A Presidential election is 2 questions;
A) Does the incumbent deserve reelection?
If not, is the challenger a viable alternative?
Kerry and his team were actualy making inroads in convincing America that the answer to question “A” was no. In doing so, he put himself in position to convince America, at his convention, that he had a compelling vision that made him more than simply the “anti-Bush”. Clinton did this convincingly in 1992 and it was [i:2e6gp40c]lights out[/i:2e6gp40c].
However, Kerry’s convention was a disaster and he became the only guy in the 50 year history of the Gallup poll to emerge weaker than when he entered the convention.
Kerry’s best strategy would have been to reuse the Clinton “It’s the economy, stupid” tact and talk down a rather good economy.
Instead, Kerry chose to attempt to shore up his perceived weakness on National security by beating the “I served in Vietnam” drum.
The strategy backfired huge. After weeks of attacks from Veterens who served alongside Kerry and called his credentials into question, he opened the door to the central part of the debate being shifted towards “who will best defend us?”
In his pathetic response to the swifties, Kerry actualy enhanced Bush’s advantage on the issue. Seeing the opening, the Republicans took full advantage during their convention.
Now, today, as we look back 3 years to that awful day, the dynamic of the election has centered to 2 different questions;
A) are we still in Danger?
If so, who can best defend us?
All polls indicate that Bush is creaming Kerry on this question and, thus,
5 National polls show Bush with at least a 7 point National lead.
I do not believe Kerry can recover with a scant 50 odd days left.