What are the realistic chances for Republican's in 2008?

Realistically, what are the chances for any Republican candidate currently in the running for the 2008 presidential election? Since she is the front runner, lets say that the Democratic candidate is Hillary Clinton running with a popular Vice Presidential choice (pick anyone you want that will have a positive or neutral impact on the election).

Break down the candidates based on who you feel have the best chances to win the Republican nomination…and then give your opinion on what their realistic chances are of winning the Presidency. Pick whoever you want to be their running mate.

For the sake of the debate lets assume that things in Iraq remain unchanged to how things are today, and that the economy is in essentially the same position as today…and that no other major events (terror attacks, natural disasters, etc) have taken place in the mean time.


President Bush is loathed, yet none of the major Republican candidates have repudiated him. The Democratic candidates are ahead in fundraising, while traditionally Democrats usually lag behind Republicans in the money game. The leading Republican candidates are out of sync with the Republican base on social issues like gay rights and abortion. And poll after poll has shown that the American public trusts the Democrats more than the Republicans on a wide range of issues … even traditional Republican strengths like defense and fiscal responsibility.

Who know what will happen over the coming year, but so far it looks like the Democrats are going into the election with huge advantages that it will be difficult for the Republicans to overcome.

Definitely true–but don’t discount the Democrats’ ability to overcome their huge advantages.


Hillary Clinton + Barack Obama is going to be very tough to beat. Hillary, for all her faults is a good candidate and has Bill; Barack is young, coloured, and has something o the air of JFK. Someone who has Condi Rice (black, female, intelligent) as the VP candidate might just have a chance.

Isn’t it sad that I’m having to highlight the sex and race of each?

But if the Republicans really want to win the White House next year, they need to get organised now. They need to get Dick Cheney to step down and put their preferred candidate in his place. Rudy Guiliani and Fred Thompson come to mind. Then that person can campaign as a sitting VP. If they give the nod to Fred, then Rudy should be the VP-in-waiting.

The bottom of the ticket means so little that I’m not even thinking about it.

The Republicans do have some advantages:
A solid core in the south and Bible Belt that still like Bush. Hillary will take few of these votes. The tendency of the people to go patriotic and support the party in power in times of crisis. Since the OP excluded new terror attacks, we have to neglect them.

Fred Thompson could be the Wesley Clark of 2008. Once he gets in, we’ll see he isn’t that good a candidate. He won’t win.

Rudy Giuliani is the likely nominee. He may gather more anti-Hillary crossovers than he loses from GOP voters that hate his pro-choice stance. He may have a better chance to breakthrough among urban voters. I think he CAN win, I don’t think he WILL win. A long campaign would bring out his personality and I don’t think that’s a plus.

Mitt Romney has the second best chance to beat Hillary. But he’ll struggle to keep the base in the Bible Belt, who don’t cotton to Mormons.

I don’t see any but these three getting the nomination nor do I see any of these three beating Hillary.

Thing is, I believe it will come down to an individual vs individual match come 2008. Sure, Bush is going to drag down any Republican candidate, but it all comes down to the candidates. The reason this race is so hard to handicap is that usually one of the candidates is already known by this time…they are either the incumbent President running for a second term, or the incumbent vice president. Then it’s easy to pair up every candidate from the other party against this known candidate and decide which ones have a shot and which ones are hopeless.

But for the first time since 1952 no incumbent P or VP is running on either side. Which means that handicapping the race can lead to all sorts of rock-paper-scissors type matchups. In a couple of months the real front-runners will emerge and we’ll deal with real candidates.

And the other wild card is that the two leading Democratic candidates are Hillary and Obama. Who knows what might happen when people get in the voting booth and ask themselves whether they really want a woman as president, or a black man as president. An otherwise hopeless Republican might win the race because he’s not black, or because he has a penis. It may be that the electorate is past such things, I hope we are, but the proof of the pudding is in the eating.

Rudy Giuliani has a shot. It’ll be great, like Bush but without morals.

My prediction for the general election is New York vs New York vs New Yarkansas. Rudy, Mike, and Hillary in a battle royale for the hearts and minds of everyone who loved New York for 2/3 of September 2001.

Except what candidate wants to be tied to the Bush administration? Accepting that VP slot locks the candidate into blindly supporting Bush, he can’t run on a platform of supporting certain Bush policies while repudiating others, he’d have to support everything. And besides, the whole point of this race is that there is no annointed candidate, Bush can’t pick one candidate to annoint because he has no idea which one will be the best campaigner. All the republican candidates have major strikes against them from the republican base. Let the campaign sort out the best candidate, the last early annointment strategy saddled the republicans with Bush.

Aww goddam contrary, Bush was an excellent candidate - malleable, rich, amenable to instruction from his handlers. Rotten President, perfectly good candidate. Don’t you remember? The Pubbies were floundering around, some even thinking of running Bob Dole again! Soon as Bush was even mentioned, the campaign money started rolling in by the carload lot.

But to the matter at hand, and one apologizes for not having a Certficate of Critical Thinking…

Guilliani is doomed, he’ll never make it. Too many skeletons rattling around in his closet, waiting to spring forth. Bernie Kerik may even be the least of them. So far, his only schtick is pounding the various war drums, about what a tough guy he is because he knows how to mouth platitudes into a bullhorn after all the dying is over. * Feh! * they say in New York and so will the rest of us. And if he actually starts getting any traction with his tough guy schtick, the rest of the pack will steal it, he doesn’t actually have any such cred. Mitt Romney will be pointing out that he has an Eagle Scout Merit Badge in marksmanship (hey! those varmints are small, and move quickly! Take a real hunter to nail one of those. Varmints, that is. With a gun, I mean…)

From here, its either Romney or…
Newt! Newt! Newt!

I don’t agree with you on this.

What in your experience over the last six years makes you think Bush would accept anything less? Of course someone could lie through his teeth and claim he’d be completely loyal; once in office he could do a turnaround confident in the fact that Bush can’t fire the veep. But that would be a very, very tricky play indeed.

Ok…and how would he do in a national election against Hillary? Thats kind of what I’m asking here. I realize its early days still, but I think its interesting to speculate one how the Republican’s might do next year if the political landscape remains pretty much the same as today.

I think thats HIGHLY unlikely (I assume however that you are joking :slight_smile: ).


The new NBC/WSJ poll shows that Rudy’s dropped 11 points in the polls v. both Hillary and Obama since March. He had been running 5-6 points ahead of both; now he’s running 5-6 points behind.

And several potentially quite damaging stories about Rudy haven’t hit the media in a big way yet.

Plus there’s the matter of his personality.

And that he knows jack shit about his signature issue.

None of this has really hit the big time yet. Yet he’s already sinking in the polls.

I agree that he’s the most likely winner of the GOP nomination, but that’s only because somebody has to win; the rules say so. And everyone else has bigger liabilities with the GOP base.

Rudy’s also the only one that I can see having a chance to beat Hillary, Obama, or Edwards next fall. But IMHO, his chances then would depend on his getting even less media scrutiny over the next 15 months than Bush’s back story did in 1999-2000.

The more people get to know Rudy, they more they’re gonna hate him. That’s just the way it is. He’s already peaked. See, the trouble is that Rudy’s an asshole. Put him up against Hillary or Obama or Edwards? He wouldn’t stand a chance. Romney might have a chance…too bad he’s Mormon, because that’s gonna sink him. Even if he gets the Republican nomination. Sure, the kind of bigot who won’t vote for a Mormon probably also wouldn’t vote for a woman or a black. But that means those guys are going to stay home, and there goes your Republican base.

Thing is, I can easily see Obama or Hillary or even Edwards eventually getting an enthusiastic party base behind them. I can’t see the same thing happening for whoever the republican candidate turns out to be. Couple that with Bush fatigue, and you’ve got a recipe for a blowout.

The OP assumes the Dem nominee will be Hillary Clinton – who is at once the most popular and the most hated woman in America. Nominating her might solidify the Pubs’ base around their candidate no matter who it were – but the Pubs’ base is far fewer votes than they need to win. There would be a fierce competition for the swing voters. Hillary has the advantage, there, that she is already the most center-right of the Dems’ leading candidates. The challenge would be for a Pub to be far enough right to distinguish himself from Clinton without alienating the center. Giuliani could pull that off, but he has too many skeletons; Romney would have a better chance, but even with Clinton in the race he risks alienating the religious-right vote, not only for his record in Massachusetts, but just by being a Mormon. McCain is irrelevant and Fred Thompson is a hole in the air. If I were a Pub, I guess I’d vote for Giuliani.

What makes you think Bush would care? Lemur866 made a claim and I don’t agree with it. Let him back up his claim.

Thats pretty much the way I see it too…and kind of why I started this thread. Granted, contrary to popular belief I’m no Republican (I’m not a Democrat either of course)…but I can’t see how ANY of these guys have a chance in hell against any of the Dem’s.


If Paul got the nomination for the GOP, I could give them a running chance to beat the Democrats…but the likelihood of that nomination is close to zero. :frowning: With the entire rest of the GOP field being pro-war, and given the general feeling of the public on the war…I highly doubt good things will happen to a pro-war candidate. If Rudy manages to get the nomination, well, his closet is basically built out of skeletons. The mudslinging against him will be hard, fast, and deadly.

:rolleyes: You want him to back up the claim that Bush demands absolute unwavering loyalty in all things from his team? Where have you been the last seven years, North Korea?!

Rudy entire candidacy seems to be based on the fact that he was the mayor of New York during 9/11. Which, when it comes down to it, really isn’t anything to run on. By the time the election comes around it’s going to be 7 years in the past. I don’t think morality (read: Gay marriage) will be much of an issue this time around, but I still can’t see the religious right getting behind a thrice divorced guy that supports/ed gay marriage. That’s an important base for Republicans. With Rudy’s lack of other credentials his inability to court the religious right is probably a death blow.

Romney, excepting the Mormon part, really appeals to the right wing. He is basically Bush recast as a Mormon governor of Massachusetts. Which is actually a really good thing for Romney. He can say the same things, (“Fight them over there so we don’t have to fight them here”), without the taint of failed policies. He has an advantage over Hillary and Barak in being able to play the family values card legitimately. Hillary is associated with Bills’ indiscretions, and Obama is going to have a hard sell due to his ethnicity.

At this point I think the Republican primary race is between Romney and everyone else. I can’t see how he could manage to lose it. McCain is effectively dead as a candidate, and as I noted earlier Rudy is extremely weak. Assuming that Romney wins the nomination, he has a very good chance of beating either Obama or Hillary. I think he beats Obama by a small margin based on family values, strong statements against terrorism, and Obama’s liability to be characterized as a soft on terror liberal.

Hillary is by far the strongest candidate on paper. She is the most experienced politician, and has a great deal of foreign affairs experience. Unlike Obama, it is going to be very difficult to cast her as soft on terror. Plus, her support for ending the Iraq war is going to help her. The problem for her is that she is going to get killed in “family values” and will be cast easily as a liberal. I’m not sure if the country is ready to elect a women president period, let alone Hillary.

I think if Romney is nominated he has a very good chance of beating Hillary. There is still some magic in the ole “Family values/Anti-Gay” hat.