Polls, Debates, and Biden

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The last time we heard from Hillary Clinton, she was saying that her Democratic rivals were attacking her not because she was a woman but because she was the front runner, and adding that the attacks were "right out of the Republican play book." Yesterday she went after Barack Obama on the issue of experience, saying, "Voters will have to judge if living in a foreign country at the age of 10 prepares one to face the big, complex international challenges the next president will face." Maybe her attack on Obama is based on the fact that he is the front runner? At least in Iowa. The latest Washington Post-ABC News poll has Obama leading in the crucial first caucus state with 30% of likely Democratic caucus-goers, compared to 26% for Clinton and 22% for John Edwards, who finished a close second in Iowa in 2004. Obama, responding to Clinton's jab about experience, said, "I was wondering which world leader told her that we needed to invade Iraq."

Speaking of Iowa, we're going to hear from Sen. Joe Biden, who is trailing in the polls there, but who seems to be quoted approvingly by his Democratic rivals in many of the debates. Also joining us is Paul Kirk, the co-chair of the Commission on Presidential Debates, which released its 2008 general election debate schedule this week.

Also on the super-sized Junkie show (as opposed to the Junkie column): the Virginia Senate race gets a new candidate ... Scott McClellan spills the beans on the Administration's role in the Valerie Plame outing ... and a new political trivia question.



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Mr. Biden, as young voters in the very early 70's we attended a coffee klatch at a home in Claymont, DE and met you as you ran for the US Senate. We have followed your career and have admired your dedicated and informed work on our nation's behalf. I am angry, however, that you do not receive the same attention on the debate trail as do the seemingly media annointed front runners. You deserve better and would like to know how might achieve this. You have answers!

Sent by Patricia Harrington | 2:31 PM | 11-21-2007

With all the questions about who is most qualified/experienced, etc., I'd love to see a big table in some newspaper or website of each candidate's experience in different categories.

Sent by Amy | 2:33 PM | 11-21-2007

Hilary does not have experience in a presidential role. Being first lady does not mean you have experience dealing with world and national matters. It means that you can plan nice dinners in the white house, look put together (sometimes) while you stand next to your husband, the president, have social encounters with other first ladies and plan decorations for the white house while you live in it. Hilary and all the other presidential candidates of the democratic party have said nothing to spark interest from voters. All they do is insult each other on national television and talk about George Bush and how bad they think he is doing. It would be interesting to see what they would have done different if they were in his shoes. Instead of wasting time battling it out they should get serious about national topics like our growing debt with China, homeless and hungry Americans, a failing education system and economic prosperity to include reduction in dependence on other countries for resources.

Sent by Patricia | 2:35 PM | 11-21-2007

Hi just wanted to say that I think calling Barack Obama the "first serious African American candidate" is a little unfair to Jesse Jackson's run in 1988. Jackson was the leading vote-getter on Super Tuesday and went on to beat Dukakis in Illinois and Michigan. I'm a pretty strong supporter of Obama, but I don't think its doing anyone a service to say he's the first serious AA candidate.

Sent by Eric | 2:40 PM | 11-21-2007

Any chance that y'all will find a moment or two during this "super-sized Junkie show" to mention the Cheney impeachment resolution? (You know, the one which was referred to the Judiciary Committee a couple of weeks ago? As far as I can tell, it hasn't been mentioned in the Junkie column either.)

Nah, I didn't think so. Not at all interesting or important, I suppose.

Sent by Brian Lupiani | 2:41 PM | 11-21-2007

Does anyone else question whether being married to a governor/a former president and 1 term in the Senate qualifies Hillary Clinton to be president?

Sent by Michelle in Evanston, IL | 2:46 PM | 11-21-2007

I keep hearing about Hillary's experience as first lady. So, I guess Laura Bush (or Barbara Bush) could run on the Republican ticket? I would add that living outside the U.S. and/or having relatives from another country, actually does give one a unique perspective on how the U.S. is viewed by others.

Sent by Joyce | 2:46 PM | 11-21-2007

I,too, am disappointed by the lack of press coverage given to Mr. Biden. Is it because he is the most qualified, straight-talking contender? In this day and age, media coverage drives election results; why can't he get equal exposure to the "front runners".

Sent by Michael Levin | 3:21 PM | 11-21-2007

Obama is the last thing we need in the White House! Any man who refuses to place his hand over his heart during the National Anthem or say it, doesn't deserve to be in this great nation, and most certainly does not deserve to be commander in chief!

Sent by Bobbie Jo Emmons | 3:45 PM | 11-21-2007

I am so ready to have a President who cares about the American people and can back it up with his experience! Barack Obama started his experience as a community leader, Civil Rights attorney, Law Professor, Illinois State senator and US Senator in fighting for things that are important to me health care, education, jobs, better wages for teachers, a living wage for all people, the Constitution of the United States, fiscal responsibility, international diplomacy and overall progress forward. His experience and wisdom in speaking out against the war in Iraq was just another consistency in his character to make the right decision, even if it isn't popular. He will lead with intelligence and wisdom. I am so ready to have a President who cares about the American people!

Sent by Mara | 4:25 PM | 11-21-2007

So here is how it goes: the early polls show that the country is (gasp!)favoring Hillary Clinton in the presidential race. Suddenly the idea that "The Clinton's" might be in the White House again starts moving from a nagging fear to a real terror. The far left (who never like "The Clinton's" for compromises with Republicans) is horrified and so is the Far Right(who get a facial tic every time they hear the name Clinton).

Enter The Right Wing Media Machine: they who a) are in the business to sell content and b) is owned by people who do NOT want a Democrat to win, especially if it is named Clinton) Now we hear "we need some real fireworks! When are they going to "take the gloves off" and go after Hillary...when, O when???" and when they finally do cave and start a negative campaign against her The Media Machine then gets to report all the negative things both the Dems and the Right are saying about Hillary. Now we have a whole Geek Chorus of Anti-Hillary bashing going on. And when she responds, it is "Oh, look who is slinging mud now".

And when the mudslide finally moves the poll numbers you have The Media trumpeting "Look! Obama is ahead! My God, the earth has moved in Iowa!" And everyone can feel good about themselves: the Lefties who want to feel oh so progressive and the Right Wing who fear above all else the C word. In the meantime what the rest of us get (besides the annoying press and idiot pundits)is the chance that the democrats will, true to form, implode and we will not really get the Regime Change in Washington we so very much need. The Right Wing Media Machine will do whatever it takes to keep its people in power. If the Democrats succumb to the taunting and attack each other, instead of the current Idiots In Power they will be able to watch the monstrosity of anther nut case stealing the election.

Sent by George from Oregon | 4:38 PM | 11-21-2007

Eric makes a fair point. What I should have said is that Obama is the first African-American candidate with a serious shot at the nomination. Jackson indeed made serious runs in '84 and '88, though no one can say that he had a real chance of becoming the nominee.

Sent by Ken Rudin | 5:28 PM | 11-21-2007

We have TWO major parties in this country, not one. Where is your in depth coverage of the Republican race? I am very disappointed in NPR. This just reinforces the left wing bias argument.

Sent by Steve Merchant | 8:11 AM | 11-22-2007

Why does it seem that the News Media is pushing for Obama? It appears to me that maybe the Republicans might be behind this. Maybe they think they have a better chance of beating him next fall than Hillery.

Sent by Harold Reynolds | 10:02 AM | 11-22-2007

Sen. Clinton & Sen. Obama are both merely sound bites of the static due to the political black-hole of the Bush Regime. In that darkness, a female and a Muslim (whose middle name proves he's Muslim) become tiny glimmering stars in such a void.
It's time to come out of the Wanna-Be closet into the daylight of reality. Only one candidate talks real change from the Status Quo Politics. And his name is John Edwards.
Go and Vote for a real Change, Folks.

Sent by Adam Young | 1:27 PM | 11-26-2007

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