Florida: One Small Step for the Primaries

My gut feeling is that Tuesday will soon prove to be a big day in Florida, not so much for specific Democratic candidates because they can't win any delegates, but now we can begin to eliminate some scenarios for the general election. In other words, my intuition is that Florida was a "one small step for the nominations, one giant leap for the general elections" primary.

First, let us all breathe a collective sigh of relief that Giuliani is now out of the picture having finished 3rd in his most crucial state. I'm sure I'm not the only one who genuinely feared his being elected to president. The last thing we need is a "tougher" on "terror" president who also happens to have a vindictive streak. Give me a simpleton or a religious zealot over that any day of the week. Even better than any of these latter possibilities is the guy who is probably going to get the nomination...

Second, of all the evils coming from the Republican side, McCain is by far the least and I think Florida is going to seal the nomination for him. I feel that he is a sincere individual who lives by principle. However, his greatest hamartia, in my opinion, is his desire to escalate in Iraq. While his reasons are logical, the implementation and results of continued action in Iraq are likely to be expensive and sloppy (i.e. more of the same). Barring a well-timed terrorist attack closer to the elections, I have a feeling that his militarism will be his undoing.

Third, Florida has in recent history been a Republican state. But the turnout yesterday was decidedly in favor of the Democrats. Note that Florida was a closed primary for both sides, somewhat discrediting the notion that Democrats have enjoyed a numerical advantage in the primaries because they have remained open to independents.

Lastly, we can probably be confident that the two most centrist candidates will once again get the nominations--but I think I'm going to vote for Obama or Edwards despite the inevitable. I feel like I need to cast a protest vote against the Clinton campaign and firmly against the war right now, just to make myself feel better. I'll vote for Senator Clinton come November.

In general, though, relief.