Well, the common wisdom was that part of the reason that Obama appointed Hillary Clinton to be Secretary of State was so that she could not credibly challenge him in 2012. Beyond that, there isn’t a single, strong challenger, just a raft of senior Senators and a few Governors any of whom could make a primary challenge if Obama appeared very weak, but none of whom want to risk crushing their own political careers.
There isn’t really any obvious Ted Kennedy types waiting in the wings. I guess Gore could give it a whirl, but he seems pretty happy in his current incarnation as Global Warming guy. Most of his more creditable 2008 primary challengers are now in his administration (Hillary, Biden) or busy trying to stay out of prison (Edwards).
I guess Dean could try, he has a strong following amongst the Dem base, was a successful DNC chair and has been somewhat critical of the Obama administration (and was apparently miffed that they didn’t offer him the Sec of HHS position).
Its pretty hard to picture anyone trying to seriously primary Obama though. If we reach a point where Obama is so unpopular he’s beatable in the primary, then its hard to see the Democrats winning in anycase. And I can’t really see Dean or Gore or anyone wanting to go to the trouble of running a long nasty Primary campaign just to get creamed in the General Election.
Dean and Gore both had their shots. Dean could possibly rehabilitate his image as a bit of a loon, but Gore has the sticky goo of “loser” all over him, and his involvement with global warming is rife with ammunition the right can use against him.
Only the most mavericky maverick would even think of this, barring a Nixon-like meltdown. Dennis Kucinich is about the only Democratic politician with a national rep who comes close to meeting this standard.
But the premise is simply absurd given our current status. Obama is way more than sufficiently popular within the party and is overwhelmingly likely to win the election. Every Democratic politician is thinking about 2016. And, really if you ask them in private, so are all the Republicans.
What you’re asking is: what would be different if everything changed? I don’t have an answer for that.
Not to mention destructive, not only of their own public standing but of their party’s prospects in November. The only recent times it’s happened, the challenger has succeeded only in damaging the President’s chances of re-election, not only by forcing him to spend resources and time in a primary but in making it appear that he doesn’t even have the support of his own party.
Common among whom? :dubious: Those who indulged in caricaturing, fantasization, and personality-cultism rather than fact in the 2008 primaries? While common on this board, they were fortunately a minority in the real world.
Of course, that’s why there is no real answer, because the only way Obama is not the Dem candidate (to say the very least) is that he started graffitiing the Washington monument with “Allahu akbar” while wiping his ass with the US flag.
Sitting Presidents rarely face serious primary challenges, and Obama is neither weak enough, nor any potential challenger strong enough to make this season an exception. We may see some symbolic challenges from fringe candidates, but nothing serious.
I’m as pro-life as you can get, but his winning would require not only my far-fetched scenarios, but also the direct intervention of at least 5 apostles, 3 fathers of the Church, 4 churhc doctors and 34 canonised popes.
I’m thinking someone who’s been at least a losing but strong gubernatorial candidate.
Bah…the classics are best. Channeling Edwin Edwards, I’d say Obama has the Dem nomination sewed up unless he’s caught in bed with a dead girl or a live boy. If he is, and nobody can pin it on the Clinton machine, Hillary would probably step up to the plate.
It depends on what you mean by “challenge”. Randall Terry could challenge Obama in the same sense that Stephen Hawking could challenge Mike Tyson to a boxing match. He could issue the challenge, but it wouldn’t be challenging.