Female Or Minority American President?

Do you think we’ll ever see one in our collective (taking an average of SDMB member ages) lifetimes?

I think there will be either a female or minority (or both!) American president, but I’m very pessimistic I’ll be around to see it.

I’m 29, and I think I’ll see a female president before a minority president, but both eventually in my lifetime. I don’t really have any reasons to back that up, but its just my feeling on it.

I think we’ll see a black president fairly soon; the other minorites don’t seem to get as much widespread support politically except in areas where there’s a traditional minority presence (what I’m trying to say is that my own state, Arizona, has had a Hispanic governor, etc.).

A woman, on the other hand, I doubt. Women are perceived as being too emotional, having an axe to grind, being manipulative and other canards.

A black president isn’t farfetched, but the first one would have to be a conservative to get broad enough support. Fact is, Colin Powell could have made a credible run as a Republican nominee in 1996 or 2000, and he’s not too old to consider 2008. The fact that he doesn’t want the job seems to increase his appeal to some people.

Well, you had for president, let’s see, a crook, a drunk, an alzheimer, an invalid, a sex maniac or two and a couple of idiots. Those could be considered some kind of minorities.
No pun intended, just a cruel joke. Kind of.

Some countries that have had a female head of state: New Zealand, Canada, the United Kingdom, the Philippines, India, Sri Lanka, Israel, Malta, Pakistan, Turkey, Iceland, Bermuda, Poland.

Would you say an woman is less likely to be elected President in the United States than in these counties?

(Idle curiosity only; I don’t mean to criticise. :))

Very, considering that no woman has yet had a decent chance in an election. In this way, our country is very backward. I, too, think we’ll see a black president before we see a woman. I wish we’d just cut straight to the chase and have a black female president. I’m thinking auntie em would be the best choice.

My guess is that a Black president will come first. Politicos lump people together, and the biggest minority voting blocs are black and hispanic. IMHO, with all the fuss over undocumented workers it will be a while before a latino candidate can carry California. A black will be president first. Powell started to run once but backed out for his family. He may try later, and he could win.

I don’t think that the U.S. is too sexist to elect a woman president, but we are sexist and it keeps us from having women contenders. Also, looking at the landscape from Texas I see Kay Bailey Hutchinson, and, God, I don’t want to see another Texas Republican as president.

In the end though, it will more depend on who is in position and decides to run. IMHO, the people are more ready than the pundits think they are. Any opposition to a minority candidate is more a fear that the news coverage would undermine the campaign.

How’s this for a wild thought: Condi Rice is still young (not that we have to wait, of course.) Wouldn’t she be a shoe-in for a George Bush (sr.) career path?

You do have to consider that in this day and age, to run successfully for the US Presidency you need to have years earlier become part of a network of potential candidates and supporters spread around in positions of power in both public and private sectors, then present yourself as an aspirant to your peers first, and then to the key voter groups. And then start collecting money. In some other countries you can rise to the top entirely within the party structure. As of today, the majority of the people in positions to form the network we’re talking about is still white males, who will even without ill intentions gravitate towards one of their peers. But change should not be too long in coming. I believe another 20 years will mean enough women and minorities will have risen thru the ranks to positions of corporate power so that the odds improve. (Also, by 2040 the “white anglos” will no longer be the demographic majority, so “minority” may change in its meaning.) Not that it means it can’t hapen earlier, just that by then it should not be even remarked to have such candidates as viable contenders.

BTW, my WAG is the first woman or “minority” Prez will probably run as a conservative-to-centrist.

The way demographics are changing in this country, we will see a minority president within our lifespans. Denis Leary was not joking when he said the future of our country was “Como esta usted.” I’m looking forward to it. I hope s/he is Republican, too, not because I’m a Republican (I’m not), but just to see the expressions on the faces of all those smug bastards in my college… :slight_smile:

I think David Palmer would make a fine president, although he seems to come with some baggage.

The Unofficial Site for Condolezza Rice for President in 2008.

Nitpick: “shoo-in”.

It’s possible that a non-white woman could be president one day, fulfilling both things at the same time.

But I don’t think I’ll be alive to see it. Unless, you guys elect me. :slight_smile:

When I was in college, a professor showed us a picture of a group of people of various ethnicities. In the picture was a Jewish white guy, a black guy, a white woman, a guy who looked Middle Eastern, and an Asian guy. She asked who did we think had a better shot at being president, and everyone said the black guy. Then she asked who is most likely the poorest and who has faced the most bigotry. Again, everyone said the black guy, on both accounts. I thought that was interesting.

Funny, but no one thought the white guy–who was Jewish–would be elected president, citing the whole Christian influence thing on American politics (and anti-Semitism too). I can’t remember what we thought about the white woman, but we all agreed that a non-white guy had a better shot than she did.

We’ve already lived to see a minority elected president of the US. Nobody thought a Catholic could become president until John F. Kennedy did it.

Interestingly, most people don’t think of Catholics as minorities anymore. Isn’t it funny how that happens.

Twenty years ago I’d have said no way we’d ever see a black president, but in the meantime Colin Powell came on the scene and I have no doubt he could have been elected president.

On the other hand, I think the Bush cabinet has really set back the profile of women in government. Under Clinton we had Albright and Reno obviously in positions of supreme power; now we have Condoleeza Rice who we almost never see (and what does a national security advisor do, anyway?) and Gale Norton, Secretary of the Interior (whom you’ve never heard of), who is being tried for contempt of court.

The young people out there who already don’t remember Reno and Albright have already slipped back into the mindset of decades ago, when you just didn’t see women in positions of power. It’s sad, and I hope it changes soon.

Here are some possibilities:

Ron Kirk: If he wins the Texas US Senate race, he’ll be on everybody’s short list for running mate in 2004. The problem with many African-American politicians is that most come from the civil rights era and are more liberal than the populace in general. Kirk, OTOH, is fairly moderate. Still, he’s got a formidable opponent this year, so there are no guarantees.

Cruz Bustamante: California’s Lieutenant Governor who will probably run for Gov in '06 (If Davis wins he’s still term limited). He’s fairly liberal, but California’s a big base to work from and, Barbara Boxer notwithstanding, uberliberals can’t win there. Still, it’d be tough for him to do so.

Jeanne Shaheen: The token woman on Al Gore’s short list. She’s the New Hampshire Gov and is running in a tough US Senate race this year. Being a Dem in NH, she’s shown herself to be an electable moderate, but she’s sailed into some rough political waters with her recent school funding issue, so it remains to be seen if she’ll even win the Senate race, let alone the presidency.

Janet Napolitano: My favorite. She’s a latino AND a woman. She has shown herself to be electable in conservative Arizona as the only Democratic statewide officeholder, and is looking good for this year’s upcoming gubenatorial race. She’s had innovative ideas and has been able to generate voter interest in her campaign. AZ limits its candidates to two terms, so if she wins this year and in 2006, and if there’s an open seat for the presidency in '08, I wouldn’t be surprised if she goes for it.

Condi Rice probably wouldn’t make it out of a primary. She has described herself as “mildly pro-choice.” When 66% of primary voters are pro-life and the religious right is a powerful force you have a slim to nothing chance of getting out of the primary. Colin Powell had excellent chances to run in 1996 and 2000 and passed, so I doubt he’d run in the future. When I look at the rest of the party, they’ve still got a ways to go. Their only federally elected African-American, JC Watts, has way too many skeletons in his closet to make a credible run.

Of their three women senators two (Snowe and Collins) are too liberal, while Hutchison is another Texas GOPer, and I don’t think Americans will vote for her. When you look to the House the woman I think has the most potential is Melissa Hart of Pennsylvania. She’s pro-life and can win over Democrats, she definitely has high aspirations and is in her early 40s.

There are always those Cuban-Americans from Florida, but the old guard dominates in those seats and I don’t see any emerging stars down there. There are only two African-American Republican statewide officeholders in the US, one is running what will probably be a failed congressional campaign (Joe Rogers, Colorado’s Lieutenant Governor) but the other, Ken Blackwell, Ohio’s Secretary of State, will probably win again this year and has said he’ll run for governor in 2006. So I guess he’d be their best bet.

I’d venture that the first non-white-male American President will have to be a Republican, if only because any non-white-male Democratic nominee would get vivisected (or worse) by the right-wing nutballs out there. :rolleyes:

That’s the number one reason why Colin Powell won’t run. Which is a pity.

If Powell hadn’t stated his (apparent) intentions not to run, I could well believe that he would be our next president. He seems to be popular across the board, he comes across as morally upright, he’s an excellent public speaker, and the guy just comes across as the “presidential type”.

Again, I’m disregarding any of his specific stances on issues here, and simply considering his qualities as a politician.

Well, I’m 16, and I will be old enough to vote in the next election. And my humble opinion is that I think a female president will come first.

I would have liked to see Powell run. I think he’d win, but since he doesn’t want to, I don’t see anyone else with potential.

IMHO, we will probably see a female or minority Vice President before a President, but I don’t think it will be very soon. Too many attitudes have to change first for that to happen and, as a whole, I don’t think we are nearly as progressive as we like to think.