Peter Schiff Hits the Big Time, Is Still Doomed

Yes, Peter Schiff is on a roll. He’s raised a zillion dollars, his potential candidacy has drawn national attention, and now he’s landed on the front page of the state’s largest newspaper. A run seems almost inevitable.

Let’s state the obvious: this is a real long shot, and Schiff’s chances are lousy.

Why? Let’s make a list with bullet points!

Why Peter Schiff is Probably Doomed

  • Schiff represents the libertarian wing of the Republican Party. Ron Paul didn’t generate a huge amount of support in the presidential primary here, libertarians are not traditionally strong in Connecticut, so he’d have to gain an awful lot of converts. He is good on TV, so he can sell a message, but it’s difficult to think enough Republicans will bite.
  • He’s in a crowded field, and his niche is kind of small. Think about it this way: Rob Simmons is kind of like John McCain, a quirky, experienced member of Congress with a lot of credibility with moderates. Foley’s like Romney, he has business credentials and money, and Caligiuri’s a little like the likeable, more socially conservative Huckabee. Plus, there’s Linda McMahon, who gets all the wrestling fans. That leaves Schiff to be Ron Paul (sans wrestling fans). Not good.
  • He, uh, doesn’t like voting. No, this does not make him the cool rebel kid. It makes him seem disengaged from the political process in his state and his country.
  • He has economic credentials. Those can’t be disputed (or can they?). But what else does he know? A debate about foreign policy will be… interesting. Foley has actual international experience as a diplomat, and Simmons was a CIA officer and extremely knowledgeable about foreign affairs. Schiff?
  • While the conduct of family shouldn’t necessarily be campaign fodder, Schiff’s father is in prison for not paying his taxes. It will, as Schiff admits, be an issue.
  • Inexperience. He has never run for any office before. Foley also has this problem.

To be fair, Schiff does have some important things going for him.

A few bright spots

  • Money and a network of nationwide support. Ned Lamont had that, too, though the field was obviously less crowded.
  • An economic message different from that of every other candidate. He could be in the best position to capitalize on the anger and alienation a lot of conservatives are feeling.
  • He’s the ultimate outsider, and his economic predictions make him look like a prophet.
  • The media seems to like him. And why not? He’s a member of the tribe.

The second point is the only one that should give Schiff’s potential GOP opponents pause. Schiff is the kind of guy who has the credentials and the message to turn the kind of free-floating anger we see at town halls and at tea party protests into something real. It isn’t that he’s a demagogue, but he could be seen as a sort of anti-government white knight.

That scenario, however, is like catching lightning in a bottle. Doable, but hardly likely.

I expect Schiff will announce soon, and then we’ll start to see what kind of candidate he makes. At this point, however, his is a stock I would pass on.

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18 responses to “Peter Schiff Hits the Big Time, Is Still Doomed

  1. The media seems to like him. And why not? He’s a member of the tribe.

    haha… wait a second… is that a double-entendre GC?! haha…

    I basically agree with everything you said, except…

    your highly presumptuous statement:

    That leaves Schiff to be Ron Paul (sans wrestling fans).

    Some wrestling fans supported Ron Paul:

    http://wonkette.com/338053/monster-demon-wrestler-endorses-paul

    And as Puf previously mentioned, Glenn may not like Linda that much anyway:

    I think Schiff gets the 5-10% libertarian / anti-government vote… and also gets at least a quarter of the 0.01% WWE vote. So there!

  2. And beyond that… well… I don’t see how Schiff does it… though I wouldn’t be upset in the least bit to see him get the nod… cuz I think it’s possible Dodd loses to him. And I’d love to see Schiff in the US Senate.

    One thing has changed though since Feb 2008… I hear a lot more Cheshire Republicans speaking positively of Ron Paul. That’s not to say that they would vote for him today… or that they’d vote for Schiff next August. But many GOP primary voters are truly concerned about the deficit spending… and they want honesty. And the Republican most credible (though imperfect – think earmarks) on those two issues is Ron Paul.

  3. One thing has changed though since Feb 2008… I hear a lot more Cheshire Republicans speaking positively of Ron Paul. That’s not to say that they would vote for him today… or that they’d vote for Schiff next August. But many GOP primary voters are truly concerned about the deficit spending… and they want honesty. And the Republican most credible (though imperfect – think earmarks) on those two issues is Ron Paul.

    That’s Schiff’s biggest strength. It doesn’t seem like enough right now, but maybe by next year it will be. You never know!

    He has enough money to shake things up a little, at least.

  4. I said something on Memorial Day 2006.

    I saw Chris Murphy in our parade and very sincerely wished him the best of luck in 2008 when I figured Nancy Johnson may finally be retiring. (I like Chris and it really was meant with best wishes.)

    I now look like a j@ck@$$… as do many who thought smurf had no chance.

    Nationally, the globals were everything in 2006. And with the wars still raging and the unemployment pretty high… I’m not convinced that in 2010, incumbency will have the typically great value that it normally has.

    But then, that’s a general… and there’s plenty of history to have some sense of the possibilities with those.

    Wide open primaries could go anywhere. Though at this point, I see only four constituencies leaning anywhere:

    1) Simmons’ personal friends / constituents – 3% to 5% maybe
    2) Caligiuri’s personal friends / constituents – less than 1%
    3) libertarian-leaning GOP – 5% to 10% for Schiff
    4) Roe voters – 30% for Sam

    That leaves well more than half of the GOP completely undecided… and possibly less than 40% winning the primary. I do expect the field to narrow though.

  5. If McMahon, Foley and Schiff are all pro-choice, I find it hard to believe that Sam loses a five-person GOP primary.

  6. Don’t underestimate Schiff.

    The economy will really be in the tubes by the time the election rolls around and Schiff is the only one who can say he predicted the crisis and knows the way out.

    The fact that he is a political outsider is a huge positive, at least for me. Our founders envisioned people leaving their jobs to serve a few years in Washington, and then coming back to their job in the private sector.

    Schiff’s final line says it all:

    “The country’s in serious trouble. We’re not going to change anything by sending the same bureaucrats back to Washington.”

  7. Our founders envisioned people leaving their jobs to serve a few years in Washington, and then coming back to their job in the private sector.

    I’m favorable to Schiff, but wasn’t Jefferson a career politician?

  8. Who thinks a conversation about respective daddies would necessarily help Dodd? Both of them have only to quote scripture to the effect that the sins of the fathers should not be visted upon their sons. The dad’s were ober 12, right?

  9. AndersonScooper

    Geez, I wonder what our Founding Fathers would say about a man who has never bothered to vote.

    That aside, Schiff has no chance of gaining the nomination. If he wants to run, he’d be smarter to do so as an Independent.

    But then again, I don’t think Schiff’s is running to win. The guy’s a sheer huckster, and my belief is that this is all about media exposure so he can rake in more fees from people buying into his hedge fund.

  10. Great headline, GC! I have heard from some fairly active GOPers that they love Schiff, but I agree, it would be so hard for him to pass a sitting State Sen. and a former prominent rep. It can be done, but I rate Schiff about 4th in likelihood to win the nomination, and perhaps 2nd in ability to win against Dodd. (Foley can’t beat Dodd, and Dodd and the media would crucify Caligiuri for not being an active member of NARAL.

  11. If Schiff takes it seriously he can win. He’s younger, more dynamic than Simmons or Dodd.

    A bad economy won’t hurt.

    Schiff’s been predicting a double dip in the market in the September to November time frame. If he and Dr Doom are right he’ll become a media guru.

    Yes I’m skeptical about his commitment to this Senate run.

    I’m also skeptical that the US as international debtor pariah will happen as quickly as he’s predicting. There’s no sign that China will cut us off yet. I think he’s right but not about the timing on this one.

    A bad economy and he can sell gloom and doom and fiscal responsibility.

  12. If I wasn’t clear I agree with Genghis.

    Schiff has the money and the media presence to make a huge splash here if he wants to.

    I don’t think he can win as an indie candidate. An indy run would be Dodd’s dream.

  13. AndersonScooper

    GoatBoy, you’re forgetting Foley and $10-12 Million campaign he’s putting together. Will Schiff be able to approach those numbers?

    I predict that compared to Foley, Schiff is going to look like a quack.

  14. GoatBoy, you’re forgetting Foley and $10-12 Million campaign he’s putting together. Will Schiff be able to approach those numbers?

    Schiff has stated that the race may cost $20 million, and he will only run if he thinks he can raise close to it. He is just under $1 million right now and he hasn’t even announced. He has a nationwide base of support and thousands of clients to ask for donations. Also, Schiff has mentioned that he would sacrifice 1 or 2 million of his own money.

  15. But then again, I don’t think Schiff’s is running to win. The guy’s a sheer huckster, and my belief is that this is all about media exposure so he can rake in more fees from people buying into his hedge fund.

    Wow, I agree with Scooper. A day for the history books for sure.

  16. I had a chance to meet Foley, Simmons, and Caliguiri at an event last week, and have been tracking Schiff on FB for a couple of weeks too.

    For sake of perspective, I don’t consider myself aligned with the Libertarian Party, and thought Ron Paul unfit for president, but certainly suitable as a congressman. I like Huckabee a lot, and held out hope he could win the Republican nomination against all odds.

    So, that being said, here are my impressions:

    Simmons is a back-slapping, glad-handing “Politician”. Canned lines, partisan jokes, you name it. I’ve never been a fan of “moderate” Republicans who lack the spine to take a stand and lead. I voted for him against Gejendson (sp?), but I hope he doesn’t end up with the nomination.

    Caligiuri is a likeable guy for sure. He’s proven to be fiscally conservative with the exception of abandoning his party to vote in favor of a minimum wage hike (major error). It’s hard to shine running on a record as a legislator in the minority party at the state level. It’s hard to make the irrelevant seem relevant. Apparently many of his compatriots have already endorsed Simmons as well, which doesn’t bode well.

    Foley is a down-to-earth guy who doesn’t seem to have a care in the world, or if he really gets any traction in this race. I almost want to get behind him just for that. Not certain what his motivation or strategy will be though, and this is going to be a hard fought, bloody race, with plenty of national interference. Not sure his life experience is up to that.

    So, after having met all these guys, I’m in the Schiff corner for now. He speaks with great understanding about how markets work, and the effects of government interference in them. Frankly, I think he’s just what this state and nation need right now.

    The primary is still many months away now…

  17. READ THE BELOW ARTICLE AND YOU WILL UNDERSTAND WHY CT NEEDS PETER SCHIFF. ALSO IF SCHIFF DOES NOT GET THE REPUBLKICAN PARTY ENDORSEMENT THE CT INDEPENDENT WILL RUN HIM. HOPEFULLY THE REPUBLICANS WILL NOT MAKE A GIANT MISTAKE .

    *********************************************************

    The financial world today has changed greatly over the years, with seven day banking and faster than ever clearing times of transactions our finances have moved into the realm of light speed.

    Big banks and their banking policies have also changed greatly with the changing times. After the Real Estate bubble popped, big banks became victims of their own greed. Staggering foreclosures and evaporating collateral in real estate forced hundreds of small and large banks to go out of business.

    However, some select banks were deemed “too big to fail” and reckless and greedy banking institutions like AIG, Citibank, Fannie Mae, Freddy Mac, Bank of America, etc.. etc.. were given Trillions of dollars in taxpayer bailout money.

    This money was created by the Federal Reserve System, a corrupt institution run by the banking elite themselves and led by Ben Bernake. While many have recently congratulated Ben Bernake for fending off a Depression globally, Americans have seen no relief, no growth, and ever increasing unemployment.

    The Trillions in fake money that has been given to so many un-named institutions are still a mystery to the average American but fortunately our leaders have taken notice and two bills H.R 1207 and SB 607 are demanding an audit of the Federal Reserve. The Federal Reserve has fought back by hiring a high priced PR firm to lobby Congress and make sure the recipients of the Trillions in tax dollars are kept secret.

    According to Peter Schiff of Euro Pacific Capital, every one of us will be paying the price even harder in the coming years.“When the fake money hits the streets Congress will be confronted with two horrible choices. Raise interest rates to stop runaway inflation and further collapse the real estate market and stock market or leave interest rates low and force the Dollar down against other currencies. This second choice also brings the risk of forcing our debtors to cut their losses, to induce the sale of U.S. treasuries and debt and spawn hyper inflation, or worse hyper stagflation.”

    “The stage we are at now with banks is one…

    CONTINUE READING BY CLICKING BELOW

    http://www.milforddailyblog.com

  18. Obama was sold a Keynesian policy to stimulate through debt , a chepaer dollar and through an inflationsry spiral.

    Deflation was viewed as the biggest risk: wage deflation would mean even more foreclosures. Revenue deflation for companies means debt default and job cuts. Tax revenue deflation means government increasing crisis in federal and state budgets.

    Keynesians will tell you that a round of wage inflation and revenue inflation for governments and corporations will erode long-term debt like mortgages and bond commitments when viewed through the prism of present income five years into an inflationary cycle. Much easier to pay a $2,000 mortgage when base your income increases 30%, etc. The US National debt begins to look much smaller with inflated 2015 dollars.

    Will it work? Is a weak dollar to stimulate exports an answer? Rapid price reflation?

    Schiff doesn’t think so. I don’t. We are commited to seeing the drama play out as we double national debt in the naxt decade and inflation grips the system. Eventually we’ll face 1980/81 again where inflation and interest rates will be so high that price deflation is necessary to stabilize the economy.

    It won’t play out in time for Schiff’s campaign.

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