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This is "Anyone but Bush" Country!
May 16, 2006 9:40 AM   Subscribe

Bush out of favor in 47 out of 50 states. The SurveyUSA 50-state-poll shows some interesting details on Bush's approval rating, which has fallen to just 35% in North (and South) Carolina, 29% in Missouri, and 42% in Texas. He remains popular in only three states: Idaho, Utah, and Wyoming. Could the Democrats have a shot even in Utah in the not-too-distant future? A lot of Utahns think so.
posted by insomnia_lj (89 comments total)

 
Could the Democrats have a shot even in Utah in the not-too-distant future?

Bush won't be on the ballot, technically.
posted by caddis at 9:45 AM on May 16, 2006


Was just in SC last week... 9 out of 10 cars still have their "W" stickers on. So, he's not quite so "out of favor" there, yet.
posted by BobFrapples at 9:46 AM on May 16, 2006


Bush is unpopular now, no doubt. But to correlate his low poll numbers with future Democrat success is a mistake. The current polling data is an opinion on Bush. What really matters in the end is the choice between Bush (and his party) and the opposition party.

Don't forget, lots of the red states are down on Bush because he's not conservative enough. There has been no gay marriage ammendmet to the constitution. He hasn't directly challenged abortion. He's done nothing about illegal immigration (that's been factored into the polling yet, at least).

If anything I'd say a 3rd party has a better shot than ever.
posted by b_thinky at 9:48 AM on May 16, 2006


Wife and I noticed that around here (Cambridge area, a veritable hotbed of right-wing radicalism) you can see the spots on all the cars where the yellow stickers and magnets used to be.
posted by Ryvar at 9:48 AM on May 16, 2006


Bush won't be on the ballot, technically.

Precisely. It's dangerous to conflate disapproval of Bush with good times for the Dems in a state like Utah. Utahns may finally be getting sick of Bush, but they are staunchly, unbelievably conservative as a whole.
posted by gurple at 9:48 AM on May 16, 2006


Utahn, Teton, muon, Revlon, roll-on, futon, two-ton, UConn.
posted by airguitar at 9:50 AM on May 16, 2006


Just wait until the GOP pulls out the Federal Marriage Amendment this fall. People's hatred will trump their well being every time.
posted by Mean Mr. Bucket at 9:54 AM on May 16, 2006 [1 favorite]


Again, if the Democrats insist on running as the party that "Is not the Republican party", then they will not have the big victory they think they will have this fall.

The populace, as a whole, still does not think that the Democrats offer anything substantially better than the Republicans are offering. The 2004 election results should have taught the Democrats that lesson.

If anything, I think that the last 18 months have demonstrated that the populace is simply tired of the current crop of politicans in Washington. The double-speak, lack of clarity, unbalanced priorities and general 'disingenuousness' (i think i 'inventioned' a word there) has really begun to tire people out.
posted by tgrundke at 9:54 AM on May 16, 2006


If anything I'd say a 3rd party has a better shot than ever.

What I'd like to see right now is an energized anti-corporate party with a platform that is mostly economically paleo-conservative, socially progressive, and constitutionally absolutist.

and general 'disingenuousness' (i think i 'inventioned' a word there)

disingenuity?
posted by Ryvar at 9:56 AM on May 16, 2006


oh, and while I'm ranting, let me just add that I'm sick and tired of un-informed politicians trying to make decisions on important, complex issues (ie, oil, iraq, climate change, etc.) by taking populist stances ($100 gas rebate or windfall profits tax, anyone?).

I think we're entering an era where our problems are getting so complex that traditional populist politics aren't just bad, they're going to hurt us severely in the long run.
posted by tgrundke at 9:57 AM on May 16, 2006


Could the Democrats have a shot even in Utah in the not-too-distant future?

HA! Sure, maybe on HBO...
posted by SweetJesus at 9:57 AM on May 16, 2006


by taking populist stances ($100 gas rebate or windfall profits tax, anyone?).

I dunno. Offering people two free tanks of gas for their SUVs while they read on the front page of damn near every newspaper that Exxon made record-breaking quarterly profits is not exactly populist. Populism would be nailing those fuckers to the wall in a flagrantly public and self-advertising manner while gas prices dropped a solid forty cents.
posted by Ryvar at 10:01 AM on May 16, 2006


"Was just in SC last week... 9 out of 10 cars still have their "W" stickers on. So, he's not quite so "out of favor" there, yet."

Only three months ago, he had balanced approval/disapproval levels in South Carolina, before falling 15%, so maybe there hasn't been much of a visible change yet, because there literally hasn't been enough time for the change to really be internalized by most Carolinians.

"Utahns may finally be getting sick of Bush, but they are staunchly, unbelievably conservative as a whole."

True. That said, there are more moderate regions of Utah which are up for grabs in this upcoming election.

I'm hardly saying that Bush disapproval equals Democrat approval, but it certainly does help them, as most states are in play. This just underscores the need for the Democrats to run a true 50-state-campaign next time around.
posted by insomnia_lj at 10:04 AM on May 16, 2006


I live in SC, and While such stickers are pretty damn popular in areas like Charleston, you will find them a lot less popular in Greenville and Columbia.
posted by sourbrew at 10:09 AM on May 16, 2006


Um, one of the three U.S. House of Reps members from Utah is a Democrat.

Are Utahs electoral votes going to go to a democratic presidential candidate anytime soon? No. Do the Dems have a chance at winning a Utah congressional seat? They already did.
posted by JekPorkins at 10:09 AM on May 16, 2006


I thought Charleston was the liberal bastion of South Carolina. But, I've never crossed the Mason-Dixon so what do I know.
posted by Mean Mr. Bucket at 10:14 AM on May 16, 2006


If the Dems can come up with a candidate they might have a shot. I don't think Clinton or Kerry is going to cut the mustard though. They need someone who can speak to American idealism without sounding like a complete hypocrite. I think if they could find a good speaker who could make a credible case for rebuilding the country, they'd have a winner. Unfortunately, there isn't anyone on the national level who fits the bill. Are there any southern governors who aren't nose deep in corruption and can speak without first consulting their handlers?
posted by doctor_negative at 10:24 AM on May 16, 2006


It is, sort of, but it's also home to the Citadel.
posted by kittyprecious at 10:26 AM on May 16, 2006


Wait, wait - you're telling me people don't like George W Bush?

STOP THE PRESSES oh no wait forget it
posted by GuyZero at 10:27 AM on May 16, 2006


Mean Mr. Bucket - that title would certainly go to Greenville before charleston, but charleston is one of the only cities I know of left in the country that still has debutante balls as a matter of course for young ladies of "society".
posted by sourbrew at 10:28 AM on May 16, 2006


I hail from Missouri.

I cannot believe that his approval rating is so low there. That blew my mind.
posted by i_am_a_Jedi at 10:29 AM on May 16, 2006


b_thinky writes: The current polling data is an opinion on Bush. What really matters in the end is the choice between Bush (and his party) and the opposition party.

I disagree. While the Dem's won't (or at least, shouldn't) make a habit of using the "stop sign" strategy (stop Iraq, stop the runaway deficit, stop unprotected borders, stop Republican corruption, stop Republicans from continuing to fuck over the country), it'll work fine in November. Keeping the right-wingers and fundies home on election day is a victory in itself, and one that Bush may have accomplished with no help at all from Dems (no ban on certain types of marriage proposed, idiotic border regulation, utterly byzantine health-care plan for the elderly). Certainly some of them will pinch their nose and vote for whomever Bush pats on the shoulder, but it'll be much different than 2004. (The huge Republican pick-ups in 1994 are falsely remembered as a win for Gingrich's "big idea," the Contract with America--in fact, people were really, really sick of Clinton and especially the Dems in Congress, and that's all it took for a takeover.)

And IMO, no one seems to fully appreciate Dean's 50-State Strategy (espeically his fellow Dems). As JekPorkins points out, the Dems need to funnel money to all elections, even the longest of long-shots, not because Utah and Wyoming are going to turn blue any time soon, but because there are plenty of winnable pick-ups to be made in any state with a centralized urban community (which is, every state of course). Close wins in local races can pay big dividends down the road for any party, even if Chuck Schumer and Rahm Immanuel don't feel overly welcome there.
posted by bardic at 10:34 AM on May 16, 2006


Is this an FPP? It's some statistics and a speculation. "Bush's approval rating falling" may make you happy, but it's not the Best of the Web.
posted by Eideteker at 10:36 AM on May 16, 2006


Idaho, Utah, and Wyoming are the 3 states in question.

Though I have to wonder what it means that Bush has a net approval rating of 1% of the population of Wyoming. If ten guys drive out of state for a fishing trip, it might push the net approval down to zero.
posted by selfmedicating at 10:40 AM on May 16, 2006


Or, if I'd bothered to read the footnote:

'Weighted Average' means each state is weighted proportionally to its share of USA population. For example, California, the most populated state, is given 71 times the weight of WY the least populated state, in a weighted avg.
posted by selfmedicating at 10:42 AM on May 16, 2006


Was just in SC last week... 9 out of 10 cars still have their "W" stickers on.

Those stickers are pretty tough to remove, often requiring a scraper or some sort of solvent.
posted by adgnyc at 10:43 AM on May 16, 2006


And IMO, no one seems to fully appreciate Dean's 50-State Strategy (espeically his fellow Dems).

There are a lot of Dems who love the 50 state strategy. The ones that hate it are the DLC and the Beltway Dems seeing their power, influence and income falling.

The battleground state strategy has been tried multiple times. It doesn't work for the Democrats. Dean campaigned for the DNC chair based on using the DNC money for 50 state, and the people who elected him -- the state parties offices -- are thrilled with him, because he's keeping his promise to 1) earn money for the state parties, and 2) spend it on a 50-state strategy.

The reason you hear complaints is that the Beltway Dems have lots of reporters to grip at, and reporters have lots of editors who are interested in making the Democratic Party look bad.
posted by eriko at 10:50 AM on May 16, 2006


Isn't it just a little short-sighted to be focused on Bush's approval rating? The guy will be gone from the scene in less than three years, and the Dems (other than Dean's heroic efforts mentioned above... though I sense that the DLC will eventually stab him in the back on this) still have yet to position themselves as a viable alternative3 to the GOP.
posted by psmealey at 10:55 AM on May 16, 2006


I was in Tampa a couple of weeks ago and saw what had clearly been a Bush bumper sticker with a (slightly narrower) "Pro-Values, Anti-Bush" sticker pasted over it. Made me happy and bitter at the same time.
posted by Lazlo Hollyfeld at 10:57 AM on May 16, 2006


Don't forget, lots of the red states are down on Bush because he's not conservative enough.

I've come to the conclusion that this argument is a red herring. Most Republicans still want a centrist or center-right candidate. The fact that a significant majority would prefer a hard-right candidate spells big trouble for the Repubs. Remember, their biggest strength all along has been their ability to march lock-step with each other despite their differences.

In fact, I would rather the Repubs to be split then to collectively agree to move leftward.
posted by Afroblanco at 11:02 AM on May 16, 2006


(significant majority should read significant minority) Sorry, my bad.
posted by Afroblanco at 11:04 AM on May 16, 2006


Bush is unpopular now, no doubt. But to correlate his low poll numbers with future Democrat success is a mistake.

A big mistake. I would guess that most of the Bush haters don't like most Democrats much better. I think the real story is that 28% (or whatever today's number is) of the country actually approves of what Bush has done. Are there that many oil company executives / bankers / Shiite Republicans in the U.S.?
posted by LeLiLo at 11:08 AM on May 16, 2006


Those stickers are pretty tough to remove, often requiring a scraper or some sort of solvent.

Bush: tough to remove, often requiring a scraper or some sort of solvent.

I do support the 50-state strategy, but even I wouldn't say that a pickup of Cannon or Bishop's seats is likely.

Bush won't be on the ballot, technically.

The midterm elections are historically seen as a referendum on the White House. When the WH is doing well, the incumbent party can actually pick up seats at the midterms, but the historical average is a loss of 15 house seats. When the WH is doing poorly, they can lose much more than that. Strategic redistricting has reduced the number of competitive seats over the last few decades, though, and it's unclear how many are actually in play.

I think that a robust Democratic strategy and bold leadership would help, but it isn't even necessarily a deciding factor.

Utahns may finally be getting sick of Bush, but they are staunchly, unbelievably conservative as a whole.

There is such a beast as a conservative Democrat.

The populace, as a whole, still does not think that the Democrats offer anything substantially better than the Republicans are offering.

O RLY. The generic ballot suggests otherwise -- or at the very least, that large numbers of the public are so turned off by the GOP that they're willing to give Dems a chance. Independents have swung toward Democrats by a margin of 20 points -- a dramatic change from years past.

Essentially, tgrundke, you're offering the Joe Klein position: The Democrats suck, and by the way, it's time to appease the right again, because we didn't do it enough last election. Some Democrats are getting pretty fucking tired of having the "liberal press" regurgitate Ken Mehlman's fax machine every single day.
posted by dhartung at 11:15 AM on May 16, 2006 [1 favorite]


The GOP will get their base out for this election, guaranteed. Gay marriage will be an issue again, as will the border and tax cuts. The more democrats fight on any of these issues, the more it will be in the news, meaning the more republicans will show up to vote republican.

I doubt the Bushies give a fuck about the polls unless its election time. All that's upcoming on their agenda is designed for the elections.

Dems can only energize their base if Iraq gets way, way worse.

In 2004, 95% of Republicans backed Bush. In the recent polls, his approval rating amongst Republicans is in the low 50s. As the election draws near, most of these folks will be re-energized. They will never, ever, ever vote for a Democrat. Wake up from your wet dream if you think they will.
posted by b_thinky at 11:29 AM on May 16, 2006


Also worth noting, last I heard the RNC has about 4-5x more cash in its coffers than the DNC.

Two things matter in politics - money and votes. Polls mean shit. Democrats typically do worse at fundraising and turnout, especially in the GWB era.
posted by b_thinky at 11:40 AM on May 16, 2006


Those stickers are pretty tough to remove, often requiring a scraper or some sort of solvent.

Would the shattered bones and blood of dead soldiers do it?
posted by ryoshu at 11:48 AM on May 16, 2006


President Clinton was not on the ballot in 1994 either. But people found a neat way to send him a message...
posted by brucec at 12:00 PM on May 16, 2006


What's the view like up there on the Hindenburg, b_thinky?
posted by bardic at 12:13 PM on May 16, 2006


b_thinky: I would be interested to see a source for your "cash in coffers" statement. Seriously.
posted by anomie at 12:15 PM on May 16, 2006


and general 'disingenuousness' (i think i 'inventioned' a word there)
disingenuity?


Ironicalliciously, disingenuousness has at least one definition, while disingenuity. has none.
posted by delmoi at 12:24 PM on May 16, 2006


Dems can only energize their base if Iraq gets way, way worse.

i don't think you put a lot of thinky into that, b.

I doubt the Bushies give a fuck about the polls unless its election time

as a great man once said, "you canNOT be serious." i guarantee you karl rove pores over polling data more closely than you examine, uh, say, instapundit droppings.

They will never, ever, ever vote for a Democrat

my father, who has never voted democratic in his life, just told me last week that he got his every wish -- republican president, congress, state government (he lives in kentucky), supreme court, and his conclusion is that you should be careful what you wish for. this fall he'll be voting against his own party for the first time. anecdotal, sure, but indicative that behind the numbers of the polling trend are real people who have had the scales pulled from their eyes by the utterly visionless incompetence of the C.O.C.

that said, however, we're not talking about the "backwash" in this discussion. did you not note the 20 point democratic swing among swing voters?

the only thing that can prevent sweeping democratic victories is vote fraud. but such fraud is much easier to pull off in a presidential election (twice!) than on hundreds of congressional campaigns nationwide. also, i think the chief election thief might be a bit preoccupied.
posted by Hat Maui at 12:25 PM on May 16, 2006


Why is it Idaho, Utah, and Wyoming? Don't electromagnetic waves travel that far into the interior? Is there a vortex or something under Fossil Butte National Monument?
posted by pracowity at 12:39 PM on May 16, 2006


So we've got our poll drum-beating and winger chest-thumping; does anybody want to do anything with a backbeat for a change?
posted by furiousthought at 12:42 PM on May 16, 2006


b_thinky: I would be interested to see a source for your "cash in coffers" statement. Seriously.
posted by anomie at 12:15 PM PST on May 16 [+fave] [!]


I saw it on ABC news or something (TV). They said RNC has about 40m while DNC only has 10m. I don't know what website might have this info, but Dean has been criticized for his lackluster fundraising.

Hat Maui:

1) Tell me what Democrats could do to energize their base more than they did in 2004. 99% of Dems want Bush hanged, no change over 2 years ago.

2) I'm sure they examine polls, but I doubt they alter their strategy much because of them, at least until election season. This administration does a terrible job of touting their successes. Our economy is awesome because of the tax cuts. Yet they never mention it.

3) Interesting about your pops. But lets see what he says in 6 months after taxes, gay marriage, immigration and the possibility of surrendiring the war on terror (what GOP will say, not me) have been in the news.
posted by b_thinky at 12:50 PM on May 16, 2006


Why is this so surprising? You certainly do not need to be popular to win elections or even need good policies. You cream your opponent, appeal to people's "common sense" or bigotries or fears, get lots of funding, and laugh all the way into the history books.
posted by skallas at 12:54 PM on May 16, 2006


"Dems can only energize their base if Iraq gets way, way worse."

The Dem's base is already more energized than during the last election, which had record turnouts, in no small part because things have gotten worse in Iraq.

"(Bush's) approval rating amongst Republicans is in the low 50s. As the election draws near, most of these folks will be re-energized. They will never, ever, ever vote for a Democrat."

Where's your data to support that assertion, because that is exactly what they're not telling not only pollsters, but each other. Every few days, I hear another "I thought I would never vote for a Democrat, but..." speech. I mean, my wife's father is voting Democrat next time, and he hasn't voted Democrat since LBJ.

As for fundraising, the Republicans currently have about a $20M advantage. That's not much when you spread it across so many elections, especially considering that the most intense fundraising that the Democrats are traditionally better at is yet to come.
posted by insomnia_lj at 12:55 PM on May 16, 2006


Also worth noting, last I heard the RNC has about 4-5x more cash in its coffers than the DNC.
posted by b_thinky


IIRC, the DNC is outraising the RNC, though. Money in the coffers is only potential. If you never turn it into kinetic, as Dean is doing, it's worthless.

Kerry had millions in his coffers after the election. Maybe if he's spent it, he would have done better.
posted by Happy Monkey at 1:01 PM on May 16, 2006


The publisher of Harper’s, earlier this month, on the bland, tepid Democrats...
posted by LeLiLo at 1:05 PM on May 16, 2006


Kind of what others have said. B_thinky, no doubt die-hard Republicans and Dems will vote with their party. But the two issues here that seem to be most critical for November (and that, speaking as a Dem, put a big smile on my face personally) are that many swing-voters now will either vote against sitting incumbents (most of whom are, of course, Republicans) and that many of the Evangelicals and (for lack of a better phrase) Buchanan-Conservatives or paleo-cons (small government, controlled deficit, semi-isolationist foreign policy) will stay at home this fall out of disgust with a Republican party that has had all the cookie jars for the past six years, and frankly, accomplished nothing beyond tax cuts for the ultra-wealthy. "Don't get in their way" is hardly a stroke of genius on the part of Democratic strategists, I agree, but it'll work fine in practical terms for this year.

My hope is that my party can build on this "let the Republicans continue to commit hari-kiri" notion, and form something new and (god I hate this word, but) proactive for 2008, because it's obvious that this type of strategy will only work in the short-term.
posted by bardic at 1:08 PM on May 16, 2006


Bland and tepid sure sounds good, in comparison with the last eight years......
posted by IronLizard at 1:18 PM on May 16, 2006 [1 favorite]


I think the Dems need to broaden their base, frankly.
posted by JekPorkins at 1:18 PM on May 16, 2006


Err, 5 1/2. I just can't wait till it's over.
posted by IronLizard at 1:19 PM on May 16, 2006


Could the Democrats have a shot even in Utah in the not-too-distant future? A lot of Utahns think so.

State of Utah's Republican Party -- commentary from the excellent Radio West. There's definitely a shift in the weather here, and races will likely be closer than usual this fall, but it's probably not enough to tip the balance.
posted by weston at 1:20 PM on May 16, 2006


Pete Ashdown is running in Utah with an interesting message that seems right for winning a state like Utah. It boils down to having ideals rooted in religion, but with the libertarian ethos of "keep the government out of my church".

In general, I personally think the right approach for the Dems in 2006 (and forward) is the approach espoused by the Democratic Freedom Caucus
posted by robla at 1:27 PM on May 16, 2006



I think the Dems need to broaden their base, frankly.


Yeah, it'd be cool if they'd reach out to the left for a change. Maybe they could get some of those voters to show up to vote this time.
posted by dilettante at 1:43 PM on May 16, 2006


Our economy is awesome because of the tax cuts.

Actually, Figure 2, here shows that while tax cuts may help recovery from a recession, tax increases work even better.
posted by JackFlash at 1:44 PM on May 16, 2006


In terms of expanding their base, I'd like to see the Dems capitalize on privacy as a motivating issue--your home, your family, your church, your computer, your phones, and yes, your body--no act of terrorism can ever challenge the inherent right to privacy you have as a tax-paying American citizen to do, make, say, think what you want within or about these places.

The practical issues wouldn't go away, but I still think it could be branded as an effective plank--"We're the party that will leave you and your loved ones the fuck alone if we're in power."

Needs work, but it's the thought that counts, as always.
posted by bardic at 1:50 PM on May 16, 2006 [1 favorite]


I think the real story is that 28% (or whatever today's number is) of the country actually approves of what Bush has done. Are there that many oil company executives / bankers / Shiite Republicans in the U.S.?

I forget who said it but we now know that the absolute lowest Bush can go is exactly 27%. We know this because in the last election a certifiable crazy man, Alan Keyes, flew in from his home in Maryland to Illinois a few weeks before the election to run against Barak Obama and still got 27% of the vote. I think that pretty much defines the floor for whacko Republicans.
posted by JackFlash at 1:56 PM on May 16, 2006


Actually, Figure 2, here shows that while tax cuts may help recovery from a recession, tax increases work even better.
posted by JackFlash at 1:44 PM PST on May 16 [+fave] [!]


Let's just do 100% taxes then.
posted by b_thinky at 2:01 PM on May 16, 2006


Yeah, cause that's exactly what he was advocating.
posted by stenseng at 2:06 PM on May 16, 2006


If Carter(28%), Nixon(24%) and Truman(23%) could go lower, I hope there is still room for Bush to drop further.
posted by BrotherCaine at 2:14 PM on May 16, 2006


Bardic, I'm not so sure that is an intelligent strategy. Remember that the GOP has successfully employed the opposite strategy of intimidation and fearmongering. If the Dems decide to run on a platform of privacy you can guarantee that the GOP will lambast Dems as a bunch of limp wristed faggots who don't have the stomach to do what is necessary to keep your family safe from terrurists, wetbacks and preverts..

I think a better strategy would be to attack the GOP on the deficit, corruption, and the secrecy and unaccountability of the Bush administration. Mentioning invasions of privacy should only be an issue where the public overwhelmingly opposes the status quo, and while that may become the case, it certainly isn't presently. A criminal investigation is certainly in order if Dems retake congress, but to run on that would be foolish when it is still contentious whether the public still thinks the president is doing the right thing with respect to the NSA.
posted by [expletive deleted] at 2:18 PM on May 16, 2006


I think Bush will hit 25%, which would require roughly one out of every six of his staunchest supporters to turn on him, not even to start voting Democrat. That's easily achievable, given his current horizon--people have forgotten about ObL, have forgotten about Afghanistan (which is a shame, because I'd be sending more troops there right now to shore up the one credible foreign policy gain that he has made, and that by many accounts is now slipping away). Even the recent tax-cut has been branded piss-poorly--no middle-class Republican voter is thinking well, gee, maybe ten years from now I'll be in the 200K+ tax bracket.


Hmm, now I'm thinking he'll bottom around 23%. The scary thing is that I'm convinced he's capable of launching nukes at Iran just as a fuck-you to the American public who turned on him. The more a politician and his cronies tell you polls don't matter, the more they abso-fucking-lutely do.
posted by bardic at 2:22 PM on May 16, 2006


"a certifiable crazy man, Alan Keyes, flew in from his home in Maryland to Illinois a few weeks before the election to run against Barak Obama and still got 27% of the vote..."

Oh. come on. Alan Keyes might be insane, but he was also an experienced diplomat and the former President of Citizens Against Government Waste. He called Bush's tax cut plan "a discussion between the masters of how well or ill they're going to treat the slaves."

Although he was generally supportive of going into Iraq, he also wouldn't have cooked the intelligence in order to do so, and seemed to feel that invasion might not be necessary should WMD inspections pan out.

He also said something pretty prescient about Iraq back in 2002...

"the first stages look simple enough, but then we are encumbered with responsibility for maintaining coherence in a situation which is far more complex, I think, once you remove Saddam Hussein than it appears to us with his presence there. Reminds me of the situation in Mabutu in Zaire where, bad as he was, the situation becomes more chaotic and complicated once you have removed him."

He might be a loon, but he doesn't deserve to be described as somehow less fit than George W. Bush. Truth be told, he probably would've made a much better president.
posted by insomnia_lj at 2:44 PM on May 16, 2006


I also think that characterizing Keyes as a crazy man is pretty demeaning, and perhaps a bit racially unfair. His position on the issues aren't any crazier than a lot of white conservatives who are taken all too seriously.

If there's anything crazy about him, it's that he tries so hard to be taken seriously by the Republican party leadership. It must be frustrating at times for him to ingratiate himself to bigots on such a routine basis.
posted by insomnia_lj at 3:06 PM on May 16, 2006


Insomnia, the fact remains that he is still a dangerously insane theocratic demagogue with little to no human decency and that this is the precise reason why so many people voted for him.
posted by [expletive deleted] at 3:12 PM on May 16, 2006


" a dangerously insane theocratic demagogue with little to no human decency"

Yeah. Too bad he's a scary black male, or that would've almost guaranteed himself a position on Bush's cabinet.
posted by insomnia_lj at 3:16 PM on May 16, 2006


...or in his cabinet, even.
posted by insomnia_lj at 3:20 PM on May 16, 2006


His position on the issues aren't any crazier than a lot of white conservatives who are taken all too seriously.

Does the fact that Zelda Fitzgerald was no crazier than Syd Barrett somehow make her not crazy?

Furthermore, not only does Keyes by all accounts seem to believe the hateful gibberish he stumps on, he has the delusion that the GOP's southern strategy is an effective tool for a black candidate, an idea so completely farcical that it has to call into question the mental stability of anyone who believes it.
posted by [expletive deleted] at 3:21 PM on May 16, 2006


I think the Republicans will be fine if they continue to turn on Bush. I sure as hell hold them accountable for supporting Bush for six years, but I think most people who voted for the chimp will forgive other Republicans. They can't really fault people for doing what they themselves did. Bush has hurt the party, but so did Nixon. People seem to have worked that out of their system pretty fast.

That being said, I don't see how anyone could vote for anyone who supported the war (I'd abstain before voting for Rodham Clinton), but I've never even contemplated voting red in my life.
posted by gesamtkunstwerk at 3:38 PM on May 16, 2006


I don't really think Keys would have made a better president then Bush. Come on, he's far more ideologically driven then even bush. I remember him saying he wanted to get rid of the income tax and replace it with tariffs, of all things.

Total loon when it comes to economics, and social policy... Rather then a war in Iraq we'd have a war on fags and abortionists.
posted by delmoi at 3:46 PM on May 16, 2006


For the record:


disingenuousness is actually a pretty common word.

Also, from here:

Republican National Committee

• March receipts: $11.8 million
• Cycle-to-date receipts: $141.9 million
• March expenditures: $9.7 million
• Cycle-to-date expenditures: $113.7 million
• Cash, March 31: $43.0 million
• Debts, March 31: $0


Democratic National Committee

• March receipts: $6.8 million
• Cycle-to-date receipts: $74.2 million
• March expenditures: $5.7 million
• Cycle-to-date expenditures: $70.2 million
• Cash, March 31: $10.0 million
• Debts, March 31: $0


And all the polls will be completely upended if there is any kind of attack before the election. Just saying it's not all set in stone.


Back to the FPP, it's interesting to see the presidential battlegrounds of Missouri, Pennsylvania and Ohio so low on the list.
posted by CunningLinguist at 6:00 PM on May 16, 2006


"Bush's approval rating falling" may make you happy, but it's not the Best of the Web.

Like APRIL FOOLS? First, you post the phrase as a comment in every thread on April first as lame-o performance art. Then you took a worthy topic and with no effort whatsoever in make a post of it. Linking to a Wikipedia article, no less--how lazy can you get ? Between your annoying antics and the substandard execution, you pissed away a great topic on the altar of your ego and it got rightfully yanked. Then, in case we missed it, you double posted it at month's end. As a public service. As if.

That's rich, you now offering your opinions on what is the Best of the Web.
posted by y2karl at 6:38 PM on May 16, 2006


Well, even if he's an idiot (I don't know), he has a point: why post this?
posted by Lord Chancellor at 6:43 PM on May 16, 2006


Two words to strike fear in the hearts of Dems:

John McCain.

He could pull the independents to him.
posted by Doohickie at 7:14 PM on May 16, 2006


Yeah. Too bad he's a scary black male, or that would've almost guaranteed himself a position on Bush's cabinet.

Um, have you ever like, paid attention to who's in Bush's cabinet?
posted by JekPorkins at 7:19 PM on May 16, 2006


JackFlash, you're thinking of this:

John: Hey, Bush is now at 37% approval. I feel much less like Kevin McCarthy screaming in traffic. But I wonder what his base is --

Tyrone: 27%.

John: ... you said that immmediately, and with some authority.

Tyrone: Obama vs. Alan Keyes. Keyes was from out of state, so you can eliminate any established political base; both candidates were black, so you can factor out racism; and Keyes was plainly, obviously, completely crazy. Batshit crazy. Head-trauma crazy. But 27% of the population of Illinois voted for him. They put party identification, personal prejudice, whatever ahead of rational judgement. Hell, even like 5% of Democrats voted for him. That's crazy behaviour. I think you have to assume a 27% Crazification Factor in any population.

posted by rosemere at 7:21 PM on May 16, 2006


Thanks, rosemere for refreshing my memory. It's an amusing observation with just enough reality behind it to make it funny.
posted by JackFlash at 7:50 PM on May 16, 2006


They will never, ever, ever vote for a Democrat

Man, talk about not being able to see the forest for the trees.

Look at the electoral map of the 1992 elections. Lots of states that we think of as being indelibly tainted with red pixels were once as blue as the sky, as blue as sea, as blue as, well, The Blue.

Things do change sometimes.
posted by Afroblanco at 7:56 PM on May 16, 2006


The only thing the Democrats/GOP have going for them is the GOP/Democrats.
posted by RussHy at 8:32 PM on May 16, 2006


John: You realize this leads to there being over 30 million crazy people in the US?

Tyrone: Does that seem wrong?

John: ... a bit low, actually.

posted by IronLizard at 10:12 PM on May 16, 2006


And all the polls will be completely upended if there is any kind of attack before the election. Just saying it's not all set in stone.

This, in the end, is one of the main reasons I think Repubs, and perhaps many non-Republicans, are insane. Because when his failures make people die, his numbers go up. Largest terrorist attack in history in his first 9 months in office, a great deal of which he spent on vacation? 90+ approval and a blank check. Osama alive and well and taunting us three years later? Polls go up. WTF is the matter with these people?

And you suggest that a terrorist attack will benefit him again? The unspeakably bizarre truth is that you are almost certainly right, and it makes me wonder if perhaps we, as a group, deserve everything we get. It's the rest of the world I feel sorry for.
posted by George_Spiggott at 10:52 PM on May 16, 2006


That reminds me. I've always wondered what you call someone from Utah. While the post suggests Utahns, I would like to submit a secondary alternative: Utards.
posted by Clamwacker at 6:04 AM on May 17, 2006


9 out of 10 cars still have their "W" stickers on.

Know that country song "Here's Your Sign!" referring to idiots?
Well, that's what a W sticker is for, to identify the really stupid people.

Again, if the Democrats insist on running as the party that "Is not the Republican party"

Again, they are not. They have a very solid platform and a solid strategy (even if FOX and Rush won't talk about it.)

- I like the idea of "privacy" in all its iterations on a political platform. - Good idea that needs framed and used.
posted by nofundy at 6:08 AM on May 17, 2006


Two words to strike fear in the hearts of Dems: John McCain. He could pull the independents to him.

I think there's probably a good number of centrists like myself who have soured on him in the last 6 years, though. I used to hold him in much higher regard, but he's folded like a cheap card table on enough things that I question how strong his integrity really is. While his unwillingness to really get into a fight with his fellow Repubs may be good party strategy it doesn't warm my fairly non-denominational heart.

And nofundy, if the Dems have a solid platform and strategy that they're not successful in communicating to the people then that's the same as not having one. They still smell of "we're not them!" to me, and I desperately WANT to believe.
posted by phearlez at 9:26 AM on May 17, 2006


And you suggest that a terrorist attack will benefit him again?

Oh sure. There's a natural rally-around-the-leader/daddy-figure thing that happens in a crisis. Bush's numbers were in the toilet on 9/10/01 but he soared up into the 80s after. I don't think it had anything to do with him per se - he didn't really impress anyone until several days later when he picked up the bullhorn at ground zero.
posted by CunningLinguist at 9:41 AM on May 17, 2006


phearlez: ditto, re: McCain.
posted by sonofsamiam at 10:53 AM on May 17, 2006


Get away from this phony "left/right" crap.
WAKE UP!
They're all working together. There is no difference between the two parties.
You are being duped by design.
posted by RockPaperScissors at 2:34 PM on May 17, 2006


Back in 1999, RockPaperScissors decided to stop in at a Starbucks to get a decaf mocha latte after the Ralph Nader rally. Unfortunately, that Starbucks was not just any Starbucks, but The Trans-Dimensional Time Rift Starbucks. The time rift propelled him 7 years into the future. Now he posts to Metafilter to remind us why we should never, ever, ever listen to people like him.
posted by Afroblanco at 11:19 AM on May 18, 2006


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