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May 31, 2007



Good analysis, Brian. But isn't there a real simple explanation?

They were against the war in various ways, but the political ramifications of having voted against either a popular, successful or non-disastrous war were too high given the inevitable flac they'd receive before the outcome was known?

Or, only if you were quite confident the war would be an actual disaster and would be perceived that way by the majority of voters in a electorally-significant amount of time would you vote against the war in advance.

It turned out the war was a disaster, but wasn't perceived that way by a true majority until after the 2004 elections, which was certainly a relevent time frame for the pols to consider. Your formulas don't consider the time frame for assessment, but it was crucial.

I doubt if any of them thought this war would still be going in 5 years, two presidential elections in the future.


I think this is all right, Jim. Which is to say I believe Shrum's account. There's no love lost between Shrum and Edwards and yet he gave an account of the vote evolution that makes Edwards look better than Edwards' own telling. That's kinda weird. I just happen to think that anybody who thought that the war was going to be a disaster knew that the disaster would come in short order. Overthrowing the regime was always going to take days. The chaos that overthrowing the regime unleashed was predictable and was always just on the horizon at the end of "major combat operations." And therefore I sorta doubt either Edwards or Kerry was really thinking very hard about the war.

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