Daily Kos
Political analysis and other daily rants on the state of the nation

Friday | August 29, 2003

Clark delays decision

You guys may have discussed this in the Open Thread already, so excuse me if I'm late to the game.

Wesley K. Clark, the retired four-star general who has been contemplating a run for president, has told close friends that he wants to join the Democratic race and is delaying a final decision only until he feels he has a legitimate chance of winning the nomination.
The article says a decision may come between September 15th and 19th. While in DC meeting with people, the rumor was the 17th.

What's stupid about the article (and the author) is that the reporting date for Q3 numbers is October, not September. So if Clark is waiting to see numbers before announcing, he'll have to wait until October 15th. Or at least until Dean's bat makes its next appearance at the end of the month.

Clark is not a stupid man. He'll need to find weakness in the opposition before trying to exploit it. The Q3 numbers will be big. Poll numbers as well.

Note that his original timetable for a decision was early September. This delay means uncertainty. It's obvious Clark wants to run, and that he'd be a great candidate. I've been impressed with the man ever since I was an early proponent of the draft effort.

But this delay does not portrend good news for those who want to see him run. If he was sold on a race, there would be no reason to wait. Time is running short, and he'd already be starting from behind. Now he'll wait to see Dean raise well over $10 million and Gephardt showing strength in Iowa, South Carolina, Missouri and Michigan (not to mention the Super Delegates).

And consider that he's a Cabinet shoo-in with whatever Democratic administration wins in 2004, and the impetus for a Clark run suddenly wanes.

I'm not going to predict whether Clark runs or not, but cold logic suddenly suggests he won't.

Posted August 29, 2003 12:26 AM | Comments (109)


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