Politics

Cap'n Ed Says Gov. Bill Richardson Blows 'em Down as Prez Hopeful!

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Ed Morrissey of Captain's Quarters writes highly of Gov. Bill Richardson (D-N.M.) when it comes to presidential aspirations:

The Democrats have no one else with a resume to match Richardson, with the possible (and extreme) exception of former Vice President Al Gore. The Democrats certainly have no other candidates with Richardson's experience and his certified centrist appeal.

Neither do the Republicans have anyone in their committed field of candidates who can match this resume, either. And that should worry the GOP, if Richardson gets close.

Morrissey's reasoning on display here. Richardson has been a govermor, a congressman, a cabinet secretary, UN ambassador, pro baseball player, etc., etc. And former Reason Web Editor Tim Cavanaugh tagged him as the Democrat candidate back in 2005:

Bill Richardson will be the Democratic candidate for President in 2008. He'll be a good one too: He's a governor, he's not Northeast, he's likable, he'll be acceptable to the left, the moderates and the party hacks, he's folksy, he's even fatter than Bill Clinton was in Old '92, and he's got the "ethnic" wild card. In fact I'll give you two predictions for the price of one: You'll know Bill Richardson is going to be the candidate when he starts referring to himself as Bill "Perez" Richardson or Bill "Big Cloud" Richardson.

More of that here.

NEXT: Saddam=Charles I=Jezebel?

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  1. i had been hopeful about richardson’s prospects as a candidate (as much as one can be about any presidential candidate) until the recent post about his proposed registry.

    now i’m not so sure.

  2. He’s been around for some time and always comes across as a nice and reasonable guy. He articulates himself very well and he’s clearly smart and capable of listening to other people (I noticed he never really interrupts other guests on TV for instance). That said, he won’t be able to raise nearly as much money as Hillary or Obama …

  3. I don’t know, AP, the internet has changed the donations game. Silly, crazy amounts of money were raised 10 bucks at a time for Dems in 2006 through sites like Kos and Atrios, using nothing but Paypal and a request to give.

  4. Don’t worry — Richardson is only proposing that so that he can get elected. He’ll be different once he’s elected. Or re-elected. Right?

  5. I don’t think Hilary can get MoveOn.org money, seing as how she was heavily criticized by the site’s proponents.

    I have no idea if Obama can, but Richardson would have a decent chance if he could swing MoveOn under his banner.

    I don’t really care though, I’m still moving to Ireland when Clinton gets elected.

  6. Joe,

    I agree that the Dems have showed the ability to raise money online, but it seems like its been mostly for the leftwing who felt like they were cut out of party decision-making. Richardson is a DLC type Dem — will the “netroots” support him? A lot of those folks seem to be eating up Edwards populist BS and/or waiting for Albot v. ’08 to declare.

  7. Anyone want to fact-check that “pro baseball player” bit?

  8. Isn’t Richardson pretty strong on immigration and controlling the border? I think he might be the only serious candidate who has a strong position on illegal immigration. If that is true, that alone might get him elected. People are very angry about immigration and tired of being ignored

  9. I think the phrase for Richardson is “the best of a bad lot.”

    Among Southwest political insiders, he has a reputation as a bit of a sleaze and a ladies man. I can hardly wait for to see what Hillary’s “Politics of Personal Destruction” oppo team does with that.

  10. “Among Southwest political insiders, he has a reputation as a bit of a sleaze and a ladies man. I can hardly wait for to see what Hillary’s “Politics of Personal Destruction” oppo team does with that.”

    If I thougth Hillary would fight half as dirty against the country’s enemies as she does against her political enemies, I would vote for her.

  11. “Among Southwest political insiders, he has a reputation as a bit of a sleaze and a ladies man. I can hardly wait for to see what Hillary’s ‘Politics of Personal Destruction’ oppo team does with that.”

    Set them up on a blind date?

  12. People are very angry about immigration and tired of being ignored

    John, Democrats are not as big on the immigration issue as the Republicans. Of the powerhouse Democratic states, only California borders Mexico and they will vote Dem anyway. Immigration is not big on New York’s radar screen.

    The question to ask is, will this pursuade any dissaffected Republicans to vote for him in the General election vs McCain or sitting it out? I don’t think he carries enough “conservative” cred to do that. In otherwords, about the only thing that Richardson will do is alienate the Democratic core, not a good thing for the party. He may be an okay candidate from the country’s view but I think the Democratic majority will block him in the Primary.

  13. “The question to ask is, will this pursuade any dissaffected Republicans to vote for him in the General election vs McCain or sitting it out?”

    I think so. If he is really strong on immigration, I think a lot of Republican voters would forget all the culture war stuff and vote for him. Moreover, the only Democrats that are for free immigration are the hispanics and the rich white ones. The middle class whites and the black community see it differently. Right now Obama is doing better among the white voters than he does among black ones. Who is going to get the black vote in the Democratic primaries if not Obama? Richardson if he is strong on immigration. A majority of the black vote and the middle class union vote will get you a long way in the Democratic primaries.

  14. Anyone want to fact-check that “pro baseball player” bit?

    Richardson for a long while claimed to have been drafted, but later admitted it was untrue.

  15. Anyone want to fact-check that “pro baseball player” bit?

    According this story, it doesn’t quite measure up.

    ALBUQUERQUE, Nov. 24 — New Mexico Gov. Bill Richardson is coming clean on his draft record — the baseball draft, that is — acknowledging that his claim to have been a pick of the Kansas City Athletics in 1966 is untrue.

    It’s certainly not the biggest whopper a pol ever came up with though.

  16. Richardson played baseball in college but never played “professionally” in the minor or major leagues. He once claimed that the Kansas City A’s drafted him late in 1966 (which is untrue) but as far as I know he never claimed to be a major or minor league player.

    I lost a lot of respect for Richardson during his tenure as Secretary of Energy, and I wouldn’t vote for him for President on those grounds alone. But we could do a lot worse.

  17. “I lost a lot of respect for Richardson during his tenure as Secretary of Energy”

    Why? I can’t remember anything about him good or bad about him being Secretary of Energy. What have I forgotten?

  18. Oh, who cares about his resume?

    This all comes down to who can raise the most money and has the nicest hair.

  19. I think Nick’s reference to Richardson’s baseball career was supposed to be tongue-in-cheek.

    When the facts about the governor’s ballplaying past came out, Richardson gave my all-time favorite confession by a politician that he hadn’t told the truth: “After being notified of the situation and after researching the matter…I came to the conclusion that I was not drafted by the A’s.”

  20. “After being notified of the situation and after researching the matter…I came to the conclusion that I was not drafted by the A’s.”

    Wow maybe I was drafted by the Yankees and just didn’t know about it. Perhaps I need to do some research into the matter and see. You are right Jesses, that is a great confession.

  21. “Why? I can’t remember anything about him good or bad about him being Secretary of Energy. What have I forgotten?”

    I think he might be referring to the Wen Ho Lee nuclear espionage debacle. Richardson was also energy secretary during a lot of other shameful shenanigans at Los Alamos National Laboratory, including highly classified hard drives going missing then popping up in zany places (a practice that apparently continues at LANL…). His predecessor Hazel O’Leary also oversaw some of that mess, but I don’t know which was worse. Suffice it to say they both sucked.

  22. This from wiki on Richardson’s tenure as energy secretary:

    The Senate confirmed Richardson to be President Clinton’s Energy Secretary on July 31, 1998. His tenure at Energy was marred by the Wen Ho Lee nuclear espionage scandal. In July 2005 it was alleged by a Federal judge that Richardson had leaked Lee’s name to reporters months before the scientist was charged with any crime. Richardson was also sharply criticized by the Senate for his handling of the espionage enquiry. During Senate questioning, Senator Robert Byrd (Democrat-West Virginia) scolded Richardson, stating: “You’ve …shown a contempt of Congress that borders on a supreme arrogance… You will never again receive the support of the Senate of the United States for any office to which you might be appointed.”

  23. Could somebody remind me why the Dept. of Energy exists anyway? Oh, right, Jimmy Carter.

    Asshole.

  24. Oh God, I had forgotten about Wen Ho Lee. What a mess. Hazel O’Leary is blast from the past. She is probably the most incompetant and corrupt cabinet official in the last 40 years and that is saying something.

  25. Richardson’s kind of schlumpy as is his wife. Don’t get me wrong – I have nothing against schlumpy people. Much of America is less than svelte and stylish.

    I just don’t know if America is ready to elect Denny Hastert’s and Horatio Sanz’s love child.

  26. Typo in the OP:
    “govermor”

    Freudian slip about a Democrat?

  27. slightlybad,

    I think you’re confusing “leftist” with “cut out of the party decision making.” A lot of the candidates most popular among the Dem netroots during the 06 campaign are pretty moderate on issues.

    Not only that, but Richardson was apparantly a big hit at the Yearly Kos convention.

  28. Aye, Richardson isn’t as fat as he was a few years ago- he dropped 70 pounds during the last election season to get himself “fighting trim” for his Presidential race. Now he just looks big.

    As for being a greasy ladies man, well… as long as he can pull off the Mexican schtick he can probably get away with it. My experience of New Mexico is that hispanic guys, especially if they had a moustache and an accent, could get away with being complete pigs. Just like Obama can get away with cocaine use, while Bush got dragged through the mud over the allegations.

    Richardson is a mixed bag, really… free trader, solid foreign policy guy, good on gun rights, fiscal disciplinarian, social liberal- all plusses in his favor. On the other hand- he’s at least slightly corrupt, has a tendency towards cronyism (okay, on the last two counts he probably wouldn’t be any worse than any other president we’ve had in the last three decades), can tend towards nannyism at times (okay, ditto), has no solid stance on immigration (which could kill him), and he’s still a bit of an unknown quantity in American politics despite his resume (impressive, but oddly low profile outside of the Southwest).

    We’ll see. He is- sadly enough- better than most of the candidates who’ve announced so far.

  29. Richardson has been a fixer for the Clinton’s problems on many occasions. I suspect he’s got too much dirt on Hillary for her to attack him. He’s probably my best hope to win my mother-in-law’s thousand bucks.

  30. He cut taxes here in New Mexico which is rare for a democrat. He also gave an “energy rebate” to every household (e.g. $128 for married couples) because the state took in so much revenue due to the price of oil (New Mexico is one of the few states that has a big surplus, budgetwise). The republican opposition were claiming the rebate should have been five times higher (which I can believe), so I voted for them.

  31. “Just like Obama can get away with cocaine use, while Bush got dragged through the mud over the allegations.”

    It seems a little early to say Obama’s going to get away with it since we’re still a year away from the first primary. It also seems like a bit of an exaggeration to say Bush was “dragged through the mud,” at least in the mainstream press (it was more like 1) he was asked questions about his past cocaine and alcohol use; 2) he gave some evasive non-answers typical of candidates in his situation (see Clinton or Gore); 3) there was some slight grumbling; and 4) it had little to no effect on the outcome of the election).

    But if there turns out to be a significant difference in either direction between how Bush and Obama are treated, it might have something to do with the fact that Obama took the incredibly novel (for a politician) approach of actually being candid and honest about it. I guess time will tell if that approach will help him or hurt him.

  32. “I just don’t know if America is ready to elect Denny Hastert’s and Horatio Sanz’s love child.”

    ‘ky. Um. Yeah. Could someone please post something to get that graphic image out of my head… Hell, I can’t even figure out how they’d fit together…

    DON’T TELL ME. Some things should remain a mystery…

  33. John says: Isn’t Richardson pretty strong on immigration and controlling the border?

    Richardson is a strong supporter of not just IllegalImmigration, but EthnicNationalism as well.

    He’s also working with the OrganizationOfAmericanStates to push their ImmigrationPolicies in the U.S. Details at my link.

    Hopefully people will start publicly asking him whether he’s required under the FARAAct to register as a ForeignAgent.

  34. Lonewacko offers the best endorsement the man can get…

  35. He really does need a good nickname. Big Bill’s already been used (by Taft if not Clinton), and Slick Willie has fortunately already been used up.

    He’s my candidate for the moment, unless Al Gore suddenly declares.

  36. If the insane ‘the-messicans-are-out-to-get-us-‘ crowd is against him, I like him already.

  37. I love the right. I love how they contrive to make words mean the precise opposite of their actual meaning.

    For example, in lonewacko’s fomulation, an “ethnic nationalist” is someone who believes that our national identity has nothing whatsoever to do with people’s ethnicity or culture.

  38. An example of BillRichardson revealing his EthnicNationalistic side at my link. Now, certainly, it’s not quite as bad as those AztlanPartisans who’ve gone as far as promoting genocide, but it is in the same quadrant.

  39. He wants to ban cockfighting in New Mexico.
    Dealbreaker right there. I don’t live in New Mexico nor have any participation in game fowl competition but I have decided on cockfighting as my “single issue”.

    Now if I was a “lesser -of -two -evils” voter it would be Richardson over McCain. The senator from AZ has a worse position on cockfighting than the Governor of New Mexico.

    OK here is how I make my choice for President in 2008. Candidate for legal cockfighting? Got my vote unless there is more than one then I will weigh candidates on other issues. Candidate takes no position? Shows some smarts- I’ll examine and decide based on those other less significant issues relating to Individual Liberty and personal autonomy. Candidate publicly opposes legal cockfighting?
    Enemy of freedom-anti American _I will oppose
    agressively. As I realise most people other than libertarians and gamefowl enthusiasts will not be swayed buy candidates opposition to cockfighting I will focus my negative persuasion on more popular wedge issues.

    POTUS cadidates who oppose Cockfighting:

    Senator John McCain (R)
    Governor Bill Richardson (D)
    Does anyone know if the other candidates have taken a position?
    I suspect Hilary opposes legal cockfighting.
    Ron Paul might support it.
    Only official public expressions for or agin
    count in my political calculous.

  40. I love the right. I love how they contrive to make words mean the precise opposite of their actual meaning.

    Unfortunately, both sides do this. Just look at the term “liberal”.

  41. Wow, Solitary Lunatic, do you talk back to the Mexican voices in your head? I mean how do you do it? Like aren’t they speaking Spanish or something? I mean if you understand the voices I have to wonder what kind of an American you are.

  42. The definition of “liberal” has actually changed, Bret.

    The defintions of “ethnic” and “nationalist” have not – they’re just being used to mean the opposite of their accurate meanings.

  43. The definition of “liberal” has actually changed, Bret.

    Not really – just the use of it by socialists. It still means “suitable for a freeman (Webster’s New World Dictionary)

  44. If anyone here ever repeats this, I will call you a liar.

    As a diehard Libertarian Republican, I gotta admit Bill Richardson is a damned good candidate. And he leans libertarian. Last year he even introduced a proposal to absolish state income taxes for all Military Personnel. Very cool.

    He’s the only Democrat worth supporting from a libertarian perspective. THE ONLY ONE!

    And I say this as a Libertarian Republican, the very guy who founded the Republican Liberty Caucus.

    Like I said, if any of you here every repeat that the Great Eric Dondero has said some nice things about a Democrat, I promise I will deny it til I’m blue in the face.

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