As we wind up the first week of the general election campaign, where are we, and what can we see dimly over the horizon?
Dean's attacks on Kerry on TV look so unhinged that they may actually help Kerry. Hallelujah! As long as this dynamic holds up, I can stop hating Dean.
The Bush Team is also beginning to look unhinged. You can just imagine Bush saying he wants to go on MTP, and no one being able to tell him no. In '00, he at least did what he was told. Being a "War President" may have made him forget his limitations.
Kerry's certainly standing tall right now. The sun is glinting off his flag lapel pin. Not only are his poll number crazy good, but he's winning news cycle after news cycle.
So what are Kerry's weaknesses?
A somewhat dour demeanor that might not hold up well? I don't think that's going to hurt him.
Radical associations while fighting the Vietnam war? I think he is completely teflon-ized on anything having to do with Vietnam.
Senate votes? The Weld race vetted him on this. I have confidence that his team can deal with the 80's era anti-Reagan military votes.
Shadowy personal issues? I get the feeling that he's been privately vetted, and whatever is there isn't a show-stopper. The mystery here is scary, of course.
October Osama? I'm not sure I share the tinfoil hat notion that this administration can stage manage quite this well. There might be some military surprise, but that's one advantage of having a war hero as the nominee.
Gay marriage? Yes.
Gay marriage is the one wedge issue that scares me. The truth is on a different side of this issue from the polls, and the intensity might get overwhelming. If he can solve this, I think the White House is his.
And finally, Petey Predicts:
John Kerry will become only the 3rd Democrat since the Civil War to get 51% of the vote.
I don't think every week will be as good as this week, but I do think there will be more good weeks than bad.