by Jonathan Bernstein

...how about a round of 2012 talk? 

OK, full disclosure: I was trying to figure out a reasonable way to fit in a plug for the excellent reporter and brother David S. Bernstein, when suddenly Jonathan Chait linked to a published list of odds for winning the presidency in 2012.  David, who reports and blogs for the Boston Phoenix, just released his regularly scheduled prognostication on the GOP field...he thinks Tim Pawlenty is in the lead.  Why should you listen to him?  Well, in the dark depths of John McCain 's campaign collapse in 2007, he called the nomination for McCain.  Not bad!

Anyway, the lists are fun to look at (I agree with Chait, though...what are John Edwards and Arnold Schwarzenegger doing at less than a million to one?).  My contribution here is just to say that no one has ever lost money betting against Members of the House or Mayors of New York winning presidential nominations, so I would seriously downgrade people from both of those categories when they occur on either list (Mike Pence?  Really?).   Oh, and if anyone tries to sell you on the idea that a pro-choice candidate can win the Republican nomination, just laugh her.  It's not going to happen.  As we get closer, it will be interesting to see if a vote for TARP is going to be a big problem for those who were in Congress in fall 2008 and supported their party and President Bush, who as you may recall was a Republican.  We'll see.  I can say that the current GOP Members of Congress are trying pretty hard to avoid casting any vote that could ever come close to hurting them in a Republican primary for anything.

Also, I liked this:

East Coast urban sophisticates saw Pawlenty’s CPAC speech as uninspiring. I saw it as perfect for Iowa. Hey, you know who else was no good at delivering a slick, rousing, barn-burner of a stump speech? Every Republican Presidential nominee of the last quarter-century, that’s who.

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