SNEAK PEEK: State of the Union, Mitt Romney? "Good"


1 day until the Florida primary (Democrats/Republicans)

7 days until Super Tuesday

President Bush delivers his seventh and final State of the Union address tonight but don't expect him to wax nostalgic about his legacy – not a surprise to anyone who has watched this president closely over his two terms.

Perhaps more interesting than the speech itself will be the dynamics on display in the House Chamber.

Will Hillary Clinton chat up Ted Kennedy after his rousing speech endorsing Barack Obama this afternoon? Which undecided or unpledged Members of Congress try to position themselves near their two colleagues running for President?

As of today, 17 Democratic Senators have endorsed in the presidential race with 10 going for Clinton and 7 going for Obama.

But let's not get too ahead of ourselves – President Bush is still in charge for one more year.

ABC News' Jennifer Duck reports that White House Press Secretary Dana Perino said the President's speech will be "focused on the future" and will "reflect the President's mind set that he is going to sprint to the finish."

For the money line ("The state of our union is…"), President Bush has never used an adjective less than "strong" or "confident." Today on CNN, Mitt Romney said: "The state of the union is good."

With voters concerned about the state of the economy, expect the President to call on Congress to move quickly on the economic stimulus package and make his tax cuts permanent.

According to excerpts released by the White House tonight, President Bush will make a plea to Congress to show bipartisanship in this election year. "[L]et us show them that Republicans and Democrats can compete for votes and cooperate for results at the same time," Bush will say.

(Who will the cuts camera show when he utters this line? Clinton, Obama or Ted Kennedy?)

The race to replace Bush hits Florida tomorrow, with a winner-take-all battle for 57 delegates on the Republican side and a beauty contest for zero delegates on the Democratic side.

There will be no winner projected until after the polls close at 8:00 pm ET.

Things to look for in the Sunshine State's Republican primary:

-- Will the clutch endorsements from Gov. Crist and Sen. Martinez give John McCain that extra boost to pull out a close win?

-- Florida is a closed primary, so only registered Republicans can vote in the Republican primary and only registered Democrats can vote in the Democratic primary. If McCain can beat Mitt Romney, he shows that he can win Republican voters and does not have to rely on independents playing in the GOP primaries, like in New Hampshire and South Carolina.

-- Assuming the polls are remotely accurate, and Rudy Giuliani is stuck in the mid-teens, the former mayor is going to have to pull of the biggest Hail Mary pass since Doug Flutie to Gerard Phelan. Giuliani compared himself to the underdog New York Football Giants last week, but even the most optimistic Giants fan would not want Eli to have to rely on the long ball with the game on the line.

-- Can Romney's constant refrain on the economy turn out economic conservatives, especially in that gold mine of Republican voters, the I-4 corridor?

The Democratic race is just a beauty contest – there are no delegates at stake since Florida set its primary date prior to February 5, 2008 in violation of Democratic National Committee rules.

  • 1
  • |
  • 2
  • |
  • 3
Join the Discussion
blog comments powered by Disqus
You Might Also Like...