Below, I will briefly look at the upcoming trends in the charts of Senator Tom Daschle, Representative Richard Gephardt, Governor Howard Dean, Senator John Edwards, Senator John Kerry, and Senator Joseph Lieberman, each a potential presidential contender.
The biblical triumph of David over Goliath is the archetypal story of the defeat of the bully. David, empowered by devotion to his spiritual faith, symbolic of truth and virtue, defeats the barbaric and brutish Philistine, Goliath. Significantly, David is unable to fight encumbered with the traditional sword and armor, but instead uses a simple sling and stone. This perfectly aimed bit of rock hits Goliath in the center of his forehead, where he is unprotected and vulnerable to a lethal blow.
The Goliath-like bullying tactics of the Bush administration are well known throughout today’s world. The orchestrated riot used to shut down the ballot counting in Florida 2000, the shameless and manipulative campaign tactics, and the recent arm-twisting, threats, and bribes used to get a UN Security Council Resolution, all demonstrate this administration’s willingness to use aggressive and threatening tactics – economic, military, rhetorical, and strategic – to further its goals. Indeed, the entire Iraqi war enterprise, a manifestation of the recently published Strategic Policy Review, has been an exercise in global bullying on a breathtaking scale.
In the meantime, Democrats are fast reaching a critical moment of decision. Who will play the role of David in the looming battle with the philistine Republican behemoth? Who will go one-on-one with George Bush on the 2004 presidential battlefield? Who can aim the stone that wields the deathblow to this corrupt, incompetent, and brutish administration?
Senator Tom Daschle, Representative Richard Gephardt, Governor Howard Dean, Senator John Edwards, Senator John Kerry, and Senator Joseph Lieberman.
There are some definite indications that point to Senator Daschle (12.9.1947) growing bolder in his ongoing battle with the Republican opposition, through 2004. He will be moving from the transit of Pluto to his natal Sun in 2002 to the progression of his Sun opposite progressed Pluto in 2003 to the progression of his Sun opposite natal Pluto in 2004. All of these configurations strengthen his position of power and prominence and bring him into an intense power struggle with the opposition. This Sun/Pluto series ends around 12/04, however, which suggests to me a decrease in prominence after 2004. This could be because the leadership mantle of the party is taken over by a Democratic president at that time. It is also possible he will give up his role as the leading Senate Democrat. Clearly, this does not signal a presidential win for him.
Look for Daschle to be more outspoken and aggressive during the following periods: January 2003, when transiting Jupiter first trines his Ascendant and then triggers the progressed Sun opposite progressed Pluto; April through June 2003, when transiting Uranus opposes his natal Mars and triggers progressed Mars conjunct natal Mars; February 2004, when Uranus returns to oppose Mars once again.
Richard Gephardt (1.31.1941) has been in a funk lately, with several Saturn activations during the election cycle and beyond. The big one is converse progressed Sun quincunx natal Saturn, activating the natal square, and continuing full strength through May 2003. This will continue to oppress him through Spring 2003.
From September through November 2002, there was also the transit of Neptune conjunct his Descendant and square his natal Saturn. Add to this the tertiary progressed MC conjunct natal Saturn that peaked on election day, and you have the setting for the recent crisis that transpired when Gephardt supported Bush’s War Resolution. The perception of weakness was enhanced by the Neptune transit, and the MC/Saturn progression suggested wrong career choices that carried a big price.
Gephardt will move out of the doldrums by June 2003 and will be speaking out more and more in criticism of the administration. Despite some perceived weakness in July and December 2003 when Neptune crosses his Sun, the general trend will be more aggressive and focused. Pluto will be conjunct his natal Mars and triggering the progressed Jupiter quincunx Mars. We can expect some very strong rhetoric around October through November 2003, during a time of great crisis for the Bush administration.
Gephardt will continue to be quite aggressive during the second half of 2004 and throughout 2005 as progressed Mars comes into opposition with his natal Pluto. However, there is little to suggest popularity during this period, and, in fact, there is some suggestion of a lack thereof. Saturn will be squaring his Venus in August 2004, just after the Democratic Convention, and in January 2005. Thus, though it looks as though he will be actively pursuing the presidency during 2003 and early 2004, his chances of catching the public’s imagination as a winner are very dim. He may, however, prove to be an effective and tireless campaigner for the nominee or a strong spokesperson against administration policy from the House chamber.
Howard Dean (11.17.1948), the current Governor of Vermont, is something of a political dark horse in terms of national politics, but he has a very strong and devoted following. It seems likely that Dean will ride a crest of popularity through 2003, with his campaign gaining some momentum. I do not have an accurate birth time for Governor Dean, but using a noon birth, some significant progressions show up. Converse progressed Sun will be square natal Jupiter throughout 2003. This triggers the larger and slower converse progressed Uranus opposite natal Jupiter that continues until early 2005. This Jupiter/Sun/Uranus combination suggests a large outpouring of expansive, ebullient, and creative energy in 2003. There will also be a strong undercurrent of passionate feeling and attraction suggested by converse progressed Venus conjunct natal Pluto throughout 2003.
Significantly, converse progressed Sun moves into a square with natal Uranus for a year beginning in August 2003, leaving the square to Jupiter by early 2004. At this point there are upsets, changes, and sudden shifts in the campaign, clearly manifesting during the primary season of 2004. The period from late March to mid August 2004 indicates some obstacles and difficulties. In particular, transiting Saturn will be square Dean’s Venus during the Democratic Convention in late July 2004, suggesting he is not entirely happy with the events there. In addition, Uranus makes a station opposite his natal Saturn from late March through mid-August, and tertiary progressed Sun will be conjunct tertiary progressed Saturn from mid-June to mid-July. Perhaps there is a hope of being the Vice Presidential nominee that gets disappointed during this period.
Interestingly, Dean’s chart suggests tremendous energy, power, and popularity come 2005. What exactly this will entail is unclear, but Pluto will conjunct his Mars, and progressed Venus will conjunct his Jupiter, so great things are possible.
Beginning in January 2003, Senator Edwards (6.10.1953) will experience the transit of Pluto opposite his Sun and sesquiquadrate his Venus for much of the year. This will add a boldness and intensity to his rhetoric and deeds in Congress. The general trend with Senator Edwards over the next few years is one of great popularity and success, running from Spring 2003 through at least mid-2009, with some periods of intense difficulty in the midst of this general mood. Progressed Jupiter will be semisquare his natal Venus from May 2003 through November 2008, joined by progressed Jupiter conjunct his natal Sun from January 2004 through June 2009. These are spectacular progressions for success and popularity. There is some question about how much the Uranus/Saturn opposition between October 2008 and February 2009 that falls directly square his Sun will interfere with the general level of protection gleaned from this tremendously strong Jupiter presence. With natal Sun trine natal Saturn, we may expect Edwards to weather this storm fairly well.
Other very positive influences in Edwards' forecast include the converse progression of Venus sextile his natal Sun (May 2003 through April 2005) and the progression of Venus conjunct his natal Mars (December 2004 through November 2005). Again, we find charisma, charm, and popularity with these strong Venus aspects, running very strong from late 2003 through 2005.
But there are some significant questions as to whether these lovely aspects will actually move Edwards to the presidency. There is the station of Saturn on his natal Ascendant from September through November 2003. Then, from late May 2004 through late September 2004, there are a series of strong Saturn influences, several to Edwards’ Moon, that signal a period of some sadness, seriousness, difficulty, and grief. It is possible that these times have less to do with presidential politics and more to do with sorrow and struggle over issues befalling the nation during a very turbulent time (see Timeline) or personal issues. But there is no way of knowing at this point.
The significant Saturn aspects during Spring and Summer 2004 are as follows: transiting Saturn conjunct natal Ascendant (5/23 to 6/1/04); converse progressed Moon square converse progressed Saturn (6/1 to 7/1/04); transiting Saturn square natal Saturn/Neptune, semisquare natal Moon (8/1 to 8/14/04); converse progressed Moon square natal Saturn (8/25 to 9/25/04); progressed Moon opposite natal Saturn (8/25 to 9/25/04); and progressed Moon opposite progressed Saturn (9/19 to 10/19/04).
In Edwards' natal chart, there is a sesquiquadrate between the Moon and Saturn. Although this is a minor hard aspect and has minimal impact much of the time, it does make Edwards sensitive to transits and progressions between the Moon and Saturn. This series includes five different aspects covering five months. There will be some significant difficulties for Edwards during this period. If these aspects are part of the presidential politics picture, I think they suggest a loss of the Democratic presidential nomination. The Vice Presidential nomination remains possible, with a strong, though brief, Jupiter transit right after the convention.
Very powerful, positive energies return without encumbrance for Edwards from late October 2004 onward. If he is the presidential nominee, he will be very likely to win, despite the somber period during the campaign. Tertiary progressed Venus will cross his natal Ascendant, then semisquare his Sun for four months. In addition, converse progressed Mars will be square his natal Pluto from December 2004 through May 2006. This brings a very aggressive, assertive, and focused energy to all that Edwards will attempt, while he remains under the general benefic influence of progressed Jupiter conjunct the Sun.
With Al Gore suddenly out of the presidential horse race, John Kerry (12.11.1943) has shot to the top of many polls as the current front runner. Interestingly, this change happened almost to the day when transiting Pluto came into a one-degree orb of Kerry’s Sun, bringing him into a role of increased prominence and power. With Pluto conjunct Kerry’s first house Sun from now through November 2003, we will see the Senator grow in stature and charismatic presence.
What is perhaps most striking in Kerry’s natal chart is the exceptionally strong Saturn influence: Saturn is conjunct the Moon, opposite the Sun, and square the Midheaven, altogether forming a tight T-square. This suggests a steady, serious, responsible, and very sober personality. There is little in the chart to suggest the warm and appealing nature of a Bill Clinton or the back-slapping (supposed) charm of George Bush. However, strength of character, integrity, perseverance, and depth are all qualities of Saturn. Although, generally, the easy charm and appeal of a strong natal Venus is an important component in a successful candidate, it is not impossible that by 2004, the country will hunger for someone who is able to demonstrate the positive attributes of Saturn. That would be someone whose conscientiousness and thoughtfulness preclude jumping into ill-conceived policies calculated for short-sighted political gain and disastrous for the long-term good of the nation. The 2005 Inaugural Chart has a great deal of Saturn energy and none of the reckless aggression of Bush’s Inaugural Mars/ Uranus square, suggesting a time of hard work and struggle during the four years it describes. It is conceivable that Kerry’s sense of responsibility and integrity will resonate with the times.
From January until early April 2003, Saturn will return to its natal position in Kerry’s chart.
During that period his somewhat stiff and serious nature will be much in evidence. Whether this will ultimately prove to be a liability for his campaign or an asset is yet to be determined.
Also beginning in December 2002 and continuing through 2006, Kerry’s progressed Mars will be conjunct his natal Mars. This is a highly enterprising and aggressive progression that will highlight action, courage, and a pioneering spirit. Natally Mars is conjunct Uranus, which sits exactly on the Descendant. The very strong Uranian influence here adds a counterpoint to the dour Saturnine qualities in Kerry’s character. The willingness to break with tradition and the power of tremendously creative thought are attributes of Uranus that always work in concert with Kerry’s Mars. These will be much in evidence between mid-March and mid-August 2004, when transiting Uranus squares his natal Ascendant and natal Uranus. Returning in January and February 2005, these Uranian periods are also likely to bring unexpected and transformative events that cause significant and sudden changes for Kerry, as well as catapulting him into a whirlwind of activity.
There are several indications that Kerry will indeed win the Democratic presidential nomination. The Democratic Convention, scheduled for July 25 thorough 29, 2004, comes during the transit of Jupiter square to Kerry’s Sun, suggesting that he will be in an expansive and optimistic mood. This transit peaks a few days after the Convention. Within a few days, Jupiter moves to conjunct Kerry’s Midheaven through mid-August, an extraordinarily propitious indication of success. In addition, as mentioned above, transiting Uranus will come back into a one-degree orb of the square to Kerry’s Ascendant at this time, suggesting powerful changes in his status and an abundance of enterprise.
In the ever-important domain of charm and attraction, Kerry does have several progressions involving Venus, between August 2004 and November 2005, that will enable him to survive the image-obsessed world of American politics with skill and aplomb and, quite likely, win the Presidency if he runs. His basic visceral appeal will be very strong during this period. The significant aspects are: progressed Venus quincunx natal Moon (8/04 through 6/05); tertiary progressed Venus conjunct natal Ascendant (9/1/04 to 10/1/04); progressed Moon sextile natal Venus (10/1/04 to 11/1/04); tertiary progressed Venus opposite natal Uranus (10/1/04 to 11/1/04); transiting Uranus trine natal Venus (9/04 through 12/04); and progressed Ascendant square natal Venus (1/05 through 11/05). These Venus aspects suggest a campaign with great appeal and a potential presidential honeymoon that will last through much of 2005.
Currently, Senator Lieberman (2.24.1942) is gaining a boost in the polls due to Al Gore’s withdrawal. In some parts of the country, most notably New York, he is running almost even with Kerry. The planetary indicators suggest, however, that Lieberman’s popularity will crest early, around May 2003. By early 2004, he will enjoy another slight boost in the polls, but things will rapidly unravel for his campaign thereafter. The relevant aspects here are: progressed Sun square natal Venus (5/02 through 5/03); progressed Venus square progressed Jupiter (2/03 through 2/04). It is the waning of these two aspects that will leave Lieberman without that aura of attraction so necessary in a political candidate. The sudden awakening to his shift in status is likely to come as Uranus crosses Lieberman’s Sun for the first time in late March and early April 2004.
There is little else to suggest a victory for Lieberman as we near the July 2004 Convention or the November 2004 election. The only other noteworthy aspect for him over the next two years is the transit of Neptune over his Mercury, ruler of his Midheaven, during 2003. This suggests unrealistic hopes that eventually are disappointed.