Tuesday, January 09, 2007

Running on Empty?

On December 11, Senator (and 2004 failed Presidential candidate) John Kerry turned 63. He has two years remaining on his current Senate term, which would put him at 65 years old when said term is up. Given the firestorm of criticism over his “botched joke”, it would behoove Kerry to maintain a low profile. That said, I’m sure he would prefer to retire from politics and commence with spending wife Ter-Ay-Zuh’s multi-millions, right?

Wrong. Kerry has recently begun to bolster his Senate and campaign staff in preparation for what some Kerry insiders insist is a likely run for president. Kerry has signed on Erik Smith to serve as a senior adviser to his Senate campaign committee and Vince Morris to be communications director in his Senate office.

Kerry’s task seems much more daunting in 2008 than in 2004 when he merely had to overcome the likes of Howard “Mad How” Dean, Dick Gephardt and John “Breck Girl” Edwards. In ’08, he’ll likely face much more formidable foes in the mode of fellow Democratic senators Hillary Clinton and Barack Obama. Lest we forget, Clinton herself threw Kerry under the bus after his supposed denigration of the military, which he explained away with the aforementioned phrase “botched joke”.

If Kerry does indeed run, he has very polarizing advantages and disadvantages.

While he carries strong name identification and a campaign bank account of more than $10 million, he is also seen as a gaffe-prone, has-been by many party insiders.

In my mind, Jonah Goldberg had the best line of 2006 when describing Kerry’s “gaffe-prone” tendencies.

Kerry is an awful politician, a human toothache with the charisma of a 19th-century Oxford Latin tutor.

Nevertheless, it will be quite the battle for the Democratic nominee in 2008. As Hillary herself has so clearly demonstrated, they’re not afraid to eat their own.

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