Saturday, December 27, 2008

LEADERSHIP, For a Change

Seems most Americans have had their fill of George W. Bush and his chicken shit presidency. According to a new CNN/Opinion Research Corp. poll, 75% of Americans are looking forward to 01.20.09. Although Bush has been on a legacy tour trying to rehabilitate his reputation, only 20% say he inspires confidence.
Bill Schneider, CNN's senior political analyst commented:
"Things started out well. When President Bush first took office in 2001, more than 60 percent saw him as strong and decisive. That impression was confirmed after the September 11th attacks. The public still saw Bush as strong and decisive when he took office a second time in 2005.
"But no more. The public has completely lost confidence in this president."
Here on CCC, I usually stick to Shenandoah Valley issues, so what gives with this national poll? Well, last night at a local wateringhole and restaurant, I had an extended conversation with two prominent Republicans - one a businessman and the other a former elected official. Both voted for McCain. Each speaking independently said the right man (Barack Obama) got elected. Both said the current president had taken the country into the dumper. I got the distinct feeling they were speaking for a large group of disgruntled and pragmatic Republicans. The poll's national numbers may be reflected in local sentiment as well.
Interestingly, both support Creigh Deeds for governor (although each commented negatively on some of his "Democratic" stands, especially in regards to unions). Both thought Deeds is a common sense guy, with well thought out positions on issues facing the Commonwealth. Both though he needs a public speaking coach! The GOP's presumptive nominee, Bob  McDonnell, does not inspire either of them. Both said Moran was okay, but I got the distinct feeling they would evaluate him vs. McDonnell if Moran were the nominee. Neither would support Terry McAuliffe - calling him a "carpetbagger" and "Clintonista." Both think Moran and McAuliffe have NOVA advantages in fundraising and exposure and they are not optimistic about Deeds' chances to win the nomination against such odds.
As I explained to them, Senator Deeds will stay in the General Assembly and work on solving Virginia's problems. Moran decided to leave the legislature to concentrate on raising money and making appearances. McAuliffe is a national political figure with zero Virginia experience, but with a NOVA connection and huge fundraising ability. On the NOVA field, the fight is between Moran and McAuliffe. But, I think Creigh will serve his constituents, Virginians, and himself well by his decision to stay in the legislative fray. His opponents may split the $ and votes in NOVA and other urban areas while Creigh will be dealing with the tough issues facing the General Assembly. Creigh needs 34% - there is a clear path to him winning the nomination as Moran and McAuliffe beat on each other. Game on.
h/t to Crooks and Liars for the Dr. Seuss graphic and heads up on the poll.

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