Presidential potentials

Everybody’s favorite pundit Larry Sabato from UVa breaks down the Republican field for 2012:

Presidential general elections are often far more predictable than the nominating contests. Why? The general elections are shaped by fundamental factors (shape of the economy, war and peace, scandal, presence of an incumbent, etc.), and these are not easily altered and can be seen–to a certain degree–well in advance. But nominating battles are very different. The vast majority of the voters agree with the vast majority of the candidates on a vast majority of the issues. They all share the same party label. So differences in personality and character, sectionalism, campaign spending, alliances with key constituencies, and other factors substitute for the fundamentals of a general election.

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