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Does Kerry Have Bad DNA?

Reported by Melanie - September 29, 2004 -

Paul Sullivan, a political columnist for the Lowell (Massachusetts) Sun made an appearance today (September 29, 2004) on Dayside w/Linda Vester. Sullivan was there as a long time Kerry watcher to speak on Kerry's reputation as the "come back kid."

Vester opened the segment asking whether Kerry "intentionally play[s] possum" and then ends with a big finish, or if he truly lags early on? Sullivan said Kerry "really isn't as good a finisher as he is a bad starter." Sullivan said the "theory" that Kerry holds back "like a race horse" is just "absolutely nonsense." Sullivan said Kerry didn't come from behind in Iowa, instead Howard Dean and Richard Gephardt both "shot themselves" and then Kerry "shot the gap."

Vester asked if she "should conclude that you don't think he could do it with this race?" Sullivan said "this is certainly winable" but Kerry doesn't have a "magic formula" for coming from behind. Sullivan said the Massachusetts state win over Bill Wells wasn't a big deal because Democrats have won senate seats there since l972. He said if Kerry'd lost, that would have been the big story.

Vester asked why Kerry gets behind, and Sullivan responded that he guessed "familiarity breeds contempt" as is often true for journalists who follow a politician for a long time, but Kerry's behind because he's not a warm and fuzzy guy. Sullivan said he finds himself disagreeing with Bush "on so many issues, but the fact is you like him. John Kerry has a likability problem." He wondered if it was a "DNA problem." Vester said "we've heard" that Kerry believes that nobody really pays attention to a presidential election until three weeks before they vote and she wondered if Kerry was "laying back until three weeks and then he just gives a lotta moxie?" Sullivan said that's the kind of thing someone who's not doing well would say, but, "but that's crazy." He said, "The trick here is, you say you're a late starter, then you don't have to do anything until the end."

COMMENT: Who needs "527 groups" when you've got Fox News?