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UW Election Eye 2012

Campaign 2012 through the eyes of UW faculty and students

Topic: Hillary Clinton

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April 23, 2012 at 6:30 AM

Monday Eye Openers: With Romney as the presumptive nominee, talk turns to VPs; Buffet Rule struck down

Each Monday we will feature several important stories in the political world — ones that either just occurred, are defining moments, or are key markers on the horizon. Our blog is UW Election Eye, and we call these Monday Eye Openers.

Florida Gov. Chris Christie and Secretary of State Hillary Clinton

Potential VP nominees include Florida Gov. Chris Christie for Romney, and Secretary of State Hillary Clinton for Obama (Photos courtesy of nj.gov/governor/ and www.state.gov/secretary/).

Who will be #2?
With Mitt Romney as the presumptive Republican nominee, the hunt is on for who he will choose as his trusty sidekick. According to the Public Policy Polling, the running mate who would help Romney the most is New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie, followed by former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush, former Arkansas Gov. Mike Huckabee, and Romney’s previous foe, Rick Santorum.

Missing from this list is Florida Sen. Marco Rubio. Many have speculated that the addition of this up-and-coming Latino would boost Romney in the polls. However, Public Policy Polling found that Rubio would not be an ace in the hole for Team Romney. With just Obama and Romney, Obama leads Romney 68-30 among Hispanics. Add Rubio on the ticket, and Obama still leads 67-32. Also missing is Ohio Sen. Rob Portman. A Buzzfeed survey of Republican National Committee members showed a clear preference for Portman. One member went so far as to say, “He was born to be the guy standing next to the guy.”

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Comments | More in Economy, National | Topics: Barack Obama, Buffet Rule, Chris Christie

April 11, 2012 at 11:30 AM

Texts from Hillary Tumblr and the 2012 Presidential Race

Is it possible that Hillary Clinton will be named the vice-presidential nominee on President Barack Obama’s ticket for the 2012 election? A certain Tumblr site and Clinton’s response raises the questions of her potential role on the Democratic ticket. Texts from Hillary is a Tumblr that has gone viral over the past…

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Comments | More in National | Topics: Barack Obama, Campaign 2012, Democrats

April 11, 2012 at 6:30 AM

With Rick Santorum out, some ponder what could have been

Karen and Rick Santorum

Karen and Rick Santorum (Photo courtesy of RickSantorum.com).

At some point in politics, people get nostalgic. They let all the potential possibilities take hold and wonder what would have happened had things gone just a bit differently.

After the 2008 presidential elections, nostalgia took a while to kick in.

Rebecca Traister of The New York Times said what was on at least some disillusioned Americans’ minds. Had Hillary Clinton won the Democratic nomination in 2008, she claimed that Clinton supporters “would have to apologize to the world for robbing it of an imagined Barack Obama presidency.” But things seem to have changed. “Three years after that intense and acrimonious time,” she continued, “some on the left are engaging in an inverse fantasy. Almost unbelievably, they are now daydreaming of how much better a Hillary Clinton administration might have represented them.”

Concerning the 2012 elections, the questions of what could have been are cropping up much faster.

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Comments | More in National | Topics: Barack Obama, Hillary Clinton, Mitt Romney

March 17, 2012 at 6:26 AM

If Lehigh and Norfolk State can do it in the NCAA tournament, can Rick Santorum upend the Republican presidential contest?

For sports fans, this time of the year is known as March Madness. That’s the popular name ascribed to the NCAA men’s and women’s basketball tournaments, in which small schools, serious underdogs, sometimes defeat bigger, far wealthier, steeped-in-tradition programs.

March Madness is the official name of the NCAA basketball tournament (logo by NCAA).

It happened four times yesterday.

Two teams that are #15 seeds (among the lowest in the tournament), Norfolk State and Lehigh, upset #2 seeds and hoop icons Missouri and Duke, respectively. In the history of the NCAA men’s tourney, only four #15 seeds had beaten #2 seeds. It happened twice yesterday.

Further, a #13 seed, Ohio University, upset one of the legendary sports programs in the nation, University of Michigan.  And a #12 seed, University of South Florida, knocked off a #5, Temple.

It was quite a day. Personally, I’m a huge Michigan fan — but I found myself caught up in rooting for the underdog Ohio U. Watching David knock off Goliath is something special.

There are favorites and underdogs in politics, too. And right now, the underdog has got a shot in the Republican Party presidential primary. It’s a long, long, long shot — but it’s still a chance. And when there is a chance, sometimes things happen. Like in 2008.

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Comments | Topics: Alabama, Bill Clinton, Caucuses

March 15, 2012 at 5:45 AM

Republican primary fight hurting candidates, not good for any of us

The final four Republican Party presidential candidates (photo by Politico)

The Republican Party presidential contest descended into schoolyard name-calling this week.

It began when Newt Gingrich on Sunday blasted Mitt Romney as “probably the weakest Republican frontrunner since Leonard Wood in 1920” — a classic I’m-the-smartest-on-the-playground insult for which Gingrich has no political peer. Romney responded the next day with his best blue-blood neener-neener: he pointed to his greater than 3-to-1 lead in delegates over the Georgian, and said, “If I’m a weak frontrunner, what does that make Newt Gingrich?”

On Tuesday morning before primaries in Alabama and Mississippi, Romney blustered that his closest competitor, Rick Santorum, was at the “desperate end” of his campaign. Santorum won both primaries that evening, and Wednesday morning a Santorum adviser lobbed his best your-mama comeback. He invoked a Romney vacation in which the candidate did something unusual, and said the Santorum campaign wasn’t about to listen to the “value judgment of a guy who strapped his own dog on the top of a car and went hurling down the highway.”

A double-dog dare is next, I’m sure.

This is not helping the GOP. Or any else, for that matter.

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Comments | Topics: Alabama, Barack Obama, Democrats

February 22, 2012 at 6:30 AM

What do you call a presidential candidate? Names, titles, and the art of political name-calling

Ron Paul, Mitt Romney, Newt Gingrich, and Rick Santorum

Republican presidential candidates Ron Paul, Mitt Romney, Newt Gingrich, and Rick Santorum (Photos courtesy of www.ronpaul2012.com, mittromney.com, newt.org, and ricksantorum.com)

Name recognition is big in politics. Amid a field of candidates for various offices, having voters know your name is key.

That’s why we still have the ultimate old school campaign technology: yard signs. They show support, yes, but more importantly they get a candidate’s name in the head of anyone who passes by. And in local races, name recognition, put simply, equals more votes. Think about Washington Congressman Jim McDermott — after more than 20 years in office, the guy’s got name recognition he banks on each election. Half of Seattle can probably spell his name in their sleep and check the box next to it.

At this point in the presidential race, most people know the names of the four Republican candidates: Mitt Romney, Rick Santorum, Newt Gingrich, and Ron Paul. Mitt, Rick, Newt, and Ron: the GOP’s 2012 Final Four.

All this got me to thinking, what do we average voters call the candidates and why?

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Comments | Topics: Barack Obama, Bill Clinton, Gender