Q&A Friday #51: How Does Mark Warner Deciding Not To Run For President Change Things?

Question: “John, with the news that Virginia’s governor, Mark Warner, will not seek the Democratic nomination for President next year, how do you see this affecting the Democratic political outlook?

I’m in Northern VA right now and the mood among most people here is shock, as most had expected him to run. Does this bode well for the Republican nomination or is it still to early to tell? Could this be ground work for Hillary’s Presidential bid?” — DCS

Answer: Mark Warner was the strongest candidate the Democrats had — by far. He is a “moderate” Democrat, with some charisma, who could have conceivably captured 3 or 4 Southern states.

Could he have made it out of the Democratic primaries? My gut instinct is that he couldn’t have pulled it off, but you never know.

The Dems do have another couple of “moderates” who may run, Bill Richardson and Evan Bayh, but neither of them is as high profile as Warner and so they’ll have a lot of trouble getting any traction in the primaries.

The good news for Republicans is that this probably means that one of the usual suspects, Hillary Clinton, John Kerry, John Edwards, and Al Gore, will be the Democratic nominee in 2008. Although anybody the Democrats put out there will likely have a real shot to win, all 4 of those candidates come right out of the standard liberal mold and those are exactly the kind of candidates that Democrats lose with over and over and over again.

The Democratic candidates who win, Carter (first term), and Clinton, are the candidates that can compete in the South and convince the American people that they’re actually moderates. Warner was that type of candidate and it’s definitely good news for Republicans that he won’t be in the race.

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