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December 16, 2003

How Can Democrats Win The Presidency?

Mike Kuster

The current crop of Democratic candidates in the presidential primary totals nine! Thatís a lot of candidates.

Yet, with a wealth of choice, is there a viable choice for the Democratic Party to put up against George W. Bush?

I wonít tell you who I think can do it, but there are a few.

The problem for these candidates is their message.

Democrats cannot win the White House with their current anti-war message. Two candidates started out with this message. One has made it THE message with his apparent success in polls.

Polls in a primary race, however, mean squat when it comes down to the election that matters. The candidate most appealing to those party faithful (usually most extreme in their views, who vote in the Primary Election) may not be the most appealing to the overall population.

Duh! That is why so many do not vote in the Primary Election. They have no ownership in the party, and really donít understand the process. They hear one candidate is ahead in the polls and assume that is the winner.

The Democratic Party needs to look at this as if this is a football game.

Okay. Maybe thatís too violent for some of these people.

Weíll look at it as a game of chess.

When playing chess, the goal is to kill the king. There are many battles along the way. Some are won and some are lost. The key battle is when you get down to the last pieces.

The primary race decides what piece will be left to take on the king. The queen may be the piece we want. She can move in any direction and any amount of spaces, but she may not be the piece that is needed.

So, the left-wingers may want an anti-war candidate, but that is definitely not what will win the battle against the king, or president in this case.

The country is not anti-war. The majority of people in this country are scared to death of terrorism and attacks against our country. They want protection.

Any candidate, who opposes the war and actions taken against Iraq, is asking to lose the election. They fail to recognize lingering effects of 9/11, the anthrax attack, and every attack and attempted attack since.

Americans do not give a ratís behind about the U.N. or France or Germany. They want to be sure that this world is safe for everyone.

Maybe France and Germany are willing to put up with suicide bombings, suicide airliners, and biological terrorism to avoid war.

Americans are not.

This country exists because Americans do not back down in the face of adversity. We donít roll over and play dead.

I am not saying donít question the need to enter Iraq. Nor do I propose that candidates should not take Mr. Bush to task for not finishing the job in Afghanistan.

I am saying that the war on terror will take us to places that are not comfortable or popular.

The fact of the matter is that Saddam Hussein was sending money to terrorists. He used the money of the Iraqi people to reward suicide bombers for killing Israelis.

If we are serious about ending the threat of terrorism, we must be willing to end the regimes of dictators and theocracies that sponsor terrorism. We must be willing to fight for our freedom and safety. Most importantly, we must be willing to fight for the freedom and safety of the world. Allowing terrorism in one part of the world will only allow it to spread, as it has.

With the capture of Saddam Hussein last weekend, the world is a much safer place. This cannot be disputed. Those who supported entering Iraq can put a feather in their cap.

Letís not forget that George W. Bush is doing exactly what he said he would not do. He vehemently opposed nation building. The war on terror cannot be won without nation building. After disposing of a corrupt and dangerous regime, a country must have the assistance of the United States and hopefully the United Nations, in building a free and just society based on the democratic principles of all freedom-loving nations.

The Democratic candidate(s) pushing for a continued presence in Iraq, more troops in the mountains of Afghanistan and Pakistan, and pursuing terrorists anywhere they hide will have a real chance of winning the 2004 General Election.

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