First, Cindy Sheehan.
[W]hen she arrives in Washington July 23, Sheehan she will issue the ultimate challenge to [House Speaker Nancy] Pelosi.
If the Speaker has not put impeachment back on the table, Sheehan promises to announce that she will mount an independent campaign against Pelosi in November, 2008.
"Democrats and Americans feel betrayed by the Democratic leadership," says Sheehan, who is furious with Pelosi and her caucus for not doing more to end the war and hold Bush to account.
Recall that one month ago Sheehan was asked about her political future and said this:
Well, of course, I'm not going to run for election. I don't—you know, I'm very disillusioned with our political system… I'm not going to, of course, run for anything, be in the system.
Fortunately for everyone who opposes the war, Sheehan doesn't really matter. There never was an anti-war movement, and there isn't one now—public opinion slowly lurched from pro-war to anti-war as the Iraq conflict got more obviously disastrous.
Meanwhile here's the ever-decisive Chuck Hagel on Meet the Press, begging for people to ask him about his non-starter possible presidential bid.
MR. GREGORY: Were you to run, would you run as a Republican or as an independent?
SEN. HAGEL: Well, I have no intention of changing parties. And that doesn't mean, by the way, that I don't think an independent does not have some renewed possibilities next year to be president.
MR. GREGORY: Are you ruling that out, running as an independent?
SEN. HAGEL: For right now I am, and what the world looks like next year, I don't know. But I have no plans to change parties or run for president as an independent.
MR. GREGORY: But you're leaving both of those options open.
SEN. HAGEL: Well, I think…
MR. GREGORY: Both running and running as an independent.
SEN. HAGEL: I think anybody in this business, but anybody in life, and I've learned this in 60 years, David, that you try to keep as many options open for yourself in life for yourself as you can.
Ron Paul's excellent fundraising quarter did two things: It further discredited John McCain's fumbling campaign and it pulled some of the rug out from under Hagel's plans. Since the lone anti-war candidate in the GOP field is 1)raising millions of dollars, 2)capturing some of the media's spotlight and 3)not rising very quickly in the polls, the rationale for another anti-war GOP campaign is fading. And as incommunicative as Paul can be sometimes, Hagel's mumbling and dithering makes him sound like a far less impressive candidate.
And both of these people, Sheehan and Hagel, are only talking 2008 to get people to pay attention to them. So… can we stop now?