Today's focus is on the presidential race. The GOP side seems wide open, and John Edwards is trying to prove that Dems need to consider what he could accomplish in a general election. And what is up with the ineffective Democratic majority in Congress?

Democrats

Tom Bevan at RealClearPolitics.com relates the struggle between Hillary Clinton and Rudy Giuliani in terms of what we should expect during the next year: those of political warfare. He theorizes that Giuliani will win because the GOP sees him as its best "warrior."

Brian Beutler says the Democrats in Congress still don't get it. They became an effective opposition party in 2005 but haven't quite figured out what to do with a majority. It shows in the polls.

Taylor Marsh delves into John Edwards' strategy of his electability. Will Edwards really be able to vie for the "bubba" vote in red states and not drag down local candidates, like Clinton or Obama might?

Republicans

Erick at Redstate.com writes an open letter to Fred Thompson. He urges Thompson to step it up a notch, and now might be a good time -- the first primary is less than three months away.

Marc Ambinder expounds on what's the matter with Mike Huckabee. Why isn't he more popular in the GOP, considering his charisma and his appeal to social conservatives? It seems the establishment doesn't trust him.

Dan Balz makes the case that the GOP now has an intense race: Huckabee, Mitt Romney, John McCain, Giuliani and Thompson. I think McCain is done. But what happens if Huckabee pulls off an upset in Iowa early in January? That's still a month before Feb. 5.

Ed Whelan at National Review Online reports that Judge Leslie H. Southwick might get a Senate confirmation hearing as early as today. He says Southwick doesn't run in conservative circles. All could be moot if the Dems decide to filibuster.

Issues

Hale Stewart at Huffington Post points out that the Asian Central Banks have lost interest in the dollar. He's expounding on a subject I recently wrote about: lack of fiscal responsibility.

Megan McCardle discusses private and public charity. If more private charities were to spring up and replace the government, then perhaps ending entitlements and embracing a more libertarian state could be considered. Ironically, I think most charities don't actually help those who need charity -- think arts and cultural organizations.

Mat Stoller at openleft.com talks about the importance of Net neutrality. It helped spread political dissent most recently in Burma -- that is, before the government shut it down.

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