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If Nominated, Hillary Clinton "A Certain Loser" in 2008, Opines Prof. Ken Bode

February 10, 2006

February 10, 2006, Greencastle, Ind. - "Hillary has become sui generis, now as much a celebrity as a politician," writes Ken Bode of Senator Hillary Rodham Clinton. Writing in today's Indianapolis Star, DePauw's Eugene S. Pulliam Distinguished Visiting Professor of Journalism states, "in the opinion of those who set the opening odds for the 2008 Democratic nomination, she is definitely the frontrunner. Sen. Clinton is sure to win easy re-election in November. She is the best-heeled contender, with a savvy, loyal staff and Bill as resident braintruster. That's not a bad start. But the other part of the opening line on Hillary is this: If the Democrats nominate her, she is a certain loser. You hear this even from those who like Hillary, or want to."

Bode, former senior political analyst for CNN, contines, "The 'can't win' argument has footing because the 2008 election will not be decided on personality or competence, or experience. It will be decided on geography. The common sense derived from that fact works against Hillary. First, the Democrats must give up their post-Bill Clinton fantasy of winning in the South... The critical battleground for 2008 is the eight states of the Midwest. Some big states, some swing states. In 2004, four went for Bush, four for Kerry. hillary rodham clinton.jpgFive were squeakers with margins of 1 to 3 percent. This is where the 2008 race will be decided and there is no reason to believe that nominating Hillary will add a single state to the Democratic column."

The professor believes other Democrats -- namely Russ Feingold of Wisconsin, Tom Vilsack of Iowa and Evan Bayh of Indiana [this spring's commencement speaker at DePauw] -- would run stronger in those key states.

Bode also believes that Sen. Clinton has "been so busy grabbing opportunities to establish herself as a centrist that she's losing the support of important voices who might have been expected to argue that she deserves a chance... Writing on the current Republican spin characterizing Hillary as an angry harpy, Maureen Dowd says: 'Hillary's problem is not that she's angry. It's that she's not angry enough. From Iraq to Katrina and the assault on the Constitution, from Schiavo to Alito and NSA snooping, Hillary has failed to take the lead in voicing her party's outrage... The Republicans can't marginalize Hillary. She has already marginalized herself.'"

In conclusion, Bode writes, "If you're tempted to bet that Hillary will be the Democratic nominee, let alone the next president, you should leave your money in your other pants."

Access the complete column at College News.org. Read about Ken Bode's op-ed from last week here.

Source: Indianapolis Star

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