Tom Schaller's non-Southern strategy gets graded a 'B' in terms of accuracy as a 'predictive model'. He ended up better than the 'PUMAs' or 'Bradley effecters', but not nearly as good as Nate Silver or the Emerging Democratic Majority writers. However, Schaller was not merely predictive, but suggestive of a strategy.
Schaller himself rationalizes what happened in the Democratic wins in the southern races, but doesn't really acknowledge that it took a strategy including southern states to get those wins.
Two years ago, Tom Schaller came up in a couple of online discussions:
Winning without the South
Worth fighting for
Earlier in the campaign he said Obama couldn't win in the South. Even going so far as to say, "Mr. Obama can write off Georgia and North Carolina..."
Even after the election he held this:
He fared poorly with Southern whites, winning only 1 in 3 of them. But Obama and the Democratic Party don't appear to need those voters to hold power in Washington, said Thomas Schaller
I was going to post about how Obama's victories in NC & VA (the GA senate race also) invalidated Tom Schaller's hypothesis about winning elections without the South , but then read the 1st paragraph of Maureen Dowd and this :http://www.nytimes.com/2008/11/06/us/politics/06family.html?hp
I thought about the fact that the Obama family will be living in the White House in less than 3 months. I thought about their new puppy running around, and was touched by the idea that Mrs. Robinson, Michelle's mother, might move in with them.
I usually think of the White House as an office with lots of meetings, but I'm hoping the Obamas are able to make it a home.
Obama's Treasury Secretary - As we're seeing, Hank Paulson has had tremendous power in guiding how the government deals with the housing/mortgage/credit crisis. This problem will not be fixed in the 2 months before Obama is inagurated, and his choice of a Treasury Secretary will hugely affect how things are handled, and also send a message about how things will go in the future.
CNN suggests six potential SecTreas nominees: Timothy Geithner, Warren Buffett, Sheila Bair, Robert Rubin, Lawrence Summers, and John Corzine. Buffett is the celebrity pick, but doesn't seem to want the job. Rubin (director @ Citi), Summers & Corzine (ex-CEO of Goldman Sachs) are pols who bring their own baggage - Geithner is from the Fed, and Bair is from the FDIC, both units that have performed fairly well.
I think Obama should go in a different direction and my pick would be: