Thursday, February 7, 2008

McCain and "independent" candidates

In this election-- given the discontent with the major political parties and given the "flawed" choices on the Republican side-- there has always been a relatively high probability of an independent candidate or two. With the probable choice of McCain (vs. Obama or Clinton), we can now speculate more specifically about the possibility of third-party candidates.

In particular, there is an increased likelihood of a candidate (or two) who wants to end the War in Iraq and is strongly opposed to illegal immigration (or more broadly, to immigration). But there would now seem to be a lower probability of a centrist/"third-way" candidate.

To name names, a candidate like Michael Bloomberg now seems less likely. But candidates like Lou Dobbs or Tom Tancredo-- and Ralph Nader or another anti-war type-- are more likely. In addition to his appeal among Libertarians, if Ron Paul decides to run as that party's nominee, he might bridge either or both the immigration and anti-War groups. But he might not be strong enough in his rhetoric for the Dobbs crowd-- and to either group, his emphasis on limited, constitutional government might be prohibitively painful for most anti-War types to support.

Finally, from the perspective of a "third-party" Congressional candidate, more dissatisfaction with the major parties and their presidential nominees-- and the presence of independent candidates-- are both at least a small benefit to my campaign.


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