United Airline
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Why Did George H.W Bush LoseThe Re-election?

Thu Dec 04, 2008 4:40 pm

At first re-election was likely. But at the end he lost. Was it due to a mild recession? Or was it the national debt? Or was it the famous 'read my lips. No new taxes' lie?
 
PacNWjet
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Why Did George H.W Bush LoseThe Re-election?

Thu Dec 04, 2008 4:51 pm

I think many political observers would argue that voters did not think President Bush was attentive enough to economic problems in the United States. Partly it was the mild recession. Partly it was the debt issue. Partly it was the reversal on "no new taxes." There were other economic worries at the time as well. Bill Clinton's internal campaign message (the message campaign staffers repeated to themselves every day) was "It's the economy, stupid." Clinton's campaign staff felt that if they hammered President Bush on the economy at every opportunity Clinton would win the election. There was also the sense among some voters that Bush was so preoccupied with foreign affairs that he had been inattentive to domestic policy issues. I imagine there are political scientists and others who would cite other factors, but there seems to be a general consensus that the Clinton campaign was on the right track with its internal reminder of what to tell the voters: "It's the economy, stupid."
 
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Why Did George H.W Bush LoseThe Re-election?

Thu Dec 04, 2008 4:56 pm

A combination of all the above PLUS H. Ross Perot's presence in the race. IMHO, that played more of a factor than the others; especially in the 'Swing' states.

BTW, Bush 41 didn't break his "No New Taxes" pledge until he was already in office for 2 years with a Democrat-controlled House & Senate doing the instigating. In contrast, then-President-Elect Bill Clinton, wasn't yet inaugurated when he mentioned that he was NOT going to implement his proposed/promised middle-class tax cut.

[Edited 2008-12-04 09:01:03]
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United Airline
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Why Did George H.W Bush LoseThe Re-election?

Thu Dec 04, 2008 7:34 pm

George HW Bush was very good at foreign affairs but not in dealing with the US economy
 
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STT757
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Why Did George H.W Bush LoseThe Re-election?

Thu Dec 04, 2008 7:38 pm

George H.W. looked old and out of touch, while Bill Clinton was youthful, smart and had a great presence. During town hall debates Clinton was getting to know the audience while President George H.W. Bush seemed annoyed and was constantly checking his watch.
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United Airline
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Why Did George H.W Bush LoseThe Re-election?

Thu Dec 04, 2008 8:28 pm

They chose George H.W Bush in 1988 though and he became the president in 1989.

Wonder what would have happened if he was re-elected.

They both very smart I am sure
 
United Airline
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Why Did George H.W Bush LoseThe Re-election?

Thu Dec 04, 2008 8:32 pm

Without the charm of Ronald Reagon people were ready for a change maybe? And maybe George HW Bush wasn't an effective campaigner?
 
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Why Did George H.W Bush LoseThe Re-election?

Thu Dec 04, 2008 8:35 pm

With Bill Clinton he also had a very charismatic opponent. Regardless what one might think of his policies, he is able to move the masses and to get undecided voters on his side.
George HW Bush is quite the opposite of the above.
 
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Thu Dec 04, 2008 8:58 pm

Old man Bush also had the disaadvantage of having the annoying little troll Ross Perot in the race as an independenent candidate. Perot cost Bush votes.
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PSA53
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Thu Dec 04, 2008 9:06 pm

What killed H.W. chances for re-election,IMO,was the changing manufacturing picture.Jobs were being lost to China and,sadly,"Made In China",started to take hold.But what benefited Clinton was that technology,computer and cellular in particular, boomed.
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dxing
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Why Did George H.W Bush LoseThe Re-election?

Thu Dec 04, 2008 9:14 pm



Quoting STT757 (Reply 4):
while President George H.W. Bush seemed annoyed and was constantly checking his watch.

He checked his watch exactly once.

Quoting Stretch 8 (Reply 8):
Old man Bush also had the disaadvantage of having the annoying little troll Ross Perot in the race as an independenent candidate. Perot cost Bush votes.

Had it not been for Perot Bush 41 would have won re-election just as had it not been for Nader, VP Gore would have won in 2000.

Bush 41 did not have the charm that President Reagan had while President Clinton did. That too cost Bush 41 votes. Many saw President Clinton as closing the door on WW2 era men as President.
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United Airline
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Why Did George H.W Bush LoseThe Re-election?

Thu Dec 04, 2008 9:29 pm

Is it possible for a US president who lost the re-election to stand for another election in the future? I mean technically can George HW Bush run again (Of course he won't even if he can due to his age)????
 
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Dreadnought
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Why Did George H.W Bush LoseThe Re-election?

Thu Dec 04, 2008 9:35 pm



Quoting United Airline (Reply 11):
Is it possible for a US president who lost the re-election to stand for another election in the future? I mean technically can George HW Bush run again

Sure. Nixon lost in 1960 and ran again in 68. Teddy Roosevelt, after having already been president from 1901-1909, ran for president again in 1912.

And yes, Ross Perot cost Bush the election in 92.
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PSA53
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Thu Dec 04, 2008 9:40 pm



Quoting United Airline (Reply 11):
Is it possible for a US president who lost the re-election to stand for another election in the future? I mean technically can George HW Bush run again (Of course he won't even if he can due to his age)????

Yes. As example,T.R. did it but bowed out on his retry.
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dtwclipper
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Why Did George H.W Bush LoseThe Re-election?

Thu Dec 04, 2008 10:16 pm



Quoting PSA53 (Reply 13):
Quoting United Airline (Reply 11):
Is it possible for a US president who lost the re-election to stand for another election in the future? I mean technically can George HW Bush run again (Of course he won't even if he can due to his age)????

Yes. As example,T.R. did it but bowed out on his retry

A better example would be Grover Cleveland. Cleveland is the only President to serve two non-consecutive terms (1885–1889 and 1893–1897) and therefore is the only individual to be counted twice in the numbering of the presidents

See Wiki
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Why Did George H.W Bush LoseThe Re-election?

Thu Dec 04, 2008 10:40 pm



Quoting Dtwclipper (Reply 14):
A better example would be Grover Cleveland. Cleveland is the only President to serve two non-consecutive terms (1885–1889 and 1893–1897) and therefore is the only individual to be counted twice in the numbering of the presidents

You beat me to it, but I will add comment to this post:

Quoting Dreadnought (Reply 12):
Sure. Nixon lost in 1960 and ran again in 68. Teddy Roosevelt, after having already been president from 1901-1909, ran for president again in 1912

As you all may know, no president can run for a third term in office, as an Amendment to the Constitution was added in 1951, during Truman's term in office, that limited a president's terms to 2. FDR was elected 4 times. He died in April of 1945, shortly after taking office for the 4th time...
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Why Did George H.W Bush LoseThe Re-election?

Thu Dec 04, 2008 10:55 pm



Quoting Dreadnought (Reply 12):
And yes, Ross Perot cost Bush the election in 92.

Yes he was a factor though another one was the Gulf War and how Bush handled it.
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BN747
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Why Did George H.W Bush LoseThe Re-election?

Fri Dec 05, 2008 12:23 am

"Why Did George H.W Bush Lost The Re-election?"

That lady who questioned him on the price of a gallon of milk (and tripped him up with it) became his Katrina. And he never recovered.


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Why Did George H.W Bush LoseThe Re-election?

Fri Dec 05, 2008 12:29 am

My own take on it is a rather shallow one: I do believe that personal appeal plays a large part in elections nowadays, whether you're talking about the USA, UK, France, Australia or Ireland. Granted, other factors come into play, but I'm absolutely convinced that "likability" plays an important part.

During the '02 campaign in the US, I noticed how Bill Clinton seemed to appeal enormously to women voters. Much and all as I like the man, I can't help feeling that this was a big factor in him winning the presidential election that year.
 
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Why Did George H.W Bush LoseThe Re-election?

Fri Dec 05, 2008 12:36 am



Quoting DXing (Reply 10):
Had it not been for Perot Bush 41 would have won re-election just as had it not been for Nader, VP Gore would have won in 2000.

While this is almost certainly the case, there is a line in America: A Citizen's Guide to Democracy Inaction (by John Stewart & Co... I can't believe I'm quoting this  Silly ) that reads: "In the 2000 Presidential Election, Ralph Nader was second only to Al Gore in costing Al Gore the Presidency." It implies that Nader stole votes from Gore, but Gore's shortcomings were what forced people away in the first place. I feel like the same holds true for Bush and Perot, only on a much greater scale.
 
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Why Did George H.W Bush LoseThe Re-election?

Fri Dec 05, 2008 12:38 am



Quoting Luv2fly (Reply 16):
Yes he was a factor though another one was the Gulf War and how Bush handled it.

What? His approval ratings were never higher than right after the gulf war and before he agreed to go back on his pledge and raise taxes as well as the onset of the recession. He ticked off enough fincnacial conservatives that they voted for Perot. Reagan democrats swung back to President Clinton and that's the end of that election.
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Why Did George H.W Bush LoseThe Re-election?

Fri Dec 05, 2008 12:40 am



Quoting Luv2fly (Reply 16):
And yes, Ross Perot cost Bush the election in 92.

Yes he was a factor though another one was the Gulf War and how Bush handled it.

I disagree.The Gulf War actually soared Bush,Sr. approval rating.It was the many things after that lead to his downfall like King/Riots,,Jobs,etc....Perot gain ground on H.W. misfortunes and did play a factor later.But after the war campaigns Bush was thought unbeatable.
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Fri Dec 05, 2008 12:47 am

Wow two die in the wool Republicans disagree with me. Talk about shock. Had he actually finished the job with the war and taken Saddam out and not left if for Clinton to deal with and then finally his son to finish the job he started. Approval ratings or not. Look George W. is leaving the office with possibly the lowest of any President.
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Why Did George H.W Bush LoseThe Re-election?

Fri Dec 05, 2008 12:52 am



Quoting Steeler83 (Reply 15):
Quoting Dreadnought (Reply 12):
Sure. Nixon lost in 1960 and ran again in 68. Teddy Roosevelt, after having already been president from 1901-1909, ran for president again in 1912

As you all may know, no president can run for a third term in office, as an Amendment to the Constitution was added in 1951, during Truman's term in office, that limited a president's terms to 2. FDR was elected 4 times. He died in April of 1945, shortly after taking office for the 4th time...

Teddy Roosevelt was only elected once - he took over from McKinley after he was assassinated, and then was elected in 1904. Lyndon Johnson did the same in the 60's, after the passage of the 22nd amendment, taking over from Kennedy, being elected in 64, and would have been eligable for reelection in 1968, but chose not to run.
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Why Did George H.W Bush LoseThe Re-election?

Fri Dec 05, 2008 12:53 am



Quoting Braybuddy (Reply 18):
During the '02 campaign in the US,

Oh really?

Quoting Braybuddy (Reply 18):
this was a big factor in him winning the presidential election that year.

mmmm, not exactly.
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dxing
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Why Did George H.W Bush LoseThe Re-election?

Fri Dec 05, 2008 12:55 am



Quoting Luv2fly (Reply 22):
Wow two die in the wool Republicans disagree with me.

No, it's more like most every historian or approval poll you'd care to look up. Just a simple check of Wikipedia gets you:


Highest approval rating
George W. Bush holds the record with 92% (10/8-9/2001 -- after the September 11 attacks).
George H. W. Bush is second highest, with 89% (2/28/-3/3/1991 -- after the Gulf War).


Incidnetally George W. Bush also holds the lowest approval rating of any President in modern times at 19%.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/United_...val_rating#Highest_approval_rating
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Why Did George H.W Bush LoseThe Re-election?

Fri Dec 05, 2008 12:59 am



Quoting Luv2fly (Reply 22):
Look George W. is leaving the office with possibly the lowest of any President.

Absolutely.But the politics at the time during H.W.'s tenure prevented taking Saddam out.It was consider bad timing since there was a lending hand of US Forces launching out of Saudi Arabia.But if H.W. would have invaded,I don't think W. would even stand a chance of being elected.
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Fri Dec 05, 2008 1:12 am



Quoting SlamClick (Reply 24):
mmmm, not exactly.

Why not?

http://query.nytimes.com/gst/fullpag...9E0CEFDD1F3EF931A1575BC0A964958260

"Women favored Mr. Clinton over Mr. Bush by a significant margin"
 
dtwclipper
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Why Did George H.W Bush LoseThe Re-election?

Fri Dec 05, 2008 1:21 am



Quoting Braybuddy (Reply 27):
Why not?

I think he is just pointing out your typo.

Quoting Braybuddy (Reply 18):
During the '02 campaign in the US

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Fri Dec 05, 2008 1:37 am



Quoting Dtwclipper (Reply 28):
I think he is just pointing out your typo.

Oops! Well what's a decade between friends . . .
 
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Fri Dec 05, 2008 2:15 am



Quoting PSA53 (Reply 26):

Absolutely.But the politics at the time during H.W.'s tenure prevented taking Saddam out.It was consider bad timing since there was a lending hand of US Forces launching out of Saudi Arabia.But if H.W. would have invaded,I don't think W. would even stand a chance of being elected.

GHWB also didn't take out Hussein because his advisers told him not to. Why? Well, because of what would have happened if he had. In fact, it would have been pretty much exactly the same scene that we have now. In other words, if you have to choose between devils, ALWAYS pick the devil you know.

As horrible as Saddam Hussein was, he did have Iraq under control, and that is no small feat. He also had Al Qaeda out of Iraq. He was no terrorist because he was too proud to be a terrorist. He fancied himself a military giant (if you doubt it, look at the murals he had in his palaces of vast fleets of rockets launching and such).

So Gulf War I was basically a warning to Hussein that he had better keep his nose clean or the U.S. would do to him what Germany did to Poland a half century earlier. And he pretty much was keeping his nose clean, too. Well, at least as clean as you could reasonably expect him to.

During that war, GHWB's approval rating was astronomical. Patriotism was EVERYWHERE and the war was short, sweet, and decisive. In 2003, Iraq had not made an aggressive move like they had back in 1990 so there wasn't broad support for the campaign. And then GWB made the idiotic move of actually going after Saddam. And as soon as Saddam no longer had the country under an iron fist, Al Qaeda was free to move in, as well as a whole lot of devils we didn't know as well.
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Why Did George H.W Bush LoseThe Re-election?

Fri Dec 05, 2008 2:29 am



Quoting STT757 (Reply 4):

George H.W. looked old and out of touch, while Bill Clinton was youthful, smart and had a great presence. During town hall debates Clinton was getting to know the audience while President George H.W. Bush seemed annoyed and was constantly checking his watch.

I wasn't yet at voting age in '92 or '96, but I definately supported Clinton both runs. I found Bush sr. to be lacking (And the start of the Neocon generation).
 
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Why Did George H.W Bush LoseThe Re-election?

Fri Dec 05, 2008 5:38 am



Quoting Dreadnought (Reply 12):
Sure. Nixon lost in 1960 and ran again in 68. Teddy Roosevelt, after having already been president from 1901-1909, ran for president again in 1912.

I know. But if one has served one term and he loses in the re-election, like Jimmy Carter, George H.W Bush etc, can he run again?
 
United Airline
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Fri Dec 05, 2008 9:56 am

Should we consider George H.W Bush as a good president?
 
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Fri Dec 05, 2008 12:32 pm



Quoting United Airline (Reply 32):
I know. But if one has served one term and he loses in the re-election, like Jimmy Carter, George H.W Bush etc, can he run again?

Yes.
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dtwclipper
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Why Did George H.W Bush LoseThe Re-election?

Fri Dec 05, 2008 12:36 pm



Quoting United Airline (Reply 32):
I know. But if one has served one term and he loses in the re-election, like Jimmy Carter, George H.W Bush etc, can he run again?

Read response #14 and you will find your answer.
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Why Did George H.W Bush LoseThe Re-election?

Fri Dec 05, 2008 12:46 pm



Quoting United Airline (Reply 3):
George HW Bush was very good at foreign affairs but not in dealing with the US economy

Do many really believe that foreign affairs was a strong point for GWB? Surely not.


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United Airline
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Fri Dec 05, 2008 2:06 pm

So why didn't George H.W Bush run again in 1996? Coz he was too old?
 
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Fri Dec 05, 2008 2:53 pm



Quoting United Airline (Reply 37):
So why didn't George H.W Bush run again in 1996? Coz he was too old?

He would have looked bad if he lost again, and Clinton was very popular in '95-'96 as the economy was really revving.

I wish I was old enough to vote in the '92 election, I was 17 at the time. If I were 18 I would have voted for George H.W. Bush, that said it is because of Ross Perot that a few months after that election when I turned 18 I registered as an Independent which I remain to this day.
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PacNWjet
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Why Did George H.W Bush LoseThe Re-election?

Fri Dec 05, 2008 3:59 pm



Quoting Bananaboy (Reply 36):
Do many really believe that foreign affairs was a strong point for GWB? Surely not.

There is a difference between how scholars and other interested parties analyze President Bush's foreign policy with some historical hindsight and what voters thought at the time. In the 1992 election campaign many voters were willing to concede that Bush had shown some mastery over foreign affairs but they also thought that he had devoted too much of his mental energy to foreign policy matters and not enough attention to pressing domestic concerns. The topic of this thread asks why Bush lost his reelection bid in 1992, not whether or not, with hindsight, present-day observers think foreign policy was a strong point for Bush.
 
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Fri Dec 05, 2008 4:17 pm

I think the elder Bush was way too aggressive in his foreign policy and it hurt the US economy
back then. He even visited the troops in Somalia, but that was before the big shoot out which led to WJC pulling the troops out.
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slider
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Why Did George H.W Bush LoseThe Re-election?

Fri Dec 05, 2008 4:39 pm



Quoting United Airline (Thread starter):
Or was it the famous 'read my lips. No new taxes' lie?

That’s a line seared into the consciousness of many, to be sure.

Quoting Stretch 8 (Reply 8):
Old man Bush also had the disaadvantage of having the annoying little troll Ross Perot in the race as an independenent candidate. Perot cost Bush votes.

That’s the crux of it. Clinton became (I believe but am not totally sure) the first candidate to win with a mere plurality and not a majority. Perot tapped into a massive groundswell of voter anger. Today, I wish there were a qualified independent that could exploit that properly, because Perot botched it and still garnered a huge pull.

Quoting Braybuddy (Reply 18):
During the '02 campaign in the US, I noticed how Bill Clinton seemed to appeal enormously to women voters. Much and all as I like the man, I can't help feeling that this was a big factor in him winning the presidential election that year.

Indeed, also true. Remember him playing the sax on TV? The boxers or briefs question? The hair coloring? Clinton ran as a moderate really.

Quoting Luv2fly (Reply 22):
Had he actually finished the job with the war and taken Saddam out and not left if for Clinton to deal with and then finally his son to finish the job he started.

Point of clarification—the UN Mandate (you know, that a lot of people think we ought to follow) only called for the cessation of hostilities against Kuwait. It did not call for the overthrowing of Saddam. Again, I’ll rely on history in making my claim that more wars start or are fomented because some nations don’t go far enough rather than too far.

From a foreign policy standpoint though, Bush was in a very unenviable position, coming in after the fall of the Wall, the ending of the Cold War, and one can strongly argue that the US didn’t do enough to help stabilize and adjust the Eastern European nations and former Soviet bloc states. This is a great topic of its own and something I’d like to do more scholarship on now that there is a sufficient rearview to look at. Also, don’t forget that Bush 41 was an intel guy—NSA, dialed in to the ‘new world order’ and all that. He was an elitist all the way and the only reason he ascended was due to Reagan picking him as VP to balance the ticket and placate the East coast bluebloods.
 
PHLBOS
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Why Did George H.W Bush LoseThe Re-election?

Fri Dec 05, 2008 5:25 pm



Quoting Slider (Reply 41):
Today, I wish there were a qualified independent that could exploit that properly, because Perot botched it and still garnered a huge pull.

Perot's main mistake was temporarily dropping out of the race back that June because he (Perot) panicked when he saw the poll numbers stating that had the election been held then, the ultimate outcome would've been decided by the U.S. House of Representatives.

Any credible 3rd party candidate for President needs to realize that possibility from a snapshot poll is a necessary hurdle to clear. From that point henceworth, then and only then will a vote for that particular candidate really be for that candidate rather than a spoiler or aiding one of the 2 major party candidates. When Perot dropped out, I lost what little respect I had for him. His re-entering the race (after 3-4 weeks IIRC) clearly positioned Perot as more of an aid to Clinton and a spoiler for Bush 41.

Quoting Slider (Reply 41):
Remember him playing the sax on TV? The boxers or briefs question? The hair coloring?

One thing to keep in mind was that when Governor Clinton first entered the race, President Bush's approval rating was still near or at its peak following the first Gulf War. As a result, Clinton's run (at least initially) was viewed as a trial run for 1996 (which would've been an open-seat had Bush 41 been re-elected in '92). That's probably one reason why he (Clinton) decided to appear in more unique venues and do a few different things (like play the sax) than most candidates would.

Additionally, the Gennifer Flowers issue/story notwithstanding, most of the press focus was largely on Ross Perot's challenge/campaign until he dropped out... at least from my neck of the woods (Philadelphia). In essence, it was after Perot's dropping out (though temporary) that shifted the public focus on Bush vs. Clinton rather than Bush vs. Perot.

Another thing to ponder (and this could release another can of worms for sure) is had Paula Jones stepped forward regarding her sexual harassment charge against Gov. Clinton (from a 1991 incident) during the '92 campaign rather than waiting a couple of years (at least she didn't wait 10 years like Anita Hill); could that have resulted in Bush 41 getting relected and/or Clinton dropping out of the race?
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Why Did George H.W Bush LoseThe Re-election?

Fri Dec 05, 2008 11:11 pm

Quoting United Airline (Reply 37):
So why didn't George H.W Bush run again in 1996? Coz he was too old?

Nixon is the only candidate I can think of who lost an earlier presidential election (1960) and then won another one. Usually a second try after an earlier loss would be a recipe for disaster, like Stevenson losing against Eisenhower in 1952 in a landslide and even worse in 1956. He might only had a chance then if Eisenhower turned out to be a big disappointment in his first term. So that's why George HW didn't even think of running again in 1996 as he knew he would only further embarrass himself. In 1996 he was 72, younger then the actual Republican candidate Bob Dole, so age wouldn't necessarily be an issue. Although both George HW, Dole and later McCain's losses were partially blamed for seeming old and out of touch.
So the rules since 1951 are; you can be president for maximum 2 terms (or 2,5, Johnson was allowed to run in 1968 because his first term was only 14 months). So 1 term presidents and losing candidates of the past can run again but Bill Clinton or GW Bush can't run ever again.
It's an interesting but purely hypothetical thought that George HW Bush and Carter can run against eachother for president in 2012, for instance because Obama, Palin and nobody else want to run.

[Edited 2008-12-05 15:21:30]

[Edited 2008-12-05 15:22:24]
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Why Did George H.W Bush LoseThe Re-election?

Fri Dec 05, 2008 11:17 pm

A lot of my friends voted for Clinton for pretty much the same reasons: Bush41 was spending way too much time outside the Untied States and was not focusing on the economy as he should have. Also, when he got sick in Japan, that sealed the deal for me. I think, at the time, a lot of my peers were tired of the same old rich fuddy-duddy men running things. Clinton actually looked like he might have been one of us at one time. He could relate to us. That is what a lot of my friends thought at the time.
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RE: Why Did George H.W Bush LoseThe Re-election?

Sat Dec 06, 2008 3:10 am

So why did Jimmy Carter lose?
 
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RE: Why Did George H.W Bush LoseThe Re-election?

Sat Dec 06, 2008 9:54 am



Quoting United Airline (Reply 45):
So why did Jimmy Carter lose?

Maybe surfing around on google, wikipedia etc. would help as well to get answers on complex but well documented issues like this.
Carters term as president (77-81) was not a success. He promised change, but he couldn't get along with Congress (governors and senators) so he couldn't get much done. Also people felt he was weak in international crises at the time, especially the US hostages in Iran and the Russians invading Afghanistan. During his presidency he had an unlucky and losery aura around him. He was a better ex-president then a president, his post 1981 work in international conflicts is widely praised.
In 1980 the affable hardliner Reagan also did an effective campaign, possibly some dirty tricks here and there (for instance his team might have made a deal with the Iranians not to free the US hostages til after Carter has lost, as Carter undoubtedly would have won if the hostages were freed in the month before the election).
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RE: Why Did George H.W Bush LoseThe Re-election?

Sat Dec 06, 2008 4:13 pm



Quoting United Airline (Reply 45):
So why did Jimmy Carter lose?

Where to begin;

Economy, gas crisis, Iran Hostage situation etc..

Jimmy Carter up to this point has been generally regarded as the worst US President in modern times, although I feel George W. Bush will now hold that title going forward. Even Bill Oreilly has been saying on the radio for the past couple months as the Bush administration draws to a close that George W. Bush will go down as the worst US President.
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RE: Why Did George H.W Bush LoseThe Re-election?

Sun Dec 07, 2008 1:15 am



Quoting STT757 (Reply 47):
Jimmy Carter up to this point has been generally regarded as the worst US President in modern times, although I feel George W. Bush will now hold that title going forward.

I'd have to disagree with that. The economy just sucked during all of President Carters administration. Not only that but President Carter actually came out and blamed the American public in his malaise speech for being part of the problem. That's a lesson that Phil Grahm should have remembered since even though it's true in some ways, saying it out loud as a public official gets you sacked. Secondly, we were still smarting from our diplomatic defeat in Vietnam, the Soviet invasion of Afghanistan, and the communist revolution in Nicaragua so his handling of the Iranian hostage crisis only served to add to the feeling we were in a tailspin internationally. Part of Jimmy Carters history is Ronald Reagan and the difference in handling different types of events. While President Carter is seen as not having done much about the hostages, when some medical students were in trouble in a tiny island nation of Grenada, boom, President Reagan sent in the military immediately. President Carter is remembered in a better light for his middle east negotiation between Sadat and Begin than President Reagan is due to the Beruit barracks bombing and arms for hostages. But the true difference is in the economy. Even though President Reagan had higher unemployment figures to deal with he is still seen as better at the economy since by appearances President Carter didn't do anything and that President Reagain was seen as believing in and better in communicating to the American people.

Such will be the case for President Bush. If soon to be PE Obama is succesful in pulling the economy out of the skids he finds it in, or if it just recovers on it's own, than like it or not he will get credit for the recovery even though the government itself is at least partially responsible for it happening. Same with Iraq. Even though the yeomans work was all done under the Bush administration, soon to be PE Obama will get the credit if the country continues to be a stable democracy after the troops are withdrawn. There is no doubt that soon to be PE Obama will be a better public speaker when he sticks to the script.

When you look at the hits the Bush administration had going in, a recession in progress plus 9/11 which forced them to completely retool from what President Bush had run on in the campaign, you have to give credit where credit is due. The stimulus checks had both an actual economic and and a physcological effect on the nation. When you look at the unemployment numbers and productivity scales no one can say that the economy was in a shambles for the majority of his administration. His response to 9/11 was both forceful and appropriate. The invansion of Iraq, a seperate event to Afghanistan as D-day was to the Phillipines, will always be seen as unnecessary and illogical no matter what happens in the future. So the question that will remain hopefully unanswered for some time to come, how will soon to be PE handle a crisis like 9/11 or a rogue nation like Iran if it appears they are about to aquire a nuclear bomb? How he handles it will instantly be compared to his immediate predecessor and could well make or break his administration.

The follow on administration often determines what the previous administration ends up looking like. Hoover/FDR, Truman/Eisenhower are two contemporary examples. A lot has to do with how the press handles the situation as well. Hoover could do nothing right in the presses eyes although just a few short years earlier he was the savior of the great Mississippi river flood and had promoted the then new media of radio by giving weekly addresses as commerce secretary. FDR, although he forced through legislation that was overturned by the Supreme Court, and then tried to pack the Supreme Court so he could have his way, never really did solve the great depression by using government as a jobs program, is well remembered by many because of his speaking style on the radio. He gave them hope even though not much was getting better in their immediate world.

Eisenhower took office after running, in part on a campaign of Korea and Corruption. Sound familiar? Truman left office with a 22% approval rating. Sound familiar? Truman was beset by domestic and foriegn problems for all of his term as President, barely squeaked by in his only election, and ordered summary investigations of thousands of government employees just suspected of being communists. Hundreds were fired, many thousands more resigned. Yet as of today President Truman is on our currency and is almost universally regarded as one of our best Presidents. Meanwhile President Eisenhower is remembered for what? More his military career than anything he did as President.

President GHWB lost the election for two reasons. He lost the support of enough of his party by reneging on his no new taxes pledge that they voted for Perot and because he seemed enough of an elitist and out of touch that the Reagan democrats returned to the democratic ticket. The close poll results, and the fact that President Clinton did not even achieve 50% of the vote pretty much makes that clear.
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RE: Why Did George H.W Bush LoseThe Re-election?

Sun Dec 07, 2008 5:23 am



Quoting DXing (Reply 48):
Yet as of today President Truman is on our currency and is almost universally regarded as one of our best Presidents.

My bad, I meant that Eisnehower is on our currency yet President Truman is almost universally regarded as one of our best Presidents.
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