, but there are more important things than just winning elections.
Huh? Considering how much is potentially riding on whether or not Bush/Cheney have another 4 years to fuck up the world, what is more important? Are you suggesting that Gephardt in some way was preferable to Edwards? If so, how?
Posted by: Bragan | Jul 6, 2004 10:19:50 AM
"The SCLM will probably run with the theme that Edwards the charming trial lawyer should trounce F*bomb, meaning the latter will only have to avoid blowing another gasket on camera."
Yes, this is a good point. James Fallows had a great article on this in the Atlantic Monthly.
The main thing is that regardless of whatever the media says, the Kerry campaign needs to make sure it doesn't fall for the typical Bushie rope-a-dope and pull the old campaign stunt of saying "my opponent is too scared to debate me" etc etc. Kerry should just keep quiet - if he's still leading in the polls in the fall, he won't need to go out of his way to call for debates anyway, unlike the typical challenger to an incumbent.
Posted by: JP | Jul 6, 2004 10:25:35 AM
"Huh? Considering how much is potentially riding on whether or not Bush/Cheney have another 4 years to fuck up the world, what is more important? Are you suggesting that Gephardt in some way was preferable to Edwards? If so, how?"
Yikes, this inability-to-recognize-irony thing is reaching epidemic proportions these days.
Correct me if I'm wrong, Zizka, but the "more important thing" here is not letting Matt get his way. Sounds good to me.
Posted by: JP | Jul 6, 2004 10:28:21 AM
So the Democratic Party is going into the election with a hard-left presidential ticket: no big surprise there. Although he is telegenic Edwards might be the worst possible choice Kerry could make. A multimillionaire ultraleftist lawyer and Vietnam-era traitor with a multimillionaire liberal trial lawyer. Barring some earth-shattering development, Bush-Cheney should make quick work of this duo. If they don't, America's in deep shit.
D'oh! What a bonehead. You're right, JP, I should have seen that coming a mile away.
Posted by: Bragan | Jul 6, 2004 10:31:15 AM
Pro: Gets soccer mom votes.
Pro/Con: Hillary has competition for 2008.
Pro/Con: Tort reform is dead.
Con: One term Senator.
Kerry/Edwards is "hard-left"? How would describe Dennis Kucinich, Al Sharpton, and the many other Democrats (much less the Naderites) far to the left of either Kerry or Edwards? And for some reason I don't think you're troubled by the substantial wealth of millionaire's Bush and Cheney. If and when the GOP wants to get serious about campaign financing, I'm sure Democrats will nominate more candidates of more modest means.
Posted by: Bragan | Jul 6, 2004 10:46:42 AM
"A multimillionaire ultraleftist lawyer and Vietnam-era traitor with a multimillionaire liberal trial lawyer."
This is a joke, right?
Posted by: JP | Jul 6, 2004 10:56:19 AM
Vadum also calls Edwards "ultraleftist" which is at least amusing. Protesting too much perhaps?
" If they don't, America's in deep shit." - Vadum.
Actually, the Republican party would be in deep shit. America would be primed for a period of healing after getting rid of some poisonous elements.
The interesting thing to watch for as it becomes more clear what an anchor BC04 is, will be what fractions of the Republican party recognize this and try to salvage their future.
Posted by: theCoach | Jul 6, 2004 11:01:23 AM
" Gephardt wouldn't have been the best candidate, but there are more important things than just winning elections. "
Was this a stalker Zizka?
Bragan: If you're a Democrat or a liberal, you probably would not see Kerry-Edwards as far left but if you're even a mild conservative, you would.
(As you know, congressional Democrats tend to be far to the left of state Democratic lawmakers, so the so-called mainstream of the national Democratic party is pretty far to the left of the U.S. voting public. The national party has moved progressively more left since George W. Bush was elected, which is acknowledged by just all about all left-wing political writers I know of.) Kerry has the most liberal voting record in the Senate, gave aid and comfort repeatedly to the then-enemy during the Vietnam War, favored a nuclear freeze during the Cold War, vehemently opposed aid to anticommunist rebels in Nicaragua, and thinks forcing the car industry to improve fuel efficiency is more important than fighting Islamofascism. (If Kerry were to win, the war on terrorism would end January 20, 2005.) If that's not hard- or far-left, I don't know what is. Edwards doesn't seem quite as far-left as Kerry but that's probably only because he wasn't politically active (as far as I know--I could be wrong) during the Vietnam War era. Nonetheless, Edwards is all for class warfare, higher taxes, stricter regulation of industry, yada yada yada.
I think it would be more accurate to call Kucinich and Nader "loony left" but Sharpton appears to be an insincere racial antagonist and I get the feeling he says whatever he thinks will fire up his supporters the most.
I don't care if candidates are wealthy but I just think it looks odd having these super-rich guys (Kerry and Edwards) arguing for the so-called little guy and using class-warfare rhetoric. On the other topic, campaign finance "reform" is a frontal assault on the First Amendment according to the ACLU and was acknowledged as such by many Democratic lawmakers before they inexplicably jumped on the McCain-Feingold-Shays-Meehan bandwagon.
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