SORRY -- RASMUSSEN HASN'T DEMONSTRATED THAT HILLARY WOULD HAVE BEEN THE DEMOCRATS' STRONGEST CANDIDATE
The logic here seems airtight. It isn't.
...McCain fares better against Obama than he does against two other prominent Democrats. New York Senator Hillary Clinton leads McCain by eight points, 50% to 42%. Former Vice President Al Gore, the Democratic presidential nominee in 2000, leads McCain 50% to 43%.
These numbers help explain why Election 2008 is competitive even though events so heavily favor the Democrats -- because the Republicans are on course to nominate their strongest possible general election candidate but the Democrats are not....
According to Rasmussen, Obama beats McCain by 2 points when leaners aren't counted, and by 4 when they are. That's less than 7% (Gore) or 8% (Clinton). So Obama's the weakest candidate of the three, and Clinton's the strongest. Right?
Wrong. I know I say this over and over again, but we have no idea how Hillary would be faring now if she were the nominee because the GOP stopped attacking her months ago, and elements of the GOP and the Vast Right-Wing Conspiracy actually aided and abetted her campaign in its final months, and are still encouraging the Clinton-or-Death crowd to vent.
As for Gore, no Republican is making any great effort to attack him either -- certainly not to the extent that Obama is being attacked.
Expose these two to a full GOP campaign and then show me their numbers against McCain. Yeah, I know -- that's impossible. Well, so is any determination based on this kind of polling of who the strongest Democratic candidate is.