Monday, January 30, 2006

Cindy Sheehan to run for senate?

So, Cindy Sheehan, the infamous (to Republicans) woman who is most famous for camping outside President Bush's ranch thinks that maybe she should be a senator?

She lost her son in Iraq, so I can see why her attacks on Bush could come from personal grief. I do sometimes wonder about those who seem to use her as some kind of figurehead for the anti-war movement, though.

Can she win a senate seat on her anti-war platform? I highly doubt it. California certainly is home to some of the most liberal people in the country, but it also has a decent population of conservatives here in the Central Valley, and a sizeable population of moderates spread throughout. Sheehan might make a decent showing, but she's a little controversial to do well, and I don't think she'll get much support at all if her only platform is "bring the troops home right now."

There is the possibility that she could get elected if she were to show that she has a political stance that actually has something to do with California itself, and not just Iraq. Senator Feinstein, who Sheehan would be running against, would have to basically throw the election, too. Feinstein is a pretty well-entrenched incumbent, and she hasn't made any major mistakes which would significantly erode her support, either.

The last thing I have to wonder is what Cindy Sheehan thinks she can do if she were to win the seat. At that point, Bush would only have two more years in office, and Sheehan would be a brand new senator with no prior experience in political office (as far as I can tell). By the time she could really get much going, Bush would be out of office. I suppose she could make an effort to try Bush for war crimes, but I don't see there being much support for that.

When I look at it from the perspective of the above, there is the possibility that Sheehan will not run at all. It could be that she is actually trying to pressure Feinstein into supporting her agenda in the senate. It would actually be a lot smarter than fighting it out. If she can pressure an experienced incumbent into going along with her, Sheehan will gain far more than trying to do it herself. However, she is not a person I would equate with subtle political maneuvering. She so far has wielded what power she has the same way Southern Baptists often do: like a bludgeon, and often a bit clumsily.

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I'm a Christian and political moderate (I tend to be more liberal on core issues and more conservative on the hot-button ones). I have a B.A. in Biblical and Religious Studies and Philosophy.