Dick Morris spoke to a group of conservative journalist types this morning at a breakfast sponsored by the American Spectator. His comments were fascinating, as always. I don’t have time to recount all of the important ones now, so I’ll just give an overview, with my editorial comments in brackets. If I find time, I’ll flesh out his comments later.
Morris strongly believes that the Democrats will nominate a ticket of Hillary Clinton and Barack Obama, and that this ticket will win. He believes the Republicans will reject the three front-runners, Guiliani, McCain, and Romney (whom he compares to the New York Yankees gold-plated but flawed starting rotation), and nominate a “minor leaguer”, quite possibly Huckabee. He reasons that the front-runners have all taken positions unacceptable to too many members of the Republican base [here, I disagree — precisely because the prospect of a Hillary victory is so real, conservatives will be pragmatic enough to go with one of the “big three”] Morris confessed surprise, however, at the level of Giuliani tolerance/support he saw in the room today.
Morris believes Clinton will win for two main reasons. First, the country is “dying to elect a Democrat” (though he thinks this will probably be somewhat less true by 2008). Second, Republican turnout in 2008 won’t exceed the 2004 level (and may well not match it), whereas Hillary can turn-out new voters in the form of unmarried women. They represent 27 percent of the electorate, but only 24 percent of 2004 voters. Morris thinks Hillary’s presence will raise that turnout figure to 27 percent, and this increment will vote overwhelmingly for her [consider me skeptical here].
Morris believes that Hillary’s presidency will be dominated by a left-wing social and domestic agenda, and a Nixon-like assault on her political enemies [it wouldn’t surprise me]. He’s agnostic on whether she learned enough from 9/11 to conduct a reasonably tough war against terrorists [as am I].
Morris is working on a film, along with Clinton-era “vast right-wing conspirator” David Bossie, that he says will expose what a phony Hillary is. [God’s work] When asked whether these sorts of attacks might prove counter-productive, he responded that only “below the belt” (i.e. sex-related attacks) are likely to backfire. At another point in his presentation, though, he noted Hillary’s skill in gaining sympathy as a woman whenever she’s attacked. Asked whether he was planning to “Swiftvet” Hillary, Morris responded “yes” [but Morris lacks the standing of the swiftvets, he’s a former(?) political operative]
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