I met up with a friend of mine last night. We've known each for a long time, and we try and get together two or three times year. We have a few beers, provide updates on our jobs and lives, and talk about any number of topics, including books and authors, current events, politics, and local sports teams.
Last night we spent some time considering the upcoming 2008 presidential election and the prospect of the Democrats winning. It turned into a hard realization for both of us that the Democrats face an uphill battle and may likely lose the election, even with the support of crossover voters abandoning the Republicans because of the many blunders and disasters of the current administration.
The reason, we purported, is that the top democratic candidates, for one reason or another, are all unelectable and would not beat Rudy Giuliani or John MCain. This notion was hard to swallow but, as we discussed each of the likely candidates, also hard to deny.
Barack Obama, with the best message and moderating platform, lacks experience and has not yet formed the body politic partnerships you need to win an election. Needless to say, he also would not win the south.
Hillary Clinton is not Bill and is so reviled in much of the country that she will be hard-pressed to make inroads in any Republican states.
John Edwards is susceptible to some of the same criticisms facing Obama, and one can only imagine the mileage the Rove machine would get out of the $300 haircut.
John Kerry was effectively neutered as a viable presidential candidate in 2004. He would fare no better in 2008.
Is it that bleak and hopeless then? Not exactly. As we listed the Democratic candidates, we kept coming back to one name -- the only name -- that can win the 2008 election as a Democrat. He's not on the ticket yet, but it's likely he's biding his time, waiting for the right opportunity to announce his intent to run, to save the party and the country.
Who is it?
Think about it. He has the experience, the political relationships, and the growing momentum from his climate change activism. I also think Gore feels he still has something to prove after the 2000 election and will see no greater opportunity for vindication than a presidential election win and cleaning up the messes Bush has made.