Governor Reno?
May 27, 2001 9:39 AM   Subscribe

Governor Reno? "In a competitive governor's race a challenger who has numbers like Reno's keeps incumbents awake at night,'' pollster Rob Schroth said. "This poll does not suggest she's odds-on favorite but she certainly takes more away from him than any other candidate we tested."
posted by owillis (27 comments total)
I must admit this surprised the hell outta me. I thought Reno's trial balloon would be DOA based on how much the Cuban vote would be against her (Elian). But it seems much of that has been negated by anti-Bush sentiment from Democrats and the black community.
posted by owillis at 9:46 AM on May 27, 2001

Reno has good name recognition. People don't entirely remember the details of why they remember her name, they just know they've heard it a lot, so she must be Somebody.
posted by kindall at 10:19 AM on May 27, 2001

But she's the terror that murdered everyone at Waco!?! I don't get Florida.
posted by thirteen at 11:43 AM on May 27, 2001

Thirteen: murdered everyone?
Didn't David Koresh have a part in the ultimate outcome of this debacle?! Certainly Ms. Reno bears some responsibility and has publicly acknowledged same, but to brand her as a murderer is to negate all the other aspects/people/ideology that created the debacle.

Thank you for giving a crystal clear example of the beauty of MeFi and the variety of opinions found within. (This is not a snarky end note.)
posted by sillygit at 12:41 PM on May 27, 2001

If's she already down 10 points now at a time when she'd likely be strongest against Gov. Bush, I don't see how she'll ever make it up.
posted by ljromanoff at 1:16 PM on May 27, 2001

When Bush got the gOP nomination, he was about 10-15% ahead of Gore...
posted by owillis at 1:48 PM on May 27, 2001

sillygit, I don't presume to speak for him, but thirteen has been known to use sarcasm on occasion. That's how I read it, anyway.
posted by gimli at 2:09 PM on May 27, 2001

Putting on my Miamian hat for a bit... the anti-Reno vote in the Cuban community is also very strongly pro-Republican. It's not like Reno alienated a core Democratic community... she alienated a community that would vote for Bush and against her even if she'd bought Elian a puppy and personally flown to Havana and spit in Fidel's face.

As to how she'd make up the 10-15% gap... that's easy. She follows the Lawton Chiles model, who beat Jeb in Jeb's first attempt at the governorship.
1) She appeals heavily to older folks who feel threatened by the Republican Party, and who may be offended by what happened to their votes last November.
2) She plays up the native Floridian vote in the panhandle, portraying Jeb as an outsider and herself as a "real floridian." (Which, having worked for Jeb at one time and having met Janet a couple times, is dead on accurate.)
3) She hits Jeb hard on the environment, making his brother's proposal to drill for oil off the Florida coast look like Jeb's fault. (Completely inaccurate, but would probably work anyway if she allowed the attack dogs to pursue it. I doubt she would.)

Now, that won't necessarily make up the whole 10%... but it would go a long way. It could certainly make it close. The big question is (considering the Parkinson's disease and her aversion to hard campaigning when she was an elected DA in Miami) whether or not she'd want to campaign hard enough to make these tactics work. She couldn't lay back and let the campaign come to her- it wouldn't work.

One other thing- this wouldn't be an issue if the Florida Democratic party had a single other viable option. But they don't- there isn't another democrat in the state with even 1/2 the name recognition she has, and there is a reason for that- they're all pretty pathetic local pols. I'm sure they'd love to have anyone else... but they aren't going to find someone else with a snowball's chance in hell of beating Jeb.
posted by louie at 2:27 PM on May 27, 2001

People don't entirely remember the details of why they remember her name, they just know they've heard it a lot

They will be reminded of it loudly and frequently if she chooses to run. Expect those poll numbers to sag.
posted by mikewas at 2:38 PM on May 27, 2001

Governor Janet Reno.

Now that, my friends, is a scary thought.
posted by Redgie at 2:57 PM on May 27, 2001

Janet Reno is one terribly frightening woman, Strom Thurman would have to grow spider legs and fangs to make half the dent she does on me. Maybe she does not get all the blame for all the deaths, but she certainly deserves the largest chunk of it. For me she is in the top 5 baddies of American history. I suppose I do use a touch of hyperbole now and then, but there is bitter truth at the core. Whenever I hear of tragedy in her life, I know it is time to stop, have some cake, and enjoy the day.
posted by thirteen at 3:02 PM on May 27, 2001

Governor Janet Reno.

Now that, my friends, is a scary thought.

Do you have some sort of reasoning behind that, redgie, or did you just feel like tossing that out? :-)
posted by jpoulos at 3:37 PM on May 27, 2001

thirteen: that's just terribly, terribly out of line. If you want to blame anyone up the chain, it's louis freeh who you should be mad at. The only reason anyone connects Reno to Waco is because she was the only one in DC with any balls during the past eight years. Any other AG since the Saturday Night Massacre would have ducked the blame and strung the FBI and BATF out to dry... she stood up and took the blame for her people, even though she really wasn't very culpable at all. If she can be accused of anything, it's being unwilling to fight back against the cowards and paranoiacs (like you) who have tarred and feathered her in the media without any grounding in reality. I suppose that unwillingness to play the political game is the real reason she'll never be elected...
posted by louie at 3:39 PM on May 27, 2001

No, I just felt like tossing that out.

(Although, she DOES look pretty scary.)

posted by Redgie at 4:44 PM on May 27, 2001

For me, the biggest news to come out of that poll is Bush's 40 percent disapproval rating among Republicans. If that's true, the Democrats are in a great position to send him packing, because there are 300,000 more registered Democrats in this state and Bush is going to get fewer than 1-in-10 African-American votes because of the election and his dismantling of affirmative action programs here.

Other than Reno, the candidate who gets mentioned most often here is Pete Peterson, the U.S. ambassador to Vietnam and a former congressman.
posted by rcade at 5:39 PM on May 27, 2001

Am I a coward, or a paranoiac? Am I mistaken, was it not she who authorized the tanks and the tear gas? Isn't that particular gas flammable, even if the Davidians did start the fires, she supplied the gasoline. I have no love for Freeh, and I don't think there should be a BATF, there is plenty of blame to go around. Also, I don't think she is responsible for the initial mess, but I have yet to hear anything that makes me think she is not the person who caused the bloody end.
posted by thirteen at 6:27 PM on May 27, 2001

Redgie: May I have your attention please?
Your little smiley faces are no excuse for your comments.

If you are going to talk about politicians with "scary" looks, you might want to rethink that approach. Cause, see, dude, there are a whole lot of fugly male politicians, but I never hear anyone talking about how "scary" they look.

In other words, check that double standard at the freakin' door.

That chaps my hide.

PS: I couldn't care less whether Ms. Reno is elected Governor of Florida. I'm just pissed off at the ad hominem (wominem?) crap.

PPS I could only stomach going through a tiny part of the roster of House of Reps website to get those links. I'm sure there are uglier dudes in the House ... but that just proves my point, doesn't it?
posted by acridrabbit at 8:19 PM on May 27, 2001

Redgie is a chick y'know.
posted by thirteen at 8:31 PM on May 27, 2001

Cause, see, dude, there are a whole lot of fugly male politicians, but I never hear anyone talking about how "scary" they look.

You know, it's impolite to accuse someone of being a man just because you disagree with them.
posted by kindall at 8:44 PM on May 27, 2001

Wha? I accused Redgie of being a man? Huh?

I know Redgie. She ain't no man. She's just another misguided female, who I attempted to help a little, here in this public forum, where maybe others of the male persuasion might see it.

In other words, I didn't email her directly because I thought some of you other guys might like the splash of cold water that was my post.

Ya dig?

Oh, and where I live, "dude" is a gender-neutral way to address someone of either gender.

Wait, what was your point again?
posted by acridrabbit at 8:55 PM on May 27, 2001

I thought you were calling what you believed to be a "him" on sexism. I also think there are lots of male politicians that are known for their lack of beauty, so it is not such a leap to call Reno on her medusa like visage, unless you want to defend the previously mentioned Strom from the unkind title of "Mangerine".

Has dudette fallen out of favor?
posted by thirteen at 9:08 PM on May 27, 2001

Despite what thirteen seems to read as Crackpot Generalissimo Reno sending in the Apocalypse Corps to take out those innocent little Dravidians, Janet Reno is the only figure from the eight years of the Clinton presidency for whom I have any respect whatsoever. Unlike any other member of that bunch of lowlifes, semi-literates, sex addicts and penny-ante power brokers, she had the courage to make difficult decisions in difficult situations and to accept responsibility for her decisions, even when the results of those decisions went awry. She doesn't appear to have ever lied, or ducked out, or blamed someone else - she just looked the camera in the "eye" and said, "I did it, I'm responsible, they were acting on my orders and that is that." I don't always agree with her decisions, but I sure as hell respect her as I have respected no other public figure in my adult life. How refreshing and depressing, all at once...
posted by m.polo at 9:10 PM on May 27, 2001

Ah, thirteen. You are talking about some basic issues, here.

Has dudette fallen out of favor?

Has editrix fallen out of favor?

See, I lub you, but please check the double standards and sexist language at the door.

It's not that hard. We've learned to talk about African-Americans and Asian-Americans, et al. Can we not just extend this a little?

To dislike Janet Reno because she's ugly is just WRONG.

To keep old, outdated stuff in our language is also wrong.
posted by acridrabbit at 9:23 PM on May 27, 2001

Oh, and where I live, "dude" is a gender-neutral way to address someone of either gender.

Um, sure. Whatever you say...
posted by kindall at 12:17 AM on May 28, 2001

rcade: "Bush is going to get fewer than 1-in-10 African-American votes because of the election and his dismantling of affirmative action programs here."

That's assuming African-American Floridians are allowed near polling stations in the next elections, right? Heh.
posted by lia at 7:21 AM on May 28, 2001

OK, I know I shouldn't even reply to this, but I cannot take this attack on my character.

First of all, I was making a joke, Acid. I meant that comment ENTIRELY IN JEST. And double standard my ass. I don't see you jumping down anyone elses throat because they disagree with you, do I?

Second of all, I am not a "misguided female", and you aren't helping me. If I felt I needed your help, I would have asked for it. And I don't think that making snide comments and calling me "misguided" is helping. Of course, I may have a different definition of helping than you do.

In conclusion, please don't call me names or jump to conclusions. If you disagree with me, fine. But don't call me names.

Besides, I'm sure you never made a comment about someone's attractiveness. I'm sure you never judge people either. (voice dripping with obvious sarcasm).
posted by Redgie at 11:20 PM on May 28, 2001

OK.....that last post was made when I was angry.

I just want to say that I do see your point, Acid. I shouldn't joke about people's appearances.

But I did take offense at the "misguided female" remark. I hope you understand that.

posted by Redgie at 11:37 PM on May 28, 2001

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