Monday, May 16, 2011
This campaign cycle reminds me of the "Schwarzenegger effect"
I just saw on Fox News that by this date in 2007, 10 candidates had already announced they were running for POTUS for the 2008 election. For this cycle, only four have formally announced. Why the difference? Sarah Palin. Everyone is waiting for her to either say yes or no. There is no way anyone on the fence (Republican or Democrat) who might have trouble raising money would even think to run if Sarah were running, too. There's just no way anyone could raise enough money, or attain the same level of name recognition she has. It kind of reminds me of when the state of California did a recall on their Governor. A handful of candidates were running to be the one to replace him. But when Arnold Schwarzenegger announced he was going to run, pretty much all the other candidates dropped out, including the guy who led the charge on the recall. I remember him specifically crying in an interview saying there was no way he could compete with Arnold who has more money than anyone and was one of the biggest box-office movie stars of all time. Palin might even be more popular now than Arnold was at that time. So this is definitely reminding me of that recall, and the effect one superstar candidate can have on an election.