Two People Who Won't Win an Election Next Year

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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?

NEXT: How Conservatives Learned to Quit Worrying and Love the Imperial Presidency

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  1. 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?

    So why did you make a post about them?

  2. Of course, commenting here defeated the point I was trying to make.

  3. Oh no, I did it again!

    (I’ll stop now.)

  4. Thoreau loses the thread.

  5. There exists a certain irony that a group of fringe political idealists like Reason magazine would be so hard on a fringe political idealist like Sheehan.

    Cindy Sheehan may not matter compared to Dick Cheney, but she matters more than the great majority of us!

  6. 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 Fred will bury them all . . .

  7. I do not understand the love affair on here with Ron Paul.Anyone that associates with ‘The Spot Light’ is suspect in my opinion.

  8. 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.

    Wha-huh? I seem to remember the streets of several cities being choked with anti-war protesters in the run-up to Iraq. Maybe that doesn’t qualify as a “movement”. The opposition died down once the war began and we all wanted to “support our troops”. As time goes by, fewer and fewer people still think that “supporting out troops” means sending them to Iraq. Still, there has always been a strong anti-war segment of the American people.

  9. RON PAUL in ’08
    He’s Not Cindy Sheehan!

  10. I thought Sheehan was supposed be retiring from public life. Now shes running for office? Any sympathy I had left for her just died.

  11. barris,

    Could it be that Reason does not particulary hold much respect for Sheehan?

    Imagine that, libertarians not cheering on communitarians, what a concept.

  12. My take on Sheehan:

    Her son must have committed some truly horrible sin before getting killed overseas, died unrepentant, and gone straight to hell.

    After all, what better torment than having to watch the antics of his publicity-seeking crank of a mother for the rest of her life, and her taped highlights for the rest of eternity?

    Wherever he is, he must be wondering if it’s still possible in the afterlife to die from embarrassment.

  13. David Weigel | July 9, 2007, 11:46am | #

    Thoreau loses the thread.

    Thoreau is just shilling for Big No Post.

  14. Weigel,

    I think you meant Paul and Gravel. I’d bet every dollar I have on it.

  15. barris,

    Could it be that Reason does not particulary hold much respect for Sheehan?

    Imagine that, libertarians not cheering on communitarians, what a concept.

    You’re right, and I’m saying that perhaps they should. Or at the very least, sympathize with her instead of putting her down because she’s not as powerful as those she opposes.

  16. tweet!

    foul!

    “instead of putting her down because she’s not as powerful as those she opposes.”

    accusation inappropriate for blog.

    two shots and possession. Mr. Steven Crane will be charged a time out.

  17. I seem to remember the streets of several cities being choked with anti-war protesters in the run-up to Iraq. Maybe that doesn’t qualify as a “movement”.

    Warren,

    But those people were “unserious.” And they were shrill. They blamed America first and they wanted the wake up call to be in the form of a mushroom cloud.

    They thought “winnng the peace” was going to be the hard part and that we would be there for years and years after the cessation of hostilities.

    People like that could safely be ignored. Broder and Matthews and Friedman said so.

  18. Cesar | July 9, 2007, 12:00pm | #
    I thought Sheehan was supposed be retiring from public life. Now shes running for office? Any sympathy I had left for her just died.

    I gave up on her when I discovered that she had already met Bush once and all the antics were to try to force a second meeting. If she had a grievance, she’d already had a chance to air it.

  19. I for one would like to see Sheehan challenge Pelosi, and I think she could get enough QC’s to be considered a fair candidate.

    “But Cindy, it’s not my fault! The Republicans are obstructionist!”

  20. Cindy Sheehan is a political naif, and is being badly mislead by the people around her.

  21. Sheehan is full of it. She thinks she can get elected and things will work her way. As a junior Congressperson, she will have very little power or influence.

  22. I live in Pelosi’s district. She wins with 80+% of the vote every election. Sheehan wouldn’t have a chance.

  23. And as incommunicative as Paul can be sometimes…

    What does that mean? Paul always sounds like a straight shooter to me.

  24. Ron Paul sounds like a whiny fanatic with a couple of idees fixes, which is the source of his broad appeal among libertarians.

  25. Brian Sorgatz,

    I don’t think Mr Weigel is referring to Dr Paul’s genuineness, but rather his tendency to talk in circles and bring up irrelevant stuff when answering simple questions. Though he’s gotten better with this over time; at the first debate, I remember him going off on a tangent of how we shouldn’t have to enforce UN resolutions, when he was answering a question on the Iraq war.

  26. IS Edward one of those trolls we’re supposed to ignore?

  27. ?at the first debate, I remember him going off on a tangent of how we shouldn’t have to enforce UN resolutions, when he was answering a question on the Iraq war.

    That method (criticizing the UN) is probably the best way to appeal to the GOP base, who generally despise the UN.

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