Strengthening Constitutional Self-Government

No Left Turns

Bush as Carter?

The latest conventional wisdom on the Presdiential election is that President Bush’s presidency is ripe for a wipe-out in November along the same lines as Jimmy Carter’s defeat in 1980. Inside the beltway punditry has it that John Kerry then is the new Ronald Reagan. Steve Hayward takes issue with this nonsense and demolishes the conventional wisdom.

As James Traficant used to say: ’Beam me up, Scotty.’ Was Traficant the last intelligent Democrat?

Discussions - 3 Comments

I honestly don’t have any idea of who will win in the fall. I’m remind of the comment attributed to the late Mayor Daley: "Regardless of how things look right now, someone will be elected."

Both Mssrs. Kerry and Bush are deeply flawed. Kerry appears unwilling to present clear positions on any subject for fear of alienating either his base or moderates both of whose support he needs to win. Bush has been a poor advocate for his positions either to the American people or to the world. Victor Davis Hanson gives him a "D" for communication.

Mr. Hayward did nothing close to demolishing the argument that has been making the rounds in dem. circles. The nutshell version is that incumbent presidents that win reelection typically win head-to-head matchups by a wide margin in the late spring. this includes Clinton, and Reagan. Incumbent presidents that lead by a small margin, are tied, or are behind their challenger inevitably lose. That is the source of the Carter/Reagan analogies. Obviously the personality and politics of Reagan/Carter and Kerry/Bush are radically different. Based on historical analogies, things look bad for Bush, particularly having spend $130 million already.

The fact that Kerry is NOT Bush is Kerry’s greatest asset. (He certainly is NOT another Ronald Reagan with the implied "Washington outsider" role this implies.) For many Americans, the presidential election isn’t so much a match-up between Bush and Kerry as it is a referendum on how well or poorly Bush is perceived to have performed while in office. Bush has major problems arising from the belief among wide numbers of Americans that they are not "better off now than they were four years ago" (to borrow from RR). Outsourcing has led to permanent middle class job losses among the very people whom Bush would logically hope for support; his support for outsourcing has alienated many in his base.

Leave a Comment

* denotes a required field

No TrackBacks
TrackBack URL:

Warning: include(/srv/users/prod-php-nltashbrook/apps/prod-php-nltashbrook/public/sd/nlt-blog/_includes/promo-main.php): failed to open stream: No such file or directory in /srv/users/prod-php-nltashbrook/apps/prod-php-nltashbrook/public/2004/05/bush-as-carter.php on line 469

Warning: include(): Failed opening '/srv/users/prod-php-nltashbrook/apps/prod-php-nltashbrook/public/sd/nlt-blog/_includes/promo-main.php' for inclusion (include_path='.:/opt/sp/php7.2/lib/php') in /srv/users/prod-php-nltashbrook/apps/prod-php-nltashbrook/public/2004/05/bush-as-carter.php on line 469