So, many of you believe that Barack Obama has been disappointing -- public option, too big to fail, detention, Afghanistan, and several other issues. Let's go through the options. The other serious candidates for the nomination, the ones who had any plausible chance of winning, were Clinton, Edwards, Richardson, Dodd, and Biden. I'll extend it; the candidates from 2004 who put together serious campaigns were Kerry, Dean, Clark, Gephardt, and Edwards again. In my view, any of those were mainstream enough that they were (on ideological grounds) plausible Democratic nominees for president, and plausible winners had they been nominated.. Hey, you with the Kucinich sign -- no, he really isn't in the mainstream of the party.
You see the question coming: pick your candidate, and explain to me how things would have been different, and you would have been happier, had he or she been elected president in 2008? Once again, this is neither sarcastic nor rhetorical. I'm looking for real suggestions -- but I'm looking for suggestions that are grounded in the real world of Blue Dogs in the House, 58-60 Dems in the Senate including Lieberman and Ben Nelson, and the rest of the context of the last two years. And, of course, the real primary and general election world of campaign '08, with all of the context involved there.
(Of course, in reality the actual alternatives were in many cases problematic on other grounds: Edwards on scandal, Richardson and Dodd also on lower-level scandal, Dean on...well, I don't really want to fight that one right now. I'm not looking for opinions about who was the best nominee; I'm looking for opinions about what would have changed with a plausibly more liberal nominee).