Monday, February 21, 2005


Timing Is Everything

The Siena Research Institute, at Siena College near Albany, NY, sponsored a poll in conjunction with its "First Woman President" Symposium, scheduled for March 4-5. These were the results:
A majority of Americans say the country is ready to elect a woman as president in 2008 -- and even more said they would vote for one.

The candidate's portrait as painted by 1,125 registered voters in a nationwide Hearst Newspapers/Siena College poll shows that she's likely a Democrat and is viewed as being at least as capable as a man on foreign policy. She's stronger on health care and education, but somewhat weaker as commander in chief of the military.

The poll listed four prominent women -- Sens. Hillary Rodham Clinton, D-N.Y., Barbara Boxer, D-Calif., and Elizabeth Dole, R-N.C., and Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice -- and asked whether any of them should run for president.

Clinton was the clear front-runner with 53 percent of those polled, including half of the men and 26 percent of the Republicans, saying she should run. The telephone poll was done Feb. 10-16, surveyed 1,125 registered voters and covered all 50 states and the District of Columbia. Of the total, 39 percent were registered Democrats, 30 percent were registered Republicans and 3 percent were from other parties. The rest, 28 percent, were not affiliated with any party . . . .

Boxer had 13 percent of voters saying she should run, but nearly 40 percent said they didn't know who she is.

"I am not running for president, but I do believe that the country is more than open to seeing a woman as chief executive," Boxer said Friday in an e-mail.
The poll also invited respondents to nominate other potential female candidates. Ex-NJ Governor Christine Todd Whitman led the write-ins with 13 mentions, followed by Oprah Winfrey with 9.

In my opinion the first woman president, as well as the first African American president, will be a Republican. Republicans will vote for whomever is their candidate, and many Democratic voters liking the idea of a woman or black president will join them. But, Democrats do not always swallow whomever their party runs, and very few Republicans will cross over for a woman or black candidate. So, I guess, we just have to steel ourselves for Madame President Rice.
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