The Corner

More 2008

A friend emailed me about the same article, disputing my take on the senators who would be president. He writes, “I disagree with you re Frist in 2008. Not that he’s the best candidate in the world or that he would win a hotly contested primary, but I think his not having been governor does not hurt him as much as it would hurt most others. What voters like is someone who is practiced at making binary decisions: up or down on particular issues, yes or no. That’s why they favor governors over senators. Frist may get a pass on this because of his background as a heart surgeon…talk about binary decisions, he’s had to make a million of them. I also disagree about Hagel. In 2008 he will have all parts of the (remaining) liberal media at his feet, like McCain, but against a

conservative voting bloc that is less likely to have coalesced around a

leading ‘alternative.’ The media will play Hagel up as a populist and many

grass-roots voters who usually vote conservative will be attracted to that

plus his military credentials. He would probably lose but poses a major

danger if he gets in.”

Ramesh Ponnuru is a senior editor for National Review, a columnist for Bloomberg Opinion, a visiting fellow at the American Enterprise Institute, and a senior fellow at the National Review Institute.

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