Tonight at 8:00 p.m ET CBS News (with partner National Journal) will broadcast a Republican debate from Wofford College in Spartanburg, South Carolina. The topic is foreign policy.
So low has foreign policy fallen as an issue in this election that CBS will only broadcast the debate for an hour and a half. To see the entire debate viewers will have to go elsewhere (CBS.com or National Journal).
Foreign policy is an important test for president, or at least it used to be. Indeed, there is a foreign policy expert (and domestic policy expert) who catches the eyes of Americans these days. Republican/conservative HotAir notes that she is the key to the keystone state (among other states). Her name is…:
“Thursday, Quinnipiac released a series of “swing state” polls that showed how much danger Barack Obama faced in Ohio, Pennsylvania, and Florida, even with the Republican Party fighting through its primary season. Obama has lost the independents he assiduously courted in 2008, and the voters that at one time were called Reagan Democrats are fleeing the ticket.
So what could bring them back? A little change in the bottom of the ticket. [snip]
The swing is significant in both models when adding Hillary to the ticket. Survey USA explains one reason why: [snip]
Don’t forget that Obama added Joe Biden to the ticket in the first place to help in states like Pennsylvania and Ohio, as well as to fill a foreign-policy gap that got highlighted in the Russian invasion of Georgia just before the conventions in 2008. [snip]
It’s not just a gender gap, either. An Obama/Hillary ticket, rather than one including Biden, wins back two age demographics over a Romney/Gingrich ticket: 50-64YOs go from 43/47 to 49/45, and seniors go from 43/49 to 47/46. There is a narrow shift among both black (76/18 to 82/14) and white (43/47 to 46/45) voters as well. There is even a shift among self-identified Tea Party supporters, from 18/76 to 24/69.”
HotAir has a little more that brings a smile:
“Even with the tickets as shown, Republicans have not yet united behind a candidate, and the numbers for Obama as an incumbent in a state with an overwhelming Democratic registration advantage are not impressive. Also, the sheer novelty of replacing a sitting VP on a re-elect ticket (it hasn’t been done since FDR booted Henry Wallace in 1944 to distance himself from Wallace’s shift towards neo-Stalinism) could damage Obama everywhere else by making him look weak and desperate.
But those caveats don’t erase the impact that a running-mate switch might have in traditional Democratic interior states for an incumbent with no other real story to tell. While these changes don’t look overwhelming, they would be enough to push Pennsylvania back into the Democratic column in a close election. And if it came down to rescuing Pennsylvania with no appreciable downside of a Biden retirement, Democrats might want to draft Hillary to rescue Pennsylvania — and perhaps a few other faltering Democratic strongholds as well, like Michigan.”
A draft for the top of the ticket is a good idea. But NObama forever and in every circumstance.
Aside from Hillary, there are some issues to watch for tonight. Will Fast and Furious be mentioned as a peripheral foreign policy issue. Whoever mentions it first tonight gets a gold star from us.
CBC news, in preparation for tonight’s debate prepared a poll on foreign policy. Tonight it is time for the Republican candidates to weigh in on foreign policy – Israel, Iraq, Afghanistan, Pakistan, China (maybe a smart candidate can work in Solyndra to China policy), Mexico, Iran, etc.
For all that, the reason many will watch tonight’s debate is to see if Perry has another brain freeze and to see if Herman Cain is able to navigate foreign policy without his own stumbles and mumbles. The battle between well versed but organizationally bereft Newt Gingrich and Willard Mitt Romney might also be an attraction.
On to the debate.