Paul Tsongas

JFK In 1960; Carter In 1976; Clinton In 1992; Obama In 2008; Vs Martin O’Malley In 2016: Why The Difference In Fortunes?

In 1960, Senator John F. Kennedy overcame Senator Lyndon B. Johnson, Senator Hubert Humphrey, and Senator Stuart Symington to win the Democratic Presidential nomination, despite being Roman Catholic in religion, and offered “a new generation” of leadership, after President Dwight D. Eisenhower.

In 1976, former Georgia Governor Jimmy Carter overcame Senator Frank Church, Senator Birch Bayh, Governor Jerry Brown, and Congressman Morris Udall to win the Democratic Presidential nomination, despite being the first Southerner since 1848, and offered “a new generation” of leadership, after President Gerald Ford.

In 1992, Arkansas Governor Bill Clinton overcame former Senator Paul Tsongas, Senator Tom Harkin, Senator Bob Kerrey, and former Governor Jerry Brown to win the Democratic Presidential nomination, despite revelation of a sex scandal, and offered “a new generation” of leadership, after President George H. W. Bush.

In 2008, Senator Barack Obama overcame Senator Hillary Clinton, Senator Joe Biden,  Senator Chris Dodd and Governor Bill Richardson to win the Democratic Presidential nomination, despite being African American, and offered “a new generation” of leadership, after President George W. Bush.

In 2016, former Maryland Governor Martin O’Malley, despite his outstanding record as Baltimore Mayor and Maryland Governor, has gained no traction against Hillary Clinton, Joe Biden, and even Socialist Bernie Sanders, all much older than him, and despite O’Malley offering “a new generation of leadership”, instead of going “backward” a generation in age from President Barack Obama.

The question is why O’Malley has gained no substantial support, despite his charisma and good looks, often seen as equivalent to how JFK, Carter, Clinton and Obama came across as being, before being elected President of the United States.

The concern is that the Republicans may nominate a candidate who is much younger than the Democratic nominee, someone such as Marco Rubio, Ted Cruz, or Rand Paul.  History tell us that most often,  the younger nominee wins over the older nominee opponent, as with Kennedy and Richard Nixon, Carter and Gerald Ford, Clinton and George H. W. Bush, and Obama and Hillary Clinton.

The Democrats, in theory, have a “bench” of potential younger candidates in the future, including New York Senator Kirsten Gillibrand, New Jersey Senator Cory Booker, Minnesota Amy Klobuchar, and Housing and Urban Development Secretary Julian Castro, along with the potential of new senators and governors who might be elected in 2016 and beyond.  But for right now, O’Malley is the Democratic “bench”, and he has failed to stir any support, very frustrating to him and anyone who is worried about the “old timers” who are the top three Democratic nominees for the Presidency this time around.

Historical Reality Of Iowa (Top Three) And New Hampshire (Top Two) Are The Only Choices For Presidential Nomination Of Either Party

All of the candidates for the Republican Presidential nomination contend they will go on, even if they perform poorly in Iowa and New Hampshire.

But the historical reality is that unless one ends up in the top three in Iowa AND the top two in New Hampshire, there is no future for such a candidate.

The only exceptions are Bill Clinton in 1992 in Iowa in 4th place behind “favorite son” Tom Harkin, “Uncommitted”, and Paul Tsongas, but Harkin winning 76 percent of the vote; and John McCain, who in 2008 in Iowa ran behind Mike Huckabee, Mitt Romney and Fred Thompson, but lost to Thompson for third place only by a total of 424 votes. NEVER has anyone in either party ending up lower than second place in New Hampshire won the Presidential nomination of either political party!

Thus, only five Iowa third or fourth place finishers have ended up winning New Hampshire and being the nominee: Bill Clinton fourth in 1992, Michael Dukakis third in 1988, George McGovern third in 1972, John McCain fourth in 2008, and George H W Bush third in 1988.

So, assuming the polls are correct, Jon Huntsman (not really competing in Iowa), Michele Bachmann, Rick Perry, and probably Newt Gingrich, are “toast”, with Mitt Romney, Ron Paul and probably Rick Santorum (due to a late surge at the proper time), the real contenders in New Hampshire.

That would mean that Rick Santorum would become the candidate of the “social conservatives”, but the odds are that Mitt Romney will win New Hampshire and go on to become the GOP nominee for President in 2012 against President Obama!