Back east, well-placed Democrats have agreed that the party's 2008 nomination is all wrapped up better than three years in advance. They say that the prize is Sen. Hillary Rodham Clinton's for the asking, and that she is sure to ask. But here on the left coast, I found surprising and substantial Democratic opposition to going with the former first lady.
At a dinner party in a private room of a Los Angeles restaurant attended by eight Democratic politicians, I was asked to assess the political scene. I concluded with a preview of the distant events of 2008. While there had not been so open a race for the Republican nomination since 1940, I said, Clinton was dominant for the Democrats. For someone who is neither an incumbent president nor vice president to have apparently locked the nomination so early is without precedent.
As I made this analysis, the liberal Democratic functionary across the table from me shook his head in disagreement. He left his seat between courses, and then returned with this announcement: ''There are eight Democrats in this room. I've taken a little poll, and none of them -- none -- are for Hillary for president. They think she is a loser.''
Fascinating. Apparently the Cali-crats doubt Hillary can win so they are looking at horses like Mark Warner and Evan Bayh. I still think that Hillary is the odds-on favorite for plenty of good reasons and would be a formidable opponent in the general election. However, it is early in the game which means plenty of time for missteps and a loss of momentum. I might add that our faithful reader oyster who hails from the other side of the aisle is not sanguine on Hillary at all.
HT: The Corner