CINCINNATI (TDB) -- Shared a meal and conversation with FroggerMarch, the diarist who writes at FireDogLake, the major national blog that is progressive in outlook and unflinching in its attitude that the Bush Administration outed the CIA's Valerie Plame for nefarious political purposes. FroggerMarch is an Ohioan who closely follows national politics, detests Dick Cheney and suspects the '08 presidential election is no gimme for the Democrats, especially if they nominate Sen. Hillary Clinton.
Frogger [an old acquaintance from a politically connected family] has been studying the GOP field closely -- no surprise, since he is famously interested in opposition research -- and thinks former Arkansas Gov. Mike Huckabee could become a far more formidable foe by November 2008 than most Democrats (and Republicans) now realize. He said Huckabee headed the Southern Baptist Convention in that state and is within reach of becoming the darling of Republican social conservatives. He sees Arizona Sen. John McCain gaining steam in the months ahead and believes Rudy Giuliani is just too liberal for his party.
As for Hillary, FroggerMarch -- who lives in Cincinnati -- says she is at the top of her game now. "I think the fact that her name is Clinton helps her in the African American community and the polls. It skews her up. Bill Clinton is a god in the African American community. And I think that what she has going for her is that she is from New York, she is a senator, and her name is Clinton. Over time, she has nowhere to go but down. Her great weakness is that she has no great strength. The bad news about Hillary is that there is no good news. She doesn't have a great resume, other than being First Lady. She has the fact that she is a woman, but the newness will wear off. If her name wasn't Clinton, would anybody think she had a chance? I think the Democrats are eventually going to move past the name, and then what is there? It will be attrition."
FroggerMarch predicts former Sen. John Edwards or New Mexico Gov. Bill Richardson will move up in the polls later this year. "Those are the guys to watch over time. I'm not leaving out Sen. Obama, but I don't think his time has come. That needs to be watched, but I'm picking Edwards and Richardson, though Richardson may have a problem or two that hasn't come out yet. There are people who have questions. We'll see."
Who knows what the future holds? The national blogger's focus on Mike Huckabee was interesting because nobody in the Ohio 'sphere has paid much attention to the Baptist preacher turned pol. Perhaps he is worth watching.
FroggerMarch, who went to Miami University, said he picked that name because his mom loved the video game called Frogger. He's active in the business world and said he uses that moniker because his politics are too liberal for many corporate types. "I have to deal with a lot of Republicans," he said.