December 30, 2005


The Office Pool, 2006 (WILLIAM SAFIRE, 12/30/05, NY Times)

HERE is your 32nd annual chance to Beat the Pundit. In each multiple choice, pick one, none or all. In a good year, a master prognosticator gets four right.

1. U.S. troops in Iraq at 2006 year's end will number: (a) current "base line" 138,000; (b) closer to 100,000; (c) closer to 90,000; (d) 80,000 or below. [...]

12. Thinking outside the ballot box - the dark-horse line for the 2008 presidential race will pit: (a) Virginia Democrat Mark Warner against Massachusetts Republican Mitt Romney in the battle of centrist capitalists; (b) Dems' iconoclastic Senator Russ Feingold vs. the G.O.P.'s nonpartisan Mayor Mike Bloomberg to compete for evangelical vote; (c) the Dems' favorite Republican, Chuck Hagel, against the G.O.P.'s favorite Democrat, Joe Lieberman; (d) domestic centrists and foreign-policy hardliners Hillary ("You're a Grand Old Flag") Clinton against Condi ("I am not a lawyer") Rice.

13. Conventionally, inside the box: (a) Bill Richardson vs. Rudy Giuliani; (b) Hillary vs. John McCain; (c) Warner vs. Romney; (d) Joe Biden vs. George Allen.

14. As Bush approval rises, historians will begin to equate his era with that of: (a) Truman; (b) Eisenhower; (c) L.B.J.; (d) Reagan; (e) Clinton.

Posted by Orrin Judd at December 30, 2005 8:41 AM

1) (d) 80,000 or below.
12) none.
13) none.
14) None while he remains in office - Reagan after he's out.

Posted by: pj at December 30, 2005 10:00 AM

1- 100,000

12- Hillary vs. Condi (jello pit is optional)

13- Hillary vs. Giuliani (jello pit required)

14- None of the above. Bush should be equated by future hisotirans with Lincoln (who was villified while in office - "the original gorilla" - as much as Bush). If Lincoln was the Great Emancipator, Bush will be the Great Liberator.

Posted by: bplus at December 30, 2005 10:11 AM

1. c (closer to 90,000) - depending on how many are moving in and out of Syria.

12. none of the above

13. c

14. what bplus said

Posted by: Rick T. at December 30, 2005 10:47 AM

Semi-related question....

Which is better: Clinton vs. McCain or Clinton vs. Rice?

Posted by: Jay at December 30, 2005 10:47 AM

1. 70k
12. obama vs mc cain
13. richardson vs giuliani
14. george washington of the M.E.

Posted by: toe at December 30, 2005 12:35 PM

1. Well under 80,000
12. Warner vs. Romney
13. I'm afraid it may be Hillary vs. McCain but I'm not yet totally convinced, so None of the Above
14. Agree with pj -- he's Reagan once he's gone (and conservatives will pretend they always agreed with him, like they did with the Gipper)

Posted by: Matt Murphy at December 31, 2005 3:53 AM