Saturday, January 12, 2008
Good Times, Bad Times
I almost wrote about this last night, but it's obvious that the economy is beginning to take a more prominent role in the national zeitgeist. In the context of the presidential campaign, it's interesting for two reasons. First, the lengthened format of the primary campaign runs the risk of emphasizing positions at the outset that have less impact when it comes time to cast ballots. In January 2006, when everyone was announcing their candidacies, the war in Iraq was clearly the main issue on people's minds. With the recent decrease in violence, that's likely to give way to growing anxiety over the economy.
Second, and at the risk of stating the obvious, this can only benefit Hillary Clinton's candidacy. To begin with, of the three candidates, she's the one with the most vulnerable position among Democratic voters adamantly opposed to the war. But more than that, whether it's warranted or not, economic prosperity is a fundamental component of the Clinton brand identity. This is one issue where people would find a repeat of the 90's not at all unwelcome.