The First in the Water Makes an Appearence

Tom Vilsack was on the Daily Show last night, and seemed surprisingly refreshing and down-to-earth. He might not be Obama or even Edwards, but he was far more charismatic than Hillary, Kerry, or even the new-the-world-is-going-to-hell-and-I-told-you-so Al Gore. Compare his demeanor (smooth) and his Iraq policy answer (not smooth).

He spent much of the interview talking about Iraq, and it’s good to see that he visited Iraq and Afghanistan, although he definitely needs to work on his answer. His observation that the Iraqi guards do not realize that they need to keep themselves safe was interesting. His solution seems to be pull out and let the Iraqis deal with the problem…this is not enough because it can be turned around by people meaner than Jon Stewart and say that this is our mess why leave them with the rubble. His answer should probably be that when we give them a timetable AND STICK TO IT, they will be required to fix their security issues. I’m not sure where Vilsack will get hit from (the right or the left) but he does not have an answer yet to why we should let the Iraqis solve a problem we created

Nevertheless, it was interesting to see someone with zero recognition on national television.

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One Response to The First in the Water Makes an Appearence

  1. anoodle says:

    I think he’s your dark horse, even more so than Billy Richardson. He has the ability to make Iowa irrelevant, and he’s got a certain plain spoken/practical way about him that people like. His biggest problem is his lack of foreign policy experience, which may prove to be vital this go around (unlike 2000 when Bush couldn’t name any other foreign leaders in that famous interview).

    The only issue with Vilsack (besides his name– Jon Stewart was great on that one), is his horrendous name recognition. Clinton in 92 wasn’t one of the big boys, but he gave the somewhat infamous convention speech in 88 (the one that dragged on way too long), and he was the president of the NGA for a while. Also, I think things were very different in 92 in terms of the amount of cash that needs to be raised, and the ability for a second tier candidate to build momentum over time. With the front loaded calendar, it’s going to be tough for anyone to do that this go around…..

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