Monday, January 5, 2009

James Carville Psychic? Richardson Chucks Chance at Commerce Sec'y Slot

A little bird told me through email yesterday morning that Bill Richardson withdrew his name as Commerce Secretary in President-elect Barack Obama's Cabinet. The New Mexico governor may have a pay-to-play skeleton in his closet. CNN fills in the gaps on the Richardson flap here.

With Richardson falling, I'm led to ask, "How many more Dems will tumble down the hill or just how psychic is James Carville, the Democratic strategist and CNN contributor? Is he really good at seeing political futures or did he also get a visit from a little bird?"

I read Carville's post at Anderson Cooper's 360 Blog last week in which he predicted ill winds coming for the Dems:
In domestic politics, my first prediction is one that pains me to make, but I'll make it anyway.

The Democratic Party has had a recent run of corruption and sex scandals. Mathematicians say that there are no such things as streaks and that the last event has nothing to do with the next. The only people who disagree are crapshooters and political operatives. Since I am both, I firmly believe that there are streaks and that political scandals happen in clusters.

The Republican Party had its fair share of scandal and charges of deeply imbedded corruption preceding the 2006 election and leading up to the 2008 elections. More: Politicians who fell from grace

It doesn't hurt to point out that these types of things are also more likely to harm the party in the majority -- Republicans had more elected politicians (315 Republican officeholders in House, Senate, and state governorships) leading up to 2006.

With two big Democratic elections in a row, Democrats now hold a larger majority -- 340 U.S. representatives, senators and governors. Simple math and history point to the fact that the more elected officials a party has in office, the more likely its politicians will get caught up in some sort of scandal.

The current streak, however removed from President-elect Barack Obama, doesn't bode well for Democrats in 2009. (Carville)
First the Blagojevich mess, now this. Obama may need to take dips in a Teflon pool each night to keep dirt from sticking. No wonder his employee hopefuls must fill out the application from hell.

Here's video with more on Richardson's withdrawal.



Updated 11:39 AM: NPR promises more on the Bill Richardson story at 3:00 P.M. today.

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