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Magazine / Political Insiders Poll

Political Insiders Poll

October 13, 2011

Who would be the strongest choice for the Republican vice presidential nomination?

Democrats (107 Votes)

Sen. Marco Rubio: 65%
Other: 20%
Herman Cain: 10%
House Majority Leader Eric Cantor: 3%
Rep. Paul Ryan: 3%

(Other vote recipients: New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie, 4; Sen. Rob Portman, 4; Indiana Gov. Mitch Daniels, 2; Virginia Gov. Bob McDonnell, 2; Texas Gov. Rick Perry, 2; Rudy Giuliani, 1; Mike Huckabee, 1; Jon Huntsman, 1; Ohio Gov. John Kasich, 1.)


Sen. Marco Rubio

“Rubio first, second, and third.”

“Not even close call as he solidifies Florida, builds support with the Hispanic community, and creates a future credible presidential candidate.”

“Gives them Florida in all likelihood, plus an opening with Hispanics, which they don’t deserve.”

“Rubio is not up in 2012, so you don’t even put a Senate seat at risk.”

“Rubio … can probably get away with stronger anti-immigrant rhetoric than the actual nominee.”

“Rubio offers only advantages, with no corresponding disadvantages.”

Herman Cain

“Though he’s not yet been vetted, Cain lends substantial private-sector credibility, a commonsense voice, and depth of character to the nominee.”

“A successful, conservative man who lived the American Dream. Boot straps sell in America.”


“Regardless of the nominee, assuming that [Gov. Chris] Christie still enjoys darling status in the New York media, he’ll give a big boost to the GOP in New Jersey, Pennsylvania, Ohio, and Joe Biden’s state of Delaware. That’s not a bad start.”

“Sen. Rob Portman. If he delivers Ohio, the election is over. Plus, he knows how the federal government works.”

“Gov. Mitch Daniels. The Republicans need a little common sense, and Daniels supplies that.”

“Gov. Bob McDonnell. He is a Southern Republican governor in a swing state, a social conservative with an inclusive campaign style, grew up in and runs well in the suburbs, and is Catholic.”

“Gov. Rick Perry. He’ll bring Romney some tea party folks. They’ll forgive his responsible position on immigration.”


Who would be the strongest choice for the Republican vice presidential nomination?

Republicans (104 Votes)

Sen. Marco: 60%
Other: 25%
Rep. Paul Ryan: 9%
Herman Cain: 5%
House Majority Leader Eric Cantor: 2%

(Other vote recipients: Sen. Rob Portman, 7; Virginia Gov. Bob McDonnell, 4; Jeb Bush, 2; Indiana Gov. Mitch Daniels, 2; New Mexico Gov. Susana Martinez, 2; Haley Barbour, 1; New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie, 1; Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton, 1; Rudy Giuliani, 1; Tim Pawlenty, 1; “depends on the nominee,” 4.)

Sen. Marco Rubio

“The Michael Jordan of Republican politics.”

“Embodies the youthful conservative credentials of a Ryan or Cantor with the added Hispanic appeal dimension.”

“Obama’s weakness in the Latino community presents Republicans with an opportunity to open the door to the tent.”

“Good for the Hispanic vote, and he would help a reasonable moderate shore up the radical social Right, of which he is a member but doesn’t show it.”

“If we don’t find our inner Latino, we are screwed as a party.”

“It’s a no-brainer. He may want to wait, but the party can’t wait for him.”

Rep. Paul Ryan

“Proven vote-getter. Intellectual powerhouse with the credibility on the Hill to help a Republican administration pass its agenda. Catholic, telegenic, swing state, great family, solid character. The whole package.”

Herman Cain

“Outsider, successful businessman, credible American patriot, a real person, and, yes, black. What a vote-getting package. And good for our party.”

House Majority Leader Eric Cantor

“Seven swing states have Jewish populations that Cantor could put in play. Not to mention the national fundraising base.”


“Gov. Rob Portman. The calculus is very simple. No Republican has ever been elected president without carrying the state of Ohio.”

“Gov. Bob McDonnell. He is only allowed to run for one term, which expires in 2013. He has balanced two budgets without tax increases, created jobs, and is a great communicator. He comes from an important swing state, where his current job approval is in the high 60s.”

“Gov. Susana Martinez. Rubio without the baggage.”


Should Democratic leaders and groups ally themselves with the Occupy Wall Street movement?

Democrats (105 votes)

Yes: 51%
No: 49%


“Absolutely yes! We need our passion back, and as long as the movement stays positive and away from violence—and soon includes jobs—we should do everything we can to engage.”

“If more Democrats understood the 99 percent messaging, they would be much more successful with election victories and policy gains.”

“With limits. This is tapping into something very widespread and significant. Just need to not be associated with tactics that are too strident.”

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“This movement gives us a hook to underscore a winning message, and we need to ally ourselves with it, own it, and keep it sane.”

“Democrats and labor need energy, and the ‘occupy’ groups could be the fuel that we need to energize the base.”


“What movement? There is no evidence they will be able to expand beyond their current protests.”

“Rule No. 1: You never want to be responsible for something you cannot control.”

“The Occupy Wall Street ‘movement’ is nothing like the tea party movement. It is much more like the thugs who go to [World Trade Organization]-type conferences. It is far more violent than the tea party movement and is far too volatile for a close association.”

“Not because they should be dismissive of them, but because they should let the movement grow organically before appearing to be steering it.”

“Occupy Wall Street is anticapitalism, and that’s the last thing Democrats need independent voters hearing.”

“It is bad enough we are back to being the tax-and-spend party, but cozying up to a bunch of hippies is worse.”

“Swing voters want to hear that Democrats are focused on economic growth and fiscal discipline. Supporting this movement would just underscore for them that Dems care about people not like them.”


Should Democratic leaders and groups ally themselves with the Occupy Wall Street movement?

Republicans (93 votes)

No: 75%
Yes (because it would benefit Republicans): 19%
Yes (because it would be politically smart for Democrats): 5%


“If Lee Atwater were alive today, he’d be hiring these protesters. It’s the San Francisco convention and Mondale all over again.”

“Maybe sympathize with the message, but don’t tie your own fate to a bunch of radicals. You lose control. The Republican connection to the tea party is starting to look more like a liability as well.”

“It will bring them electoral disaster. This is a slightly cleaned-up version of the nihilists who protest [International Monetary Fund] meetings.”

“It’s not a movement. It’s a rave made up of people who need a shower, an economics lesson, and 36 hours in detox.”

“My advice would be to keep those 10-foot poles handy.”

“This is a disaster waiting to happen.”

Yes (because it would benefit Republicans)

“I hope they do! We’d love to have this band of hippies, peaceniks, and trust-fund babies as a foil next year.”

“My dear Democratic friends, please, please, please hug these confused, repulsive crazies as close to you as you can. Feature them at your convention. Make them the warm-up speakers for every campaign event at every level. You won’t regret it. Promise.”

“The more this effort is branded as part of the Democratic Party, the less traction it will get.”

Yes (because it would be politically smart for Democrats)

“Yes, and drive a wedge between Republicans and tea partiers, who hate Wall Street almost as much as they hate Nancy Pelosi.”

“The Democrats need to motivate their base. They can distance themselves from the freaks the same way the GOP does from the tea party outliers.”

“Dems have lost the center—the only way to forestall another blowout is to bolster turnout on the fringe left.”

• • • • • • • 

Democratic Political Insiders Jill Alper, John Anzalone, Brad Bannon, Dave Beattie, Andy Bechhoefer, Cornell Belcher, Matt Bennett, Mitchell W. Berger, Mike Berman, Stephanie Bosh, Paul Brathwaite, Donna Brazile, Mark Brewer, Ed Bruley, George Bruno, Deb Callahan, Bonnie Campbell, Bill Carrick, Guy Cecil, Martin J. Chavez, Tony Coelho, Larry Cohen, Jerry Crawford, Brendan Daly, Jeff Danielson, Peter Daou, Howard Dean, Scott DeFife, Jim Demers, Tad Devine, David Di Martino, Debbie Dingell, Monica Dixon, Patrick Dorton, Pat Dujakovich, Anita Dunn, Jeff Eller, Steve Elmendorf, Carter Eskew, Vic Fazio, Peter Fenn, Scott Ferson, Jim Fleischmann, Tina Flournoy, Don Foley, Jeffrey Forbes, Vincent Frillici, Gina Glantz, Niles Godes, John Michael Gonzalez, Joe Grandmaison, Anna Greenberg, Stan Greenberg, Pat Griffin, Larry Grisolano, Michael Gronstal, Lisa Grove, Marcia Hale, Jill Hanauer, Dick Harpootlian, Paul Harstad, Laura Hartigan, Doug Hattaway, Mike Henry, Karen Hicks, Leo Hindery Jr., Harold Ickes, Marcus Jadotte, John Jameson, Steve Jarding, Jonathon Jones, Jim Jordan, Gale Kaufman, Lisa Kountoupes, Celinda Lake, David Lang, Penny Lee, Chris Lehane, Jeff Link, Bob Maloney, Jim Manley, Steve Marchand, Jim Margolis, Paul Maslin, Keith Mason, Susan McCue, Gerald McEntee, Tom McMahon, Phil McNamara, David Medina, Michael Meehan, Mark Mellman, John Merrigan, Michael Monroe, Steve Murphy, Janet Napolitano, David Nassar, Marcia Nichols, John Norris, Tom Ochs, Tom O’Donnell, Jeffrey Peck, Debora Pignatelli, Tony Podesta, Jack Quinn, Larry Rasky, Mame Reiley, Ed Rendell, Steve Ricchetti, Will Robinson, Steve Rosenthal, David Rudd, Ryan Rudominer, John Ryan, Michael Sargeant, Stephanie Schriock, Terry Shumaker, Sean Sinclair, Phil Singer, Erik Smith, Doug Sosnik, Greg Speed, Darry Sragow, Ken Strasma, Doug Thornell, Jeffrey Trammell, Ed Turlington, Rick Wiener, James Williams, JoDee Winterhof, Brian Wolff, Jon Youngdahl, and Jim Zogby.

GOP Political Insiders Dan Allen, Stan Anderson, Gary Andres, Saulius (Saul) Anuzis, Rich Ashooh, Whit Ayres, Brett Bader, Mitch Bainwol, Brian Baker, Gary Bauer, David Beckwith, Paul Bennecke, Clark Benson, Wayne Berman, Brian Bieron, Charlie Black, Kirk Blalock, Carmine Boal, Jeff Boeyink, Ron Bonjean, Jeff Buley, Luke Byars, Nick Calio, Al Cardenas, Danny Carroll, Alex Castellanos, Ron Christie, Jim Cicconi, Jonathan Collegio, Rob Collins, Cesar Conda, Jake Corman, Scott Cottington, Jay Cranford, Greg Crist, Diane Crookham-Johnson, Fergus Cullen, Tom Davis, Mike Dennehy, Ken Duberstein, Debi Durham, Sara Fagen, Frank Fahrenkopf, John Feehery, Don Fierce, Mindy Finn, Mindy Fletcher, Carl Forti, Alex Gage, Bruce A. Gates, Sam Geduldig, Adam Geller, Benjamin Ginsberg, David Girard-diCarlo, Bill Greener, Jonathan Grella, Lanny Griffith, Janet Mullins Grissom, Doug Gross, Todd Harris, Steve Hart, Christopher Healy, Ralph Hellmann, Chris Henick, Terry Holt, David Iannelli, Ed Ingle, Jim Innocenzi, Clark Judge, David Keating, David Kensinger, Bob Kjellander, Ed Kutler, Chris LaCivita, Jim Lake, Steven Law, George S. LeMieux, Steve Lombardo, Kevin Madden, Joel Maiola, Gary Maloney, David Marin, Mary Matalin, Dan Mattoon, Brian McCormack, Mark McKinnon, Kyle McSlarrow, Ken Mehlman, Jim Merrill, Lisa Camooso Miller, Tim Morrison, Mike Murphy, Phil Musser, Ron Nehring, Terry Nelson, Neil Newhouse, David Norcross, Ziad Ojakli, Jack Oliver, Todd Olsen, Kevin O’Neill, Connie Partoyan, Dana Perino, Billy Piper, Van B. Poole, Tom Rath, Scott Reed, David Rehr, Tom Reynolds, Steve Roberts, Jason Roe, David Roederer, Dan Schnur, Russ Schriefer, Rich Schwarm, Brent Seaborn, Rick Shelby, Andrew Shore, Kevin Shuvalov, Don Sipple, Ken Spain, Fred Steeper, Bob Stevenson, Terry Sullivan, David Tamasi, Eric Tanenblatt, Richard Temple, Heath Thompson, Jay Timmons, Warren Tompkins, Ted Van Der Meid, Dirk van Dongen, Jan van Lohuizen, Stewart Verdery, Dick Wadhams, John Weaver, Lezlee Westine, Dave Winston, Ginny Wolfe, Fred Wszolek, and Matthew Zablud.

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