Since September of 2006, we’ve been running a shop containing bumper stickers, buttons and magnets that support various Democratic running mate combinations for the presidential race in 2008. Obama-Edwards 2008? Sure. Gore-Kucinich 2008? OK. Kucinich-Richardson 2008? I don’t understand that pairing myself, but we’ve got it too, just in case. In fact, our goal is to offer just about every possible combination of presidential and vice presidential candidate from among the apparent contenders. That way, YOU can tell US what a reasonable 2008 ticket would look like.
In November, when I started reporting trends in our sales for various Democratic tickets, every single one of the combinations of running mates promoted on a bumper sticker, button or t-shirt we had sold included Barack Obama as either president or vice president. By the middle of December, only one Democratic ticket not including Barack Obama accounted for at least one percent of all running-mates sales, and that was the woman-centered Clinton-Pelosi ticket.
Have matters changed over the winter and with the dawning of the spring, as we’ve gathered more sales of running mate combinations? Let’s find out. The following are running mate combinations (placed in President-Vice President order) that have garnered at least a 1% share of all sales from September 2006 to March 2007, making them the major contenders in the hearts of our customers for a 2008 Democratic presidential ticket:
Barack Obama is still in all but one of these popular combinations, although it’s interesting to note that the most popular of the Obama-inclusive items name him as a Vice Presidential candidate. The most popular presidential candidate among those buying Democratic ticket items is Al Gore (38.9%), followed by Hillary Clinton (31.2%) and only then Barack Obama (11.3%), John Edwards (8.2%) and Joseph Biden (5.7%). Obama is far and away the most popular Vice Presidential candidate named (80.1% of the time), followed at a great distance by Bill Richardson (4.8%), Hillary Clinton (3.9%), Nancy Pelosi (2.8%), John Edwards (2.5%), Russ Feingold (1.6%) and Evan Bayh (1.2%). Next to nobody (0.4%) thinks of Al Gore as a veep any more. Apparently, it’s the top job or nothing for Al Gore in people’s hearts.
The following tickets each garnered less than a 1% share of all running-mates sales, but at least a few people (or one person) thought the ticket would be a good one:
Since last fall, a lot of the possible running-mate combinations have found someone willing to believe in them, although there is still only a small set of these combinations accounting for a very large majority of sales. The preferences shown by our customers are far from random. They are Obamadom, with a Clinton-Pelosi principality.
Candidacies and non-candidacies have been declared, making these considerations less abstract and more grounded in practical possibility. But developments in the race aren’t done, and I promise to check back in a month or two with an update. In the meantime, let’s take this beyond a question of sales. Let me ask you: what is your Democratic dream ticket for 2008? What do you think the ticket will actually be?