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View Diary: Why I hope Gore is our next President [update] (420 comments)

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  •  They just didn't like him enough. (none)

    It takes a second to wreck it. It takes time to build.

    by lando on Wed Sep 28, 2005 at 11:18:23 PM PDT

    [ Parent ]

    •  That's not what you said earlier. (none)
      You said that Gore was behind Bush by as much as 20 points even before he was a candidate in 1999 because people didn't like him. Period.

      The problem with that is that in early 1999 most people didn't even know Gore since he was not yet in the spotlight. What didn't they like about him back then that later they started to like when he came up in the polls? Name it.

      We know that in 1999 they knew he was Clinton's vice president and apparently that was enough for them to reject him especially if a man with the name Bush was his opponent.

      But when Gore was already a candidate and in the spotlight and he separated himself from Clinton in the convention he not only erased Bush's lead but actually took the lead in the polls. How could that be true if your theory that Gore lost because he run away from Clinton is true?

      Now you change your mind and say they just didn't like him enough. There are two problems with that claim:

      1.If election victories are based on how much people like a candidate then apparently you have to think that they liked Bush enough even if Bush convinced less voters to vote for him than Gore, both in Florida and nationawide.
      Don't forget that the only reason you say these things about Gore today is that he is not in the White House. If he was you would treat him as a winner and would not create theories about Clinton and Gore and how much people liked him and what not.
      Since Bush is there based on you logic we should say that people liked him enough. But how many people liked him enough to vote for him? More than the people who voted for Bush who is now in the White House and for that reason alone you would never say that people just didn't like Bush enough.

      2.In terms of the election result it's irrelevant how much a voter likes a candidate if he/she votes for him/her. The only thing that matters is the number of voters. (If, of course, their votes are counted)
      How can you possibly judge how much the voters who voted for Gore liked him as opposed to how much the Bush voters liked Bush?
      And why does that matter when Gore actually had more voters than Bush?
      You should say that not enough people liked him which is not the same as saying people just didn't liked him enough.
      But if you say that not enough people liked him we go back to the question: did more voters like Bush? Based on the actual election results the answer to that is clearly: no.

      Your theory is a logical mess.

      BTW, why should anyone, let alone a majority, automatically support  Al Gore for president just because there was 8 years of peace and prosperity? Where is the logic behind that?
      We know that most voters disagreed with you, but I'd like to know why you think that they should have agreed with you.

      •  No (none)
        First, read my response to your other comment.  You are wrong about the polling.  Clinton polled better than Gore throughout the campaign.  Both were behind early, although Gore was much farther behind.  Both surged late, alhtough only Clinton surged (without any campaigning!) enough to beat Bush.   You cannot say that Clinton's extramarital shortcomings hurt Gore, because they did not hurt Clinton.  Why would Gore be blamed for the BJs and not Clinton?  That makes no sense at all.

        You are right that eight years as a VP in a successful administration (one that people wanted to see continue) does not translate into automatic support for the VP.  You are also right that the election also turns on not just how much people like (or want to elect) your candidate, but what they think of the other candidate.  But being VP for a successful administration should at least be an advantage, and running against an illiterate fuckwit should also boost your chances. Gore had both of these things going for him and lost the election.

        I also take issue with the idea that Gore separated himself from Clinton at the convention.  What the hell does that mean?  He said he was his own man?  Gore got a convention bounce, like almost all candidates do.  The idea that his gain in the polls was the result of ditching Clinton does not hold water.  

        It takes a second to wreck it. It takes time to build.

        by lando on Thu Sep 29, 2005 at 08:32:42 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  You changed the subject. (none)
          First you said Gore should have been ahead from the beginning because there was peace and prosperity and what not. Then after realizing that Gore was actually 20 points behind Bush even before he started his campaign therefore even before most people actually knew who he was or what he stood for or what he would do as president  (what could they dislike in Gore in early 1999? He was not even in the spotlight. There was no orange makup or sighs.) you just said that was because people didn't like him. Then when I pointed out that argument doesn't hold water since Gore came up in the polls as people got to know him more and more you said they just didn't like him enough. Then when I pointed out that  doesn't make sense in light of the actual election result and is totally irrelevant anyway since elections are decided by the number of voters not by the intensity of their feelings you now say 'oh read my other comments about Clinton's polling numbers'. What does that have to do with your original claim that Gore was behind Bush by 20 points because people didn't like him?
          Nothing. Your argument makes no sense.

          He was that much behind because peole didn't know him other than that as someone who was the impeached liar Clinton's veep. Gore actually spent less time in the spotlight during his vice-presidency than Dick Cheney -- which tells a lot. He was rarely on TV, rarely gave interviews and most people just saw him as the wooden Indian behind Clinton who was somehow involved in all dirt generated by Clinton.

          First, read my response to your other comment.  You are wrong about the polling.  Clinton polled better than Gore throughout the campaign.

          No he didn't. You are wrong about the polling because you cherrypick some polls and ignore others which refute your theory. You don't have evidence that Clinton ever led Bush by 10% in any poll. Gore did in Sept, 2000.
          His numbers started going down after the press bashed him for "lying" (sound familiar?) about James Lee Witt, and that standing girl in that Florida school, and a certain lulluby and a dog and a mother-in-law. They did exactly what they did in 1999 with the Internet, Love Story, Love Canal nonsense and it could work so well because the public was fed up with liars in the White House.
          One may wonder why.

          Both were behind early, although Gore was much farther behind.

          But not by election day. It's not fair to compare Clinton vs Bush to Gore vs Bush in those early days. Since Gore could not really introduce himself before the convention, he was just perceived as Clinton' veep (a double negative) and Bush was simply perceived as the alternative. Gore started to pull ahead only after he could shake his Clinton's veep image, that happened during the convention and after that Gore was running better against Bush than Clinton ever did.

          By the way, if you say that Gore should have won easily how is it that Clinton was behind Bush as an incumbent president during peace and prosperity? People just didn't like him enough?
          Clinton was not  just simply behind Bush but Bush would have destroyed  him in Jan 2000 by a whooping  11% if the election had been held then. In Jan 2000 Clinton's job approval rating was above 60%. The economy was still in good shape. He was in the spotlight. There was a State of the Union and everything.  Why did the majority still say that they would vote for Bush? Why did they want change? And not just some of them but 11% more?
          Apparently the very factors that you say should have put Gore over the top easily didn't help Clinton against Bush at all. Not even much in Oct 2000. He got only 3% more while Bush went down. And don't tell me he was not campaning. Everyone knew Clinton. He gave a "let's run on the record" speech at the convetion. He made a 15 minute here I am the big dog performace at the convention. And he was still behind Bush. So how can you blame Gore for not destroying Bush when according to the polls Clinton didn't do that either?

          But being VP for a successful administration should at least be an advantage,

          Why should it be? It has never been. At least not in modern history.
          Bush Sr didn't got any advantage from Reagan's high poll numbers and perceived successes. Nixon didn't got any advantage form Eisenhower's high approval and successes.
          Both administation were viewed favorably at the end of their terms. And despite that both veeps campaigned with big handicaps. In the case of Nixon nothing worked because Kennedy could not be portrayed as a far-left radical. In Bush's case it worked only because they ran an ugly racist smear campaign against Dukakis, potraying him as a far-left liberal. Remember Willie Horton? It was do dirty Lee Atwater later appologized for it.
          But the same tactics couldn't have been applied  against Bush because Bush was very careful to portray himself as a middle-of-the-road guy, the media gave him a free ride, the religious right shut up (unlike in 1992 or 1996, remember the booing in 1992?). So what kind of advantage did Gore have? Nothing. He had an albatross around his neck called Bill Clinton.

          and running against an illiterate fuckwit should also boost your chances.

          Are you kidding? Clinton was losing to that " illiterate fuckwit " even in Aug 2000!!! Don't tell me people couldn't compare him to Clinton at the time. And still there is no evidence that Clinton would have beaten Bush (see my post below) let alone by a landslide.
          Since when does the average American voter care about intellect?
          Bush was proudly  an illiterate fuckwit because he knew that's what the rednecks like.
          Remember Adlai Stevenson and his famous comment? He was right. And he would be right today.
          Being an illiterate simpleton is not a bad thing in US elections. It's an advantage. Sad but true.

          Moreover, because he was  an illiterate fuckwit  the press never went after his lies. They just said oh he doesn't know it. Leave him alone. He cannot tell a lie because he just have no idea what he is talking about.

          Gore had both of these things going for him and lost the election.

          Gore did not lose the election and all he had was a sex maniac impeached president in his living room who had to be first kicked out of the picture if he wanted to have any chance to win.
          And the economy started down in March. Hello? So what did he have? A slowing economy, a dumbass who was proud to be a dumbass and a liar president. Indeed big advantages.

          I also take issue with the idea that Gore separated himself from Clinton at the convention.  What the hell does that mean?  He said he was his own man?  Gore got a convention bounce, like almost all candidates do.  The idea that his gain in the polls was the result of ditching Clinton does not hold water.  

          You really don't understand? Well the Bush  campaign and Karl Rove did. And they started to panic.

          Relinking Gore to Clinton
          From the Weekly Standard
          08/18/2000
          By Fred Barnes

          Around the time of the political conventions in August, voters were asked in a Gallup poll to take another stab at the 1992 election. This time, President George Bush defeated Bill Clinton by 53 percent to 42 percent. Then, assuming Clinton could run for another term, they were asked if they preferred him or George W. Bush. The answer was Bush, 51 percent to 45 percent. Finally, this same group of voters registered a verdict on Clinton's presidency. A whopping 68 percent said it's been a success, 29 percent a failure. The meaning of all this: The Clinton bifurcation lives! Voters still like Clinton's performance as president but they don't want him around. And so in the 2000 election, voters want a new president who's the opposite of him personally--and especially morally--but not a strong critic of his policies.

          Until a month ago, that person was George W. Bush. His compassionate conservatism isn't a radical departure from this administration's policies, but he's quite unlike Clinton personally. Now, Al Gore has changed things by pulling off a strategically brilliant political transformation. Gore re-mains vice president in name only. He's disconnected himself from Clinton and shaped his image to meet the requirements of the Clinton bifurcation. His policies are roughly the same, but he's presenting himself as morally separate. How's he done it? First by picking a religious person and critic of Clinton's morals, Joe Lieberman, as his vice presidential running mate. And then by talking up religion, playing the family man by showing off his wife and children at the Democratic convention, and emphasizing the future rather than the Clinton-Gore past. Also, says chief Bush strategist Karl Rove, Gore's kissing his wife after she addressed the Democratic convention "worked...unbelievably."

          So, eight weeks out, the presidential race comes down to a single question: Will Gore's separation from Clinton endure?[b] Bush and his advisers recognize how difficult Gore will be to defeat if he's no longer seen as an extension of Clinton, indeed as the vehicle for a third Clinton term in the White House.[/b] Their goal is, in Rove's words, to "re-link Gore to Clinton." The job won't be easy. Gore has gained spectacularly on the moral issue in the campaign. A month ago, voters who said morality is a top issue preferred Bush by 68 percent to 24 percent, according to pollster John Zogby. But a post-convention survey by Newsweek found Gore leading Bush by 7 percentage points on who can best promote moral values. That poll was skewed by sampling too many Democrats. But a Washington Post/ABC News poll released last week showed Gore, after running 11 points behind before the conventions, has pulled even with Bush on the moral issue.

          Worried, the Bush campaign conducted two focus groups in early September with what it calls "new Gore voters," ones who migrated to the vice president after the conventions. When a White House scandal involving Gore was cited, "there was a lot of nervous laughter," says a Bush aide who observed the sessions. In response, the Gore voters spontaneously began to mention other controversial Gore activity. This was obviously encouraging to the Bush camp. Now, the Bushies expect to raise at least a half-dozen of these embarrassing episodes in ads, Bush speeches, or the debates. These include Gore's alibi that "no controlling legal authority" barred fund-raising calls from the White House, his appearance at a fund-raiser at a Buddhist temple, his none-too-credible insistence it wasn't a fund-raiser, his excuse he was in the men's room when allegedly illegal money-raising tactics were discussed at the White House, and his claim that Clinton will be seen as one of America's "greatest presidents."

          For sure, the Bush campaign will be accused of dwelling on the past, being negative, and focusing on Clinton, who's leaving office. Bush has said he wouldn't attack the president, but he doesn't need to. His task is simply to connect Gore to Clinton and to Clinton-related wrongdoing. True, this would stress the past. But contrary to conventional wisdom, most presidential elections are about the past. In 1960, John F. Kennedy was elected in reaction to the tired Eisenhower administration. Ronald Reagan won in 1980 because the Carter presidency had failed in economic and foreign policy. In 1988, George Bush Sr. won because the Reagan administration had succeeded on those issues. Four years later, Clinton was elected because the Bush administration seemed adrift. And so on.

          The importance of the past makes Gore's feat of disassociating himself from Clinton, for the moment at least, all the more impressive. "Everything Gore's doing is working," says Republican strategist Jeffrey Bell (coiner of the term "Clinton bifurcation"). The architect of this strategy was pollster Stan Greenberg, who worked for Clinton in 1992 but didn't join Gore until early August. Greenberg spent most of the 1990s thinking and writing about how Democrats could attract middle-class voters. Just last month, he wrote in the American Prospect that Democrats should "re-enter the values debate." Voters like candidates who "put the family at the center of political discussion," Greenberg wrote, "and who devote themselves to a policy agenda that will help families meet the myriad challenges they face." This leads to the "middle-class populism" of government aid for college tuition, child care, prescription drugs, and health insurance that Gore proposes.

          But that's not all of it. "Voters are drawn to Democrats who respect the public's religious faith and belief in personal responsibility," Greenberg wrote. "Reading Greenberg's article," says Marshall Wittmann of the Hudson Institute, a Republican, "you can see Greenberg telling Gore, 'You must choose Lieberman as your running mate.'" Lieberman, an Orthodox Jew, certainly has delivered the goods, speaking incessantly about religion and morality. Gore "had to have" Lieberman to distance himself from Clinton, argues Wittmann. "No one else would have made it real."

          For his part, Bush has de-emphasized religious faith since the Republican primaries, notably since his appearance at Bob Jones University in South Carolina became controversial. The Bush strategy assumed religious faith was useful politically with GOP voters, but wouldn't help in the general election. This left a void that Gore and Lieberman have filled.

          In one way, touting faith is a cynical ploy. Lieberman didn't yap this much about religion until quite recently. In fact, reporters who covered Lieberman had a tacit agreement not to ask him about religion. No more. The message from Gore and Lieberman is: We're religious, we're moral, we're not like Clinton. Now, it's time for Bush's counter-message.

          http://www.freerepublic.com/forum/a39bcfc1964c8.htm

          Read the comments as well and you'll see more about the Rep strategy against Gore in 2000 which was basically : portray Gore as a Clinton lapdog.

          And Gore didn't just got a bounce. He got it from "moral value" voters who previously thought Gore was too close to Clinton. That was because he separated himself from Clinton in his speech and and presented himself as a family man who had high morals -- not exactly the Clinton formula.
          Can you name any other explanation for 8% jump in the polls after his performance at the convention?
          Certainly it was not because he talked about the previous 8 years and how wonderful Bill Clinton was.

          Finally, you failed to answer my question:

          why should anyone, let alone a majority, automatically support  Al Gore for president just because there was 8 years of peace and prosperity? Where is the logic behind that?
          We know that most voters disagreed with you, but I'd like to know why you think that they should have agreed with you.
          You just keep repeating that peace and prosperity were advantages for Gore but never explained why. You have an advantage in an election only if most voters in enough states to win 270 electors think it is an advantage. Apparently most did not think that otherwise Gore and Clinton wouldn't have been behind Bush during a booming peacetime economy. So why should they have voted for Gore just because there was peace and boom?

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