.
February 7th, 2008
02:20 PM ET

Does GOP have an edge over Democrats?

ALT TEXT

ALT TEXT

FROM CNN's Jack Cafferty:

You have to hand it to the Republicans… they're efficient.

With Mitt Romney out of the race, the Republicans have their man. John McCain will be the Republican candidate for president. Mike Huckabee and Ron Paul remain in the race in name only, and I would be very surprised if they're around a week from now.

So while the Republican field is pretty much set, the Democrats don't have a clue.

Hillary Clinton and Barack Obama are virtually tied with a long fight ahead. And even with Ohio, Texas and Pennsylvania still out there, along with some smaller states, it's entirely possible the Democrats won't decide their nominee until their August convention.

One of the reasons the two parties find themselves in such different positions is this: in many states, Republicans use the winner-take-all system for delegates. The whole thing goes much faster that way. The Democrats, on the other hand, divide their delegates proportionally making it much harder for one candidate to get enough delegates to win.

This enables the Republicans to set about unifying the party, and plotting their strategy and message for November.

While they're doing that, Clinton and Obama fight on – spending millions of dollars trying to take each other out – money that could be used to fight John McCain in the fall instead of each other now.

Here’s my question to you: Now that the Republicans have a clear front-runner in John McCain, do they have an advantage over the Democrats in the general election?

Interested to know which ones made it on air?

Dwayne writes:
Normally this "unification" would be an advantage, but in a year that's anything but typical, I think that conservatives will choke as the smell of McCain rises over the months. By contrast, the Democratic contest will be so curiously appealing that a fickle public will be temped to get involved.

Meg from West Virginia writes:
Jack, You really got this one wrong! The Republicans may have settled on a candidate, but they are a long way from being behind one person. And, since they have only one, the Republican "run for the nomination" is no longer news, so their coverage ends. The Democrats are a LONG way from fighting, and a good distance from any nomination. The latest poll shows that 70% of Democrats will be happy with either Hillary or Obama.

Steve writes:
Deciding on a candidate early definitely gives the Republicans an advantage in the upcoming election. However, no matter how many advantages the Republicans might come up with, they will never be able to overcome their tremendous disadvantage. That would be George W. Bush. There's no way they can overcome the most disastrous presidency in modern history.

Nick writes:
Unfortunately, the Republicans may have an edge now. McCain is not going to appeal to conservatives in the Republican Party, but then the entire mood of the electorate is swinging to the left. To win, the Republicans will need a centrist candidate, and McCain is probably the farthest from the right. If he tones down his views on Iraq and starts to talk about a draw-down or (dare we say) a timetable, then he could conceivably undermine the Democratic proto-candidates while they catfight each other.

Denny writes:
The longer McCain is out there as the GOP candidate, the more people will tire of him. The more time he has, the more likely it is he will trip over himself. Obama and Clinton will command strong coverage for some time and will help draw attention to the issues that appeal to an overwhelming number of voters. McCain is out of touch and from another time and era.


Filed under: General Election
soundoff (158 Responses)
  1. A Becker

    Does the Republicans now have an edge on the Democrats?... Not if the right
    wing of the party pushes John McCain's candidacy further to the right? They
    will lose many independents and fringe democrats. How is this going
    to lend to more cooperation and less deadlock? It won't.

    February 7, 2008 at 2:25 pm |
  2. Tom

    Absolutely not they still have John McCain pushing Geogre Bush's failed policies.

    February 7, 2008 at 2:27 pm |
  3. Terry North Carolina

    Jack
    If you were the republican canidate for president you would have the advantage over Clinton and Obama.

    February 7, 2008 at 2:30 pm |
  4. Eugene in Northern California

    Jack, unless the democrats commit political suicide, before the November elections, no republican has a chance, of becoming the next president. McCain may be the front runner but it's only by default. His liberal position, on comprehensive immigration reform almost lost him his home state, of Arizona, on Super Tuesday. That issue alone makes him a looser come this November. His close support, on most of the Administration's policies hasn't him helper either.

    February 7, 2008 at 2:31 pm |
  5. Yvonne

    The Republicans will only have an advantage over the Democrats if Hillary is nominated.

    February 7, 2008 at 2:38 pm |
  6. Brett Milam

    No way Jack. McCain is Bush in a different costume. The GOP have lost the race before it even begins.

    -Brett
    Ohio

    February 7, 2008 at 2:39 pm |
  7. MIKE ADKINS,CHARLOTTE

    the republicans have no advantage with john mccain being the front runner. they're just stuck with him as the lesser of all the evils right now. at least the republicans know who is going to lose in november so they can prepare his concession speech in advance and start working towards 2012.

    February 7, 2008 at 2:39 pm |
  8. Jay Jones, Houston TX

    I am or should now say WAS a republican. The simple answer is No, they don't have an advantage. Goerge Bush's ignorance and the republicans have totally screwed up our nation and I don't see any way whatsoever another Republican can be elected for some time to come.

    February 7, 2008 at 2:39 pm |
  9. Bill Gallagher

    Republicans are seriously hurt by Romney Campaign suspension.

    The remaining candidates, including McCain, are so hateful and full of political backroom dirty tricks,that I believe none will really get elected.

    Obama becomes a clear and meaningful choice

    February 7, 2008 at 2:40 pm |
  10. Jeri

    Are you kidding? Is that what you want, four more years of Republicans putting us deeper in debt and completely destroying any possibility of repairing Foreign Relations? And then there's the WAR! Want to continue that?

    There isn't a snowballs chance in San Antonio of a Republican candidate winning the 2008 elections. Jeeeezzzz Jack! Especially one that follows Bush Doctrine! And none of them will call him what he is, A complete Idiot!

    February 7, 2008 at 2:41 pm |
  11. W B in Las Vegas

    I wonder how many times the Democrates will run the picture of McCain hugging Bush in 2004, his singing "Bomb-Bomb Iran" or his "100 years in Iraq" statement?

    I don't think he has a chance.

    February 7, 2008 at 2:41 pm |
  12. Michael Coogen in Lorton

    I don't think so. I think the advantage will shift to the Democrats, and that advantage will depend upon whether Obama or Hillary is nominated. The best advantage would be Obama. The Democrats need to nominated the candidate who will afford the least path of resistance. If Hillary gets nominated, McCain will easily walk into the whitehouse.

    February 7, 2008 at 2:43 pm |
  13. Jordan

    Jack,
    I don't think this gives McCain an edge whatsoever. Because the GOP is a discombobulated mess right now, McCain will have to work harder at curtailing his conservative rivals than at scoring digits in the national polls. On the flip-side, over 70% of democrats are completely satisfied regardless of their potential nominee. All and all, I think that McCain will appear like he is running for a 3rd George W Bush term, and will likely lose to a landslide of new voters on the liberal side of the fence.

    -Jordan from Kentucky

    February 7, 2008 at 2:44 pm |
  14. Jeff K.

    Yes they do. Because McCain will need Huckabee to round out the Republican ticket and have half a chance at winning over either Clinton or Obama. The rest of the Republican primaries and caucuses are now just beauty contests and they can shift their focus to the general election in November.

    February 7, 2008 at 2:46 pm |
  15. Troy

    No. There frontrunner is a guy that a lot of them don't even like. They will be holding their nose as they once again vote for the lesser of two evils. They have no one but themselves to blame though Jack. They had a real conservative in Ron Paul but chose to ignore him. At this point the election is just a formality. The democrats will get white house and democratically controlled congress and the republicans will a much needed kick in the pants. Hopefully they will learn that Ron Paul was right when he said that the party has lost its way.

    February 7, 2008 at 2:49 pm |
  16. Scott

    yes jack, mccain is got time to prepare for the general, while the woman and black guy rip at each other.
    i think the woman can beat the gop but obama just don't have what it takes' substance. he's all talk no meat on the platter.

    bowling green, mo.

    February 7, 2008 at 2:49 pm |
  17. Donny V

    Considering that the Republican base is in disarray, I think it is safe to say that the stands on the issues by Mr. Obama and Ms. Cinton are enough to secure a win for the White House by a Democrat. The advantage Jack is held by the Democrats Jack, you've got a bible belting, freedom limiting candidate in Huckabee and a guy that Republicans just don’t trust in McCain. Democrats have a better sense of moving forward than basing their bid on the ghost of Regan. Let's move forward.

    February 7, 2008 at 2:51 pm |
  18. paul W.Dc

    Jack,

    The answer is no. The Primaries and Caucuses are like a proving ground. The Dems will be more battle hardened. The country will be listening to substantive debates from the Democrats for longer and will be exposed to Democratic ideas for longer.
    The Republicans will be left watching the political landscape change without any competing show of their own.

    February 7, 2008 at 2:51 pm |
  19. William-NWI

    With Romney out, McCain, the clear front runner, "should" give the Republcans a huge advantage. However, if he doesnt cross the isle, as he states he will, and
    absorb a more conservative platform; a few of Ron Paul's idea's; balanced budget, less spending on foreign governments, and bringing troops home ( Iraq and korea<– 50 years is long enough ) I dont think it matters who the Democrats put up for they will have the office of President of the United States for the next 8 years. And if I may add, may heaven help us all.

    February 7, 2008 at 2:51 pm |
  20. David, Ft. Lauderdale, FL

    No they don't. The Democrats are the ones with the advantage and momentum because of the tremendous enthusiasm and excitement relating to the candidacy of the first viable woman and African American.

    Senator McCain may be able to naturalize this momentum and infuse the Republican Party with a similar enthusiasm by choosing Colin Powell or Condoleezza Rice as a running mate. He is now the most powerful man in the Republican Party. By him making such a move, it would really send a message to the whole world and maybe even take some votes away some democratic party.

    February 7, 2008 at 2:53 pm |
  21. Greg from PA

    As long as the sky is blue, rivers flow downstream and George Bush is President the Republicans don't stand a chance come November '08.

    February 7, 2008 at 2:55 pm |
  22. Ern in Tulock,ca.

    As a life long Repubican I believe I can truthfully say the GOP has no chance at all to win in any election, due to Geoge W. Bush! His administration had cut the throuts of the Republican party. Even if Ronald Regan himself were to run as a Republican, from the dead, he would be unable to win due to the past policies of George W.
    The best McCain can hope to achieve is the title of "Also Ran!"
    Ern

    February 7, 2008 at 2:57 pm |
  23. Tina

    No cause the American people are gut full of the Grand Old Party and their steam rolling over the will of America. Every Republican should be voted out and kicked to the curb and loose their pay and try to make ends meet like the poor folks who elected them to do the right thing.

    February 7, 2008 at 2:58 pm |
  24. Tom A

    Maybe if the election were held in a month, but it will allow the party ample time to consolidate it's base under McCain. Now let's see if the loud-mouth radio and TV pundits will fall in line.

    Then again, with the election so far off, McCain better make use of this time to construct a viable platform on the economy. We all know that the office of the President really doesn't have much actual authority when it comes to economic policy, but I don't think the citizens of this country will be happy come debate time if McCain can't say anything more than "I don't have to much experience when it comes to the economy, but I can kick butt when we decide to invade this or that country."

    Tom
    Boston

    February 7, 2008 at 3:00 pm |
  25. Jordan

    No, this Republican administration has been enough of a mess that Americans won't soon forget that what we need is change. However the primary process on the Democratic side should not drag on until the convention. Americans need to start believing in the Dream Ticket because we not only need to think about the 2008 election but also the one in 2016. A Clinton-Obama administration would provide America with the visionary leadership we need far into the future, and give them both a chance to lead this great nation.

    February 7, 2008 at 3:01 pm |
  26. grant

    Jack,
    As long as the democrats keep it relatively civil, they will benefit from the increased exposure the eventual nominee will get by having to campaign longer. McCain will have to create much of his publicity; the dems will get it from a protracted nominating process. Basically, The longer the Candidate is campaigning, the better he or she will be known; this is really to Obama's advantage given that everyone already knows the Clintons all too well.

    February 7, 2008 at 3:02 pm |
  27. Patricia

    I don't think so. As long as McCain says he wants to keep troops in Iraq for decades he will not win. Most thinking Americans know that it was wrong to go into Iraq & any Republican candidate that spouts the Bush/Cheney mantra will not be President of the United States.

    February 7, 2008 at 3:06 pm |
  28. grant

    hey Jack,
    Given that Obama can raise 30 million or more a month, he has the advantage no matter how long this goes.

    February 7, 2008 at 3:06 pm |
  29. Terry from Montana

    No Jack.

    It seems that McCain can almost quietly go through the rest of the primary season. While Hillary and Obama continue to get their voices heard. The Democrats will more than likely keep the focus on them right up until the convention, which means whoever the Democratic nominee is, will be still on a roll into the general election and McCain will essentially have to start over. There is a lot of electricity on the democratic side right now. If they maintain it, they will win in November.

    February 7, 2008 at 3:09 pm |
  30. damion

    I guess now McCain can focus on fund raising but it is so evident that the Dems will be in the oval office because of the overwhelming turnout they have received. However, we will see how much longer Hillary can hold on. It seems she is going down the same route Romney went by financing her/his campaign. The sooner her voters realise that Univeral health doesn't mean "Free Health Care" they will run over to Obama's camp like a raging flood. Yes We Can!!

    February 7, 2008 at 3:10 pm |
  31. Karen Las Vegas

    Part of that will depend on the Democrat nominee. If it is Hillary, he has a definite advantage. She cannot unify the party. I have heard many Democrats say that if Hillary is the pick, they are done. They will either not vote or vote republican. I believe more democrats hate Hillary than republicans hate McCain.
    However, if Obama is the pick, the GOP has no advantage. The majority of the country does not want to keep living in this perpetual war that drives McCain.

    February 7, 2008 at 3:11 pm |
  32. Matt A.

    They sure do.

    McCaine can now rest up, get rejuvenated and conserve and load up on resources for the thrilla in November.

    He can now just watch the unfolding train wreck in the Democratic contests and enjoy the mud wrestling that's sure to come between Barack and Hillary.

    February 7, 2008 at 3:11 pm |
  33. Josh

    No, Because the Republicans reject John McCain right now. Some of them even threaten to vote for Hillary Clinton or boycott the election alltogether. John McCain doesn't have a chance because we need a leader who is calm, cool, knowledgable about the economy, healthcare and bringing Big Business under control.

    February 7, 2008 at 3:12 pm |
  34. Jeff B

    Not at all, Jack. The democratic race is fascinating and thrilling to watch, like a great battle between titanic heavyweights. The Democrats have a huge advantage over the GOP in that they have not one, but two excellent candidates, either of whom are likely to defeat McCain in November. Also, while the GOP might know their candidate, the Democrats know they are making history. Don't forget, polls showed that Democratic voters will be equally happy with their nominee regardless of who wins between Obama and Clinton. The Democratic party is energized, and there is no doubt they'll be unified. There is nothing the GOP can do to stop the change our country so badly needs.

    Jeff B
    East Lansing, MI

    February 7, 2008 at 3:13 pm |
  35. Aaron Matney

    I believe it will not play a huge role Jack. By looking at voter turnouts on super tuesday, it is completely obvious that more people are voting democratic. The democratic party is more energized and has the young vote which will prove crucial.
    -Aaron Matney of Eugene, Oregon.

    February 7, 2008 at 3:13 pm |
  36. Lyn Jenks

    Republicans will have the advantage of watching (if they're smart enough) the democratic process carefully and planning accordingly. What are the chances? What I hope is that they continue to invest in continued Hiliary bashing long enough for Barack to get the nomination and beat them before they know what hits them.

    February 7, 2008 at 3:14 pm |
  37. Jane Lawson, Lacey WA

    Jack, The Republicans lost my support about twenty some years ago. At the time I was an active Republican. That ended when I attended a caucus in which local Christians outshouted anyone who tried to express a differing opinion about the issues. The party started on a slide then and has apparently hit rock bottom with the current administration.

    Frankly, John McCain seems like an echo of the current administration; however, if the Democrats nominate Hillary Clinton, there will be lots of amunition he can use against her, which may sway voters toward the Republicans. I might even be forced to hold my nose and vote for him.

    Jane

    February 7, 2008 at 3:17 pm |
  38. Cathy Carey

    HI Jack,
    I don't agree that McCain is now as shoe-in. The Republican party is in such disarray it's going to be difficult to mend the fences. It doesn' help that McCain is from the last generation,t hey're looking back instead of forward.

    It also seems to me that focusing on the war on terror when the war is clearly unpopular is rather short sighted.

    Last but not least, yes the Dem's system is just plain stupid. After flinging millions of dollars to fight each other where will Clinton or Obama get the money to fling at McCain?

    February 7, 2008 at 3:17 pm |
  39. Kurt

    The advantage that the republicans have is that they're fielding John McCain against the possibility of Hillary Clinton. What are we thinking? Hillary Clinton voted for the war and has a very strong stigma against her. McCain can crush her.

    Leipzig, Germany

    February 7, 2008 at 3:18 pm |
  40. Alan-Buxton, Maine

    The Republicans have an advantage only if they are brain dead. Everyone talks change from the absolute disaster of the Bush administration but are voting for the worst possible Bush clone. McCain is committed to keeping the Bush war machine going for years and will certainly give amnesty to the estimated 30 million illegals who are here and draining our economy already. He will cost this country trillions of dollars and thousands more lives before he is through furthering the absolute destruction of this country. God help us if he gets elected.

    February 7, 2008 at 3:19 pm |
  41. AndyZ

    Maybe. Let's see if the religious right abandons McCain and slithers up to Huckabee. McCain compared to Romney was at least a Christian. I doubt if the religious right has thrown in the towel with one of their own still in the running.

    Fairfax, VA

    February 7, 2008 at 3:20 pm |
  42. Donald, Butte Montana

    McCain doesn't provide the Republican Party with an advantage over the Democrats. He has enough negatives surrounding him and his campaign to provide enough ammunition for months to come.
    All he can do is tout Iraqi, just as Guiliani could say a sentence without a noun, a verb and 9/11. Enough of Iraqi is enough. Bush and his cronies mishandled this 'war' from the very start and he was an ardent supporter then as he is now. Its time they faced reality. This country can no longer support is militarily nor financially - it is already dessimating the budget, deficit and this economy while neglecting this country's pressing issues at home.

    February 7, 2008 at 3:21 pm |
  43. Alex in Madison Wisconsin

    Jack,
    The race ain't over 'til it's over.
    Now that Romney is out, I think we'll see more support for Huckabee.

    February 7, 2008 at 3:21 pm |
  44. Chuck

    The low voter turnout makes it clear that nobody likes McCain anymore than they do Bush. The Republicans should bank on Ron Paul as their nominee. He has the best record and is the only honest candidate out there who will save lives by protecting our boarder and bringing our troops home. He would be the only candidate standing after his message is out at the first republican/democrat debate.

    February 7, 2008 at 3:21 pm |
  45. Michael Hagin

    My lovely wife's immediate (and very original) comment on the announcement was "The elephant is now caught between the devil and the deep blue sea..."

    Think about it

    February 7, 2008 at 3:22 pm |
  46. Bob/Traverse city Mich

    I don't think the Republicans have an advantage Jack. McCain still has to deal with the legacy of the bush administrations greed and ineptitude. He also has to deal with his partys disgrace in the Abrahamoff influance peddling scandalHillary and Obama have the luxury of explaining to the democratic constituancy why they are the best candidate to whip John McCain in November instead of the yet to be named Republican opponent. John McCain may have won his partys nomination but the pompous, well fed, recreational drug using radio republicans are cannibalizing him worse than Hillery and Obama will do to each other. Grand theater indeed.

    February 7, 2008 at 3:22 pm |
  47. Joanna

    If by Republican you mean the candidate moderates like better than the Republicans themselves... I heard a lot of commotions in Utah that they wouldn't vote it Romney isn't in it...

    Not sure... it all depends how the Clinton/Obama thing goes... if they unite... Republicans don't stand a chance...

    February 7, 2008 at 3:22 pm |
  48. George Wilson

    Jack, surely you jest. If everyone are willing to forget about the last 7 years of Bush, and Cheney. If everyone are willing to forget about the war in Iraq. If everyone are willing to forget those who sacraficed their lives, and will never come home again. If everyone is willing to forget the decay of a good economy into a mess that we may never overcome.. If everyone is willing to forget that this country has become a second rate country with out allies. If everyone can forget that we, our children, and grand children, and their children's children will be paying off the debt that this administration has put on by using false information to take us to war. If all these reasons, and many other reasons can be forgotten, and forgiven, that Senator McCain is going to build his campaign on the fact that he intends to continue the war in Iraq without any end in sight. Fat chance !!

    February 7, 2008 at 3:25 pm |
  49. Joy

    Regardless of McCain being the front runner, he's not well received by the GOP party. They're a sneaky bunch and although they verbally endorse McCain I bet some if not many will vote for Obama or Clinton. McCain is a war hero, other than that credential he has nothing going for him, that is unless you want more of the Bush regime, which he supports almost 100%. Democrats, independents and many Republicans will not allow him to be president of the U.S., what a cockey, ego maniac he has recently proven to be. It's like watching Bush all over again!!!!
    Joy, No. Carolina

    February 7, 2008 at 3:28 pm |
  50. David Richards

    As long as the conservatives refuse to unite behind John McCain the Democrats have the advantage.

    February 7, 2008 at 3:28 pm |
  51. James

    It seems the Republican Party is always much more prepared in an election.

    If the Democrats can explain that the way to develop national security is not by making enemies out of every country in the world, If the Democrats can emphasize the "Mission" in Iraq (to liberate Iraqi people and capture Sadam Hussein) was accomplished years ago and that killing Iraqi civilians into loving us will not work, the Democrats have a chance.

    If the Democrats explain that "Support the Troops" is really a euphamism for "send more money to cover gravy contracts for Friends of the President while the troops lack necessary supplies", they can win.

    If the Democrats reveal that Republicans pretend to "Support the Troops" by giving soldiers a few dollars extra per month for school in exchange for the 100% chance to die in a foreign country, they stand a chance.

    If the Democrats can explain convincingly that is at least as immoral to kill Iraq babies as it is to get an abortion, they may have a chance.

    If the Democrats can explain adequately that it does not require Gestapo control of US citizens to have National Security, thay can win.

    If the Democrats wimper on the issues and appear weak, they will loose.

    Mark me, the Republicans have a good propagandda machine, which would have made Krushchev jealous: How else does one call Bill Clinton a draft dodger, while subsequently heralding G.W. Bush's incomplete stateside military service as heroic? How else does one believe a person who failed to complete his military service is a war hero relative to a real decorated war hero -John Kerry.
    Or create a group known as the Swift Boat Veterans, never heard of before or since the last election, strictly to discredit someone. Yes the republicans are prepared, but the truth can set us free.

    February 7, 2008 at 3:30 pm |
  52. chris

    I shouldnt think so. McCain is not likely to get a lot of media coverage while the democrats are locked in a battle already fascinating the public. He might try the following strategy, though: wait until the democrats have bled each other out and then come from behind, all fresh and new ... wait, haven't we had that somewhere before?

    February 7, 2008 at 3:30 pm |
  53. Jason

    As a loyal Hillary supporter I think it’s a great move by the Republican Party. Hillary and Obama will continue attacking each other, while McCain will give you solutions to the problems facing America. I myself will be voting for McCain if Hillary does not get the nominee.

    February 7, 2008 at 3:33 pm |
  54. Edgar

    Mitt Romney did the right thing for the Republican Party by stepping aside. The only problem is that now I am sniffing a probable McCain-Romney scenario that won't be enough to beat the Democrats.

    It may solidify the conservative base of the Republicans behind McCain, but it will be now so tilted to the right that independent voters will flee to support an Obama-Clinton ticket with the Democrats. The conservative wing of the Republican Party keeps forgetting that independents are moderate, middle-of-the-road voters.

    McCain needs a person to attract moderates, women and African-American. How about a McCain-Condoleeza Rice ticket?

    February 7, 2008 at 3:34 pm |
  55. Jared Paul

    Hillary fans tell me they'll vote for Obama if he wins and Obama fans (including myself) say that we'll vote for her if she wins the nomination–but we are not likely to rally for her as we have for him. Obama's movement is about changing Washington and that is not transferable to just any lucky candidate.

    February 7, 2008 at 3:34 pm |
  56. Sharon

    Yes, the Republicans have an advantage because McCain can focus on making up with conservatives and preparing both financially and strategically for the general election. Senators Obama and Clinton are still using vital resources (time, energy and money) on the nomination, and if the battle is protracted, whoever wins may be left with little time to bring the party together and make up with their opponents followers.

    I guess the only upside for the Democrats is they know who their opponent will be in the general election, and they can focus their energy on tearing him down (right now, I think a lot of people really like McCain, and as an independent, I would be willing to vote for him).

    February 7, 2008 at 3:35 pm |
  57. Ron Bennett

    Yes the Republicans will have an advantage by having some money left over before the convention is over and more coming in for the general election. The Democratic will tap out most of there money before the Primaries are over. Next time around the rules for the Democratic primaries must be changed that will include all states and change some rules to help from deadlocking future conventions. My god, the candidates spent over one year to get their message across before the beginning of the primaries.

    February 7, 2008 at 3:35 pm |
  58. Ruby Coria, CA.

    Jack, at this point we all know pretty much where the Democrats stand and their back ground..so it is not an advantage to them because John is not going to win, and Democrate are not going to play drity, at least we hope not.

    February 7, 2008 at 3:35 pm |
  59. TLC

    The GOP will end up being like a group of kids that play musical chairs where one chair is removed and it is odd man out as there will not be a chair available for any of the nominees from the republican party. Especially, Mr. McCain since his only stated accomplishments are a bridge to nowhere, that still happened, and that we will spend 100 years in Iraq. Wow, what will be left for any child born today by the time we spend over a trillion dollars a year and the loss of life of our soldiers and that of countless innocent people in Iraq. Oh, the rice will get richer and the working person will get less, what is new in our government and society. The democrats are glad that the GOP is going to pick a loser who is probably a very good man in many ways but is too boring and is single focused just like we have today in the current administration.

    TLC from Texas

    PS. He also says that we must defend our borders first. Why can't we do more than one thing at a time?

    February 7, 2008 at 3:36 pm |
  60. Jorge from Monterey California

    Jack,
    They will have an advantage! That is why Hillary MUST drop out NOW!! and let the voice of the people move on... just look at what is going on... she is put in money in to her campaign and promoting her website for donations, wanting debates every week! come on... she is loosing and she knows it... she needs to droop OUT NOW! she knows she can not stop a movement!!!
    she knows she can not stop Barack Obama!!!

    February 7, 2008 at 3:37 pm |
  61. Fran

    ABSOLUTELY NOT!!!! When I see the Democratic Front-Runners I see excitement, enthusiasm, new visions for the future of the people of the USA. Then there's the Republican Party...I see conservatives still living in the Regan Era...their hero...with no new ideas or visions of their own. Do we want to go backward with the Republicans, or into the future where the citizens of the USA are the most important agenda of the Democratic Party!!!!

    February 7, 2008 at 3:38 pm |
  62. Vicky

    Jack,I'll make this short and sweet, they might have an advantage if they had a viable candidate.
    Boston Ma

    February 7, 2008 at 3:39 pm |
  63. Chinyere from Brooklyn

    I think this situation gives the Republican a lot more time to spread their evil ways throughout the country.

    However, the American people have to accept some responsibility and if they allow themselves to be persuaded by the Republican agenda and specifically John McCain's agenda towards:

    Continuing the war in Iraq to the detriment and cost of BILLIONS per day

    Appointing ultra-conservative judges on the Supreme Court who would be intent on overturning Roe v Wade

    Do nothing about improving healthcare, education and employment for lower and middle class Americans

    Continued tax cuts for the rich and tax hikes for the lower and middle classes

    Well then, they get what they deserve! I believe us Democrats need to get it together quickly and pick a nominee so we too can begin focusing on the General Election and not lose our current advantage with the American Electorate.

    Chinyere
    Brooklyn, NY

    February 7, 2008 at 3:39 pm |
  64. Judy, Exeter, Ca

    McCain panders and changes positions constantly. These inconsistencies will swim up and bite him during the election process. He's his own worst enemy.

    Exeter, Ca

    February 7, 2008 at 3:40 pm |
  65. john barth

    Not a chance jack. I caucused with 35 others from my precinct in Lakewood, CO and on a straw poll, it was unanamous that no matter the democratic candidate, each of us would vote Democrat. As much as I dislike the Clintons, we are better off with democrats in office then Republicans. I don't wnat my grandchildren in Iraq and am tired of being a 2nd class citizen because I am not wealthy after an honorable discharge. Republicans talk big, but actions speak louder and you know well the state of our State. After 7 years of lies, deceit, innuendos, half-truths and padding the pockets of the wealthy, I'd vote for my neighbor's gold fish if it were running on a democratic ticket.

    February 7, 2008 at 3:40 pm |
  66. Will K

    Hardly.

    Look at the total vote counts for the primaries. There have been 2 Democrats voting for every Republican. During Super Tuesday both Obama and Clinton nearly got enough individual votes to beat all the GOP candidates combined.

    February 7, 2008 at 3:40 pm |
  67. Susan Coral Springs, FL

    NO.............

    The GOP will not support him, they never have. The GOP will be quite happy to stay
    home and not vote. Their man will be Jeb Bush in 4 years. America is DOOMED!

    February 7, 2008 at 3:40 pm |
  68. Aisha

    No! The only reason the GOP has a nominee is due to the candidates, including McCain, being pretty lousy choices. However, I think those that have dropped out have made a wise descision, since a Republican will not be our next President. I truly believe that the people of the United States want someone that will make honest changes. If you don't believe me look at the votes. The Democratic Party has offered something the GOP race probably will never have, a woman and an African-American. If either one of these candidates (H. Clinton & B. Obama) is chosen as the next President, the face of America will forever be changed. Clearly, the Democratic race is far more appealing/superior than the GOP; where the name changes, but the face doesn't. Let's keep moving forward.

    Sincerely,
    Aisha

    February 7, 2008 at 3:42 pm |
  69. Scott

    The only edge they have is is the extreme right wing of the GOP beating up on McCain. The GOP is facing a major rift within the ranks and it is not going to go away anytime soon.

    Billings, MT

    February 7, 2008 at 3:46 pm |
  70. Raphael from New York NY

    No Jack. Even though McCain may be the future Republican Presidential candidate, his platform does not recognize what the voters have shown to be most important for them and for our country. While he talks about his future plans, before or after he becomes the GOP's choice, the country looks for one who will bring true changes and address the needs, including economic and environmental improvement, which the country wants and puts above needless fighting overseas.

    February 7, 2008 at 3:47 pm |
  71. Lauren

    Typically I would say the Republicans have a clear advantage. Because of the controversy surrounding McCain, I think the Republicans will need to spend much time and energy getting the party's base to support him before they can move on to defeating either Obama or Clinton.

    ~Lauren from Kansas City, MO

    February 7, 2008 at 3:48 pm |
  72. gigi

    Now that Romney has suspended his candidacy they may find they have an advantage if they also elect Huckabee as their vice presidental nominee. That is the one ticket that the Democrats should fear. Republicans would be able to bring their conservative base on board. They would still be espousing Bush's failed and disastrous policies, but they couldn't care less about that as long as they can push Christian conservative policies.
    I am a Southern Baptist but I do not believe that we can have an effective government with their policies.

    February 7, 2008 at 3:49 pm |
  73. Wise Merlin

    No, The Repigs DO NOT have any advantage over the Democrats. I've been listening to John McCain today and it is clear HE IS A BUSH WARMOVER. He will do NOTHING to help this country and he WILL do more harm to this country.

    He stated he will go after ENTITLEMENTS. Yet he WILL NOT do anything about the National Debt Interest payment this year of 264 billion dollars. That is MORE than Medicaid and SCHIP combined. He proposes to lower the tax breaks of corporation EVEN FURTHER by reducing the rate to 25%, yet he wil DO NOTHING for the 150 million middle class families. WHAT A HYPOCRIT.

    February 7, 2008 at 3:49 pm |
  74. john barth

    Not a chance Jack. I caucsed with 35 others from my precinct in Lakewood, CO and on a straw poll, we all agreed that no matter the candidate, each of us would vote democrat. After 7 years of half-truths, innuendos, decieit and outright lies, even a gold fish running on the democratic ticket would be better candidate than another term of what we have. You can send your grandchildren to Iraq – not mine.
    John, Lakewood, CO

    February 7, 2008 at 3:50 pm |
  75. Ali Bie

    No, Republicans don't have anything over the Dems. With his "hundred year war" should be enough said for each and every United States citizen. But with 80% of the networks owned by a Republican, we'll get a steady, daily diet of bullcrap from soundbites of how he's going to change the world, like his pal G W Bush is now. And how's that plan working? McCain is another Bush, only on steroids and with a bad temper!

    Ali Bie

    February 7, 2008 at 3:50 pm |
  76. Karen in Fairfax, CA

    They need to turn his strength against him.

    I suggest a series of ads showing McCain nuggets, like promising a 100 year involvement in Iraq and a future full of wars, and his calling anti-war people weenies who want to surrender to terrorists, followed by 'If you liked Bush, you'll LOVE McCain'.

    February 7, 2008 at 3:51 pm |
  77. Steve in Idaho

    The Republicans have had an advantage in this country for the last 11 years, with majorities in Congress, Senate and with veto power by president Bush. The Democrats have hopelessly tried to push legislation to no avail.
    With that advantage, they have gotten us into war war over oil and right wing religion, shipped our prosperity to other countries around the world. Destroyed the Bill of Rights, created a nest of corporate scandals and with corporate lobbyist handouts have deflated the American dollar and have done nothing short turning America into a third world country.
    Can the Republicans somehow turn all of this around and blame it all on the Democrats, ? If so, the stupidity of the people of this country to fall for it would be their only advantage.

    February 7, 2008 at 3:51 pm |
  78. Sharon from Michigan

    Actually, the Republicans really won't know who the fight is against. They're hoping for Hillary, but it could be Obama. They really don't have an advantage. McCain will be trying to unite his own party. I just love this presidential race. It's like a game show. We know who' s behind door No. 1, but who's behind door No. 2 or 3. The grand prize is the White House.

    February 7, 2008 at 3:54 pm |
  79. Ryan in Yankton, SD

    The GOP has no advantage. In the months after the Democratic convention, there is plenty of time for either the McCain or the Democratic candidate to gaffe in a way so major as to throw the Presidency out the window. It will be difficult for McCain to pull ahead of his eventual competitor, but it will be very easy for him to be dragged back down.

    February 7, 2008 at 3:54 pm |
  80. Dennis Gosen

    The Republicans may have THEIR canidate and a hundred-year war in Iraq but they don't have any answers for OUR economic or health care problems. I am a 60-year old white male in Saginaw, Michigan. We got 18 inches of snow here last night and my oil-burning furnace is set at 52 degrees becaue i can not afford to be warm. I only earn $300 a week but today on my computer I contirbuted $10 to Hillary's campaign and I hope others will do the same. Hillary is a work-horse and will get the job done.

    February 7, 2008 at 3:54 pm |
  81. linda hemmingsen

    Jack why would anyone ever elect another republican? They have destroyed the reputation of the U.S.around the world, the white house has so much corruption and lies attached to it and they have destroyed the economy. They have been arrogant in not wanting to talk to congress, and leaving americans like new orleans on their own .They still haven't finished the job there.Then all the no bids jobs in iraq which turned into more corruption, missing millions of u.s. dollars it goes on and on.

    February 7, 2008 at 3:55 pm |
  82. Sol Lippman

    If 72 year old McCain and his regurgitation of Bush's failed governing is the best the Republicans have to offer, they have no chance.

    How about looking at the problems we have and coming up with new solutions? Instead let's pile on some more debt with war bills and tax gifts to the rich.

    The biggest scam out there is that Republicans are good handling the nations money. Look at the debt Bush has added to our people. Bill Clinton BTW had a surplus. The answer is you have to cut spending first before you offer tax cuts. You should only spend what you have. A balanced budget is necessary.

    The Republican scam is to cut taxes leave and leave a huge debt for the next person. I have seen this countless times both nationally and statewide. Look at Bush, Reagan and in NJ look at Govenors Keane and Whitman.

    The old, out of touch Republicans should be shown the door, quickly and permanently.

    SL

    Paramus, NJ

    February 7, 2008 at 3:55 pm |
  83. Richard

    The Democrats now have a clear target and can start stockpiling their attack adds. Oh, what an easy target they have been given. At a time when the majority of Americans are against the war the republicans have picked the guy who has made the most inflamatory pro war comments to take advantage of. McCain gives the Democrats plenty of ammunition, both in quantity and quality. The war was the achilles heel for all the Republicans except Ron Paul, which made him the only republican with a chance. Unless there is some serious manipulating of the electronic voting machines, I expect the Democrat to be elected by a 70%-30% vote.

    February 7, 2008 at 3:56 pm |
  84. Kevin- Webster, MA

    With John McCain the nominee the Rebublicans can focus on winning the election. The major benefit is now Ann Coulter has traded in her miniskirts for polyester pants suits and is supporting Hillary Clinton. That alone is a plus for the Republicans.

    February 7, 2008 at 3:57 pm |
  85. Ben from SC

    Yes, they do! McCain has proven he can pull votes across the party lines. This is why he's hated in the GOP. He's too liberal.
    We need an alliance between Obama and Clinton for a super ticket. That's the winner!

    February 7, 2008 at 3:57 pm |
  86. Jason (Visalia, CA)

    McCain beats Clinton, Obama beats McCain. Luckily for us this isn't paper rock scissors and Obama beats Clinton as well.

    February 7, 2008 at 3:58 pm |
  87. Crystal J.

    Excuse me... everyone can think Ron Paul supporters are as crazy as they want... but Ron Paul and his movement isn't going ANYWHERE and I guarantee you we will still be here next week, the week after that, and the months after that...

    John McCain is NOT an acceptable conservative candidate. If the GOP has any hope of winning this election, McCain won't end up being their man.

    Brokered convention people. Brokered convention.

    Ron Paul 2008!

    February 7, 2008 at 3:58 pm |
  88. David S.

    Of course they have an edge. Even if McCain was Bush in different clothing (he's not), Bush WON, and I'd bet he would again.

    If you look at the polls, McCain already has a lead on Hillary and Barack, and this is before they beat each other up some more.

    I can imagine few scenarios where McCain is not the next president of the United States.

    February 7, 2008 at 3:58 pm |
  89. earl illingsworth

    Yes, they can sit back and let the Democrats tear each other up,while Rove & Company ,watches in the backroom's for any kinks in their armor. McCain like Clinton, believes this is his turn. He is definitly a formidable opponent," just ask Romney"? I would say the GOP's nomination is all wrapped up,and they have nine months to develop"Swift Boat Strategies",never mind start raising," HUGE SUMS" of cash! Just a caveat about Lieberman as V.P., he would bring a huge number of independent voters into the Republican Camp,but on the flip side it would solidify the Democrats on the fence!!!

    February 7, 2008 at 3:58 pm |
  90. Sdr126

    Of course this makes no difference, and may actually be an advantage for the Democrats. The Reublicans will have to prepare for two candidates, the Democrats know exactly who they will face in November.

    February 7, 2008 at 3:58 pm |
  91. Richard Sternagel

    Jack, When it becomes known that John McCain chose not to vote on the stimulus economic package which benefit everyone, then I think his true character as a politician will be known. He is just like Bush! Keep us in Iraq for 100 years and screw the poor and working class people! Does he have an advantage? Yes, in losing the election!

    February 7, 2008 at 4:00 pm |
  92. Sarasmom

    They settled. Not a good sign.

    February 7, 2008 at 4:00 pm |
  93. Jenny from New York

    Not if Obama wins the nomination. If he ends up beating the Clintons and their machine, not only will he come out of the contest ready to deal with any negative attacks that come his way, he'll get some Republican votes!

    February 7, 2008 at 4:00 pm |
  94. DavidfromOakland

    I thought the Democrats would be a shoo-in in 2000.
    If there is no floor fight over the Michigan and Florida delegates and Obama can win most of the delegates from here on, then the Democrats have a chance.
    If Sen. Clinton is nominated, it may be more of a problem.

    February 7, 2008 at 4:00 pm |
  95. Dennis in Gwinn, MI

    No. The Dems now know who they will be running against- they can direct their campaIgn, and contast their ideas againt McCain rather than at each other.

    February 7, 2008 at 4:00 pm |
  96. Mike

    Jack,

    The only advantage that McCain has recieved is more time to expain how he will be any different from the last republican that was in office.

    Mike

    February 7, 2008 at 4:00 pm |
  97. paulette

    Maybe its too expensive of a process, but no way does it give the republicans an advantage. If i were a republican and took responsibility for voting this current President into office not only once but twice, with the insuing disaster, there can be no advantage to a party tied to that tree let alone to a bush.

    February 7, 2008 at 4:01 pm |
  98. Paulette Bent Dallas,PA

    No Jack, maybe the Democrats need to examine and change thier electoral system but please DO NOT follow the Republicans. They're stuck with John McCain - that's scary!!

    February 7, 2008 at 4:01 pm |
  99. Kim

    Jack, no way Jose!
    McCain is an angry old man with spontaneous outburst of anger. He is neither on the right or left and he is not independent either. I don't know what to call him. It seems like his position on issues is just like his outburst of anger that no one can predict. The true right winger in the Republican party already disapprove of him.

    The only way he can fall back to their graces is miracally changed himself to be like a true right wing republican and hope to gain their favor. If that is successful, he will then alienate his current supporters! Anyway you cut it, he success is quite gloom.

    February 7, 2008 at 4:01 pm |
  100. C. Farrell, Houston, Tx

    Not with John McCain as the front runner, everybody both democrats and republicans lose with him. Republicans got it wrong again and I don't want to hear anymore negative comments about George W. Bush.

    February 7, 2008 at 4:01 pm |
  101. fletc3her

    I think that this gives the Republicans a long time to ponder whether they really want to be running McCain as their candidate. It seems like his appeal largely falls outside of the groups which strongly backed Bush in the last couple elections. Will the Republican party be able to hold together these many months or will they splinter? This early nomination means there is plenty of time to contemplate running a third party candidate. Bloomberg, Huckabee, or even Ron Paul could serve that roll.

    As to the Democrats, I for one am extremely pleased that the caucuses we are holding this weekend here in Washington are not completely irrelevant. I actually get a chance to participate now! The Democratic race has the potential to fire up voters in state after state as we actually participate in our democracy rather than being handed down a candidate from on high.

    February 7, 2008 at 4:01 pm |
  102. mitsch

    Not necessarily.

    By the Democratic candidature being undecided, Barack and Hillary have now the monopoly of the media.

    Nobody cares about McCain now that we know he is the Republican candidate. The whole focus of the media will be on the Democratic ticket.

    You just can't buy that kind of free publicity.

    All the Democrats have to do is follow the course of the last debate. Be cordial to each other and whoever gets selected will be our next president for sure.

    Mitsch

    February 7, 2008 at 4:01 pm |
  103. Bill

    I think that McCain faces an uphill battle inside his own party – in the past, the social conservatives have shown that when an election comes down to voting for a democrat or a socially moderate Republican, they will just choose to stay home instead. McCain is going to have to overcome that, and the only way I see that happening, is if he moves further to the right socially. If he does that, he's going to get into trouble with the Independents. It's going to be a tough row to hoe for McCain.

    February 7, 2008 at 4:01 pm |
  104. Jess

    NO WAY!!!! We have a war monger that knows nothing about the economy. How do we expect to fund the war without fixing the economy? Independents have ruined the republican race this year. They have given us the worst nominee since last election when we were forced to accept George Bush again. To all republicans out there just dont even vote this year and let that be our answer to giving us the worst candidates every term. Maybe then they will listen.

    February 7, 2008 at 4:02 pm |
  105. Damon

    Republicans always have an advantage over Democrats because they play on the fact the body politic is stupid. Dems always give people too much credit for intellect that isn't there, just ask John Kerry. Republicans on the other hand, know sugar catches more flies but then they'll eat whatever you give them once you've pulled their wings off – ask Karl Rove about that one. The only saving grace is people are only SO stupid and Mr.Bush used most of that up over the last eight years. Pretty sure Mitt Romney can testify to that.

    Thx,
    Damon

    LA CA

    February 7, 2008 at 4:02 pm |
  106. Lonnie

    The Republicans have nothing on the Democrats. 71% of them are fine with either Clinton or Obama, and the current process is only managing to energize more and more of them. When either Clinton or Obama finally sits across from McCain in the first debate, they can end his bid in one sentence. "My opponent said we can be in Iraq for 100 years, and he knows nothing about the economy. Debate over, you can run the commercials now."

    February 7, 2008 at 4:02 pm |
  107. Nathan Chapman

    I think that the only the Republicans have an advantage is if Senator Clinton wins the nomination. I feel that if Senator Obama is the nominee the fight will be on for Independents as well has the edges of both parties.

    The only advantage Senator McCain has now has is not having to spend money. Which maybe huge in the short but again I think it depends on who he runs against as to how much this will help.

    Nathan Chapman

    February 7, 2008 at 4:02 pm |
  108. Aubrey

    No. There three major disadvantages for the Republicans that will come into play in the fall. One is that he is weak on the economic issues. Two is the war in Iraq. He will have a very hard time to convince the other side that the surge is working. Which leads to the third and final disadvantage–his temper. He really needs to control that emotion, because if he loses it at any moment of the campaign, the Democrats will portray as being stubborn and rotten to the other side. That will have to be a major weakness in both McCain and the GOP.

    February 7, 2008 at 4:02 pm |
  109. Leigh Anne Harris

    I believe that the Republicans do have an edge over the Democrats at this point. McCain has much more time and opportunity to unite the Republican party and garner more support, even more so if Huckabee becomes his running mate. People are sick of Bush's politics and want a change, but I am not convinced that the country wants the kind of radical change that the Democrats are calling for. I don't think we can afford all the government that the Democrats want to give us. Apparently there are many Americans who mistakenly believe that the money for the "wonderful" plans the Democrats have for us will magically appear. Wake up- it's coming out of the pockets of middle class tax paying Americans. Looks like they want to add to the number of Americans in poverty by taxing the middle class into bankruptcy. I say... let the change come from the Republicans who believe in a small government and lower taxes. Go McCain!

    February 7, 2008 at 4:02 pm |
  110. Matt S.

    I don't think that the Republicans have the advantage, I believe the Democrats still hold the upper hand. Something that I think has been ignored is the fact that Barack Obama has much more room for growth than Hillary Clinton or John McCain. Ask anyone in the street what their opinion is on Hillary or McCain, I guarantee they will fire back a quick response in praise or hatred for either candidate. Most people have seen Hillary and McCain and know where they stand with them. Obama however has unlimited potential for growth. Look at states where he won on Super Tuesday, where he won, he won big, and they were in states that Democrats normally don't do well. Hillary's victories in Massachusetts, California, and New York should not be a surprise to anyone. Any state where Clinton has the machine already in motion, she holds the upper hand, but I think Obama has shown if he has enough time, he can make any previous advantage of Hillary's disappear. She won New Hampshire because she had the political apparatus in place and Barack didn't have the time to bring it down. But in states where she didn't have these machines in place, she lost and lost badly. So before we ask "do the Republicans have the upper hand?" we should be asking "does anyone have a chance against Barack Obama?"

    February 7, 2008 at 4:03 pm |
  111. Cathy Norem

    I don't think they have an advantage at all. I think it is hurtful for the party if the citizens don't have a choice and have to go with the one that is left. McCain is running on his being a POW and that seems to be it. McCain is just a mirror image of Bush and we certainly don't need another one like Bush in the White House.

    February 7, 2008 at 4:03 pm |
  112. Gino

    Heck no... he is a Bush baby... he relies on his past military history... and he is a hawk, not exactly what Americans want and need! He is the one who says we will be in Iraq for another 100 years! He continues more or less to follow the present White House policies with a few exceptions.
    He sure is eager to denounce Senators Clinton and Obama! If Republicans elect him to run for President of the U.S., they better realize they'll be losers!
    America does not need a hawk, we need someone who can reunite the country and reunite this country with the rest of the world!

    February 7, 2008 at 4:03 pm |
  113. Jennifer

    Absolutely the Republicans have an advantage. They have an extra 6 months, potentially, to get out a unified message–both for their party and against the Democarats' eventual nominee. I realize that the delegate allocation procedure was changed in the late 80's to protect "minority rights" but it doesn't work, because it doesn't allow for the unity that the Republicans can muster. Being a minority myself, I want my views heard and respected, but I also want my party to win. We can't do that as long as we stay in a dogfight for 6 months while the Republicans plot strategy. As a party, the Democrats need to stop trying to be everything to everybody by catering to small, individual consituencies within the party. They must come up with a unified message behind a candidate they pick early on in the process. If that means returning to "winner take all" delegate allocation, so be it. We won't have a chance to win as long as we have these internecine fights while the Republicans get their propaganda machine going against us.

    February 7, 2008 at 4:04 pm |
  114. Tim in California

    I think the opposite is true. This competition between Democratic titans will continue to garner more press coverage than John McCain's campaign receives until, finally, a nominee surfaces. That coverage will continue to highlight the differences between these two parties, and given the current political climate in America, this will work in the Democrats' favor.

    February 7, 2008 at 4:04 pm |
  115. Janel, St. Paul, MN

    Obviously, McCain will be the candidate, but I think it is sad that the Republicans won't have a choice.

    If Hillary wins, McCain has a good chance to win the presidency because too many in the Democratic party don't like or trust her. Even many Independents are leery of her leadership.

    However, if Senator Obama receives the nomination, I doubt McCain will win the presidency.

    There is some HOPE for our country!!

    February 7, 2008 at 4:05 pm |
  116. Don Hyde

    John Edwards could have beat any Republican by 10 points. Once again the Dems have taken an election given to them on a gold platter. I couldn't believe when they lost in 2000 and again 2004. I am sad to say it will take an act of God to get a women or a black man in the white house in 2008. Once again its all over but the shouting.

    February 7, 2008 at 4:05 pm |
  117. Theresa

    No Jack. John McCain's speech today sounded like Bush in his 70s, and his insistance upon referring to the democratic party as the democrat party makes him appear stupid and mean....but I digress, he sounded like Bush in his 70s. We need a president who represents all of us not part.

    February 7, 2008 at 4:05 pm |
  118. Renee

    Yes the Republicans will have an advantage if the Democrats continue to battle it out for too long. It is obvious that the Democrats are uniting as a party, and could be virtually unstoppable in the General Election. However, the more time that McCain can smooth over things with his party, the more likely it will be that his party will warm up to him. McCain really needs this time to connect to his party, while the democrats continue the delegate tug o' war. If the dems don't pick someone soon, they are digging their own grave.

    February 7, 2008 at 4:05 pm |
  119. Arlean Guerrero

    I think the democrats will win with either candidate but they will only have a huge majority with Obama, the movement candidate.

    We are all pretty sick and tired of the establishment, particularly the republicans but Reid and Pelosi haven't been making any friends either.

    The country needs a huge democratic victory to end the war, save the economy, provide health care and educational programs. We need a president who has the people at his back, the bully pulpit and a cudgel in his hand. .

    February 7, 2008 at 4:06 pm |
  120. Brad, Annapolis MD

    It gives an advantage in terms of being able to focus on the November election versus the primaries. I'm a conservative independent, and now that McCain is the nominee, I will almost certainly vote Republican. The stars are aligning for the Republican party to defy all of the obvious historical trends that point towards a Democratic president next year. McCain is the only Republican that can win, because he has what Bush doesn't: honesty. It seems that this will be a horse race down to the end.

    February 7, 2008 at 4:06 pm |
  121. Dave

    Do they have an advantage over the Democrats? Only if Hillary is on the ticket!!! She motivates the Republican base like no other. The Republicans could nominate anyone they want and they'd win if the Democrats are stupid enough to nominate her. But if Obama is the nominee ... Obama beats McCain easily. Odd that Hillary supporters can't see the forest through the trees ... their candidate is unelectable in the general election.

    February 7, 2008 at 4:06 pm |
  122. Leigh Anne Harris

    To those who think that John McCain is another George Bush, let me ask you- what is Bush's opinion of him? How do the ne-cons feel about him? If he's another W., why do the most conservative right-wingers dislike him so intensely? He is the only Republican candidate who can reach across party boundaries to get things done. We need a more moderate Republican to turn things around, and he is just the ticket.

    February 7, 2008 at 4:06 pm |
  123. Daniel From Tempe AZ

    No advantage to the GOP, the current administration has taken that advantage and tossed it out for many years to come. Do we really want more of what we currently have?

    February 7, 2008 at 4:06 pm |
  124. John Hurley

    With McCain as their nominee, the GOP's chances of winning in November have become vastly improved, as McCain is a true moderate who will likely attract many Democrats not satisfied with either Clinton or Obama. I know several Democrats who've stated plainly that if Clinton is the nominee, then they'll vote for McCain. The media speaks of the hostility of the core GOP against McCain, but perhaps someone needs to speak to the hostility of Democrats towards the unenviable promise of another Clinton presidency (and an inferior one at that, compared to the first time around).

    In my view, McCain is poised to capture the White House and the Democrats will (as typical) shoot themselves in the foot and miss opportunities to prevail. Obama would be a better competitor against McCain than Clinton, but I don't believe his idealism and lack of experience will carry him nationally (JFK he is not).

    February 7, 2008 at 4:06 pm |
  125. Hendricks

    John McCain is a dead candidate just like Kerry was in '04.

    February 7, 2008 at 4:06 pm |
  126. Steve

    It's not a matter of advantage, Jack, It's a matter of competency. If John McCain, who talks of another 100 years in Iraq , wins in November the Democrats will have shown their total lack of it .

    February 7, 2008 at 4:06 pm |
  127. Ann, Newton, New Jersey

    Absolutely not! John Mc Cain can talk all he wants about being a Conservative, but his past shows how Liberal he really is. People do not forget his stand on the war, amnesty and now his "no show" to pass the tax reform bill. Why should he care what Bush would think if he voted for the bill? Same old suit, different body.

    February 7, 2008 at 4:07 pm |
  128. Ryan

    I think the Rep. do indeed have an advantage here. Many people are assuming that the Dem. will win the race for the white house, but if they can't get their act together until Augst, then McCain does have an advantage, because the whole party (will eventually) back him, whie Dem. members will be confused right up until election day as to who to vote for. And, McCain being as "liberal" as he is, could take a few independents for himself, if he has the time to solitify his domanance in the presidential campaign.

    February 7, 2008 at 4:07 pm |
  129. Martin, Michigan

    Of course the GOP has an advantage, they are now free to consolidate votes in a unified stance and use the democrat's division against them.

    This means someone on the democratic side must withdraw soon. That would be Obama. He lost the big states, lost latino states, and won states that will likely not turn blue in November.

    McCain would eat him for breakfast, even in traditionally blue states.

    February 7, 2008 at 4:07 pm |
  130. IT from Texas

    With Romney leaving the race, the presidential baton has already been handed over to Democrats.Now the question now is who is gonna be our next president Hillary or Obama???

    February 7, 2008 at 4:07 pm |
  131. Harry

    It doesn't matter, bush has destroyed the republican party in so many ways. It could take thye republicans several years to so any progress after what this administration has domestically and around the world

    February 7, 2008 at 4:07 pm |
  132. Ron Russell from SF

    Even with the millstone of George Bush around their necks, I think the Republicans are in the drivers seat. The Obama and Clinton fight has already alienated the supporters of the other. I resent his statement that Hillary's voters would cross over for him, but the reverse isn't true. Because he would take his marbles and go home if he looses, I can't support him–for the good of the country. We've endured 7 years of 1 spoiled brat and this country can't stand another, even if that means enduring another Republican president.

    February 7, 2008 at 4:07 pm |
  133. carrie from CO

    As usual – the republicans and McCain are imprinting the brains of their base. "You are united, now we will destroy democrats, I really am conservative, I won't raise taxes, I will bring back Ronald Reagan..." Unfortunately this year the mindless republican base can't hold off the force of the rest of us who subscribe to reason. Democrats, independants and even some republicans do not just want change – we are inspired to turn our country around and will leave the herds of republican sheep wandering the fields looking for another shepard.

    February 7, 2008 at 4:07 pm |
  134. H Stout

    Absolutely the Republicans have an edge. Not only can they begin to strategize against the Democrats, everyone in the remaining states is spared the inevitable negative advertising against McCain and subjected to it against both Clinton and Obama. Every negative advertisement the Democrats run against each other helps McCain and the Republicans in the long run. Since McCain has emerged as the candidate, the focus can be on uniting the party and he can talk about the principles of conservatives without necessarily courting the religious right so much, which will be helpful in the general election as well. The only thing a protracted Democratic race does is help the Republicans.

    February 7, 2008 at 4:07 pm |
  135. Karl in CA

    The Democrats have it won regardless of who runs and they know it. On the other hand, the Retardlicans are preoccupied with who is the most conservative, as if anyone with a brain really cares, and actually think they can elect someone who mimics George Bush and wants another 100 Year War. How pathetic can you get?

    February 7, 2008 at 4:08 pm |
  136. Cale Forty(D)

    No they don't. This isn't coming from a biased Democrat view, but the republicans just aren't recieving the turnout that the Democrats are. We are ready for change and we will get it. I have to say this is probably one of the least complex questions you've raised.

    February 7, 2008 at 4:08 pm |
  137. wizoz

    McCain is a real threat to the Democratic candidate. Everyone counted him out, and he won the Republican nomination. McCain reaches independents and disaffected Democrats. The consevative facists will hold their noses and vote for him. McCain is right on Immigration, Campaign Reform, the Deficit, Torture, and rejects the Bush/Rumsfeld Doctrine.

    February 7, 2008 at 4:08 pm |
  138. Joyce

    I agree with poster named Brett Milam – GOP lost this race even before it began. People are looking forward to ending Bush's term along with the Republican party. After Bush, there can never be a GOP candidate good enough to take the white house after Bush.

    February 7, 2008 at 4:08 pm |
  139. Dennis, Dallas, Texas

    I think it gives them a slight edge only in that they can refine their message. However, the Democrats will be running a candidate against the "established party" that has an unpopular sitting President. Whomever the Democrats nominate will be seen as a true change from Bush, while McCain will be portrayed as the next Bush. Despite the posturing between Clinton and Obama's supporters, the vast majority of Democrats will unite behind their candidate for the general election in November.

    February 7, 2008 at 4:08 pm |
  140. Ethan

    No, the Democrats will be garnering much more free media time and publicity as their campaign between two compelling candidates continues and McCain sits and waits. Another thing...how democratic are these winner take all primaries and why don't we have a system in place where one person's vote counts for one vote instead of the current shambles the primaries are in?

    February 7, 2008 at 4:08 pm |
  141. Robert

    With 75% of Americans against the "war" in Iraq, no pro-war Republican like McCain or Huckabee can win against the Democrats. The only Republican who could win against the Democrats is Congressman Ron Paul; Ron Paul will get us out of Iraq and other foreign entanglements faster than Clinton or Obama.

    February 7, 2008 at 4:08 pm |
  142. nancy potts

    The republicans do not have what it takes to beat Hillary or Obama. The question will be..do we want more of the same Bush policy's or do we want a real change? It will take years to dig us out of the hole we are in now. Only a democrat can do that, and start us on the road to recovery..

    February 7, 2008 at 4:08 pm |
  143. Webb

    Of course the Republicans have an advantage they are no doubt starting to prepare their attack strategy for Barack and Hillary and they will be ready no matter which is nominated.However if we had a fair and unbiased press and not given so many Barack free passes the democrats too would have a clear frontrunner in Hillary If you hate liberals you should abhore this Guy.At least with Hillery you get a touch of moderation. Webb/Lacarne Oh

    February 7, 2008 at 4:09 pm |
  144. Sonoradweller

    Yes, the Republicans have a head start because McCain needs to convince the party's conservatives that he is acceptable to them. If he fails, they will sit on their hands and the Democratic Nominee will win in November. If he spends months trying to do this, he will alienate the moderates, independents, and Democrats who would normally want to vote for him because he is just as acceptable to them. In that case, then they would not vote for him in November and he will lose to the Democratic Nominee. So, he has to get the conservatives to accept who he is quickly and not appear to be pandering. In fact, he IS acceptable both to conservatives and to the moderates and centrists in both parties because he is such an independent thinker. This is what makes him the Republican version – dare I say – of Obama, a UNIFIER. He is perfectly acceptable to a lot of different groups of people. AND, he does want to clean up Washington. Eliminate pork, run out the lobbyists, and make government run efficiently. He wants a green policy to help our economy, our industry, and our society. Who disagrees with that?

    February 7, 2008 at 4:09 pm |
  145. faboo

    Not really...Now, Clinton can mimic Obama's actions, like she always does and finally start running against McCain. Sen. Obama has already started running against McCain as of two weeks ago. Hey, maybe Clinton can get McCain to agree to debate her so she can get some free publicity going.

    February 7, 2008 at 4:09 pm |
  146. Fernando

    The Bush administration has single handily damaged the GOP for years to come. Plus everyone knows while a lot of the Republicans where trying to distance themselves from Bush, McCain was 100% behind Bush. This obviously will be his down fall in November.

    February 7, 2008 at 4:10 pm |
  147. Bruce St Paul MN

    My father was a lifetime Republican. During the Bush Sr years, we found it harder to identify with the party. I think the same thing has happened to many conservatives during the last decade who see the Republicans as the party of Delay, Ambrimoff, Bush, Cheney, Wolfowitz, etc. The self-serving policies, the constant deception (Iraq, senior prescription benefits, the tax cut, torture, spying)
    have left the faithful in a disillusioned state. Now add McCain, academically below average, intillectually unimpressive, stubborn. Sound familiar?
    I think his early ascension only makes him a clear target for both Democratic candidates along with Mr. Bush. Conversely, McCain can't focus on a particular opponent, since he doesn't know which one will prevail.
    If the Dems stick to their chorus of change, change, change, McCAin will be the perfect foil.

    February 7, 2008 at 4:10 pm |
  148. KB

    No advantage. With either Democratic candidate being the nominee. Especially if they get together and run on the same ticket. I don't think its fair to say "only if Hillary is nominee" or "Only if Obama is nominee", that's short sighted and divisive. I think either of them would appeal simply because most people want out of the war and want to improve America's global image.

    February 7, 2008 at 4:10 pm |
  149. Ron SD CA

    Hi Jack:

    No there is no advantage.

    Ron K. San Diego

    February 7, 2008 at 4:10 pm |
  150. Matt Estell

    Hi Jack,

    Yes! Absolutely the Republicans have a huge advantage in the General Election . . . if Hillary Clinton gets the democratic nomination. McCain swings plenty of independents and, the Republicans will certainly support him just to stop the Clintons from moving back in to the White House.

    Matt Estell – Littleton, CO

    February 7, 2008 at 4:10 pm |
  151. Chris Conley

    As long as the Republicans continue to push War and Debt, they will lose. I would just like to see them go fight in Iraq. Oh yea, that's for the poor.

    February 7, 2008 at 4:10 pm |
  152. George; Wilmington, NC

    McCain could win, but he'd be better off with Romney now at VP, I think. Charismatic more than McCain.
    Bigger job winning if running against Obama, easier if running against Clintons, because that duality of the Clintons will be their downfall

    February 7, 2008 at 4:10 pm |
  153. Micahel Guinn, Ventura, CA

    The GOP is in complete disarray! They are NOT and will NOT unify because the amount of hate the ultra right has for moderation is way past party lines. They have made it clear that they either won't vote or will vote for the Democratic nominee to "bring Republicans back to their senses".
    I am an avid Obama supporter, and won't miss Mitt at all. The time has come for REAL CHANGE- he said he offered that, but we know that he just meant a change to the extreme right.
    Our time has come! No advantage to Republicans at all!

    February 7, 2008 at 4:10 pm |
  154. Curt W

    Actually I think this works to the Republican's disadvantage as they will disappear from the news while the Democrats monpolize. As long as Hillary and Obama keep it above board, they will continue to bring energy to the Democrats throughout the entire country while the Republicans disappear from view. Except for the politicians, no one right now is focused on November.

    February 7, 2008 at 4:11 pm |
  155. Jeff in Connecticut

    One would think so Jack, but for the plain fact of all the lies, deception & pain the G.O.P. put our nation through in the last 7 years, I don't see much of a contest come November. Gen. Petraeus himself forecasts that the Republican's plans for Iraq will end up costing $1.6 trillion. That's TRILLION, not billion. Do you honestly think any intelligent American will vote for that?

    February 7, 2008 at 4:11 pm |
  156. craig

    No chance. I can't believe he did as well as he did. Now you have a front runner in support of a war that doesn't sit well with over half the population. He may be the front runner but all thats doing is securing a loss for the republican party. If the republicans really want to win the white house McCain is not the answer. I have listened to all debates and am astonished at the lack of votes for Ron Paul, someone who actually says something that is believable and would have policies that would unite a congress and country. But the lack of coverage by the networks of Paul must mean he's not their man.

    February 7, 2008 at 4:11 pm |
  157. David Navas

    And if the Democrats continue to hold debates where they spend all their time defining themselves against McCain, rather than each other? Doesn't seem like that's money wasted come November.

    February 7, 2008 at 4:11 pm |
  158. Sarah L.

    The real advantage may ultimately be for Obama. The Democrats now know who they have to beat. In the upcoming primaries and caucuses, the Democrats will have to look to the candidate that can rival John McCain's appeal to independants. That candidate is certainly not Hillary Clinton.

    February 7, 2008 at 4:12 pm |