Who Can Win


Unelectable Loser

Kill me now:

“Candidates can become stale if they’re out there long enough. It is very difficult for candidates to come back after losing four years earlier,” said Bill Moore, a political science professor at the College of Charleston. “Edwards ran. Edwards lost. The No. 1 thing people are looking for is a candidate who can win.”

Look. This isn’t me defending Edwards. This is me saying that the whole “candidate who can win” idea is bullshit. The idea of going once more down this path of scaring ourselves off of voting for somebody because someone else might not vote for him or her makes me want to tear off my own head and eat it.

You know who can win elections? The person who wins them. The person who gets the most votes. The person who gets the most people to punch a ballot with his or her name. That’s who “can” win.

Not somebody who some pundit tells me appeals to some mythical constituency that just this once will turn out and turn things in our favor.

Not somebody who embodies some brand new specialness never before seen in American politics.

Not somebody who has this, that or the other person or group of people in his or her corner.

All political predictions at this stage are total stroke sessions designed to do only one thing: make the predicter sound important. Bloviating about electability at this stage or at any stage presumes the bloviater to be above the common rabble who don’t know what they want and have to be lectured. As a voter I need to be told, by Bill Moore or David Broder or some other wise and sensible person who is electable, what is achievable, how best to hedge my electoral bets and what precise level the shit should be in its bucket before I have to start eating it. As a voter, I need to be told not just what I want, but what I can reasonably expect to get, and if I want different, and I want more, well too fucking bad, because my candidate of choice can’t win.

During primary season, there’s simply no place for it, this idea that we should only vote for the guy somebody else thinks will win. Vote for whoever the hell you want running the country, and don’t go looking for approval in the political bookie’s office, not at this point.

Nobody’s electable. Nobody’s a winner. Nobody has the right kind of magic to make it all happen. Nobody can win.

Until they do.

A.

7 thoughts on “Who Can Win

  1. hoppycalif says:

    A. you forget, we picked Kerry the last go around because he was the one who could win. Look how well that worked out.
    What we need to do during the Primary Election cycle is for each of us to try to decide who we want to be our next President, then vote for that person in the Primary. Only after one of the candidates accumulates enough delegates to be the winner do we know who is electable. Then our job is to elect that candidate in November. If we succeed, we can say, without any doubt, that person is electable.

  2. darrelplant says:

    Nixon lost. Reagan and Poppy Bush lost in primaries. Isn’t that, like, three of the past four (elected) Republican presidents?

  3. Rmj, Curiously Refreshing says:

    Nixon not only lost in ’60, he left public life famously declaring “You won’t have Dick Nixon to kick around anymore.”
    8 years later, he was back. 4 years after that, he took every state but Massachusetts. It’s the reason Democrats, 35 years later, still talk about having a “winning” candidate people “will vote for.”
    Edwards ain’t Nixon; not by a long shot. Hell, even Kerry could run again, and do so credibly, if he just avoided Bob Shrum and the DLC.

  4. Aaaargh says:

    The only person who can win is the person with Diebold in his pocket.
    The GOP let their control of the voting machinery slip a little in 2006. They won’t make that mistake again.

  5. hoppycalif says:

    Yes, we all can root for or against Hillary or any other candidate. However, betting in office pools is really just not the in thing.

  6. Ian Smith says:

    Under the “who can win” theory, Regan never would have been president. That sorry bastard ran and ran and ran and ran. And then he wasn’t sorry anymore but prez. Only with the Dems does losing once mean your turn is finished.

  7. Eli says:

    I can still root against Hillary, right?

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