Monday, January 28, 2013

Democratic Presidential Power Rankings

I'll confess that I have been making a glaring mistake in conducting these Presidential power rankings.  I hate making these types of mistakes and it has been gnawing at me, a bit.  This mistake has been that I have been ignoring Elizabeth Warren's age while moving her to the top of the list.  Warren is just two years younger than Hillary Clinton.  Biden is much older than both.  But, oh well.  I have to weigh these various considerations when making these power rankings.  So, we'll lead off with a surprise at the top spot. 

1. Chris Christie- Yes.  I know that Christie is a Republican.  But Christie is becoming closer to buddy-buddy Barack Obama at this point.  Christie came out and yelled at the NRA about their advertisement trying to politicize Obama's children.  Christie's favorability, measured by Public Policy Polling, has gone up 3 points from the last poll.  Christie's favorability is growing, almost completely, because of Democrats.  His favorability among Democrats has gone up 10 points while his favorability among Republican has gone down 9 points.  His favorability among Independents has gone up by 6 points.  Christie's message and his political beliefs are closer to the Republican party than the Democratic party.  But Christie, if he has Presidential aspirations, which by most accounts, he does, it might work out best for him to run as a Democrat.  I remain slightly unconvinced that Christie would run as a Democrat.  I think it is much more likely that Christie runs as a 3rd party candidate.

2. Elizabeth Warren- The Democratic party doesn't have a whole bunch of capable and experienced young candidates out there.  They have young superstar candidates who are not quite experienced enough to make a run as President.  I'm not saying Elizabeth Warren is young enough or experienced enough to be a real challenger here but I think she shows up for the debates.  Her favorability, overall, has gone up by 5 points.  Her favorability among Democrats has gone up by 8 points.  Warren's popularity is likely to grow.  She seems like she'll be tougher on Wall Street, which is what a number of liberals want to see.  I say seems because we'll see how she actually acts as opposed to just writing about it.  In 2016, Warren will be 66 which makes her older than most first-term candidates are.

3. Hillary Clinton- I still see it as very unlikely that Clinton will run but she still seems to be the popular choice among many pundits out there.  I've waved her off in the past, mainly due to age, health concerns, and her own statements.  Clinton's popularity has been falling.  She fell 3 points overall since we last checked in on her.  Her unfavorability among Democrats went up by 4 points.  This makes her less favorable.  It's likely that since she finally testified on Benghazi her favorability won't slide anymore.  But who knows for sure?  Her health concerns might also be driving down her favorability, as well.

4. Joe Biden- He seemed to relish his role of negotiator in all of the gun control talks.  He was also a mediator in a lot of the discussions. This might impact his favorability going forward.  We do not have the numbers on his favorability since then.  But before then, his favorability only moderately increased by 2 points.  Biden is likely too old to be a serious contender for the Democratic presidential candidate.  But, we'll see how it goes.  Biden is getting better with age and less gaffe-filled.

5. Corey Booker- Booker is probably too inexperienced to be a serious candidate.  Booker has not been in an elected position among mayor, at this point.  But Booker is likely to run for the New Jersey Senate seat in 2014.  If Booker gets elected in 2014, he might have just enough experience to throw his hat in the ring, too. 

6. Mark Warner- Warner is slightly getting more popular.  Well, at least more favorable.  His favorability has increased by 3 points.  Among Democrats, Warner has increased his favorability among Democrats by 7 points.  His name recognition needs to greatly increase if he wants a true shot of running for President.

7. Andrew Cuomo- Cuomo's favorability has increased by 3 points.  But his favorability and unfavorability has also increased among Democrats.  That is likely to change after his conversations about making New York's gun laws even more strict.  Cuomo is likely to become more popular among Democrats but since those numbers are not out, we're relying on these ones.

8. Julian and Joaquin Castro- I'm just lumping them together.  I think it would be cool to have twins try to run for the Presidency at the same time.  Joaquin is a Congressman right now and Julian is the mayor of San Antonio.  Julian is the one who received all of the attention after the DNC but because Joaquin will have a little more experience, he might be more likely to run in 2016.  But a lot can change in 3 years.

9. Deval Patrick- current governor of Massachusetts, the best thing that you can say about him is that nobody knows who he is.  His favorability has increased by 1 point but nearly 3/4 of people don't have a favorable or unfavorable opinion of him.  So, if more people get to know him, perhaps he'll be able to mount a serious run in 2016.

10. Martin O'Malley- Oh. Another governor.  His favorability increased by 3 points while his unfavorability has decreased by 4 points.  O'Malley has the same problem that Patrick does in that most people don't know who he is.  O'Malley's only shot is to increase the number of people who know who he is.  I wouldn't be surprised if O'Malley runs but he will need a lot of help to get there.

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