01 October 2007

Rudy ... Rudy ... Rudy

Christian Conservatives Consider Third-Party Effort

Alarmed at the chance that the Republican party might pick Rudolph Giuliani as its presidential nominee despite his support for abortion rights, a coalition of influential Christian conservatives is threatening to back a third-party candidate in an attempt to stop him.

(from Caucus, the NYT political blog)

For fifteen years I've heard dire predictions that the GOP would split as a result of the uneasy alliance between the the corporate and social conservatives. Never happened. I kind of doubt it will happen this time, either. But we can hope.

If nothing else, the Dobsons are sending a clear message to the kingmakers in the GOP, and at the same time hamstringing their most electable candidate. Pass the popcorn.


  1. You, being so partisan, should think more clearly about this stuff. If the Christian conservatives go third-party, then you've blown the biggest lead Democrats have ever had.

    If the Christian right goes away for the primaries, then Guiliani wins the primaries. Then you go general against him, in which he looks unbeatable right now.

    I understand that your thinking is that the CR takes it all the way through to the general election, and I concede that chance, but Rudy G is still a bigger obstacle than Romney or McCain in my estimation.


  2. First of all, I did say that I think this is probably an empty threat -- to mount a third-party challenge, that is.

    The nature of the possibility is, I think, less threatening than you suggest. The threat to mount a third-party challenger was conditioned on Rudy *already having won* the GOP nomination.

    Think of this as a Nader on the Right. If the Fundies and the corporate conservatives split their vote between Rudy and the Third-prety-to-be-named-later, I would expect that to give an easy win to the Democrat.

    Interesting that you describe Rudy as "unbeatable" in the general, though. That would not be my analysis at all. Presuming a standard two-party race, I don't see Rudy as winning easy, or even winning at all. Granted, he is by far the most dangerous of the GOP candidates in the general. No disagreement there. He has some residual social-liberal credibility to appeal to moderates. But he risks losing the social conservative vote -- if they are demoralized enough to stay home, he'll lose the margin that put Bush in office twice.

    Right now, the most recent polls I have seen on the national scale put Hillary ahead of Rudy by seven points overall and eleven points among moderates. Yeah, yeah, thirteen months from the election, that is pretty meaningless, but I find it encouraging.

    It's disappointing to me that I am seeing Obama's star fading a bit and Hillary looking more and more ascendant every day. I can live with her, but she is so not my first choice.

  3. Guiliani would not be the best candidate for the Republicans. He has spent enough time acting as a pro-war candidate who is real sorry about hanging out with all of those sissy liberals to get anyone on the left.

    I actually think Guiliani books SC, AR, SC, & LA in play for Hillary.

    Also, Guiliani will be Swift Boated by the 9/11 Fire Fighters.

    Matt, why do you think Guiliani looks unbeatable? I mean, Hillary shouldn't stop campaigning or anything, but polls showing her kicking his ass doesn't exactly make him look unbeatable.

    BTW, I also think the immediate invassion of Iran is a good reason not to vote for him. I know the topic is the horse race, but I thought I'd add that.

    Finally, I really wish Obama would do something. Edwards has basically given up by accepting matching funds. So, Obama is the only non-Hillary option for President.

  4. Obama, strangely, stopped actually running for president a few weeks ago but never actually announced it.

    From Gallup: "Rudy Giuliani has led the field of Republican candidates for the 2008 presidential nomination in every Gallup Poll since January. In the most recent nationwide poll of Republicans, 30% name Giuliani as their first choice for the party's nomination, giving him an eight-point lead over second place Fred Thompson"


    "Giuliani is the most positively rated candidate of either party, with a 59% favorable rating in the latest Gallup survey."


    "the three leading Democratic candidates are only about evenly matched with him in national test elections. Clinton, Edwards, and Obama are all statistically even with Giuliani in a hypothetical trial heat ballot."

    So according to Gallup she's not beating him at all.


  5. Obama, strangely, stopped actually running for president a few weeks ago but never actually announced it.

    Geez. You'd think the guy would hve the decency to stop filling my email inbox with constant messages begging for cash.

    I tell you, it's like giving a toddler a piece of candy. It makes them happy for a few minutes but then you have to endure hours of whining as they beg for more...

  6. Obama, strangely, stopped actually running for president a few weeks ago but never actually announced it.



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