Before we get to the topic today, once again those wild and crazy lawyers North Of The Border intrude upon our thoughts. Just when you were sure things could not get any crazier in "fun city" comes this little gem: Criminal Defense attorney Gary Ostrow flew to Tallahassee on May 2 to file papers to challenge incumbant Public Defender Howard Finklestein. But before he could get out of town, Ostrow managed to get himself ARRESTED FOR POSSESSION OF COCAINE. That's right- The Clerk's office before noon, and the County Jail by midnight. What a wild campaign ride indeed. The Sun Sentinel has all the wacky details
Now on with the show.
Hillary Clinton will not drop out of the race for the democratic nomination, and Rumpole is going to tell you why certain numbers tell the story.
76 and 80. If John McCain wins the presidency, he will be 76 when he runs for reelection and we would have to elect a president who will serve when he is 80 years old. That makes his reelection an unlikely scenario.
1992. When was the last time a party ran after holding the White House for 12 years? 1992. And despite winning a war, President Bush could not get reelected. You have to go back to Roosevelt/Truman to find a successor President from the same party (Truman) winning reelection (over Dewey, and by the way "Truman Beats Dewey" is just up in the Herald's Breaking News section right now.)
So if McCain getting reelected is unlikely, what is in Clinton's best interest if she cannot get nominated now? We propose that she intends to attack Obama until she has separated him from every last independent voter, older democratic female, and working class disaffected (read "white) male, thus handing the election to McCain and giving her the best chance to win in 2012.
2016. What does her getting the nomination as Vice President do for her? Not much. She would have to wait until 2016 to run again for President. Who were the last two sitting Vice Presidents to win the Presidency? George Herbert Walker Bush in 1988 and Martin Van Buren in 1837. And both of them served only one term.
The last Vice President to be elected to two terms was Richard Milhous Nixon and he was not a sitting Vice President when elected. The elections of Nixon and Ronald Regan also give hope to Clinton. They were elected and re-elected after having run for the Presidency and lost. Nixon lost the general election in 1960 and Regan lost his challenge to Ford for the Republican nomination in 1976. Nixon waited eight years before trying again and finally winning. The last person to get his party's nomination twice in a row after losing the first time was Adlai Stevenson who lost in 1952 and 1956. Stevenson ended up heroically staring down and cross examining Valerian Zorin for Kennedy at the UN during the Cuban Missile Crisis. The prospects of Obama getting the nomination twice in a row are dim. "He couldn't beat McCain in 2008" would be the analysis, "so lets give Clinton a shot now".
So if you are Hillary Clinton and have come so close to your dream of being elected President, and if you are willing to spend your personal fortune and make all the other sacrifices necessary to achieve your dream, what is the play here? Take second place on the ticket and watch it all slip away, or give the election to McCain so you can run and win in four years?
We think Clinton will not give up. We think she will fight right to the convention this summer, attacking Obama at every chance she gets. This is the only way we see her getting her chance to be President for eight years, even if it means starting four years from now.
See you in court, where not even a lowly county court candidate would give our political analytical skills the time of day.