And they’re off. It’s Obama on the inside taking the lead. The rest of the large field in this 2012 White House Derby is all bunched up out of the gate. Obama, the morning line favorite, is in front as they head down the very, very, very long front stretch toward the Iowa first turn. He’s followed by Pawlenty along the rail, then Romney and Huckabee. All three will have to move to the right to get around Obama. Next, on the outside, comes Palin and much further out to the right is Bachman. They are followed by Santorum and a few others contenders no one knows the names of. At the back of the pack are Barbour and Gingrich; burdened by carrying the most weight. And bringing up the rear is the entry with the fancy comb over mane, The Trump.
As they settle in for the long, long run to the Iowa turn, it looks like Obama, the entry with the most money going for him, is breezing and not breathing hard. His plan is obviously to stay out in front and away from any drama. The rest of the pack are surely in for some drama and maybe even some trauma as they all try get into position versus their fellow pack mates. It looks like before that first turn there will be some tight in-fighting and perhaps a dirty trick or two that will be played by one or more of the entries in order to eliminate some of the other members in the field.
But all the entries must try and remember that in addition to being a sprint to the Iowa turn, it may also be a long marathon of a race to the final Convention turn. And then after that it will turn into a match race with the leader (of the free world). It will be extremely interesting to see which of the large and unruly starting field will have the unique combination of speed, strength and stamina, along with the famous “fire in the belly”; to mount and sustain a year and a half’s worth of energy and money to carry them all the way to the finish line. And more importantly it will be fascinating to see if any of the field can muster not just the chutzpah, but the popularity to overtake the front running Obama.
Mountains of copy, opinion, analysis and commentary will be written during and after the event takes place. Some of it (probably not too much) will be wise and insightful. Some will be no more than wishful thinking, hoping or dreaming on the part of partisans. Some will just be plain out of the box crazy ranting about what should or shouldn’t be the eventual result. In fact some people will use metaphors that are different from the analogy to a horse race.
Some will use the perennial old chestnut of the football game; with Barack “the Rock” Obama as the quarterback, Joe “the Pro” Biden as his hard hitting, trash talking, blocking fullback, Harry “the Horse” Reid as his not-too-flashy but hard working running back, “Fancy” Nancy Pelosi as his go to tight end, Clinton (Hillary) as his fleet footed, international wide receiver touchdown scoring threat, and a host of other Democratic position players to be mentioned at a later date. The opposition TEA Party Titans (formerly the Republican CountryClubbers), nicknamed the “Beasts of the Basin” (Potomac) will (probably) be lead early in the season by some veteran, white haired, white guy, with a young Turk or Turkette on the sidelines hoping the “old man” gets his clock cleaned. The key position players for the “Beasts” will be their host of potty mouthed defensive secondary players who will try to break up the “Dems” plays with a combination of roughing the quarterback, holding (of “birther” rallies) and too many (white) men on the field. In the end the smash mouth play of the “Beasts” will fall short of stopping the all around speed, balance and fan support of the “Darlin’ Dems”. Final score Dems 34 – Reps 14 (states).
Baseball, World Football (in American: Soccer), or even Cage Fighting could also be used as stand-ins for the 2012 Presidential Election; with home runs and pick-offs (Baseball), free or penalty kicks (Soccer), or groin kicks (Cage Fighting) used as appropriate or inappropriate examples of what goes on in American politics.
But it really is most like the “Sport of Kings”; that’s why they call it the Presidential Race. So, it’s off to the races. Stand by for my continuing call of the race.