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The Democratic Strategist

Political Strategy for a Permanent Democratic Majority

Oh That Wes Clark Is So Dreamy!

Especially if your dream is beating George W. Bush in November, 2004. Too bad he didn’t give a better announcement speech, but presumably this is something he can work on.
As Clark starts his campaign, here are some things to watch out for. Report back to DR when you have the answers to all questions.

  • money: how much and how fast?
  • campaign staff: which ones and how good?
  • the press: will he be comfortable with them or have an adversary relationship?
  • domestic policy positions: can he develop credible ones fast?
  • bigfoot Democrats: how many and how important?
  • blacks: is Charlie Rangel really with him and who else?
  • unions: will McEntee back him and are there any others?
  • Dean supporters: will nervous Dean supporters head for Clark as the electable alternative?
  • Kerry supporters: will unenthusiastic Kerry supporters (are there any other kind?) desert his sinking ship for Clark?
  • undecideds: can Clark convince them he’s the guy to beat Bush?

Useful reading on the Clark question: David Greenberg’s piece in Slate on “how generals get elected president“. Greenberg’s bottom line: “[Clark] has mastered the two historical requirements: He doesn’t act as if he needs the job, and he doesn’t act as if he wants war.”