In the Wall Street Journal this morning Michael Barone applies his usual omniscient analysis to examining Hillary Clinton as a candidate for president in 2008: “Hillary 2008.” His analysis suggests that she would be handicapped by the siginificant portion of the electorate that appears to be opposed to her under most foreseeable circumstances.
One of his pieces of evidence, however, raises more questions than it answers — a poll testing President Bush against her in a hypothetical 2004 race. But Barone acknowledges she won’t be running in 2004, and does not contemplate any of her possible Republican opponents in 2008. He doesn’t because at this point there is no natural Republican successor to President Bush. Hillary’s prospects obviously depend to some significant extent as much on the strengths and weaknesses of her opponent in 2008 as on her own strengths and weaknesses. You can’t beat somebody with nobody and the landscape is littered with Republican nobodies who want to be president.
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