• This whole Gore-Dean thing got me thinking. Everyone's crowned Howard Dean (search) the inevitable nominee. Game over. All this without one caucus, one primary, one contest -- anywhere. Not one vote has been cast. But yet it seems like the die has been cast.

    Says who?

    Imagine if a tall, lanky backwoodsman named Abraham Lincoln had to rely on polls before seeking the presidency back in 1860. He'd have been laughed off the ballot before there was a ballot.

    Harry Truman didn't poll well in 1948. But last time I checked, he won in 1948.

    Richard Nixon was a third choice among Republicans polled in 1967. He went on to get his party's nomination and the election in 1968.

    Look, for all I know, these polls are right. Howard Dean is "the" guy in New Hampshire, maybe now Iowa too.

    But I can remember when Eugene McCarthy was suddenly "the" guy in 1968. When Ed Muskie was "the" guy in 1972. And when a guy named Scoop Jackson was "the" guy in 1976.

    Polls shouldn't elect presidents. We should.

    Sentiment is one thing. Banking on it being bible is another.

    Would a former Princeton University professor named Woodrow Wilson have polled well? Or an argumentative John Adams? Or an out of nowhere Jimmy Carter?

    I don't think so.

    Look, polls are nice. But there's a big difference between measuring sentiment at the moment and a leader for the future.

    I heard one network anchor say he was ticked off at a recent debate that we had to hear from Carol Mosley Brown or Dennis Kucinich, presumably because these guys didn't have a chance.

    Says who?

    No election told him that. Polls told him that.

    I don't know if I was more offended for them being dismissed, or that pompous network anchor for being the one to dismiss them. Dismiss them based on nothing more than a poll? Please.

    Watch Neil Cavuto's Common Sense weekdays at 4 p.m. ET on Your World with Cavuto.