Tuesday, March 28, 2006
Who Will Succeed George W Bush?
I'll be posting quite a bit on the next US presidential election. Although it's some time away, the contenders are already jockeying for position. So first up, I thought I'd trawl through the possible and probably candidates for the Republican nomination. The favourites at this stage in the process inevitably tend to be those with the highest name recognition. So Rudy Giuliani, John McCain and Condoleeza Rice are those mentioned most often. I suspect that Vice President Dick Cheney hasn't ruled out a run, but his health would almost certainly rule him out. Others being mentioned include Senator Bill Frist, Colorado Governor Bill Owens, Massachusetts Governor Mitt Romney, George Pataki, Newt Gingrich. The list could go on and on. If I had a vote I would probably cast it for Giuliani or Condoleeza Rice. However, whoever I have talked to about this in Washington rules both of them out without a second thought. Giuliani is considered to be too liberal on social issues (ie pro choice, pro gay, anti gun) and as someone said to me yesterday, "the South would never vote for someone with a name like that". There are also rumours of financial scandal that continue to dog him. The fact that he oversaw the regeneration of New York City and played a blinder in the aftermath of September 11th seems not matter a jot. As far as Condi Rice is concerned she's ruled out because she's a) single (obviously a lesbian then...) and b) no one knows what she stands for and c) she's black so she must be liberal. I may be wrong but I have a gut feeling that she will get quite a fair wind with the media, who would nothing better than to see a catfight between her and Hillary. I can hardly believe that Newt Gingrich thinks it worth running but I'm told he genuinely believes he can win. He's certainly a man full of ideas although I think that he has too much of a past for his run to be taken seriously by either the media or people within his own Party. The name of Florida Governor Jeb Bush continues to be mentioned but I think three Bush's in a row would smack of the creation of a monarchy. It is an intriguing thought thought that after Reagan it is possible for the next 5 Presidents to have been called either Bush or Clinton. Or even six, if the First lady Laura Bush fancied a tilt at it. And there are a few people in Washington who wouldn't rule that out (I would though). In the end I suspect it will come down to to one established name and a hitherto unknown who comes through the middle. Who will that be? No idea!