Pamela mentions that the mainstream media has concentrated on Kerry’s comments on running in 2008 as a headline following his appearance today on Meet the Press. It comes as no surprise that the media concentrates on the horse race. While Iraq is the more important news, it is important to get out the message that Kerry learned from the 2004 race.
Some call for a fresh face, but cleaning up the mess George Bush will leave takes someone with experience in government. Despite the shambles Bush has made of the GOP, we can also anticipate that they will ultimately unite behind a strong candidate, backed by a strong network of supporters. Going with someone inexperienced in national races is a mistake unless we should find a candidate who is as naturally skilled a campaigner as Bill Clinton or Ronald Reagan and qualified for the position. It takes this experience to successfully go up against the Republican Noise Machine, and perhaps to have the ability to shake free of the advice of the professional Democratic strategists who have not performed too well.
Looking purely at electability, Democrats should concentrate on candidates with this national campaign experience. The Democrats have a number of potential candidates who have gone through this. John Kerry and Al Gore have both experienced this first hand, while Hillary Clinton and John Edwards also gained valuable experience as first lady and Vice Presidential candidate respectively. For a variety of reasons, including their early opposition to the war and degree of experience, Kerry and Gore would be preferable to the others in this group. As long as Al Gore says he does not plan to run, this leaves John Kerry as the obvious leader.