January 9, 2008, - 11:52 am
By Debbie Schlussel
I haven’t written a lot about the Presidential primaries in the last couple of weeks or so because I figured–and hoped–you were as tired of hearing about corn-p3wned Iowa caucuses and the Ben & Jerry emigres to New Hampshire (yes, a lot of New Hampshirites are transplanted Vermont hippies) as I was.
But Michigan is another story. As a lifelong (except grad school) Michiganian (I hate the Michigander goose-like description) and two-time candidate for office in the Metro Detroit area (I lost by just one vote), I think I know the ins and outs here and have a little something of note to say on our January 15th primary, next Tuesday.
I predict, on the Democrat side, that Hillary will win Michigan. Well, actually, that’s not a hard prediction, since she’s the only major Democratic candidate on the ballot. The others boycotted our primary in keeping with the Democratic party’s proscription of not making our primary earlier. So, Hillary will win. While there is a too-little, too-late movement by Obama supporters to get people to vote “Uncommitted” in the Democratic Primary, it’s a non-starter. And Hillary will get more than 50% of the Democratic primary vote. Hillary is very popular here, including and especially among older female Black voters. Younger Blacks here tend to favor Obama, but they don’t tend to vote in large numbers.
There is the option for Democratic voters to vote “Uncommitted,” but they are not allowed to write in anyone’s name. Doing so invalidates a primary ballot, which many absentee voters have done (they are being given a second chance to revote, the legality of which I question unless they specifically ask for a new ballot). You have to notify the city clerk which party’s ballot you want. I doubt “Uncommitted” will beat Hillary, but it would be a resounding defeat for her (worse than losing to Obama) if that happened.
But many Dems will be crossing over and voting Republican. And there’s the rub. In 2000, we had a similar scenario. By then, we knew that Gore would be the Democratic nominee. So, Democrats from all over voted in the Republican primary, which you can do in Michigan. As a result, John McCain beat George W. Bush. This time around, though, Dems are urging their crew to vote for Huckabee because they think he’ll be the weakest candidate and the one most easily beaten in November. They’re right about that.
I predict, though, that many Dems will vote for McCain instead of Huckabee. John McCain is popular here in Michigan, including among Democrats (except among Muslims–in 2000, McCain attended the Dearbornistan Arab American Insititute political conference and gutsily told them he supports Israel, continued aid to it, and Jerusalem as it’s undivided capital).
That’s why I think either McCain or Huckabee will win Michigan. And from the campaigning here, I think McCain–not Huckabee–will pull it off. I vote in every single election, including for school board and dog catcher. And the only campaign that’s contacted me–several times by phone–is the McCain campaign. As a likely primary voter, I was invited to, among other things, an airport rally/town hall meeting, this afternoon, with John McCain in my county. Although, I must say, the recording of John McCain did not sound all that enthusiastic and charismatic. (I also got a call from Rasmussen Report pollsters, but I was on the other line and clicked over too late.)
The fact that McCain got the endorsements of both the liberal Detroit Free Press and the Islamist-occupied, semi-liberal Detroit Newsistan means nothing. No-one listens to these papers endorsements. It’s less important than a merit badge for baking cookies in the Girl Scouts.
Romney has been running TV ads the longest, although McCain and Huckabee have begun doing so. But Romney’s ad–he’s been running the same, single ad for weeks–is a bad one. It talks about the Chinese and how soon they will be building cars and airliners. At the very end, Romney claims he will invest in development and research and insist on a level playing field–all glittering generalities without specifics. But you never really notice that part because the majority of the ad sounds like a cheerleading campaign for China.
That’s a big no-no in Michigan, where the dominant manufacturing segment is shrinking faster than a pie on Rosie O’Donnell’s snack-plate. Although the ad is meant to appeal to Reagan Democrat autoworkers who’ve been laid off, it serves more as a source of anger and doesn’t tell us much about what Romney will do.
Huckabee only has one scheduled event in Michigan before the primary, a speech to the Detroit Economic Club, where only elitist Detroiters will see or hear him. They are not rank-and-file Michigan Republican Primary voters. On the other hand, Romney and McCain have several events scheduled almost every single day through Tuesday’s Primary.
Fred Thompson and Rudy Giuliani have no appearances scheduled here and no ads appearing on TV. That’s a mistake. At one time–for a prolonged period of time–Rudy led polls in Michigan. He could have won here. Thompson even led, every so briefly, here.
The punishment on the Republican side for holding our primary early is that the number of Michigan delegates to the Republican National Convention will be cut in half. But by the time of the conventions, I predict neither party will, in fact, punish the state, as they want to win the swing/bellweather state and home to Reagan Democrats in the general election.
Romney can’t afford to lose here because he made that so by constantly billing himself as a Michigan “favorite son,” which he isn’t. Not sure how having a liberal nutjob father who was a self-declared “brainwashed” Governor of Michigan FOUR DECADES AGO makes you a favorite son. We haven’t seen or heard from Mitt Happens until about a year-and-a-half ago. But he’ll lose, and I predict it will be the beginning of the very long drawn out end of his campaign, though he’ll spend far more until he finally drops out.
So, if I had to bet money on it, I’d predict Hillary Rodham Cankles Clinton and John McCain will win Michigan, with Mitt Romney in second place here. That’s my story, and I’m sticking to it.
Tags: candidate for office, China, Debbie Schlussel, Democratic Party, Detroit Economic Club, Detroit Free Press, dog catcher, Fred Thompson, George W. Bush, Governor, Hillary Rodham Cankles Clinton, Iowa, Israel, Jerusalem, John McCain, major Democratic candidate, Michigan, New Hampshire, Rudy Giuliani, school board, Vermont