The Day After

By Big Tent Democrat

It looks even worse for Hillary Clinton. So what can she do?

Of course the obvious is win. But I think how she wins matters too. But I do not mean win margins. I mean not winning ugly.

It's not fair. The Media, the blogs AND the Right (more on this later) have swooned for Obama. The Obama Rules have been operative throughout. But the Clinton campaign can't change them and any attempt to change them will only make them worse. Either the Media will suspend them now or they will not. Clinton can't do it. The Clinton campaign must remain relentlessly positive and substantive.

More . . .

In addition, the Clinton campaign MUST drop all discussion of super delegates, pledged delegates, Florida, Michigan and all the rest. That discussion must wait until after Clinton has won some recent primaries. Stow the inside baseball discussion.

There are two good reason for this. Number one, they do not matter if Clinton does not win. But number 2 is more important. In order to alter the Clinton Rules, the Media must be forced to discuss the prospect of an Obama Presidency and what that would mean. As someone mentioned in a comment last night, the Media will never be for Clinton. Now they must face the question of whether they will be 100% for Obama. As a Democrat, I plan to try and hold them to the Obama Rules. But for Clinton, her chance of victory comes IF the Media changes those rules. But that development is out of her hands. Even more, if she goes negative, they will be reinforced even more ruthlessly.

If the Obama Rules are rendered inoperative the next two weeks, it will take the McCain campaign and the Right Wing Noise Machine to do it. One of the truly funny ironies of this campaign season is that the GOP and the Right Wing Noise Machine have snookered themselves. They were so busy cheering Obama on in his battle against the Wicked Witch that they helped create the Obama Rules. Apparently they were confident that that Clinton would emerge the winner. They turned Obama into a great dragon slayer. The appreciation of Clinton Haters throughout the country was assured. And since that contingent includes the Media, they are now stuck. It will be very difficult for them to turn this around.

The Obama campaign has provided some fodder for such an attempt. Michelle Obama's statement on having never been proud of the US in her adult life until Obama did well in this contest is the most obvious blunder. Watch to see if that story has legs. Then we will know if the Obama Rules have been weakened.

Finally, a word to Obama supporters, particularly the blogcentric ones. It is time to consider that half of the Democratic Party still likes Hillary Clinton very much. Dancing on her political grave does no good for the conquering hero. A little graciousness goes a long way.

< Post- Election Results Open Thread | Obama's Speech >
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    Good analysis (5.00 / 1) (#9)
    by TheRealFrank on Wed Feb 20, 2008 at 07:45:43 AM EST
    The Clinton campaign seems stuck. If they make negative noises, the media will go after them for being negative. If they remain positive and substantive, they will not generate any news.

    You're right that only attacks from McCain might help her now, since she can't do it herself.

    I don't see how Clinton could still pull it off now, since the dynamics and narrative are wrong for her now. And since SC, all her wins (e.g. those on Super Tuesday) seem to have come through consolidation of support, not by attracting new supporters. Now that Obama seems to be eating into her base support more, there does not seem to be a way anymore for Clinton to turn things around.

    I suspect that Texas will be a narrow loss, and Ohio a narrow win for her on March 4th, after which she'll drop out.

    Looking forward to the GE, I wonder who the media will love more: McCain or Obama. I suspect McCain, as the Democrat usually get the short end of the stick. The Obama campaign has had two big things going for it in the primaries: 1) A media advantage, and 2) A well-executed campaign based on winning states, generating momentum. But, neither of those will work anymore in the GE. Of course, any Democrat still has the big advantage in the GE of Democrats being fired up, and Republicans depressed. But I wonder how it will play out.

    Admit it (none / 0) (#41)
    by tek on Wed Feb 20, 2008 at 08:37:50 AM EST
    no matter what the Clintons do, the media will blast them for attacking and being negative, then make up a bunch of stupid stuff and attribute it to them until it sticks.

    The Dem Party is the loser (5.00 / 2) (#15)
    by Salt on Wed Feb 20, 2008 at 07:51:00 AM EST
    I don't believe it looks as bad for Hillary as it dose the Party.  Dean and Brazile should be fired today why wait and that stupid DNC Dean mailer was pitiful and went directly into the trash my suggestions for the Party would be less than civil, Fla and Mich should never have happened the elevating of SC made this about identity politics that wont sell in a GE, the caucus shell game was the same one Patrick used in Mass for his race for governor so its really hard to believe that they were unaware of the loop hole built into undermine any front runner and enthrone an heir.  MSM no way will keep with the Obama rules there is too much juicy stuff coming up, Rezko trial the backdrop of why Dems lost Congress and much of their power in the 90s, Weather Underground, militants you can tell Obama's wife is becoming the surrogate target they woman hate and all ironic of course.  Everyone needs to concentrate of the local races and provide a veto proof margin in the Senate so if McCain tries to stay in Iraq he can be thwarted.  And WOMEN need to get a grip and think about consolidating their electoral power instead of belonging to political Parties that pander to them on one issue.  Amazing that men and AA can consolidate behind a candidate that looks like them with pride and women can not instead meandering and discussing if after 220 years is she the one, duh.

    I have not given up on a Hiallry nomination as yet

    yes, let's indeed be gracious (none / 0) (#71)
    by riddlerandy on Wed Feb 20, 2008 at 09:22:05 AM EST
    Followers versus supporters (5.00 / 2) (#24)
    by Plutonium Page on Wed Feb 20, 2008 at 07:59:58 AM EST
    Finally, a word to Obama supporters, particularly the blogcentric ones. It is time to consider that half of the Democratic Party still likes Hillary Clinton very much. Dancing on her political grave does no good for the conquering hero.

    You're absolutely correct.  I'll just say one thing:  the schadenfreude has had as positive an effect as would dumping toxic waste in many Clinton supporters' flats, houses, and backyards.  I'll vote for Obama in November, but only because I have to.  The followers' behavior (versus the classiness and grace of the supporters' behavior) has done more damage than they will ever know, and I'm not just speaking for myself.

    A little graciousness goes a long way.

    I'll believe it when I see it :-(

    Furthermore, Michelle Obama's incredibly presumptuous, condescending, and disrespectful remark has really upset those of us who actually have some knowledge of history.  I mean, come on. She wasn't proud of her country when the civil rights movement was going on?  She wasn't proud of her country when it produced a former vice president who won a Nobel Peace Prize for sounding the alarm on climate change?  Unbelievable.

    Yes but (none / 0) (#27)
    by Democratic Cat on Wed Feb 20, 2008 at 08:12:11 AM EST
    Look, I basically agree with you, but we saw Hillary get pilloried for remarks she made when Bill was running the first time.  Based on the little that I have seen, I don't like Michelle Obama very much (just like a lot of people didn't like Hillary in 1992) but I think most of her mistakes are due to her being a political amateur. She needs to get better in order to be more of an asset. She seems like a smart woman, so I hope she works on it.

    Well, there may be hope (none / 0) (#81)
    by delandjim on Wed Feb 20, 2008 at 09:41:16 AM EST
    First in response to the Michelle issue, she is too young to remember the civil rights movement. Doesn't that say something. By the way I find it interesting that the first black person with a serious shot at the POTUS really doesn't have any background in our black history, ironic.

    Anyway....Morning Joe, Scarborough is starting to seriously go after Obama. The blip from Tweety with an Obama supporter when he couldn't name a single accomplishment seems to have had quite an impact. I wonder if Tweety will keep it up. By the way, didn't that start with Frank Luntz? Scarborough was comparing him frequently to having a heart surgeon just out of school or one who has performed surgery before (experience)

    Don't worry about the proud of my country, McCains and the right will take care of that.

    Tapper and Ambinder have a good piece up about 527's for Hillary being set up. (about time)They will be using very good ad people (sample in articles.

    Wow Tweety is still on Morning Joe telling Joe to keep asking 'what has Obama done?'  )There may be hope)


    Somerby calls the MSNBC pundits/reporters (none / 0) (#113)
    by jawbone on Wed Feb 20, 2008 at 10:35:00 AM EST
    "Jack Welch's boys," and he means by that that Welch got himself a network with a well-respected news division and decided to put it to good use.  To get good value for his money. Meaning that he felt he could influence politics enough through NBC's coverage to get the people in government he felt would best meet his needs.

    Somerby feels Russert and Matthews, in particular, then Brian Williams were groomed to do this "job." Russert had MTP, and Tweety and Williams were on cable.  Williams felt he needed to preserve his gravitas, so was given a news hour on CNBC, which he used to excellent advantage during the run up to the 2000 election to continually point our how phony Gore was, what a liar he was, etc.

    Not sure it is a clear cut as that, but look at their actions: On the whole, R's are treadted far differently than D's.

    What I see is that the MCM (mainstream corporate media) is the single greatest influence on who gets the party nominations and then who is eventually elected.

    If the corporate part of the MCM want Obama, he will get the treatment which will enable him to win. If the corporatists want another Republican, McCain will win.

    Axelrod looked at how Bush was packaged and sold to the public, and, I think, he felt with better raw material, Obama and Patrick, he could "package" them and "brand" them to get them to win. His brand is titled "Hope and Change."  It worked. However, MA voters heard the same things they'd heard from their new governor and were not as moved, even with the Ted Kennedy endorsement and Carolyn's blessing, and Hillary won fairly big in MA.

    There have been little pricks of MCM attacks on Obama. Last night's Tweety questioning of the surrogate was almost painful, however, as he pummeled and pummeled him. Made me feel sorry for the guy. But why didn't he have a reply? As the commenter above mentioned, Frank Luntz had already done this question with a focus group of BO supporters--and not one could come up with an accomplishment. There are some in actuality, so the guy could have been better prepared.

    But Tweety's objective was to provide fodder for at least a grazing frenzy on Obama's experience and accomplishments.

    I'm not sure we can tell where the MCM is going to come down.  Their favored position is on the side the the ReThugs.

    BTW--did Matthews say much about Hillary this morning? Or have they figured the don't need to anymore? That may say something about how they're going to treat Obama from now on....

    Where will this go? I have no idea. They may make a few softening up attacks, then go in for the kill during the GE (so ironic when talking about MSNBC's people).


    followers versus supporters (none / 0) (#149)
    by winters61 on Wed Feb 20, 2008 at 12:51:53 PM EST
    Michelle Obama was a child when the civil rights movement was going on? Her remarks have been grossly taken out of context. This type of exaggerated venomous assualt is exactly what Rove, Limbaugh & Co. have been doing for years. Unbelievable. Thankfully America continues to respond to the call that our politics need to be changed. Lastly, do this country a favor and don't vote for a candidate because "you have to" this attitude has gotten us where we are today!

    I don't think.... (5.00 / 2) (#34)
    by A DC Wonk on Wed Feb 20, 2008 at 08:29:29 AM EST
    ... that Clinton has played the victim.  I think it's her supporters who have said that she's a victim.

    And I think they are right.  She was singled out for sexist comments.  Period.  Nobody else was.  Nobody else was asked stupid questions like "Diamonds or Pearls" in a national debate.  Nobody else had their laugh, or cleavage, scrutinized.  Nobody else was compared to a witch.  Nobody else (well, perhaps a little bit with Rudy) had been criticized for marital problems (hello, anybody know McCain's past on this?  it ain't pretty.  Same with Thompson).

    Check out MediaMatters for more info on this.

    Clinton's campaign is done (5.00 / 1) (#38)
    by herb the verb on Wed Feb 20, 2008 at 08:31:57 AM EST
    I say that with great sadness because out of the two she was the only one who had a chance in November and I have been a strong supporter since fall. She was a great candidate and would have been a great president. Sadly, she ran one of the worst campaigns I have ever seen. Of ocurse, it is pretty hard to run a good campaign when the media hates you, your own half of the blogosphere hates you, men hate you, the opposing party hates you, and half of your own party hates you.

    But she knew that going in, and should have worked harder at the organizing level to get out her vote. She was the name recognition front runner, there was no excuse to lose Iowa, there was no excuse to let Brazille and Dean screw her out of the front-loaded Florida and Michigan primaries where she would have clinched her lead. Those are all campaign execution failures and go directly to the lack of ability of her team and campaign. Now she is paying the price (in fact we ALL will in November and for the next 4-8 years).

    I agree the only place she can go from here is positive. She needs to maintain her class and status as a valiant fighter who gave it her best shot and lost. That is the only thing she can salvage from this campaign and I have the feeling she knows it.

    Yes, (5.00 / 1) (#42)
    by tek on Wed Feb 20, 2008 at 08:40:06 AM EST
    and what it truly sad to me is that I think she probably won't be able to run again if she doesn't make it this time.  There goes our chance of a woman president in my lifetime.

    That's my sadness, too (none / 0) (#90)
    by Cream City on Wed Feb 20, 2008 at 09:54:31 AM EST
    and as my daughter and I talked last night, after voting together yesterday when I said that at least we had been able to do so once -- I worry whether she will see it happen again in her lifetime.  So does she, wise as she is about sexism but stunned by the level of the reaction in our society in recent months.  

    She told me that she still may vote for Clinton in November, no matter what -- as a write-in.  And she said that she now is an Independent, not a Dem, after seeing that the leading Dem candidate did not speak up for her or even for his own daughters.  If that becomes a more widespread reaction among young women, that is not good for Dems in the long run.  When we go, will Dems still have the majority of women, the only way we win?


    because Obama (none / 0) (#117)
    by A DC Wonk on Wed Feb 20, 2008 at 10:41:06 AM EST
    ... didn't react when the Media was trashing Clinton, that means your daughter won't vote for Obama?

    (Question: did Clinton react when the press started peddling the Madrassa stuff?  Or that he's a Muslim?  Or when, on Monday night, MSNBC put up a pic of Osama bin Ladin when talking about Obama?)

    Not voting for the Dem in Nov is increasing the chances that we get more Alitos and Roberts on the Supreme Court (Justice Stevens is 84 I think); and increases our stay in Iraq.  That seems like cutting off one's nose to spite one's face.


    Yes, that's what she said -- (none / 0) (#143)
    by Cream City on Wed Feb 20, 2008 at 11:58:52 AM EST
    she has a dad who stands up for his daughter and others' daughters.  And your reverse argument makes theoretical sense, but she isn't looking for a reason to not vote for Clinton; do you get that about getting voters to switch?  They have to switch to the candidate who would be the nominee, not the one who no longer would be in contention.

    As for the argument about the Supreme Court, that is more important to her than you can know -- but again, a man who won't stand up against sexism suggests to her that he won't do well on this, either.  And as for me, I know that a president only nominates, so we will need a stronger Congress -- and you can see in other posts my concerns about the lack of the coattails that we would need to win one.

    So she and her mom are not persuaded by what you say, but there are many months ahead to "hope" to hear more that may give her positives to get her to the polls.  And that ought to be the concern, the turnout, yet the talk always as if there are only two choices for voters in November.


    republican deciding dem nominee (5.00 / 1) (#43)
    by neilario on Wed Feb 20, 2008 at 08:40:30 AM EST
    personally, i am angry and horrified that no one in the democratic party is really talking about the active and no longer covert republican campaign to vote for BO to stop HRC. The fact that in a race this close this is happening is outrageous in my mind. BO will be crushed by mccain and the ridiculous and sunny optimism that so many republicans are flocking to BO because of his great unproven uniter skills is an illusion - and for verification just watch the dick morris bits from yesterday.
    while i am an ardent hrc supporter - i would have accepted BO as a nominee if it had been even close to a fair fight. But between unfair rules regarding MI and FL selective punishment, media attacks, BO's race baiting and sexism AND the republican campaign encouraged by BO's 'be a dem for a day' flyers... i am disgusted by the process.  argh.
    I wish i could actually be happy for the success of BO but the democrats actually hugely favor hrc. and i did think this was a contest for the dem nominee. argh.

    MI and FL (none / 0) (#47)
    by A DC Wonk on Wed Feb 20, 2008 at 08:44:34 AM EST
    Regarding those "unfair rules regarding MI and FL selective punishment" -- do you realize that Harold Ickes, part of HRC's staff, voted to strip MI of their delegates?  Don't blame that on Obama.

    What's most baffling (none / 0) (#58)
    by dmk47 on Wed Feb 20, 2008 at 08:56:01 AM EST
    is that the Clinton campaign devoted more energy to having the rules changed in MI and FL retroactively than competing for yet-to-be elected delegates, until it was too late.

    Yep, one of many bone-headed moves (none / 0) (#87)
    by A DC Wonk on Wed Feb 20, 2008 at 09:50:36 AM EST
    ... by her campaign.  Once she had decided that Texas and Ohio should be her firewall, she should have concentrated solely on that and/or solely on making the "I'd be a better president" case, rather than letting many news-cycles go by with a focus on MI and FL delegate battles.  There's plenty of time after Mar 4 to worry about that.

    Focusin on process just fed into the very meme Obama's been building on, and creating appearances of hypocrisy, etc.  There already was a stereotype that Obama is inspiration and Clinton is the wonk -- but getting knee deep in process that most don't understand (and with Harold Ickes voting one way, and arguing the other way) -- that just detracted from the message she needed to put across.

    Hillary was ill-served by her senior campaign staff.  (She should sue them for gross negligence!)


    unfair rules (none / 0) (#85)
    by neilario on Wed Feb 20, 2008 at 09:43:53 AM EST
    the unfair i use relates to the fact that while other states moved their primaries up onlt MI and FL were punished. fyi. i actually did not blame obama for many of the things i listed fyi.

    Wisconsin shows this clearly (none / 0) (#86)
    by Cream City on Wed Feb 20, 2008 at 09:49:40 AM EST
    as noted on another thread.  I know the counties, I can see the massive GOP crossover yesterday in places like Waukesha County, two to one for Dems but where no Dem can get elected even to town constable.  The conservative talk show campaign and drive by other media here to cross over worked well for him.

    So we may win the White House, but in Wisconsin and elsewhere, we live with states' rights.  Roe v. Wade, for example, hardly exists here -- and such issues will not be a priority for an Obama administration to fix in Congress.  We need it to win approval of presidential nominations to the Supreme Court and so much more in our legislatures.  The win yesterday, and many others, were not with Dems, and no way that most of those crossover voters will be with us in April or November, when we need a coattail effect.  

    This has me very worried.  We will see.


    *if* Obama gets new voters (none / 0) (#89)
    by A DC Wonk on Wed Feb 20, 2008 at 09:52:30 AM EST
    If Obama gets new voters to come out (which we keep hearing about) who haven't voted before very much, won't that help down-ticket?

    Not necessarily (none / 0) (#93)
    by Democratic Cat on Wed Feb 20, 2008 at 09:58:50 AM EST
    Sen. Obama's message is not to promote the Democratic party, it's to promote independence from party. His new voters may or may not vote for Dems downticket. Probably most will, but I think it's an open question.

    Can we learn anything from primary voters' preferences on other measures or candidates on the ballot?  How well did downticket progressive candidates/measures do compared to Obama's numbers?


    Dems did not win downticket (none / 0) (#120)
    by Cream City on Wed Feb 20, 2008 at 10:42:43 AM EST
    in the regularly Republican counties yesterday.

    There it is.


    They come out every four years (none / 0) (#119)
    by Cream City on Wed Feb 20, 2008 at 10:42:02 AM EST
    and only vote Dem if they really are Dems.  They won't be with us in April.  And most of them won't be with us in November.

    We have seen this before and often in Wisconsin, with the open primary.


    Re: Obama supporters (5.00 / 2) (#51)
    by rafaelh on Wed Feb 20, 2008 at 08:48:17 AM EST
    I support Obama, and I agree that many people are being real jackasses when it comes to attacking Hillary. I don't think I need to attack Hillary to explain my support for Obama; I thought they were both great, and just liked him better. In fact, one of the main reasons I preferred Obama was because I thought that Hillary's campaign team would just try to repeat the 1992, 1996 campaigns and work on 14-16 states and forget about the rest of the country. I think the way her campaign worked has proved me right.

    The other reason I preferred Obama is that I really didn't think she would be able to beat the Media, and again I was right. This election is too important and I want a Democratic candidate that knows how to play the media and say all the nice things they like to hear. I think Obama will still face a lot of crap from the Media in the general election but it will be nothing to what they would have done to Hillary. It would have made the 2000 election coverage look fair to Gore.

    Now, we have to work on that, on changing the power structure that allowd the Media to have such an improper influence, or rather, to use their influence in such a childish and unfair way. But that is the world we live in and we have to deal with that now. Obama always seemed more electable  because of that difference in treatment by the media.

    So, my reasons are not that I hate Hillary or think she is evil. And you know what, I think most Obama supporters agree with me. This is one of those times where we are letting the blogs distort our image of the real world. Look at the polls and all the times that voters have been asked about both candidates. The inmense majority of democratic voters like both candidates. Up to now, a small majority has simply preferred Obama to Hillary. I mean, we have to pick one! Don't let the trolls and the people lacking in social skills and empathy determine how you look at the situation.

    If Hillary had won I would have voted for her with a smile and be proud of her. For our country's sake, I hope you guys can manage to do the same for Obama, if he wins. (Hey, anything can happen!) But if the idea of voting for the guy gets difficult, just think of the Supreme Court judges that McCain will nominate. That might help.

    Why does the media love Obama? (5.00 / 1) (#57)
    by Lora on Wed Feb 20, 2008 at 08:55:58 AM EST
    Because they're sexist, and they hate Hillary?  Is that it?

    Or is there a "support Obama over Hillary" movement behind the scenes among the higher-ups?

    That's what I think is more likely.

    It's not (just) sexism.... (none / 0) (#61)
    by dmk47 on Wed Feb 20, 2008 at 08:59:29 AM EST
    it's the mutual antagonism between the media and Bill Clinton that goes back 15 years, that they are now projecting onto Hillary Clinton. The sexism is sort of epiphenomenal, and I doubt it will be long before Michelle Obama takes the brunt of it.

    It's also a more complicated story than you suggest. If Clinton had won 10 states in a row after Super Tuesday, would anyone in the media still be giving Obama a chance?


    I don't know (none / 0) (#67)
    by lilburro on Wed Feb 20, 2008 at 09:09:48 AM EST
    if the media will have as great a need to humiliate a future First Lady, as opposed to a future first female president.

    They love Obama b/c (none / 0) (#76)
    by A DC Wonk on Wed Feb 20, 2008 at 09:34:38 AM EST
    They love Obama (or, perhaps more accurately loved Obama) because he was a fresh young face, a breath of fresh air after all this crappy stuff coming out of Washington.  Because he not only talked about changing policy, but also talked about changing our collective mind-set.  And he talked about it in a very inspiring way.  He's charismatic and telegenic.  He reminds some of how they felt about RFK and JFK.

    Before I get jumped on, I'm not suggesting the above reason is enough to vote for a man.  But I am suggesting that the above was a rather large factor in why he became such a media star.

    I also think that some just want to "move beyond the Bush-Clinton years".  I think that is manifestly unfair, as I think that the policies and economics of the Clinton years were superb.  But people often don't remember the good times as much as the bad times -- and they think of Lewinsky, impeachment, Whitewater, etc.  Is it an accurate portrayal of the past?  No.  But nevertheless, that's what the zeitgeist appears like to me.

    (Matthews had it exactly backwards: if Bill Clinton hadn't had the Lewinsky affair, Hillary would not only be Senator, but probably in a stronger position for President than she is now).



    Unfortunately the corporate media (5.00 / 1) (#69)
    by my opinion on Wed Feb 20, 2008 at 09:11:48 AM EST
    with the aid of many websites have controlled this election exactly the way they wanted. It began as soon as the 2006 election went to the Democrats. They do not want a strong Democrat to win the Presidential election. It has driven news such that a Republican or a weak Democrat will win. It is sad that they can actually change peoples opinions. That doesn't bode well for our democratic republic, which is already in bad shape.

    Good Advice (5.00 / 1) (#96)
    by BDB on Wed Feb 20, 2008 at 10:03:01 AM EST
    I think you've given Clinton really good advice.  Most of this is out of her control, so she has to go with her strength which is policy and hope that someone bothers to notice.   And she will get two debates, which provide excellent opportunities to highlight her strengths in this area.

    I feel like a fever has overtaken the Democratic party and until it breaks, there's no use trying to discuss the candidates' strengths and weaknesses rationally.  She just hopes it breaks in the next two weeks so she can be heard.  If that happens, I'd feel a lot better about the outcome, even if she loses.  I don't trust judgments made in this kind of heightened emotional state.   Perhaps Obama's win last night will let the fever break a bit and permit even his supporters to see more clearly.  Which will be a good thing, even if he's the nominee because accountability is important.

    Finally, I think it's important that she continue.  It's never easy to be the first person to do something.  I'm sure it wasn't easy for Jesse Jackson in his runs, but he paved the way for Obama.   Clinton isn't the first woman, of course, to seek the nomination, but she's the first one with any meaningful chance and that's always going to make her journey more difficult.  And I noticed that while there's been a lot of discussion about the women's vote, but men went for Obama 2-1 in Wisconsin.   But then, Jesse Jackson didn't win the white vote on his runs either.  I do think HIllary sees her historic role more clearly than many of her supporters, including me, probably do.  She's the first woman to win a presidential primary and the first to win a caucus.  That's huge, even if we don't realize it right now.  And certainly, even if she doesn't win (which she still could, albeit it is less likely now), her run - and the misogyny around it - has served as a great reminder to a lot of us of how much further this society has to go.

    I have stated on numerous occasions (5.00 / 1) (#101)
    by flyerhawk on Wed Feb 20, 2008 at 10:09:48 AM EST
    that both groups of supporters need to remember that we are on the same side and this isn't a sporting event.  

    This intra-party fighting needs to end at the water's edge.  We Obama supporters cannot treat the Hillary supporters as beaten losers.  We must treat them with the respect that fellow Democrats deserve.  

    Clinton supporters also need to realize that, no matter what, John McCain is simply not an option for us.  Do not let your disappointment allow someone take the White House who feels that invading Iran is a desirable option.  

    BTW (1.00 / 1) (#20)
    by Big Tent Democrat on Wed Feb 20, 2008 at 07:57:24 AM EST
    I expect GRACIOUSNESS, no I DEMAND, graciousness, from supporters of both candidates.

    This will be STRICTLY ENFORCED today.

    No gloating and no lashing out please.

    If only (5.00 / 1) (#95)
    by litigatormom on Wed Feb 20, 2008 at 10:01:36 AM EST
    Kos would do the same. The site has become intolerable.

    A refugee from Daily Obama here. (Hi, BTD, your fellow boricua here.) Yesterday I was personally insulted -- called dishonest -- by an Obama supporter for suggesting what I thought would be a good strategy for Obama against McCain in the GE should he win. Apparently, suggesting that any McCain attack on Obama might gain traction in the GE, even when coupled with a suggested counterattack, is the equivalent of trolling.

    No good deed goes unpunished.


    Welcome LM (none / 0) (#134)
    by Big Tent Democrat on Wed Feb 20, 2008 at 11:31:55 AM EST
    While you will find mostly Clinton supporters here (I am not one of them) we try and remain civil to all here.

    Re "You will find mostly Clinton (none / 0) (#141)
    by oculus on Wed Feb 20, 2008 at 11:55:21 AM EST
    supporters here":  That is not my perception.  Poll?  

    Well, there seems to be a pretty (none / 0) (#147)
    by litigatormom on Wed Feb 20, 2008 at 12:28:17 PM EST
    even split based on my brief observation.

    What is most refreshing is the virtual absence of flaming.


    It is a refreshing contrast to (none / 0) (#148)
    by oculus on Wed Feb 20, 2008 at 12:31:30 PM EST
    DK.  I have to admire the few people still willing to public advocate for HRC there.  Glad you are here.  

    I would be thrilled (none / 0) (#32)
    by A DC Wonk on Wed Feb 20, 2008 at 08:24:43 AM EST
    if you really did apply that!  Strictly.  To both sides.  I think it would improve the atmosphere here.

    FWIW, I think your analysis up top is fairly spot-on.

    If I may add a few things:

    So far, the fact that neither candidate had it sewn up by (or on) Super Tuesday looks like a good thing. Those who are saying that one of Obama's weaknesses is that he's not battle-tested have a point -- and this extended primary battle has helped.  Both Obama and Clinton are better debaters now than they were four months ago.  And both are using the Internet to raise money better now than four months ago.

    Hillary's in a tough bind.  BTD, you said that the intitial playing field was not fair.  I agree.  She continues to be in a tough position.  You wrote "The Clinton campaign must remain relentlessly positive and substantive."  Indeed she must.  Ruth Marcus, in today's WaPo, notes that attacking Obama as an empty suit isn't going to work either -- that Dem voters are plenty cynical and not foolish and naive, and yet they are still responding to Obama.  Marcus concludes, "Telling them they's been chumps is not a winning message."

    So, how does she win while winning positive?  I have no idea -- I guess if I knew I could hire myself out as a senior strategist.  Clinton seems to have been a victim of an unfortunate confluence of events combined with biased (and some despicable sexist) media.  But I continue to believe (am I naive) that, if she remains true to herself (and stops listening to some of her advisers) she'll keep fairly close to the high road.  The Dem party sure needs that!


    I am doing so (none / 0) (#39)
    by Big Tent Democrat on Wed Feb 20, 2008 at 08:33:20 AM EST
    Frankly, I believe I have done so.

    You do not see the comment I delete.

    You often DO SEE the extended nonsense from Obama supporters.

    Clinton supporters move on after I delete bad comments.


    I don't want to get into an argument with you (none / 0) (#53)
    by A DC Wonk on Wed Feb 20, 2008 at 08:51:59 AM EST
    because I think you do a terrific and probably extremely time-consuming job.

    But I do see the comments that you don't delete.  Just last night Obama was called a cretin and an a#$hole and it was there all night (don't know if it's still there now).

    You got very angry at me when I cited a number of other comments, none of which had been deleted.


    I was not here after 10 last night (none / 0) (#59)
    by Big Tent Democrat on Wed Feb 20, 2008 at 08:58:06 AM EST
    I do what I can.

    Many do slip through the cracks and I apologize for that.


    Thanks for that acknowlegment (none / 0) (#77)
    by A DC Wonk on Wed Feb 20, 2008 at 09:35:32 AM EST
    I appreciate that.

    I don't spend all my time (none / 0) (#153)
    by Jeralyn on Wed Feb 20, 2008 at 03:28:37 PM EST
    reading comments either. If you see one that is over the top, email me.

    Come on DC (none / 0) (#52)
    by AF on Wed Feb 20, 2008 at 08:49:59 AM EST
    Are you really complaining about Clinton supporters' manners?  Part of being gracious is letting these things go.  And as BTD and Jeralyn do clean up anything that crosses lines.

    I did not generalize (none / 0) (#55)
    by A DC Wonk on Wed Feb 20, 2008 at 08:54:34 AM EST
    I didn't complain about Clinton supporters in general, and, if you notice, in the comment above I didn't even say which side was making comments!

    I am saying, however, that some comments on here are fairly harsh.  Yes, they come from both sides.  I didn't single out any side.


    Sounds like TL needs a (none / 0) (#114)
    by oculus on Wed Feb 20, 2008 at 10:36:19 AM EST
    night watchperson.

    Well she has to have some brilliant debates (none / 0) (#1)
    by lilburro on Wed Feb 20, 2008 at 07:24:04 AM EST
    and be careful at not throwing any low blows there.  I guess it's possible that the debates may be spun to the good of Clinton?  I think if Obama makes a brusque comment it could be picked up and turned into some kind of narrative...and there goes the Obama rules.

    Do you think the debates will be very important?

    The temptation will be for Hillary to attack (none / 0) (#5)
    by robrecht on Wed Feb 20, 2008 at 07:41:47 AM EST
    but that could easily backfire if she's perceived as being "shrill".  Easy for Obama to take the high ground.  If she just does better as a policy wonk that won't move the masses or shift the momentum.  Basically, all Obama has to do is avoid a huge mistake, which should be pretty easy for him.

    I thought Obama was fairly gracious... (none / 0) (#2)
    by mike in dc on Wed Feb 20, 2008 at 07:30:26 AM EST
    ...last night in his speech.  He barely mentioned her, except for the usual "politics as usual" oblique attack.  He spoke as though he already were the nominee, which in some ways is probably worse for her.  

    She's got two debates and two weeks to try to turn things around.  I doubt she'll be able to, but I'm sure she'll give it her best shot.

    I suspect Obama will move above the 50% line in national polling now, which is a good sign for the party, if a bad sign for Clinton.  It shows we're starting to coalesce behind one of these two excellent candidates.

    Heh (none / 0) (#3)
    by Big Tent Democrat on Wed Feb 20, 2008 at 07:34:48 AM EST
    Gracious by barely mentioning her?

    Sometimes you Obama supporters are too much.


    Well... (none / 0) (#6)
    by andrewwm on Wed Feb 20, 2008 at 07:43:17 AM EST
    considering that most of her speech was spent attacking him, I think that's about as gracious as the candidates are going to get these days.

    You saw most of her speech? (none / 0) (#7)
    by Big Tent Democrat on Wed Feb 20, 2008 at 07:44:42 AM EST
    Not on TV you didn't.

    The part I saw barely mentioned him too. I thought it was pretty ungracious on her part.


    Did you see the politico link? (none / 0) (#11)
    by andrewwm on Wed Feb 20, 2008 at 07:47:38 AM EST
    Clinton scheduled hers to go first to try and cut off Obama's speech.



    I doubt it (none / 0) (#19)
    by Big Tent Democrat on Wed Feb 20, 2008 at 07:55:58 AM EST
    I think Politico is wrong on that one.

    IF this was planned, to me it was planned to have OBAMA cut her off (The Snub 2) rather than have the networks cut her off as they have throughout.


    They cut her off (none / 0) (#98)
    by litigatormom on Wed Feb 20, 2008 at 10:04:52 AM EST
    and then they covered Obama's entire 45 minute speech, which completely lost my interest after a while. Which is unusual for him.

    The story that got repeated on MSNBC later was that the Obama folks got pissed because Clinton didn't "concede" to him in the first few minutes of her speech, so they decided to go out early.


    Gamesmanship (none / 0) (#22)
    by dmk47 on Wed Feb 20, 2008 at 07:59:11 AM EST
    My guess is the Obama people waited to see if she would acknowledge that an election happened in Wisconsin, and when she didn't, they decided there was no reason to give her 30 minutes of free media to attack him.

    It's really pretty shocking that the Clinton campaign has spent the entire two weeks since super tuesday complaining about process, attaching asterisks to states and voters, and laundering superdelegate and MI/FL schemes through the press, instead of working on their ground organization and making halftime adjustments to their strategy.

    Did they think that would work, or are they just out of resources?

    Re: reconciliation: of course we want Hillary voters to come over to our side. It would be nice if her supporters (especially in the blogosphere) would stop calling him a closet Reaganite. It's not remotely true, and obviously so.

    What are the odds that Taylor Marsh starts flacking for John McCain? Pretty good, I think.  


    your guess is absurd (none / 0) (#26)
    by Big Tent Democrat on Wed Feb 20, 2008 at 08:06:22 AM EST
    You think there was some kind of "Ok, she didn't mention us, let's go" moment?

    My gawd, the things folks will imagine.


    that's strange (none / 0) (#44)
    by dmk47 on Wed Feb 20, 2008 at 08:42:16 AM EST
    Do you think it's absurd (a) that the Obama people were watching Clinton's speech or (b) that they timed it deliberately? I think doubting (a) or (b) is fairly absurd.

    The other theory (from Ben Smith) is that Clinton tried to pre-empt Obama's speech and it backfired.


    That the timing was (none / 0) (#60)
    by Big Tent Democrat on Wed Feb 20, 2008 at 08:59:28 AM EST
    decided by watching a speech that was ongoing.

    That strikes me as absurd.


    It may be absurd (none / 0) (#99)
    by litigatormom on Wed Feb 20, 2008 at 10:06:19 AM EST
    but that's what MSNBC said last night.

    Buttressing evidence (none / 0) (#138)
    by Big Tent Democrat on Wed Feb 20, 2008 at 11:35:28 AM EST
    of its absurdity.

    Touche n/t (none / 0) (#146)
    by litigatormom on Wed Feb 20, 2008 at 12:27:07 PM EST
    Isn't Obama openly a (none / 0) (#74)
    by sancho on Wed Feb 20, 2008 at 09:32:50 AM EST
    Reagan admirer?

    flacking for McCain (none / 0) (#78)
    by wasabi on Wed Feb 20, 2008 at 09:36:50 AM EST
    That is a rediculous statement.

    She apparently called Obama (none / 0) (#115)
    by oculus on Wed Feb 20, 2008 at 10:38:18 AM EST
    to congratulate him

    Obama (none / 0) (#30)
    by tek on Wed Feb 20, 2008 at 08:22:14 AM EST
    always speaks as if he's already the nominee. That's because the DNC has promised him the nomination, like Michelle said, they're not going to run again (take that for what it's worth).

    this is false and should be deleted (none / 0) (#94)
    by JJE on Wed Feb 20, 2008 at 10:01:24 AM EST
    Which part (none / 0) (#102)
    by delandjim on Wed Feb 20, 2008 at 10:10:00 AM EST
    Which part are you saying is false? That DNC has promised the nomination or Michelle has said they won't run again?

    Michelle Obama HAS said Barack (none / 0) (#129)
    by litigatormom on Wed Feb 20, 2008 at 11:14:38 AM EST
    wouldn't run again, because she didn't think they would subject themselves to the rigors of the campaign again. I thought it was a fairly odd comment at the time, which was when he was behind in the polls -- sure, no one likes to say that they'll run again because it is premised on the assumption that they're going to lose this time, but I thought she could have just dodged the question.  It came across as: buy now, we won't make you this offer again.

    On the other hand, I can't believe that the DNC has promised Obama the nomination. I don't know where that story comes from.


    ridiculous (none / 0) (#130)
    by A DC Wonk on Wed Feb 20, 2008 at 11:20:07 AM EST
    Harold Ickes was part of the DNC.  He works for Hillary.  He's part of the conspiracy, too!  Puleeze.

    What is ridiculous about what I said? (none / 0) (#150)
    by litigatormom on Wed Feb 20, 2008 at 01:15:02 PM EST
    Or were you responding to something else?

    Because I think I agree with you.


    I know (none / 0) (#142)
    by delandjim on Wed Feb 20, 2008 at 11:56:54 AM EST
     I was just wondering which part was being called false by JJE commenter.

    Not gracious to my LGBT friends (none / 0) (#105)
    by Cream City on Wed Feb 20, 2008 at 10:15:32 AM EST
    those "folks not like us."  I know the context softens it, but that phrase seriously concerned me, coming from someone who could be president.  Put that together with concerns about comments that could suggest sexism, and there is reason for worry as to whether the Dem platform planks for women and gays will hold.  And I vote for the party, the platform, more than the person.  Without our platform, I may as well be an Independent -- or look at Log Cabin Republicans, for pity's sake.

    Candidate Sell Yourself (none / 0) (#4)
    by Jade Jordan on Wed Feb 20, 2008 at 07:39:22 AM EST
    Clinton's big mistake is that she became so obsessed with Obama she fixated on him instead of selling her strong points.

    People vote for you based on your strenghts and not how well you tear down your opponents.  A strong offense would have given her more votes.

    If she starts telling people why they should vote for her without telling them why they shouldn't vote for Obama she will do much better.

    She tried that for a while. (5.00 / 1) (#13)
    by TheRealFrank on Wed Feb 20, 2008 at 07:47:38 AM EST
    She tried that in the run-up to Iowa last year. And lost support. She tried it going in to Super Tuesday. And lost support (although retaining enough to pull off some wins).

    It seems she's damned if she does, damned if she doesn't when it comes to going on the attack.


    Disagree (none / 0) (#54)
    by dmk47 on Wed Feb 20, 2008 at 08:52:43 AM EST
    For most of 2007 her campaign was running on Mark Penn's ridiculous idea that she was invulnerable and could disregard the opposition. Her narrative wasn't "vote for me because I'm the best candidate and here's why"; it was "vote for me because I've already won and this is your only chance to get a ticket to the inaugural."

    The parallels to the Giuliani campaign in some respects are eerie. Penn truly believed that poll numbers in July 2007 represented an unchanging picture of voter preferences. Likewise, the Giuliani people looked at polls in the tri-state area and assumed his support was locked in permanently. Never mind the idea of camping out in TX and OH for three weeks, which to her credit, she finally abandoned, but too late, and with terrible strategy in WI.

    I've been saying since Nevada to any Clinton supporters who would listen that she needs to present a case for why she would be a good president --- and not in some stupid a million little microtrends sort of way --- as opposed to dwelling on past experience and acting as if it were owed to her.    

    It only got worse as the Clinton campaign entered a sort of Baroque period, devoting more time to process complaints and plotting to game the superdelegates and reinstate MI and FL than contest the elected delegate pool. Her strategy looked byzantine even to those of us who pay a lot of attention to this stuff. I can only imagine what average voters thought of it.


    Hillary (none / 0) (#103)
    by mouth of the south on Wed Feb 20, 2008 at 10:10:20 AM EST
    You conpletely forget in this post that Hillary has always had high negatives.  She has never been able to lower them and that has been her really big problem.  I voted for Bill Clinton twice and think he was a fine president, but I do think that 20 years of either a Bush or a Clinton in the White House is enough.  And I think lots of Americans feel this way.  If her name had been Smith, she would have won this.  As we have seen with Bush II, sequels are never as good as the original and I think people shy away from her for that reason.

    If her name had been Smith... (none / 0) (#151)
    by diogenes on Wed Feb 20, 2008 at 01:54:08 PM EST
    If her name had been Smith, then she'd be the junior senator from New York and possibly a vice presidential prospect for someone like Edwards or Gore.

    No (5.00 / 1) (#37)
    by tek on Wed Feb 20, 2008 at 08:31:11 AM EST
    Her earlier campaign speeches just talked about what she planned to do and never mentioned him.  Bill's speeches basically do the same. Then Obama started attacking them and accused them of his own behavior (how truly Rovian).

    I think it doesn't matter what Hillary does, the Party is determined to get her out and have Obama and he knows it. The media is determined to have Obama and one thing that is obvious from this campaign is that Americans are led by the media and don't pay attention to facts. It's amazing to me that 6 weeks ago, Obama was down in single digits in lots of these states, he had almost no support in HI, and in that short time he's pulled way ahead. It's very strange.


    This. (none / 0) (#10)
    by andrewwm on Wed Feb 20, 2008 at 07:46:28 AM EST
    I think you're right. If Clinton had kept up what she had done pre-NH she'd be in a lot better shape, I'd wager. The going negative plays right into the narrative of the Obama campaign.

    Outside of a major event (none / 0) (#8)
    by cannondaddy on Wed Feb 20, 2008 at 07:45:06 AM EST
    there doesn't seem like there's much she can do.  But events happen...

    How about a thread on how Obama should go about defeating McCain?

    How about a post (none / 0) (#18)
    by Big Tent Democrat on Wed Feb 20, 2008 at 07:54:33 AM EST
    on the pitfalls for Obama?

    He should beat McCain. The question now is how could he blow it?


    I think you get that already in every thread (none / 0) (#23)
    by cannondaddy on Wed Feb 20, 2008 at 07:59:58 AM EST
    Seriously, how about some optimism for Nov.

    Complacency is the evil (5.00 / 2) (#25)
    by Big Tent Democrat on Wed Feb 20, 2008 at 08:05:19 AM EST
    The fact is Obama has had no troubles whatsoever.

    We need to see how adversity, still possible, might be faced.

    You will not like this, but he really remains an untested candidate. imo of course.


    Untested? (none / 0) (#104)
    by andrewwm on Wed Feb 20, 2008 at 10:13:30 AM EST
    He was down in the polls, way down, from last July until October. Clinton's had him on the ropes any number of times since then - winning in any of the following would have killed his canidadcy: Iowa, South Carolina, winning by +100 on ST.

    In fact, he's looked like he was going to lose badly twice: after Nevada and anytime before last November.

    They've been campaigning for over a year now, and Obama had to get something like 95/100 things to go his way to win. He pulled it off - I'd say that's a major test.


    Some comments at firedoglake and Digby (none / 0) (#35)
    by kenoshaMarge on Wed Feb 20, 2008 at 08:29:32 AM EST
    are all ready making a steady stream of demeaning and nasty remarks about McCain's age. (I don't know about kos, Huff,BuzzFlash or TPM since I no longer go there)

    I have no problem with any comments about McCain's politics. None whatsoever. But once again we have all the loudest mouths and the emptiest heads leading the charge for the blogs with the least amount of class.

    I have all ready said that because of MY perception that Obama is a sexist or at least talks like one I will not vote for him. I have also said I would never, could never, vote for John McCain.

    But as a Senior Citizen I am damn sick and tired of the relentless nastiness about McCain's age. One commenter make a sad little joke about Senator McCain only having Cindy McCain around to comb his hair since he can't lift his arms that high. Does it seem a good tactic to remind people what McCain endured while a prisoner? Another disgusting comment had to do with McCain's bowel movement if you can believe anyone would sink that low. Insulting older voters, who are amongst the most dependable voters seems a stupid and short sighted idea to me.


    This (5.00 / 1) (#40)
    by tek on Wed Feb 20, 2008 at 08:36:20 AM EST
    is what is so annoying to me about this election. Now it's the Democrats pulling the character assassination, etc. I guess the Party has been down for so long, they've decided to adopt the tactics of the Right. Guess that will be our culture from now on. I fully expect the Democrats to be ruthless in the GE to try and get their Chosen One in the WH. Expect to see the same stuff we saw from Rove.

    It's all so depressing. I was envisioning a Hillary government where we would have people John Edwards, Wes Clark, Al Gore and maybe some accomplished women. She could adopt Kucinich's idea of a Department of Peace and appoint Al Gore Secretary of Peace. Dream on....


    The military industrial complex.... (none / 0) (#63)
    by kdog on Wed Feb 20, 2008 at 09:04:36 AM EST
    to which Clinton and Obama are beholden to would never allow the establishment of a Dept. of Peace.  

    Kucinich was our only chance for something like that....he got no money and less votes.


    McCain's rage is the problem (5.00 / 1) (#50)
    by Dadler on Wed Feb 20, 2008 at 08:46:37 AM EST
    He has an out of control temper behind the scenes, which is very well documented.  I'm sorry, but John McCain is a terribly psychologically addled guy, it is obvious, and his age, which should have given him wisdom certainly has not.  We should stay in Iraq for a hundred years???  That is beyond senile and speaks loudly of a man who cannot, not even for the good of his nation, get out of his sick paradigms.  He is not fit to be president.  Hell, the guy can't even come out and talk about Vietnam honestly.  He was murdering people in their own nation, dropping munitions on them from tens of thousands of feet in the air.  What on earth does he think would, or should, happen to someone who, say, did that in the American heartland?  Would he feel sorry for that person if those in the heartland decided to rip that bomber to shreds?  Of course not, he'd say the person deserved it.  His pitiful contradictions and emotional defects are simply too off the charts.  Some part of me pities him, another part simply is terrified of him.  

    The more I see him on TV.... (none / 0) (#65)
    by kdog on Wed Feb 20, 2008 at 09:06:20 AM EST
    the more I notice McCain's body ticks and strange mannerisms.  The more he is on the tube the better for Obama.  

    My problem is not with his age (none / 0) (#106)
    by litigatormom on Wed Feb 20, 2008 at 10:16:04 AM EST
    (as a 52 year old, 70 gets younger every year). My problem is that his thinking is stuck in the Vietnam era. We lost because the electorate betrayed the military. We must rectify this mistake in Iraq. We should stay in Iraq so that the sacrifices of the soldiers who have already been killed or maimed are not in vain. If McCain had his way, I suspect, we would STILL be in Vietnam.

    Hello, all you Republicans who unthinkingly repeat the mantra of "support the troops." Foreign policy does not exist to support the military. The military exist to support a foreign policy confronted with a threat -- a genuine threat -- to our nation.  The fact that we've poured blood and treasure into an unworthy foreign policy does not mean we should pour more.

    The highest and best way to support the military is to call on their bravery only when it is really necessary, and then only if we have a strategy to minimize the time they have to risk their lives, and to minimize their losses.  Like having a long-term strategy that is supported adequately by the Department of State.  Like sending them all the equipment they need. Like caring for them when they return home in pieces. Like not stop-lossing them over and over.

    That kind of supporting the troops. How about that, John?


    Ageism is not the answer (5.00 / 1) (#70)
    by cannondaddy on Wed Feb 20, 2008 at 09:19:03 AM EST
      Can't really help what the blogosphere does.  Alienating senior citizens would only hurt. It's better to frame his experience as more years spent under the corrupting influence of Washington.  Straight talking Mccain has compromised on immigration, torture, Bush's Tax cuts, etc.,  an honest man brought down by Washington.

    Gracious? (none / 0) (#80)
    by Jgarza on Wed Feb 20, 2008 at 09:39:31 AM EST
    apparently thats a one way street at this site.  Seriously this site spends the entire election cycle bashing Obama, then has the nerve to complain about his supporters.

    That's not fair (none / 0) (#88)
    by Democratic Cat on Wed Feb 20, 2008 at 09:50:48 AM EST
    Criticizing someone is not the same as bashing. People go overboard every once in a while, but that's not the general tenor of this site. We don't have a lot of people writing "BREAKING!! Obama proves he is the Anti-Christ!!!" And when they do, it seems to me our hosts do a pretty good job of cleaning it up.

    Weak candidate (none / 0) (#109)
    by delandjim on Wed Feb 20, 2008 at 10:25:51 AM EST
    I think he is a weak general election candidate. The argument Hillary makes about home not having gone through the republican attack machine is very true.
    Another thing is now in the primary the press is hammering his opponent constantly and not looking at his history yet. I do think they are starting to look but it may be too late.

    In the general I strongly believe they will not hammer McCain like they have Clinton. Just imagine the press behaving like they have and substitute McCain's name for Clinton.

    My hope is outside forces (527 etc) will help before she is gone. I think if not, Clinton should start to look to 2012. Not the Veep since Obama's presidency will be smeared and attacked constantly by the right (if he managed to get elected.

    Look at the treatment she she has had and does anyone think any other candidate would still be standing?

    While it is on my mind, what is up with her campaign people? O do think some of them are lame (sorry)


    Normally (none / 0) (#12)
    by Abdul Abulbul Amir on Wed Feb 20, 2008 at 07:47:38 AM EST

    Normally your analysis of things Dem seems pretty good.  OTOH this piece of GOP stuff is imho off the wall.

    One of the truly funny ironies of this campaign season is that the GOP and the Right Wing Noise Machine have snookered themselves. They were so busy cheering Obama on in his battle against the Wicked Witch that they helped create the Obama Rules. Apparently they were confident that that Clinton would emerge the winner.

    Hillary could unite the GOP in ways BHO never could.  My oredictiob still stands that BHO will win 40+ states in the GE.  

    Here is one more prediction for the GE.  We will see many of the criticisms of BHO characterized as racist, just as we saw in the primaries uncharitable words about HRC characterized as sexism or misogyny.

    Wow (5.00 / 2) (#82)
    by Steve M on Wed Feb 20, 2008 at 09:41:35 AM EST
    Criticisms of Obama characterized as racist!  That will be really different!

    That dynamic is going to play out much differently in the GE.  The GOP will happily ridicule any and all attempts to characterize terms like "fairy tale" as racist, and they will get away with it, because the majority of Americans don't like the whole political correctness gambit where you have to watch every word that comes out of your mouth.

    That tactic worked great for Obama in the Democratic primary but that's the only place it can possibly work.


    Exactly. (none / 0) (#152)
    by blogtopus on Wed Feb 20, 2008 at 03:19:13 PM EST
    You read my thoughts, Steve.

    The Dem party is the Party of Conscience, and thus makes it a point to include everybody, and tries to be sensitive to everybody's feelings.

    The GOP has no such goal. Cries of foul from the Dems about 'racism' will only bring out a 'there you go again' moment that will ring for the rest of the election, effectively destroying that tactic and tying Obama's hands for any future REAL racist attacks.

    One could call such a memorable moment a 'mement', even.


    I am not sure (none / 0) (#16)
    by Big Tent Democrat on Wed Feb 20, 2008 at 07:53:22 AM EST
    if you really understood my point.

    Hillary could unite the GOP (none / 0) (#21)
    by sancho on Wed Feb 20, 2008 at 07:58:06 AM EST
    in ways that Obama never could?  Judging from Cream City's comments on another thread, Obama possibly united masses of republicans to vote Hillary out of the Wi primaries. They won't be back for Obama in the fall and it won't be because something happens to change their minds. Thay are taking advantage of an opportunity to vote twice in a presidential election. To me, this is the under-analyzed story of these primaries: how easy is it for committed Republicans to game the democratic primary system? Don't tell me you think they are "above" that. No wonder we lose every cycle Perot is not running as a third cadidate. If Obama loses in Nov., the democrats have to fix this open primary mess.

    Because the only genuine crossover (none / 0) (#48)
    by sancho on Wed Feb 20, 2008 at 08:44:35 AM EST
    in my lifetime has been to Nixon or Reagan. Because the last two elections (if not actually fraudulent) were highly suspicious. I'm taking a historical perspective--and ignoring any tingles I may get watching a candidate speak. Why is the idea of republicans gaming the system so difficult to understand? If you can get rid of your most feared candidate early, why not do so? The current sytem allows that, thus it is possible.  Hillary has pretty much won only the ungameable states. Look, what Kos advocated in Michigan (dems vote for Romney) has been--as Kos points out--for years established Republican strategy. If Obama wins in Nov, great. Odds are, he is the latest McGovern-Mondale-Dukakis. We'll know in November.

    Above that (none / 0) (#66)
    by Abdul Abulbul Amir on Wed Feb 20, 2008 at 09:08:01 AM EST

    Almost certainly there were hard core Reps that voted BHO as they thought he would be weaker in the GE.  

    Almost certainly there were hard core Reps that voted HRC as they thought she would be weaker in the GE.

    There were also some crossovers that will stay crossed for the GE that are excited about voting for the first black or woman president as the case may be.  


    Thanks for reading that (none / 0) (#100)
    by Cream City on Wed Feb 20, 2008 at 10:08:08 AM EST
    and the newer totals up here this morning, county by county, confirm a massive crossover in crucial (well populated) solid-red counties even more.  We will not get coattails from that, where we need them -- in our legislature, in our Congressional seats (the ones who have to confirm presidential appointments to the Supreme Court, the ones who could help us fight against states' rights in eviscerating Roe v. Wade in states like Wisconsin, where it hardly exists but for a couple of counties).  And it's not just about November; from what I see from results here, we will not even get coattails in April, in local races that really affect where we live.

    I can remember when coattail effects mattered, when it wasn't about just one candidate for the Dems -- when it was about the party, about the platform, about enduring impact.  We are sorely lacking in long-term strategy in this party.


    People are crossing over to the (none / 0) (#140)
    by g8grl on Wed Feb 20, 2008 at 11:42:56 AM EST
    anti-Bush side.  They have been going to Hillary too (as demonstrated by the record turnouts and virtual tie nationally).  What bugs me is that the Moderate Republicans and Indies are going to pick our Democratic nominee.  If Obama wins, we (the Democrats) won't really even get to claim a victory.

    As usual (none / 0) (#17)
    by Kathy on Wed Feb 20, 2008 at 07:53:24 AM EST
    I agree with you on some parts.  Debates are critical, and some of the media are certainly hog-tied by their own rules.  I'm not sure about the negative thing, mostly because I don't think it's "attacking" to point out the truth.  I think it's good politics.  The steady chipping-away she's doing seems like a good plan, and of course she'll get lots of new stuff in the debates because remember, he only does press conferences now-very controlled and scripted.

    Interesting pick-up by Taylor Marsh where a high-level Obama supporter can't name one of the senator's accomplishments.

    Tweety, of all people.  A sign of things to come?

    Yes to graciousness (none / 0) (#28)
    by AF on Wed Feb 20, 2008 at 08:14:12 AM EST
    As an Obama supporter I second the call for graciousness.  Not only does most of the party like Hillary a lot, she's earned the respect and gratitude of everyone.  We don't have a lot of winners and she's one of them.  

    Along that line, I don't necessarily think she needs to refrain from attacking Obama, as long as her attacks are fair (that's not a contradiction in terms!).  If he can't survive 'em, he shouldn't be the nominee.  

    I think this is going to come down to (none / 0) (#29)
    by andgarden on Wed Feb 20, 2008 at 08:19:25 AM EST
    the next debate, whenever that is. Things aren't looking good for Hillary, that much is certain.

    I don't think Hillary can (none / 0) (#33)
    by IndependantThinker on Wed Feb 20, 2008 at 08:24:50 AM EST
    pull it out. People just don't believe her because the Media has done an effective job destroying her credibility. I think we all suffer, not just because Hillary's candidacy was destroyed, but because the Media can't be trusted. The Media is critical to a free and democratic society and our Media has been corrupted either because of ratings, profits, or by design.

    Zogby Numbers (none / 0) (#45)
    by sar75 on Wed Feb 20, 2008 at 08:43:26 AM EST
    Probably not the result of Wisconsin (especially since Gallop has Hillary tracking back up), but Zogby's numbers, for what they're worth:

    Obama - 52
    Clinton - 38

    I expect that Obama's rising national numbers will have a growing influence on the larger states to come.

    Ah yes, Zogby (none / 0) (#56)
    by andgarden on Wed Feb 20, 2008 at 08:55:25 AM EST
    Nothing could be wrong with his work, right?

    Ugh, zogby (none / 0) (#64)
    by lilburro on Wed Feb 20, 2008 at 09:05:51 AM EST
    As a sociology student interested in honest data and good methodology, he absolutely repulses me.  In this entire election cycle noone has driven me closer to an aneurysm than Zogby.  He is a complete joke.

    Tweety has already turned on a dime... (none / 0) (#49)
    by desert dawg on Wed Feb 20, 2008 at 08:45:46 AM EST
    He eviscerated State Sen. Kirk Watson last nite on BO's legislative accomplishments (check the video on mydd) He clearly feels that BO has it sewn up and so is setting up the "inexperience" meme for the GE vs McCain.  

    While Matthews has a chameleon's ability to change from one day to the next and hold positions directly contrary to those he held 24 hours before, I think this is a good indication of where the entire MSM will be in a few weeks.  

    Ironic, isn't it?  HRC couldn't make the inexperience tag stick, but the MSM will. Good luck, Barack, you're going to need it.

    Because however much the press fawns over (none / 0) (#112)
    by litigatormom on Wed Feb 20, 2008 at 10:30:14 AM EST
    Obama now, McCain is their true love. Against all the evidence, they continue to portray McCain as the "moderate," the "maverick," who sticks to his principles and doesn't give flip-flop.

    To paraphrase Bill Clinton, "Give me a break. It is the biggest fairy tail I ever heard."

    Why do the media love McCain so much? Simple: he cultivates them. He feeds their egos. He gives them shallow, superficial access. And they stupidly think they will have that same access if he becomes president.

    So the media will turn on Obama soon enough.  Suddenly his inspirational speeches will be empty of substance, and his inexperience critically important. The MSM will not expose McCain's hypocrisy on public campaign financing (using matching funds as COLLATERAL for a bank loan) and will continue to cover Obama's "broken promise."

    The media didn't have to set Clinton up for a fall.  She's always been on their hit list.


    Did you formally endorse Clinton already? (none / 0) (#72)
    by timber on Wed Feb 20, 2008 at 09:27:23 AM EST
    First you were for Dodd, then Obama,  but lately were giving antiObama posts.  Did I miss that that you formally endorsed Hillary clinton?

    No (none / 0) (#79)
    by Big Tent Democrat on Wed Feb 20, 2008 at 09:38:50 AM EST
    I am a tepid Obama supporter.

    MY thinking has been consistent throughout.

    I understand the view you express is that an Obama supporter must provide unbroken adulation for him and rant hatred against Hillary.

    I do not subscribe to that view.


    Nope. (1.00 / 1) (#92)
    by bob5540 on Wed Feb 20, 2008 at 09:55:20 AM EST
    You are a concern troll with a blog.

    You are a pompous blowhard.

    Your call for "graciousness" after your most ungracious treatment of any commenter who doesn't toe your line, reeks of how the Republicans acted after they lost the Congress in 2006.


    Perhaps you will find (none / 0) (#122)
    by oculus on Wed Feb 20, 2008 at 10:48:41 AM EST
    a blog more to your liking.

    yes (none / 0) (#83)
    by Jgarza on Wed Feb 20, 2008 at 09:42:46 AM EST
    apparently you think the exact opposite is true.

    listen to the speeches (none / 0) (#110)
    by glennmcgahee on Wed Feb 20, 2008 at 10:26:23 AM EST
    I just watched last night's speeches, Obama's and Clinton's, back to back on CSpan. They do not compare. How the mindset is leaning toward Obama is beyond me. I suppose its the media's attention to the bright,new shiny penny. Of course, I thought we would be helped when the Rezko info started to get attention when his trial began. But now, the trial is re-scheduled from 2/25 to 3/3, the day before TX and Ohio vote. Suprised? Don't be, the judge, Amy St. Eve is an Obama supporter who just happened to be an Independant council to Kenneth Star during the Whitewater hearings. Does the public know anything about that? NO. But my favorite is Michelle Obama stating that she "is proud of my country for the first time in my life". Boy, talk about helping John McCain. I guess thats what he's talking about when Obama says we will work with Republicans. As far as Wisconsin, the Republicans there voted for Obama in droves. Not because they support him. They want to run against him, not Clinton. The DNC's primary rules suck. When Republicans can vote in the Democratic primary or caucus to sabotage us. In how many states is this going on? This is an organized effort. I was shocked when my friends in Wisconsin told me about it. They were calling our party fools.

    I don't get this Republican Conspiracy to Vote for (none / 0) (#116)
    by fuzzyone on Wed Feb 20, 2008 at 10:38:39 AM EST
    Obama thing.  I have yet to see a Republican who does not say that they would rather have Clinton as the opponent in the General.  Isn't it possible that Obama is actually swaying people?  They may or may not vote for him in the GE, but it seems likely at least some will and that seems like a good thing.  Persuasion is what Politics is all about and right now Obama is doing better at that than Hillary is.  I do think a lot of her problem is her complacency early on when she seemed to be coasting (before a vote was cast).  

    Whatever the Republicans do the most important thing is for Dems to stick together.  Like BTD I tepidly support Obama, but would be happy with either.  McCain will be far worse for everything that we care about and talk of supporting him or staying home for the GE simply makes no sense.  I'll cheer my heart out for whoever weans and work my butt off to beat McCain.

    I dont understand it either... (none / 0) (#121)
    by Raheem on Wed Feb 20, 2008 at 10:47:31 AM EST
    he polls well against McCain who no one likes... and yet you have the folks here saying he needs to stop trying to unite and bringing everyone together... like this is bad... even tho repubs and independents like the message... its cool, Soon they'll understand

    Well if it is a Repub conspiracy (none / 0) (#156)
    by Lora on Wed Feb 20, 2008 at 03:48:05 PM EST
    ...then Obama and McCain will win the nominations but McCain will win the presidency, in part due to the MSM who will have portrayed Obama in an unflattering light following Repub attacks.

    I hope this doesn't happen.

    However, I would not be at all surprised if it did.


    LOL @ u guys (none / 0) (#118)
    by Raheem on Wed Feb 20, 2008 at 10:42:01 AM EST
    This continues to be the funniest blog on the liberal left... u got people saying "be kind to the Clinton supporters" and then u turn around and bash Obama... its just funny...

    I agree, bashing Clinton needs to stop... and Obama hasnt done that (unlike the Clinton campaign)... but the hypocrisy is what gets me... peace

    It is breathtaking that (none / 0) (#123)
    by hillaryisbest on Wed Feb 20, 2008 at 10:52:21 AM EST
    you can say the Obama campaign and their supporters have not bashed Hillary.  How someone can deny the truth that is right in front of their own nose is beyond me.

    My comment (none / 0) (#126)
    by Raheem on Wed Feb 20, 2008 at 10:59:56 AM EST
    Was actually that Obama hasnt... his supporters have... and I admit, I have... but tell me that Obama has?

    he hasnt even put out a negative ad against her... Hillary just did this in Wisconsin...

    in the end, he is looking like the best candidate...


    this is the stuff that makes me crazy (none / 0) (#125)
    by white n az on Wed Feb 20, 2008 at 10:59:42 AM EST
    Now that Obama has it virtually wrapped up, out come the daggers...

    Typical MSM (none / 0) (#135)
    by litigatormom on Wed Feb 20, 2008 at 11:32:29 AM EST
    They just love them some McCain.

    This is what we've been waiting for (none / 0) (#154)
    by blogtopus on Wed Feb 20, 2008 at 03:40:53 PM EST
    I think a lot of Hillary supporters (and not a few Obama supporters) have been holding our breath, waiting for this to happen. We were expecting it to happen sometime around September 1st; the media might have just gotten too sure of itself.

    It looks the Obama Gloves are coming off. Steel yourselves.


    If I were undecided, this would (none / 0) (#127)
    by g8grl on Wed Feb 20, 2008 at 11:02:31 AM EST
    work to convince me for Hillary (from http://facts.hillaryhub.com/archive/?id=5960):

    In her time in the Senate, Hillary has sponsored 21 bills that have become law including:

    -- a bill that extended the availability of unemployment assistance.

    -- a bill which established a program to assist family caregivers.

    -- a bill that provided benefits to public safety officers who were killed or injured during the 9/11 terrorist attacks.

    But Hillary's accomplishments in the Senate are not limited to bill sponsorships. Among her many other legislative accomplishments:

    -- Hillary worked with Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-SC) to expand access to health care for the National Guard and Reserve.

    -- Hillary passed an amendment that created a national program for teacher and principal training and recruitment.

    -- Hillary used Senate rules to force the Bush administration to make emergency contraception, also known as Plan B, available over the counter.


    since Sen. Obama joined the Senate (applying the same standard the email applies to Hillary) he has sponsored two bills that have become law:

    -- a bill that sought to promote democracy in the Democratic Republic of Congo.

    -- a bill that named a post office.

    It's at the same time dismissive and factual.  It also has the added benefit of popping a small hole in Obama's balloon.  

    Obama/Clinton (none / 0) (#137)
    by Raheem on Wed Feb 20, 2008 at 11:34:26 AM EST
    this is From Claudia Jordan...

    Senator Clinton has based her campaign on an erroneous claim to greater legislative and administrative experience. ..No one in the press has had the diligence to lay out her record for the public to assess.

    Senator Clinton, who has served only one full term (6yrs.), and another year campaigning, has managed to author and pass into law, (20) twenty pieces of legislation in her first six years. These bills can be found on the website of the Library of Congress (www.thomas.loc.gov), but to save you trouble, I'll post them here for you.

    1. Establish the Kate Mullany National Historic Site.
    2. Support the goals and ideals of Better Hearing and Speech Month.
    3. Recognize the Ellis Island Medal of Honor.
    4. Name courthouse after Thurgood Marshall.
    5. Name courthouse after James L. Watson.
    6. Name post office after Jonn A. O'Shea.
    7. Designate Aug. 7, 2003, as National Purple Heart Recognition Day.
    8. Support the goals and ideals of National Purple Heart Recognition Day.
    9. Honor the life and legacy of Alexander Hamilton on the bicentennial of his death.
    10. Congratulate the Syracuse Univ. Orange Men's Lacrosse Team on winning the championship.
    11. Congratulate the Le Moyne College Dolphins Men's Lacrosse Team on winning the championship.
    12. Establish the 225th Anniversary of the American Revolution Commemorative Program.
    13. Name post office after Sergeant Riayan A. Tejeda.
    14. Honor Shirley Chisholm for her service to the nation and express condolences on her death.
    15. Honor John J. Downing, Brian Fahey, and Harry Ford, firefighters who lost their lives on duty.

    Only five of Clinton's bills are more substantive.

    1. Extend period of unemployment assistance to victims of 9/11.
    2. Pay for city projects in response to 9/11
    3. Assist landmine victims in other countries.
    4. Assist family caregivers in accessing affordable respite care.
    5. Designate part of the National Forest System in Puerto Rico as protected in the wilderness preservation system.

    There you have it, the facts straight from the Senate Record.

    Now Barack Obama's record....

    Now, I would post those of Obama's, but the list is too substantive, so I'll mainly categorize. During the first (8) eight years of his elected service he sponsored over 820 bills. He introduced

    233 regarding healthcare reform,
    125 on poverty and public assistance,
    112 crime fighting bills,
    97 economic bills,
    60 human rights and anti-discrimination bills,
    21 ethics reform bills,
    15 gun control,
    6 veterans affairs and many others.

    His first year in the U.S. Senate, he authored 152 bills and co-sponsored another 427. These included:
    **the Coburn-Obama Government Transparency Act of 2006 (became law),
    **The Lugar-Obama Nuclear Non-proliferation and Conventional Weapons Threat Reduction Act, (became law),
    **The Comprehensive Immigration Reform Act, passed the Senate,
    **The 2007 Government Ethics Bill, (became law),
    **The Protection Against Excessive Executive Compensation Bill, (In committee), and many more.

    In all since enter the U.S. Senate, Senator Obama has written 890 bills and co-sponsored another 1096. An impressive record for someone who supposedly has no record according to the spin meisters and mindless twits. I challenge Clinton supporters to name a single legislative accomplishment that demonstrates her superior experience.


    But how many of those passed? (none / 0) (#155)
    by blogtopus on Wed Feb 20, 2008 at 03:44:58 PM EST
    Hell, I can sign up for the Publisher's Clearinghouse Sweepstakes a million times, but I still have to win it.

    Obama may have introduced thousands of bills, but unless 233 separate healthcare reform bills passed the legislature, I'd say that list is a bit misleading.


    Read carefully: (none / 0) (#158)
    by echinopsia on Wed Feb 20, 2008 at 06:29:43 PM EST
    Senator Clinton, who has served only one full term (6yrs.), and another year campaigning, has managed to author and pass into law,


    During the first (8) eight years of his elected service he sponsored

    Apples and oranges.

    The fact is, in his time in the Senate (applying the same standard as to Hillary) he has sponsored two bills that have become law:

        -- a bill that sought to promote democracy in the Democratic Republic of Congo.
        -- a bill that named a post office.


    quite one-sided (none / 0) (#139)
    by A DC Wonk on Wed Feb 20, 2008 at 11:37:28 AM EST
    You left out quite a number of Obama's accomplishments:

    • Lugar-Obama Nonproliferation Legislation.  This was pretty important, actually (expanded the Nunn-Lugar framework (which basically allows the US to fund the destruction or securing of nuclear weapons in other countries) to deal with conventional arms, such as unsecured lightweight antiaircraft missiles.)  This was signed into law.  I don't know why the web site you cited above leaves this out.

    • Avian flu -- sponsored legislation, including what I think is the first bill dedicated to pandemic flu preparedness

    • regulating genetic testing

    • Obama and Clinton, together, introduced legislation aimed at helping hospitals to develop programs for disclosure of medical errors

    • co-sponsored, along with Clinton, the Minimum Wage bill.

    • Re: Katrina -- Aid for kids and a ban on no-bid contacts by FEMA

    • Federal Funding Accountability and Transparency Act (requiring OMB to create a searchable online database of all governments contracts, and allow the database to be searchable by agency, geography, industry, congressional district and types of federal funding.)  This type of sunshine should make it a lot easier to spot fraud, insider schemes, etc.

    • in the wake of the Walter Reed scandal, co-sponsored the Wounded Warriors Act (mandate standards of care and facilities for wounded soldiers)

    • co-sponsored, with Durbin, the Stop Fraud Act, to prevent mortgage abuses

    • Media Matters notes that in just his first two years: "Obama was the primary sponsor of 152 bills and resolutions introduced in the last Congress. These included bills to create a federal standard for renewable diesel fuel (S.1426), to improve benefits and services for members of the armed forces and veterans (S.3988), and to direct the Nuclear Regulatory Commission to establish guidelines for tracking spent fuel rods (S.1194)."

    Perhaps I should have (none / 0) (#144)
    by g8grl on Wed Feb 20, 2008 at 12:04:02 PM EST
    posted the entire piece but if you go to the linked site it basically says that you have to compare apples to apples and oranges to oranges.  It says that the comparison that was listed in the Obama email was to compare what Hillary passed into law with what he co-sponsored (most of which, with the exception of the two cited, didn't pass into law).  Thus giving him the appearance of a greater number of legistlative successes while being highly misleading.

    but it still doesn't make sense (none / 0) (#145)
    by A DC Wonk on Wed Feb 20, 2008 at 12:21:35 PM EST
    The Lugar-Obama Nonproliferation was passed and signed into law.  That should be on the list, shouldn't it?

    jawbone (none / 0) (#133)
    by Big Tent Democrat on Wed Feb 20, 2008 at 11:30:35 AM EST
    Your link broke the margins. Please use a hyperlink format.

    Barach HUSIEN Obama Islamic roots (none / 0) (#157)
    by daveram on Wed Feb 20, 2008 at 05:53:11 PM EST
          Why has all those people being blind folded by the media , any one can google obama and see that he had spent from  one year to 9 years old in an Islamic step father and Islamic country before he moved to Hawai to live with his grand mom.
    Do you know that the Gop will make cheese cake of Obama if he wins the Nomination

    The GOP will rip him apart and win election by a landslide
    The media is setting him up for the great fall