About Those Clinton Memos

The Atlantic has released a series of internal memos from the Hillary Clinton campaign. The memos are here.

Hillary Clinton’s campaign was undone by a clash of personalities more toxic than anyone imagined. E-mails and memos—published here for the first time—reveal the backstabbing and conflicting strategies that produced an epic meltdown.

....What is clear from the internal documents is that Clinton’s loss derived not from any specific decision she made but rather from the preponderance of the many she did not make. Her hesitancy and habit of avoiding hard choices exacted a price that eventually sank her chances at the presidency.

Greg Sargent at Talking Points Memo and the Caucus at the New York Times provide some analysis. Jake Tapper at ABC News suggests the memos "appealed to prejudice" and in this later post, refers to a memo written after Iowa in which Mark Penn talked about "releasing the tapes" to counter Obama. Tapper asks, "What tapes?"

< The Pros and Cons of Sen. Evan Bayh | Russia Announces Halt To Military Operations In South Ossetia >
  • The Online Magazine with Liberal coverage of crime-related political and injustice news

  • Contribute To TalkLeft

  • Display: Sort:
    The memos are a hatchet job (5.00 / 30) (#1)
    by myiq2xu on Tue Aug 12, 2008 at 01:57:06 AM EST
    They are presented selectively to make Hillary look bad.

    But read without the negative spin they do just the opposite.

    As for "the tapes" the answer is obvious.  Hillary's campaign had the Wright tapes but didn't use them.

    Not exactly ruthless, was it?

    Funny how the Atlantic (5.00 / 5) (#117)
    by BernieO on Tue Aug 12, 2008 at 09:50:18 AM EST
    does not put any blame on the media for biased coverage. What a surprise!
    I just spent the weekend with relatives who had voted for Bush in 2000 but are appalled at how terrrible a president he had been. Not one of them was aware that this was a man who had never succeeded in business - quite the opposite - and had clearly been involved in insider trading. They all said that had they know these facts they would not have voted for him. They had all heard those bogus stories about Gore - supposedly claiming to have invented the internet, etc. but did not know that they weren't true.
    Don't tell me that the media does not decide who we will elect then sell them to us. They do. The only question is will they succeed this time or has the public woken up to their manipulations.

    Where's the racist stuff? (5.00 / 6) (#125)
    by myiq2xu on Tue Aug 12, 2008 at 10:03:56 AM EST
    There was supposedly an intentional effort by Hillary's campaign to inject Obama's race into the campaign.

    Where's the smoking gun?


    Penn proposed it... (5.00 / 4) (#196)
    by dianem on Tue Aug 12, 2008 at 11:59:37 AM EST
    ...Clinton rejected it. That was part of her "bad" campaign strategy. The real irony is that if Clinton HAD actually race-baited, she probably would have won.

    I'd assume that's what they meant. (2.00 / 0) (#10)
    by JoeA on Tue Aug 12, 2008 at 04:37:43 AM EST
    Either that or Hillary's campaign stole Larry Johnson's imaginary tapes!

    I would laugh myself silly (5.00 / 3) (#25)
    by cmugirl on Tue Aug 12, 2008 at 07:11:06 AM EST
    If Larry Johnson was proved right all along.  Many people would owe him apologies, including the Netroots.

    Haven't you heard? (5.00 / 0) (#61)
    by JoeA on Tue Aug 12, 2008 at 08:16:37 AM EST
    Larry has moved on from the (non-existent?) tapes and is now pushing the idea/scandal that he thinks Barack Obama's birth certificate shows his surname as Soetoro (i.e. his step father's name) . . .  a good trick given that his mother didn't meet him until several years after Obama's birth.



    Not a trick at all (5.00 / 3) (#94)
    by myiq2xu on Tue Aug 12, 2008 at 09:14:31 AM EST
    When someone is adopted a new birth certificate is issued with the child's new name and showing the adopted parent(s)

    Larry always said (5.00 / 2) (#103)
    by BernieO on Tue Aug 12, 2008 at 09:23:14 AM EST
    that the tapes would be held until after the convetions so we will not know for sure if they exist until then.
    I would not be surprised either way.

    I heard a passing comment on Hardball... (none / 0) (#26)
    by Maria Garcia on Tue Aug 12, 2008 at 07:15:24 AM EST
    ...I wasn't paying attention, someone else in my home was watching...but I heard someone say something that seemed to suggest that the tapes might be of Obama sitting in church during a particularly offensive Wright sermon, not anything to do with Michelle.

    Sorry, but (5.00 / 0) (#77)
    by byteb on Tue Aug 12, 2008 at 08:30:37 AM EST
    according to Sam Stein at Huffington Post:

    "Asked about "the tapes" a former aide who had direct knowledge of the footage, deflated all the drama from the room.

    'These were various tapes we acquired from previous campaigns that showed Obama had flipped positions. Penn was obsessed with these. This actually pretty much played out. One of the tapes aired on ABC News and others were published in the Washington Times.'"


    According to the article (5.00 / 26) (#2)
    by weltec2 on Tue Aug 12, 2008 at 02:09:00 AM EST
    her advisers were trying to get her to go negative on Obama and she consistently refused to do it. It is positively acrobatic the way they twist this information to make her look like a weak ineffectual leader unable to put an end to the fighting within her own campaign.

    and perhaps timed - (5.00 / 5) (#91)
    by Josey on Tue Aug 12, 2008 at 09:11:14 AM EST
    so that Obama is justified in not selecting Hillary for VP.

    What a pathetic attempt to bury Hillary (5.00 / 27) (#3)
    by blogtopus on Tue Aug 12, 2008 at 02:15:14 AM EST
    I think everyone who likes Hillary will respect her all the more, and it makes her look better.

    As usual, she will walk away from this unscathed and as strong as ever. These folks never really learned from the impeachment proceedings, did they? A CLINTON NEVER RUNS AWAY.

    The people with CDS will only pile more sand on their heads, awaiting the golden moment when the GOP comes to put a big boot upside their butts (which are conveniently stuck in the air).

    True. (5.00 / 6) (#4)
    by Fabian on Tue Aug 12, 2008 at 02:27:45 AM EST
    The only debate in the GOP is "When" and "How" not "If".  And the GOP isn't stupid either.  They won't throw it all out there at once.  They'll create memes and then they'll grow those memes, gradually and persistently.  

    It will be interesting to watch.


    I'm having tax returns flashbacks (5.00 / 1) (#5)
    by nycstray on Tue Aug 12, 2008 at 02:30:47 AM EST
    I just glanced at a couple of them (the least they could have done is scanned them straight!) I have a feeling there won't be much there there to support all the faux outrage they are trying to stir up for whatever reason.

    If she was hesitant (5.00 / 12) (#110)
    by BernieO on Tue Aug 12, 2008 at 09:40:21 AM EST
    I am sure it was because she knew the media hates her. Whenever candidates are not the favorite of the media, they a very difficult time adopting a successful strategy. They look confused and defensive, but I think it is because there is usually no good way to proceed - whatever they do will be ridiculed by the media. It is like being the kid in high school that the cool crowd decides to pick on. No matter what these kids do, they get mocked. It is no wonder people in that situation get rattled and look weak. They cannot win unless some in the in crowd stand up for them.

    The media claims that they supported Hillary in the early days of her campaing until her supposedly big screw up about drivers' licenses for illegal aliens in that one debate. In reality, by most accounts she was just much better in the early debates than any of the other candidates so the media, who have always despised both Clintons, had no ammunition. The media was waiting for an excuse to pounce and when the drivers license issue came up they blew it out of proportion and the gloves came off. (Obama made the same mistake a few weeks later in a debate, which was harder to excuse since he had had fair warning that the question might come up, but it was barely a story. Clearly the media did not really believe bungling a question on this issue was a big deal.)
    The thing that helped Hillary turn things around was that the public woke up to the biased, sexist coverage and blasted the media, particularly NBC. This intimidated them and took away their credibility with many in the public and allowed Hillary to talk over them and get her messages out.
    The same dynamic occurred in 2000 with Gore, only the media got away with trashing him. The public, including most Dems still do not realize how biased the coverage was against Gore.
    If you doubt this dynamic just look at how McCain was fumbling around in the beginning of his campaign. He has looked much more confident now. This change coincided not only with his attacks on Obama after his European trip but also the reports that the media was getting fed up with Obama's arrogance and began to get tougher on him. As the coverage gets more balanced McCain seems more confident.


    Perfect! The MCM as our national bully-- (5.00 / 6) (#122)
    by jawbone on Tue Aug 12, 2008 at 09:58:26 AM EST
    sort of explains why their choices for president turn out so badly.

    MCM--Mainstream Corporate Media


    I agree (5.00 / 20) (#171)
    by JavaCityPal on Tue Aug 12, 2008 at 11:25:19 AM EST
    The media and the Obama campaign did all they could to try to push the image of a nasty, negative campaign coming from Hillary. Never once did I see a thing from her campaign that attacked anyone personally.

    Everything was policy and experience based, which is exactly why the media and the Obama campaign was forced into turning Bill and Hillary comments into a ball of clay they could reform into racial attacks.

    The Clinton's both have enough compassion and passion for this country to be able to talk endlessly about bringing its assets to the forefront of all our lives.


    if there are some sort of damaging tapes (5.00 / 13) (#6)
    by Turkana on Tue Aug 12, 2008 at 02:59:31 AM EST
    and they come out, and they hurt obama, i'm just certain all the obamabots will credit hillary for not having used them. or something.

    Naw! (5.00 / 5) (#7)
    by Fabian on Tue Aug 12, 2008 at 03:10:48 AM EST
    The whole JE thing brought up the meme "We need to thoroughly vet our candidates!.".  After all, we don't want to have problems with any baggage, do we?

    I got the impression from (5.00 / 5) (#8)
    by nycstray on Tue Aug 12, 2008 at 03:16:49 AM EST
    reading the comments in the linked article, that on pg9 (Penn Memo) it implies the tapes are about his double stance/flipping on issues etc. But, who needs tapes when you have the live show?

    I wouldn't be surprised to find they knew or had the Wright tapes. He was/is? due for a book tour this fall, so I think any other tapes that may be out there won't reflect back on her whether she knew or not. Again, who needs tapes . . .


    I find it hard to believe (5.00 / 2) (#111)
    by BernieO on Tue Aug 12, 2008 at 09:41:37 AM EST
    that her opposition research people did not find the Reverend Wright tapes, although I am sure they do not want to admit it. If they do the Obamabots will accuse them of being behind their release.

    Well, than the Obamabots are stupider than (5.00 / 7) (#164)
    by masslib on Tue Aug 12, 2008 at 11:17:20 AM EST
    I thought.  Those tapes were hidden in plain view.  I do think that was what the tapes refers to.  But the press had these tapes, the Edwards affair, etc., all along.  It didn't take a super sleuth to find the Wright tapes.  And clearly, Hill didn't use them as Penn suggested she do.

    If anyone sees some (5.00 / 5) (#11)
    by Fabian on Tue Aug 12, 2008 at 05:40:47 AM EST
    objective analysis, let us know.  The frothing has already begun elsewhere.  

    I doubt there is anything that could surprise me.  There are going to be staffers who wanted to bury Obama any way possible and others who wanted to be more cautious.  Predictable.  I expect that instead of using people's actual names, we'll get "Clinton staffer" a lot.

    I'm not even going to bother reading it. (5.00 / 18) (#12)
    by Maria Garcia on Tue Aug 12, 2008 at 06:13:27 AM EST
    I've got Clinton Derangement Syndrome fatigue.

    Agree wholeheartedly - (5.00 / 2) (#21)
    by Xanthe on Tue Aug 12, 2008 at 07:06:13 AM EST
    it's a bloody presidential race already - no one is wearing white gloves and sipping tea.
    How were these leaked?  Do we know who leaked them?



    Doesn't seem to be any giveaways. (none / 0) (#63)
    by JoeA on Tue Aug 12, 2008 at 08:18:04 AM EST
    I haven't read through the memos so I don't know if there are any clues . . . such as the memos stopping after a certain date.  i.e. such as when PSD left the campaign.

    Hah! (none / 0) (#119)
    by nemo52 on Tue Aug 12, 2008 at 09:53:49 AM EST
    I do too!  In fact, I am just about to start ignoring the entire campaign.

    Has anyone been able to upload... (5.00 / 5) (#13)
    by p lukasiak on Tue Aug 12, 2008 at 06:21:24 AM EST
    these documents into a more readable (i.e. full page) format?  

    I just read the "notorious" March 2007 Penn memo and I don't see what the fuss is about.   Obama was pushing his "multicultural" roots, and Penn was making the point that most of America is "unicultural" ("American" culture) and telling Clinton to not go negative while emphasizing her connection to middle America.

    If Clinton had followed this advice early on(rather than waiting until Obama made explicit his complete disconnect from working-class americans with his "bitter/cling" remarks) she propably would have won.

    And the so called "Kindergarten memo" doesn't even mention Kindergarten.  What is interesting about that memo is that it tells me about something that received very little media coverage -- Obama's "Hopefund", hus PAC which he used as a slush fund.

    Yes, I feel Mark Penn comes out positive. (5.00 / 2) (#153)
    by laurie on Tue Aug 12, 2008 at 11:05:08 AM EST
    I wonder how much Solis-Doyle stuck her oar in????

    There's a magnifying glass at the top of (none / 0) (#175)
    by JavaCityPal on Tue Aug 12, 2008 at 11:31:49 AM EST
    the inserted documents. The full page button makes them disappear on my screen, though.

    Try the Printer version if the magnifying glass doesn't work for you.


    Who's the leaker? (5.00 / 8) (#14)
    by LadyDiofCT on Tue Aug 12, 2008 at 06:24:56 AM EST
    Do we know who leaked these memos?  Is it Solis Dolye?  What sleeze this has all become.  Campaigns are dirty business for sure and do we really think that the Obama campaign and it's staff are pure as the driven snow.  Just another hit job on Hillary to try to convince voters that Hillary is racist and Obama is the victim.  Desperate and low.  Dirty Chicago politics rears its ugly head again.  Unity my a*s. Does anyone doubt that this came from the Obama camp?  One more reason for me not to support this guy.

    Josh Green is (5.00 / 1) (#18)
    by MichaelGale on Tue Aug 12, 2008 at 07:00:23 AM EST
    a real piece of work, in my opinion anyway. I think he's a hack.

    First Edwards (5.00 / 11) (#20)
    by jb64 on Tue Aug 12, 2008 at 07:04:40 AM EST
    then Clinton. Like Michael Corleone Obama seems intent on "settling the family business" before the convention.

    As to the memos and the campaign itself, if even a modicum of fairness from the media, and certain segments of the "blogosphere" had existed for Senator Clinton during the primary its unlikely we'd be talking about this at all. Her treatment by the media (then, and now) makes the worst excesses of what Gore, and Kerry, hell, even President Clinton look collegial. Since they won't have 3 more months of trivial, salacious, catty and erroneous reporting to do on her, they'll cut their losses and pick the bones now.

    Who am I kidding, the reporting will remain the same, it'll just be a different narrative.


    Ha, I can only dream that.... (5.00 / 1) (#27)
    by Maria Garcia on Tue Aug 12, 2008 at 07:18:29 AM EST
    ...for some reason before this is all over that Team O has to throw Donna, Dean, and Nancy under the bus. I'd sit back and gleefully eat the popcorn for that show.

    Well, the Atlantic author made it sound like (5.00 / 4) (#70)
    by Valhalla on Tue Aug 12, 2008 at 08:21:26 AM EST
    he just wandered up to some staffers and they couldn't give him enough help giving him all the memos they could find.  In other words, they were there for the asking!  

    I'd like to hear when the articles on other campaigns will come out, since it's so easy to obtain confidential campaign memos.

    Penn comes across quite well, and PSD comes under no criticism at all.


    Are you implying Obama leaked the Clinton memos? (5.00 / 0) (#89)
    by AF on Tue Aug 12, 2008 at 09:06:34 AM EST
    No wonder they won -- they had a mole in the Clinton campaign!

    Look up (5.00 / 4) (#97)
    by TeresaInSnow2 on Tue Aug 12, 2008 at 09:18:06 AM EST
    Patti Solis-Doyle.

    It wasn't Doyle (5.00 / 2) (#106)
    by samtaylor2 on Tue Aug 12, 2008 at 09:34:17 AM EST
    In the article the writer makes it apparant that it is not.  I get the feeling they are from multiple sources, as at one point he says that some of the memos were given to him by people who liked Doyle and felt she was getting a bum rap.

    The article is very good.  You don't walk away from it thinking evil anyone.   The article does lead you to think they were too many generals and not enough foot soldiers though, which seems was the problem.  

    The only "new" information, was the internal discussion of the MI and FL issues.  Very cool insight into how they were combating Obama's number's campaign


    I'd look for whoever was also talking to (none / 0) (#120)
    by ruffian on Tue Aug 12, 2008 at 09:53:49 AM EST
    Chris Matthews.  He was always snidely insinuating about 'dirty tricks' the Clintons were just about to spring.  Maybe he got wind of these tapes, and thought (or pretended) they were more sinister than just flip-flop stuff

    We get it. (5.00 / 16) (#15)
    by lentinel on Tue Aug 12, 2008 at 06:28:04 AM EST
    It was Clinton's fault.
    The NYTimes et al, talking about cleavage, her clothes, her laugh - no.
    Edwards criticizing her jacket during a debate. No.
    Tim Russert's hatchet-job. No
    The phony charges that her reference to Bobby Kennedy made her a murderer in waiting. No.

    It was Clinton's fault.
    And people who supported her are "disgruntled".

    Given Obama's tight relationship (5.00 / 16) (#16)
    by nulee on Tue Aug 12, 2008 at 06:32:28 AM EST
    with the press, I can't help but think his publicity team fanned the flames of this story and its release right NOW when he is about to announce a VP pick.  Is he hoping when he does not pick Clinton that somehow this ditty from the Atlantic is going to be a breaker for the tsunami of disgust that is going to be unleashed when he does not pick Clinton?  Is he planning to point to these "findings" to say 'See, I couldn't have picked her...'?   I would not put it past him.  But it won't work with the 18,000,000 who voted for her - they've been there, done that with media attempts to slander the Clintons.  YAWN...

    The sad part is BO seems not to have the party's best interests in mind.

    Work against VP OR against (5.00 / 5) (#72)
    by Valhalla on Tue Aug 12, 2008 at 08:22:21 AM EST
    a real ballot/vote at the convention.  Dual purpose.

    That was my thinking (5.00 / 2) (#88)
    by A little night musing on Tue Aug 12, 2008 at 09:03:53 AM EST
    (assuming there is a reason behind the publication at this time, which I'm just about getting tin-foily enough to believe)

    On another note... my "For everyone who's ever been counted out" T-shirt arrived yesterday. Today's a good day to start wearing it, I think.


    Heh (5.00 / 13) (#17)
    by Steve M on Tue Aug 12, 2008 at 06:33:52 AM EST
    As usual, Josh Marshall has the "definitive take":

    In a sense the revelations of Mark Penn's 'xenophobia' memos is old news, a post-mortem on a campaign that was all-consuming three months ago and now part of history. But seeing the memos beyond the message is instructive, highly instructive for another reason.

    During the campaign there was a lot of clucking about whether the campaign's message just accidentally stumbled on to charged words and associations. And now we can see what was obvious at the time -- that the people in charge of the message weren't sloppy and unlucky but rather what you would expect, professionals following a detailed plan.

    Now how about Sen. McCain? You see his ads lining Obama up with Paris Hilton and Britney Spears, a new ad with the tagline "hot chicks dig Obama" (yes, those are the actual words in McCain's ad) and countless montages of Obama as pop music sensation. How do you think McCain's memos read?

    Only the deeply naive or the deliberately oblivious -- which regrettably includes the greater number of the people covering the campaign -- don't know the answer to that question.

    Nothing gets by this sage of the blogosphere, does it?  Yes, these memos provide the definitive insight that the campaign must have directed Andrew Cuomo to appear on some local radio talk show and drop the racially-loaded term "shuck and jive."  I'd say the memos make that pretty conclusive.  Also, that bit about "hard working white people," that wasn't just a sentence that came out badly; the memos make it clear that it was totally purposeful!

    Josh is, of course, using the standard argument I hear from 9/11 conspiracy theorists and all sorts of kooks: if you don't see all the associations I do, well then, you must be utterly naive.

    not only naive - (5.00 / 2) (#23)
    by Xanthe on Tue Aug 12, 2008 at 07:09:08 AM EST
    but stupid and unenlightened.

    Yes, the fact that Clinton refused to (5.00 / 15) (#37)
    by frankly0 on Tue Aug 12, 2008 at 07:36:13 AM EST
    use a message that dwelt on Obama's being less than fully American is somehow evidence that she in fact embraced racist stereotypes.

    The man, Josh Marshall, is sick with his own sense of importance and his belief in his mystic insights into politics and society.

    It's a good thing for him that, almost unique to the left blogosphere, he has disabled any way of commenting on his own posts. It is completely in character that he should do so. There's no honesty in the guy and no accountability.

    He's a complete hack.


    I read a snippet (5.00 / 7) (#39)
    by lilburro on Tue Aug 12, 2008 at 07:38:17 AM EST
    about the strategy to turn Obama into a "foreigner."  I really don't see that as having shaped the Clinton rhetoric much at all, and certainly not effectively.  

    Plus, xenophobia and racism are different.  I don't think anyone was accusing the Clintons of xenophobia in the primaries.

    The memos aren't pretty.  But who would expect them to be?  God knows what the Obama memos look like.  I am sure Marshall will search for the answer as to whether "periodically, when she is feeling down" was a piece of awkward improvisation.


    Obama's 4 page race-baiting memo (5.00 / 11) (#95)
    by Josey on Tue Aug 12, 2008 at 09:15:20 AM EST
    against the Clintons received little media attention.
    But in our Obama-dominated media culture - Obama merely said "he" wasn't involved with the memo and that was the end of it.
    otoh - Hillary is "responsible" for her staff's actions.

    Yes that post is unfair to Hillary (2.00 / 0) (#93)
    by AF on Tue Aug 12, 2008 at 09:11:47 AM EST
    But do you doubt that the McCain campaign has a conscious strategy to paint Obama as a swarthy foreigner who covorts with blond bimbos?

    yes, i do doubt that (5.00 / 6) (#134)
    by TimNCGuy on Tue Aug 12, 2008 at 10:19:15 AM EST
    I believe tha the McCain campaign has a conscious strategy to portray Obama as not ready or experienced enough to be president by saying that he is "popular" because of his image just like Paris Hilton and Brtiney are populat because of their images and not because of any talent they have.

    It is just co-incidence that in today's popular culture the best example of this happens to be a blond bimbo, Paris Hilton.  Two or three years ago you could have used Am,erican Idol contestant "Sanjaya" or "William Hung" to make the exact same point without causing the "race-card" claims to erupt.  But, their 15 minutes of fame is over now.  On second thought, the race-card claims would have still errupted because of Sanjaya's race.  Because you cannot claim that Obama isn't qualified to be preident without having your statement interpreted to mean that Obama, because he is black, has to be more qualified than a similar white candidate.  Or, you cannot claim that Obama is arrogant without having your statement interpreted to mean that a black candidate must appear more humble than a similar white candidate on order to not be called arrogant.


    You cannot claim Obama isn't qualified (1.66 / 3) (#150)
    by AF on Tue Aug 12, 2008 at 10:56:14 AM EST
    without putting Paris Hilton in an ad?   Glad we got that one cleared up.

    Nice strawman there. (5.00 / 10) (#156)
    by tree on Tue Aug 12, 2008 at 11:11:09 AM EST
    Paris Hilton stands for meaningless celebrity. The McCain campaign is trying to equate Obama with the same meaningless celebrity. Its apparently hitting a chord.

    Now if you want to see cavorting with s bimbo I suggest you look at the Obama girl video. Oops, that one was supposed to be a pro-Obama video. And yet it plays directly into the same meme that McCain is trying to hit. Obama's been hoist on his own campaign's petard.


    The Harold Ford "call me" ad (5.00 / 0) (#169)
    by AF on Tue Aug 12, 2008 at 11:24:32 AM EST
    Also hit a chord.  Doesn't mean it wasn't a low blow.  So did the Willie Horton ad, for that matter.

    To be clear, I am not accusing Hillary of doing this.  I am accusing McCain.

    I'm also a little confused why commenters on a blog called "talkleft" are defending another typical Republican hit job.  


    Big difference between the two (5.00 / 2) (#182)
    by JavaCityPal on Tue Aug 12, 2008 at 11:37:33 AM EST
    The Ford ad absolutely was trashy and intended to create an image his state voters would take exception to.

    Obama has a following that is largely based in the empty celebrity follower group. The Paris Hilton ad was directed, without doubt, at the celebrity for no substantial reason idea that numerous demographics can relate to...especially the ones McCain is reaching for (i.e., the parents of those little celebrity watchers).


    I see you don't address the (5.00 / 6) (#186)
    by tree on Tue Aug 12, 2008 at 11:39:47 AM EST
    Obama girl video, put out by Obama supporters, but mention the Ford ad. The apt comparison is not between the Hilton ad and the Ford ad. Its between the Obama girl video and the Ford "call me" ad. There's no cavorting by Hilton in the McCain ad. Its a one second  head shot of her in a public setting, denoting her celebrity. Now if you want to see cavorting, watch the Obama girl video. There's cavorting.  

    What I think (5.00 / 1) (#151)
    by Steve M on Tue Aug 12, 2008 at 11:03:31 AM EST
    is that the Republicans ALWAYS try to paint the Democratic nominee as some kind of liberal creature from another planet who doesn't share our values.  So yeah, I have no doubt about what they're doing, but I find it unhelpful to analyze it in racial terms and get all offended.

    Now, I actually happen to buy Amy Sullivan's reporting about the "anti-Christ" dogwhistle.  What we do about it politically is a different matter.  Just because you believe there's a hidden message in there doesn't mean you benefit politically by pointing it out, if no one is going to buy your argument.


    Sure (2.00 / 0) (#177)
    by AF on Tue Aug 12, 2008 at 11:32:51 AM EST
    The campaign shouldn't be making this point.  Doesn't mean it isn't true.  I'm not the campaign, just a lowly blog commenter, though I do occasionally get some press.

    Well (5.00 / 3) (#188)
    by Steve M on Tue Aug 12, 2008 at 11:40:40 AM EST
    When the blogosphere goes all abuzz about how every single thing McCain does has a hidden racist message, that gets into the zeitgeist and people develop the general impression that liberals are nuts.

    We saw this hurt Obama with the Paris Hilton ad, where even though his campaign never explicitly claimed it was racist, so many of his supporters on the blogs and on TV were making that argument that the public came to believe he was, in fact, saying that.

    Basically, I have no illusions that I can ever persuade the sort of liberal who sees racism in every single thing, but at least maybe I can get them to understand that it's politically self-defeating to keep going back to that well time and time again.


    'tis true, 'tis true (none / 0) (#135)
    by OxyCon on Tue Aug 12, 2008 at 10:20:02 AM EST
    "The One" said so, so 'tis true.

    Result (5.00 / 3) (#35)
    by Lou Grinzo on Tue Aug 12, 2008 at 07:35:11 AM EST
    Clinton pulled a lot of punches, which, combined with the larger than expected groundswell for "change", set up Obama for yet another relatively easy electoral victory.  And now he's running against a Republican who's obviously willing to lie and generally be as negative as is needed to win.

    Obama better morph from Fraser Crane into Chuck Norris, or he's going to blow this election.  He still has time to turn this around, but the clock is ticking and McCain continues to make progress in defining Obama to the less attentive voters.

    Given all the howling on Some Web Sites about what a dirty campaign Clinton ran (when she did nothing of the sort), this turn of events is almost too much to take.

    Folks here at TL saw it coming (5.00 / 4) (#58)
    by Valhalla on Tue Aug 12, 2008 at 08:14:24 AM EST
    months ago.  I was one of many who said once McCain's camp got going, Obama would be reminiscing wistfully for Clinton's 'dirty' campaign.  She lobbed some softballs his way, and got excoriated every time by the fanboys in the MSM.

    Whining about how mean the Republicans are doesn't seem to be working so well.  What was that about a GE strategy?


    Teeing Up Against Hillary, Repost (5.00 / 6) (#53)
    by fctchekr on Tue Aug 12, 2008 at 08:00:08 AM EST
    They are not putting this out there without a very good reason. It's news, but it's news to make Clinton look bad. Once he picks someone else for VP it will inevitably stop, till she comes into the spotlight again, running again for something. So the news is clearly intended to boost Obama. Who's picking the Prez?

    I don't know, (5.00 / 0) (#57)
    by samanthasmom on Tue Aug 12, 2008 at 08:10:31 AM EST
    but McCain is obviously their choice. Keeping things stirred up in the Democratic Party is their strategy.

    You hit (3.66 / 3) (#71)
    by tek on Tue Aug 12, 2008 at 08:22:03 AM EST
    the nail on the head.  She's not going to be VP and they are trying to HOODWINK the Hillary supporters into falling behind THE ONE.   That Barack Obama, he really knows hoodwinking, okey-dokeying, and bamboozling.  

    The Democrats (5.00 / 7) (#59)
    by tek on Tue Aug 12, 2008 at 08:15:04 AM EST
    have certainly sunk to a new low.  They must be truly desperate over the bad candidate they've handpicked.  No wonder Democrats don't get in office.  Their main focus is destroying the only successful Democratic president in the last fifty years.  I am so done with these people.  

    And what can we say for Obama?  The man who condones all the corruption and deceit spewed out of the Democratic leadership against their own so that he can get advantages for himself.  Tells me a lot about who Obama really is.  But, hey, so long as he gets in the WH, right?

    Change we can believe in? (5.00 / 6) (#65)
    by rooge04 on Tue Aug 12, 2008 at 08:18:59 AM EST
    All I believe is what I've seen with my own eyes: Destroying the Clinton presidency, attacking Hillary for things she never said nor did, and winning by technicalities! It's great being a Dem!

    How do you spin this as Democrats (none / 0) (#73)
    by JoeA on Tue Aug 12, 2008 at 08:22:44 AM EST
    sinking to a new low?

    This is a story in the "media" about memos leaked by a member of the Clinton campaign.  


    Um (none / 0) (#99)
    by TeresaInSnow2 on Tue Aug 12, 2008 at 09:21:11 AM EST
    Leaked by whom?

    Like the Pizza (5.00 / 2) (#66)
    by blogtopus on Tue Aug 12, 2008 at 08:19:30 AM EST
    Chicago Style is thick and rich and full of unhealthy stuff... but the media finds it very, very tasty.

    I question the timing... does Obama really not want Hillary involved with his campaign EVER? If so, then that's fine with me.

    He's apparently sure he can (5.00 / 1) (#102)
    by TeresaInSnow2 on Tue Aug 12, 2008 at 09:21:59 AM EST
    win without her in any capacity.

    yet she campaigned for him in Nevada (5.00 / 1) (#163)
    by kimsaw on Tue Aug 12, 2008 at 11:17:10 AM EST
    The irony never ends. The medias' eloquent timing on behalf of Obama making the candidacies of Edwards and Clinton little blimps on the Obama's trajectory all while "The One" is on vacation.  Only in America can we rail against and remain in bed with the Fourth Estate, sounds like an Obama campaign strategy to me.

    It is also SF style, NY style (5.00 / 1) (#109)
    by samtaylor2 on Tue Aug 12, 2008 at 09:40:14 AM EST
    Denver style.  Politics is poltics.  Poltical machines worked and still operate in every major city in this country.

    But Chicago has a long (5.00 / 2) (#162)
    by tree on Tue Aug 12, 2008 at 11:16:35 AM EST
    and storied history as one of the most corrupt. I don't think Denver or SF can hold a candle to them when it comes to corrupt machine politics.

    How is NY's storied history? (5.00 / 1) (#199)
    by samtaylor2 on Tue Aug 12, 2008 at 12:09:22 PM EST
    Haven't read the memos, but this (5.00 / 3) (#67)
    by Anne on Tue Aug 12, 2008 at 08:20:49 AM EST
    smacks of finding a way to kill the last vestiges of Clinton's VP chances once and for all.  Lucky for Obama, there is a whole team of Clinton-haters who stand at the ready to spread their "analysis" in the most negative light possible, even if it makes no sense.

    I can't be the only one who keeps thinking of Obama's history of clearing the field, but the question I have is, at what point does this kind of story not only negate her chances at VP, but also make her radioactive on the campaign trail?  

    Slowly, but surely, I look for Hillary to fade away in the campaign and to be relegated to the dustbin.

    No, we've saved her (5.00 / 8) (#80)
    by samanthasmom on Tue Aug 12, 2008 at 08:39:44 AM EST
    a seat of honor under the bus.

    "relegated to the dustbin" (5.00 / 4) (#98)
    by sj on Tue Aug 12, 2008 at 09:18:39 AM EST
    They've been trying to do that for nearly a year.  And it hasn't worked yet.  

    But the less time she spends on the Obama mess of a campaign, the more time she has to prepare for the next legislative session.  So, personally, I'm for it.


    Oh, and (5.00 / 10) (#68)
    by blogtopus on Tue Aug 12, 2008 at 08:21:11 AM EST
    They really haven't learned that beating a dead pony does not make your own unicorn all the more shiny.

    I read every memo (5.00 / 3) (#78)
    by Jim J on Tue Aug 12, 2008 at 08:36:45 AM EST
    and it's amazingly tame stuff. This is a real non-story.

    I didn't really learn anything I didn't already (5.00 / 2) (#124)
    by andgarden on Tue Aug 12, 2008 at 10:02:27 AM EST

    Well, Penn's memos reinforced my (5.00 / 2) (#154)
    by inclusiveheart on Tue Aug 12, 2008 at 11:09:09 AM EST
    already low opinion of him as a political "strategist".  His obsession with making Clinton into what amounted to a "tough broad" in order to attract white males was about as counter-intuitive as anything I've seen in politics.  

    Some day someone far smarter and committed than I will do an analysis of the under-lying sexism implicit in Penn's obsession with making an historic woman candidate run as a "tough guy" -- even when it was clear from the moment that she entered the race that many, many people were captivated by the notion that we had a viable female candidate running for President of the United States - and even when it was clear that most Americans don't think as little of women as Mark Penn seems to.


    I'm unconvinced that he was wrong (5.00 / 1) (#160)
    by andgarden on Tue Aug 12, 2008 at 11:14:10 AM EST
    We all eventually came to accept that she passed the "commander in chief test," but I think that may have been a result of the constant "ready on day one" message.

    Penn wasn't great, but his advice doesn't seem as horrible to me as has been made out. Obama won on points, remember.


    It was linking the commander-in-chief (5.00 / 1) (#176)
    by inclusiveheart on Tue Aug 12, 2008 at 11:32:42 AM EST
    test to white males and thinking that by making her into some sort of George Bush type macho idiot was going to help her was my problem with his analysis.  Effectively, his premise is that no woman can be perceived as tough and appeal to the "beer drinking" crowd unless she pretends not to be a woman - what was that line about nobody wants a "mamma" in chief?  UGH.  If that's the case, no woman should run or be taken seriously as a candidate until the percentage of white beer drinking males declines.  But I don't buy that at all.  I think that even white beer drinking males understand that a woman can be feminine and at the same time be tough, effective and serious in her professional capacity.

    Memos (5.00 / 0) (#86)
    by CST on Tue Aug 12, 2008 at 09:03:07 AM EST
    The only thing the memos say to me, is something I already knew.  Mark Penn is a complete tool, Clinton should have fired him earlier.  The fact that Clinton didn't take this path doesn't indicate "problems" within her campaign, it indicates that she was smarter than her campaign.

    And Mark Penn is an @ss.  In case I didn't make that clear enough.

    Well I too think more of (5.00 / 2) (#104)
    by brodie on Tue Aug 12, 2008 at 09:25:22 AM EST
    Hillary Clinton than her campaign team.  But, alas, she was the one who signed off on elevating Penn to Chief Strategist, knowing (presumably) how much his grating personality didn't sit well with many inside the tent.  

    Had she kept him merely as Senior Advisor, competing equally with several others in that position, then also not allowed him to keep his gig with that unfortunate PR firm, we might have seen more positive dynamics coming out of that disfunctional group of top advisors.

    While some of his advice was sound, I had problems right at the outset with the uninspiring, fuddy-duddy theme they decided to go with (presumably from Penn's pen) about Experience.

    Sorry, but it's Politics 101 that, especially in a change election, you don't beat a dynamic Change candidate with a message that fairly shouts out Status Quo and Establishment.  Contentious conservative Penn almost seemed to make my candidate Hillary into this year's version of the experienced and dour Nixon as against the charismatic agent for getting the country moving again, the JFKesque Obama.

    Besides, as others pointed out before me elsewhere, Experience is just a threshold question that voters consider as they evaluate a candidate -- it's not the sort of exciting message that enables a campaign to enlist throngs of energized voters.


    Hmmmm. (5.00 / 7) (#105)
    by pie on Tue Aug 12, 2008 at 09:33:59 AM EST
    it's not the sort of exciting message that enables a campaign to enlist throngs of energized voters.

    Until you bring it up in relation to a candidate with little experience, then attention is paid.

    Those of us who are looking for competence after the Bush reign don't need fireworks and meaningless messages of hope and change.  We need substance, and we need solutions.


    As I indicated above, Experience (5.00 / 1) (#113)
    by brodie on Tue Aug 12, 2008 at 09:43:08 AM EST
    is the sort of immediate threshold question voters make about a candidate and once their decision is made -- in O's case more than enough of them decided he had at least enough -- then your dynamic campaign theme can kick in and work its magic.  HRC was left holding her unexciting Experience threshold-issue theme as a message going forward, and with the undertones there of status quo and establishment, it just was the wrong signal to send in a change election.

    Further on experience, voters consciously were discounting it as a major positive factor after the 8 disastrous yrs of the experienced Bush regime.  Experience became devalued as political currency, and this had been clear for some time, yet Penn-Hillary decided the frumpy overrated theme would work.

    Notice here that sometime after the voting started this cycle, Team Hillary amended its message to incorporate the Change theme.


    Oh, please. (4.25 / 4) (#118)
    by pie on Tue Aug 12, 2008 at 09:50:29 AM EST
    No one had to tout change.  A new president means change, even if it's McCain.

    We'll see in November how many people think Obama's level of experience is enough.


    Sorry, McCain (5.00 / 2) (#129)
    by brodie on Tue Aug 12, 2008 at 10:09:45 AM EST
    doesn't mean change.

    And Hillary needed something more dynamic, something more in tune with the context of the election, something that would speak more forcefully to Dem primary voters about the need for a new approach.

    The fact that her campaign adjusted their theme during the primaries to include Change means they recognized that their Experience brand was a mistake.  


    And what does it say about Obama (5.00 / 7) (#137)
    by pie on Tue Aug 12, 2008 at 10:21:19 AM EST
    that his message failed to be effective in March, April, May, and June?

    But the bottom line, as always, is that the better candidate is not the nominee.


    as effective, that is (5.00 / 3) (#140)
    by pie on Tue Aug 12, 2008 at 10:25:18 AM EST
    That Pennslyvania debater and his subsequent refusals to participate in more really demonstrated the difference between the two candidates.

    Sadly, it was too late, and Obama limped or was carried across the finish line.


    O's message was effective enough (5.00 / 3) (#144)
    by brodie on Tue Aug 12, 2008 at 10:40:22 AM EST
    in those months.  

    And at that point, because he'd gone into the halftime (post-Feb) lockerroom with a fair-sized cushion in points, all he needed to do in the 3d and 4th qtrs was not allow Hillary to get easy big scores from costly Obama turnovers.  

    She did outscore him in field goals the rest of the way, perhaps at a 3-2 ratio, but she needed to get into the endzone with a touchdown or two to go ahead and win.  TeamO did have that turnover in their own territory from wild receiver Jeremiah Wright, but TeamHillary was not able to capitalize and drive the team for the six points plus the conversion.


    Heh (none / 0) (#155)
    by A little night musing on Tue Aug 12, 2008 at 11:10:27 AM EST
    "effective enough"

    I think you are right in terms of the (5.00 / 0) (#136)
    by inclusiveheart on Tue Aug 12, 2008 at 10:21:01 AM EST
    general election strategy, but in terms of the primary strategy I think that the experience meme really did hurt Clinton more than it helped.  Once Senator Clinton got rid of Penn and started talking about specific changes she would make and demonstrated the value of her experience in the context of those discussions, she was much more effective.  But because the campaign started with more of a simpleton's message about "experience" it was easy for the Obama campaign to spin that into "same old same old".  Penn was at too high a pay level imo not to have anticipated this weakness in his strategy.

    negotiating change (5.00 / 2) (#121)
    by pukemoana on Tue Aug 12, 2008 at 09:54:11 AM EST
    my sense is that they were focused on how to overcome gender bias, i.e. perceptions that a woman can't be in charge (so align her with Maggie Thatcher, yuck!), that women are too emotional and touchy-feely.  The campaign seemed to struggle with capitalizing on the historical nature of her run without arousing those sorts of biased assumptions.  Turns out voters took for granted her competency as C-in-C and wanted to see the more emotional side.

    Btw, I think something similar is at work with Obama's campaign.  They're worried about him being pegged as an Angry Black Man which is hampering their ability to have him come out swinging at McCain.  But I think voters want to see that he can hold his ground and fight back.


    Penn is the quintessential boys club (5.00 / 3) (#127)
    by inclusiveheart on Tue Aug 12, 2008 at 10:06:10 AM EST
    type.  He simply couldn't accept that being a woman in the race could be seen by the American public as an advantage rather than a deficit.  He kept trying to make Senator Clinton into some kind of experienced macho guy.  Early on it is was clear to me that both the media and many voters who were paying attention were pretty enchanted with the notion that we had both a viable woman and African American candidate vying for our nomination and yet from what I could tell Penn never picked up on that.  He just kept trying to make her into the lady with the sturdy shoes - steel toed shoes.  As a descendent of the South, I can tell you that I've met a lot more feminine women who are stronger, tougher and possess more resolve than the most macho men I've ever met.  Once Penn was out of the picture, she finally got over his old boys network paranoia about showing her feminine caring side - showing how both warm and yet still very tough the feminine side can be - I think it is a shame she didn't get rid of him much, much earlier.  Because Americans are looking for safe haven now, but they aren't looking for safety delivered via more troops - they are looking for sanity - for a reasonable leader - someone who is fair and level headed - that's where Penn really missed to point imo - and really managed to mangle this campaign and his candidate's image.  And that is where Obama found an opening amongst Democrats.  It is a shame.

    Heh (4.83 / 6) (#168)
    by Steve M on Tue Aug 12, 2008 at 11:23:14 AM EST
    I never cease to be amused by the way you persist in worshipping at the altar of Change.

    Obama was the winner, but any number of factors combined to make that happen, some of them purely fortuitous.  There was no pre-ordained, "Politics 101" rule that the "Change" candidate couldn't possibly be defeated by an experience argument, that's just the way it turned out.

    You could probably apply for a job as a big media pundit with your penchant for authoring these narratives that aren't empirically justified, but sound so goshdarned compelling!  "You see, it was a change election."  Why?  Because the change candidate happened to win!

    You're not the only one guilty of this, of course.  The traditional narrative of the 1960 election is a classic change vs. experience one where the American people decided they were ready to move boldly forward after the relatively stable 1950s.  That sounds great, until you realize that Kennedy won by only the slimmest of margins, and that it very easily could have gone the other way for any number of reasons, in which case we'd have a different narrative.

    You simply can't extract a clear historical lesson from a super-close election, or any sort of inexorable "Politics 101" principle.  All you get is an ad hoc rule that's just as likely to be disproven in the next election.


    Yep, we are seeing 1960 again (5.00 / 4) (#198)
    by Cream City on Tue Aug 12, 2008 at 12:09:03 PM EST
    since it was won by the Chicago political machine.

    A Daley won it then, a Daley won it now, so far -- see the current mayor's place in the Obama campaign.  And another rising clan's connections to the machine, i.e., the Solis connection.  

    And, of course, the Kennedy clan connections to the Obama campaign.  And their connections such as Kerry, and his connections such as Edwards . . . and all suggesting that there will be quite a book on this campaign, when the Democratic Party died.  Or when the old machine-ridden party regained dominance by defeating the real hope of the party, those not part of the party's allegiance to the Chicago machine, i.e., the Clinton camp.

    And re the comment that, c'mon, there are lots of cities run by machines -- you don't know Chicago, then.  Other cities have a machine.  But in Chicago, it's a full-scale industry.


    CC, it's simply an old Repub canard (3.66 / 3) (#203)
    by brodie on Tue Aug 12, 2008 at 12:13:47 PM EST
    that JFK won in 60 only because Daley stole it for him.

    1. Kennedy didn't need IL to win (TX put him over the top).

    2. Daley's alleged shenanigans were never proven by Repubs before the IL state election board -- most there were Rs and they unanimously found no D misconduct.

    3. There were widespread allegations that the Rs downstate were holding back and manipulating vote totals on election night, something never proven (like R charges against Daley/Kennedy) but rarely noted by Rs and the various Kennedy haters.

    You seem to insist on misreading (5.00 / 1) (#200)
    by brodie on Tue Aug 12, 2008 at 12:09:56 PM EST
    my arguments.  

    Change:  I dont contend any candidate can just show up with the Change banner behind him and expect to phone it in from there.  On the contrary, O was up against quite a formidable candidate in HRC, despite her less than stellar campaign org, and he had to actively press his case, throwing some sharp elbows eventually (fall 07 and later) in order to prevail.  

    Obviously too he benefitted greatly from some highly positive MSM coverage while his opponent just got nailed by same.  

    No one here contended therefore that the Change candidate was always going to prevail.  What I do suggest is that the Change candidate had picked the correct campaign message to enhance his chances of prevailing.

    History:  For Dems particularly, just because it lines up to be a Change Election doesn't mean the D will win in a landslide or (1960) win by a squeaker.  Most significant change elections post-Great Depression -- 1960, 1968, 1976, 1992 -- have involved narrow or non-landslide wins, 1952 being an exception and 1980 (not a classic change election since Carter was only a one-termer) a semi-exception with RR winning barely 50% of the PV.  

    What it does suggest is that underlying factors with the electorate will tend to favor that agent of change, give him a built-in advantage he normally wouldn't have.  Other dynamics (e.g., the candidate's nontraditional religion, clearly the one major negative that hurt JFK's victory margin, or minority racial status) will likely work against such change agent, including a poorly-run campaign.


    "dysfunctional" (5.00 / 6) (#130)
    by Stellaaa on Tue Aug 12, 2008 at 10:13:34 AM EST
    Now lets see, some Atlantic magazine hack, can look at memos and come up with some narrative of her being an ineffective manager?  How absolutely brilliant.  Of course the boyz will say, look it proves it.  

    Running a campaign is not the same as running the country.  Like it was said many a time, Bush handed over the campaign to Rove, he ran it.  Obama handed it over to Axelrod who ran it.  What does that prove?  Who is he going to hand over the running of the government?  Does he have a Cheney?  

    Facinating stuff (5.00 / 0) (#132)
    by Faust on Tue Aug 12, 2008 at 10:15:34 AM EST
    I would LOVE to see memos from the McCain camp and the Obama camp. I would be entertained for weeks.

    we saw a memo from the Obama campaign (5.00 / 10) (#139)
    by TimNCGuy on Tue Aug 12, 2008 at 10:23:02 AM EST
    The SC memo on race-baiting.  Tim Russert confronted Obama with it.  But, we were all told it was of no consequence.  It wasn't relevant.

    But somehow, these memos from the Clinton campaign provide proof for whatever point of view you wish to run with.


    Tim....and don't you think McCain will (5.00 / 2) (#145)
    by PssttCmere08 on Tue Aug 12, 2008 at 10:40:31 AM EST
    bring up that memo to use against obama?  I do...it is going to get ugly.

    Can't explain it (5.00 / 2) (#146)
    by RalphB on Tue Aug 12, 2008 at 10:44:25 AM EST
    because I have never understood the idiocy of that.  Yet it was talked up even here on TL.

    I can't explain, but I hear ya. (5.00 / 3) (#147)
    by kempis on Tue Aug 12, 2008 at 10:44:35 AM EST
    I've wondered the same. It seems that all we heard after every primary was "that's it; game over."

    Mark Penn is a pollster. He gave her the (5.00 / 3) (#149)
    by masslib on Tue Aug 12, 2008 at 10:50:28 AM EST
    same kind of advice that was going on in every other campaign, we just don't have those memos.  This is a complete non-story.  All we know is Hillary didn't follow Penn's advice.  She didn't "release the tapes", etc.  She had lots of negative stuff at her disposal and didn't use it.  Non-story.

    Oh yeah, delegates... (5.00 / 1) (#187)
    by Rashomon66 on Tue Aug 12, 2008 at 11:40:24 AM EST
    One salient point is this:
    One story line that has featured prominently in the postmortems is Harold Ickes's attempts to alert the campaign to the importance of the party's complicated system of allotting delegates ... just 12 days before Iowa--Ickes tried again, in a memo that seems to be introducing the subject of delegates for the first time...

    This tells me one of two things:
    The campaign really didn't understand the delegate system. Or the campaign felt that they would win Iowa easily and once they did all the other states  [and hence delegates] would fall into place. I'm assuming the latter. Although there was a point where Penn says something about once they win California it would be all but over, which is a hint that maybe he didn't get it.

    What it says: How on earth did she lose to HIM? (5.00 / 0) (#194)
    by catfish on Tue Aug 12, 2008 at 11:54:48 AM EST
    What all of these articles say, including ones that contend "she ran a horrible campaign" is that she is clearly the better candidate!

    I could be wrong, but (5.00 / 1) (#205)
    by ruffian on Tue Aug 12, 2008 at 12:22:51 PM EST
    I think BTD might have a suggestion on how to achieve unity.

    On the subject of expenses (5.00 / 5) (#206)
    by ChrisO on Tue Aug 12, 2008 at 12:28:19 PM EST
    the media and Obama followers keep repeating the notion that because Hillary ran up debts, she was somehow not competent to be President. Campaigns usually run up debts. Candidates often hold fundraisers after they've been elected. Retiring campaign debt is an age old issue. But because Obama was able to raise so much money, Hillary is somehow deficient.

    Obama's campaign gets credit for effective fundraising. It's a necessary tool in campaigns. But I found it kind of weird how so many "progressives" advanced the notion that the person with the most money is automatically superior. Sounds rather Republican to me.

    Also, I hated it during the campaign (5.00 / 2) (#208)
    by ChrisO on Tue Aug 12, 2008 at 12:39:54 PM EST
    when Obama supporters would claim that every negative thing that came out about their candidate "had the Clinton's fingerprints all over it." By the same token, there were clearly a lot of divisions and rivalries within Hillary's camapign. I think it's very possible that factions within her camp released these memos. Political pros often scramble to distance themselves from defeat. While Obama's camp may have had something to do with this, I think it's unreasonable to declare unequivocally that they came from his campaign, then start railing against them for doing it. I think Hillary's people had a lot more access to the memos than Obama's people.

    UNBELIEVEABLE....!!!! (3.00 / 2) (#85)
    by EddieInCA on Tue Aug 12, 2008 at 09:02:03 AM EST
    Josh Green of the Atlantic Magazine...

    ...writes an article about the CLINTON campaign...

    ...using actual documents supplied to him by staffers of the CLINTON campaign...

    ...of which not one person on the CLINTON campaign has refuted the veracity...

    ...which detail the dysfunction and chaos of the CLINTON campaign...




    LOL. What? (5.00 / 0) (#90)
    by rooge04 on Tue Aug 12, 2008 at 09:09:43 AM EST
    Who is blaming Obama for anything? What we're reacting to is the COVERAGE of these memos. Which mean NOTHING since you know, she's lost. No one is blaming Obama for anything so settle down.

    I suggest... (5.00 / 1) (#96)
    by EddieInCA on Tue Aug 12, 2008 at 09:16:52 AM EST
    ... you re-read comments #20, #27, and #16.

    Perhaps you might reconsider your first sentence above?  Several on this site are certainly blaming Obama.


    Please explain (5.00 / 3) (#92)
    by cmugirl on Tue Aug 12, 2008 at 09:11:27 AM EST
    I read the emails.  I still don't understand where the "dysfunction" is - they clearly had disagreements, but that's to be expected.  Where's the beef?

    Oh, and BTW - George Bush ran two great campaigns also.


    This Memo... (none / 0) (#100)
    by EddieInCA on Tue Aug 12, 2008 at 09:21:49 AM EST
    ...defines dysfunction:  http://tinyurl.com/5drsk9

    Please, help define it for me, as it comes from (5.00 / 1) (#128)
    by jawbone on Tue Aug 12, 2008 at 10:08:53 AM EST
    this email.

    Sounds like things I've heard in business meetings when different factions held strong opinions about a sales approach or marketing campaign.

    But, please, help me to understand. T/U.


    Exactly. Everywhere I have worked (5.00 / 4) (#131)
    by Cream City on Tue Aug 12, 2008 at 10:14:54 AM EST
    in business and in academe over many decades, there have been memos from idiots with harebrained ideas.

    I do not recall any of those ideas being pursued.  I do recall that several of the idiots who wrote them soon had to find other employment or, if they had some sort of sinecure, soon became marginalized.

    Or as we say these days, they became busunderers. :-)

    As the Atlantic ought to be.  What a nonstory: Stuff that never actually happened.  Uh huh.


    If Solis-Doyle forked over the messages . . . (5.00 / 0) (#108)
    by wurman on Tue Aug 12, 2008 at 09:38:07 AM EST
    . . . to the media, then certain opinions may seem valid.

    If she was a mole in the Clinton campaign, then certain other opinions may seem more valid.

    If Chicago-style political hatchet jobs go national, then some real conclusions may be developed from valid opinions.

    And if frogs had wings, the Flying Spaghetti Monster would not have developed flying fish--even if Josh Green & The Atlantic were to fabricate non-stories about them.


    EddieInCA (5.00 / 2) (#133)
    by ding7777 on Tue Aug 12, 2008 at 10:17:33 AM EST
    Do you know who the staffers of the CLINTON campaign are who supplied Green with the memos?

    Of course there was chaos; it was a national campaign - not a post-mortem. (Note: Axelrod's campaign memos would also detail the dysfunction and chaos of Obama's campaign)  

    OBAMA'S FAULT?? Heck no, its just a coincidence the pro-Obama Atlantic magazine is running Hillary muck prior to the convention.


    Now, will someone be objective enough... (3.00 / 2) (#152)
    by OldCity on Tue Aug 12, 2008 at 11:04:50 AM EST
    ...to admit that though qualified, with a great grasp of the issues, Clinton ran a dysfunctional campaign?  No objective and qualified manager can look at the bloated structure of her campaign and the debt she incurred and not think that.

    My opinion has never been that HRC isn't qulaified to be president, but that she was largely responsible for her own undoing.  There were defects in her strategy and her organization that were the root causes of her defeat.

    The fact that we consistently have to hear and read about "conspiracy" and the "DNC's designated candidate" when HRC's failure to win the primary is discussed illustrates an unwillingness to be analytical on the part of those pushing those ideas.

    Had HRC managed her money well, and put together a good structure, she would have won going away despite the "misogyny of the media", etc.  She paid the price for her presumptuousness and her reliance on her staff.

    Well, imo, Obama had the caucus (5.00 / 5) (#165)
    by zfran on Tue Aug 12, 2008 at 11:18:16 AM EST
    systems worked out, I participated in one. Want to hear the illegalities at my caucus alone? Sen. Clinton was somewhat below par at caucuses, I'll give you that. What put Sen. Obama over the top were the superdelegates, the Michigan decision, the Florida decision, the DNC's illegalties, the race-bating claims by the Obama campaign, need I continue. Sen. Clinton could have done things better, of course, but Sen. Obama could have been more on the up and up as well. And, as we've seen since the primaries, Sen. Obama has flipped on so many issues he campaigned on during those primaries. Interesting.

    Get as upset as you want (3.66 / 3) (#179)
    by OldCity on Tue Aug 12, 2008 at 11:33:55 AM EST
    about his "flips".  He still won.  

    As for the illegal activities at your caucus, were there no mechanisms to report them?  Did you?

    The rules for the party were fairly straightforward, as were the agreements the candidates made vis' FL and MI.  I just can't believe that the HRC strategy to attempt to circumvent those rules and agreements is projected onto the DNC and Obama.  It's a perversion of history.

    You don't like Obama...I get that.  But his changing his mind on issues doesn't invalidate his victory.  We've already been through one scorched-earth, ideologically driven administration.  A little circumspection wouldn't go wrong, in my opinion.  

    But, in the end, the race was so close that one can certainly ascribe her failure to win much more to her campaign's mismanagement and strategic defects than to any external influence.  Not acknowledging that doesn't make it less objectively true.  


    First, complaints were made about (5.00 / 2) (#189)
    by zfran on Tue Aug 12, 2008 at 11:40:46 AM EST
    the caucuses, TX officials didn't want to alter the date of the state convention and didn't want to bother with the thousands of complaints. They are told here at TL through various primaries. His "victory" was ill-gotten and illegal in some areas. You are correct that I am not, nor have I ever been an Obama fan. He is underqualified (being nice here) imo to be president and has shown his immaturity and inaccuracies. He voted "against" the consitution in his change of mind FISA vote, a sneak preview into his decision-making? I was called a "racist" for voting for Sen. Clinton, of which I am not....which campaign do you believe said that about me? I was told to knit and I always come home....I will not this year. This is getting too long. I will not support a candidate that does not support me.

    Report the illegal activities at a caucus? You (5.00 / 6) (#190)
    by Angel on Tue Aug 12, 2008 at 11:43:15 AM EST
    obviously have never been to a caucus.  I could write a book about the crap that went on in my caucus.  Why don't you go back to those threads from March and before discussing what went on in the caucuses?  You need to read up on this stuff to know what we're talking about and to understand everything in context.  

    Not one person that I've read on any of these threads has blamed Hillary's not becoming the nominee on any one thing.  It was a multitude of things, beginning with the sexism and Clinton hate in the media, the DNC's behavour, the media's fawning of Obama, the coverup of John Edwards' affair(s), and many, many other things.  It is never one thing.  

    But learn the facts and have some intellectual honesty with yourself.  The fact is that Obama is an inexperienced man who was chosen by the DNC elite to be "the candidate" this time.  It was going to be him or someone else because it had already been decided that it would NOT be Hillary.  


    One more point, Sen. Obama (5.00 / 4) (#195)
    by zfran on Tue Aug 12, 2008 at 11:56:06 AM EST
    did not "win" the primaries. The superdelegates put him over the "magic" number. He couldn't achieve it for himself. He was handed the nod for whatever reason(s) and deals that were made. What would you have said had the supers put Sen. Clinton over the top. She, too, would have "won" with the supers, not on her own.

    Both Obama and Clinton had defects in their (5.00 / 4) (#183)
    by laurie on Tue Aug 12, 2008 at 11:37:55 AM EST
    strategy and organization.
    IMO Hillary also had the MSM and the DNC running against her.

    The root cause of Obama's November defeat lies precisely in his Primary strategy, which was to leave scorched earth behind him, as if he were running a single election and not a two tier one. First you win the Primary, then you unite the Party-you do this by running fairly.

    In addition the error the DNC and the RBC made was to underestimate the strength of affection felt for the Clintons throughout the country.

    Why they made those errors was because they are out of touch with the electorate.
    IMO a shift began during the 70s and 80s when people stopped working their way up from the bottom. There were always patricians around, (who however often adhered to a tradition of service), but now we find two generations of people who went to elite schools and walked into one high paying job after another without really learning anything from the bottom up.  Now an alarming percentage of Congress are the sons and daughters of members of Congress.

    Both Hill and Bill worked their way up. (Read their autobiographies to see how)
    Obama is of that other generation which hopped from job to better paying job.


    If If If (1.33 / 3) (#166)
    by Rashomon66 on Tue Aug 12, 2008 at 11:21:34 AM EST
    Please stop blaming the DNC, the Obama voters, the media and whomever else you don't like. It's time to admit that Clinton's team did not run a very successful campaign. It's OK to admit that. She's a good politician and she may even be more deserving of the nomination due to her qualifications. But she did not win. The campaign failed for a number of reasons, which these memo's hint at. What's more the DNC did not change the rules mid-game. If they had decided popular vote mattered more than delegate count then that would have truly been changing the rules. The rules they did change would not have made Hillary the winner.

    The DNC did change the rules, (5.00 / 8) (#172)
    by zfran on Tue Aug 12, 2008 at 11:26:00 AM EST
    see the May 31st televised decisions on MI and FL. This was a debacle!!! Meetings were held in private, which is against the rules. The tv "G" rated version was for show only. The decisions had already been made. For instance, how can a candidate whose name was not on a ballot earn  some of the delegates of another  candidate who was on the ballot? Just one example!

    What? (1.50 / 2) (#178)
    by Rashomon66 on Tue Aug 12, 2008 at 11:33:52 AM EST
    Wait, so you think that since Obama was not on the ballot then ALL the votes and ALL the delegates should have gone to Hillary wholesale?
    Even if she did get all the votes and delegates do you really think people would buy that? Do you honestly think the super delegates would have bought that? Would they have said, 'Wow, Clinton won everything in MI and Obama got zero. Well, I guess I'll put my support behind her."
    No way. They could quite clearly see that there were a large number of uncommitted votes. Those uncommitted votes were not for someone named Uncommitted or for some unknown candidate. The super delegates were not dumb.

    His name was not on the ballot! (5.00 / 7) (#191)
    by zfran on Tue Aug 12, 2008 at 11:49:06 AM EST
    Period. I don't know what kind of business you are in, but if you think that allocation was fair, I don't want to work for you. There was no compromise in MI, there was only a "throwing under the bus" attitude. He "chose" to take his name off that ballot. It was his "free" "choice" and he then should deal with the consequences of that "choice." Do you have to deal with the consequences of your "choices" or like a child, argue but, but, but...

    Puh-leaze! (5.00 / 9) (#192)
    by LatinoVoter on Tue Aug 12, 2008 at 11:50:37 AM EST
    Wait, so you think that since Obama was not on the ballot then ALL the votes and ALL the delegates should have gone to Hillary wholesale?

    I don't know if you're being ignorant on purpose and twisting what zfran said or if you're just ignorant about what happened and what zfran is talking about.

    Hillary had delegates taken away from her that she actually earned as a result of people voting for her and given to Obama. And all of those uncommitted delegates weren't his to get. Edwards too had voters vote for uncommitted.


    The DNC gave Obama (5.00 / 11) (#193)
    by tree on Tue Aug 12, 2008 at 11:50:47 AM EST
    ALL the uncommitted votes and some of Clinton's votes. That was unprecedented and illegal under their charter. The DNC decided to play clairivoyant
    and surmise that all the people that voted for "Uncommitted" really wanted to vote for Obama(not for Edwards or Dodd or perhaps they really were uncommitted), and that in addition some of the Clinton voters really didn't mean to vote for her either, they too really wanted to vote for Obama.

     If you think that that isn't a travesty, ask yourself how you would feel if some elected official decided  that everyone who failed to vote for the top of the ticket really wanted to vote for McCain, and that a few of those who voted for Obama really meant to vote for McCain too.


    Another straw man (5.00 / 8) (#201)
    by sj on Tue Aug 12, 2008 at 12:11:21 PM EST
    so you think that since Obama was not on the ballot then ALL the votes and ALL the delegates should have gone to Hillary wholesale?

    Who said that?  Candidates always make strategic choices as to which primary/caucuses to participate in.  The fact that Obama did not participate in MI should only be noteworthy as a strategic decision made by the campaign.  They don't (or anyway shouldn't) get to make that decision, save all the money and effort of not campaigning and then claim delegates.  It's unethical and wrong.  

    Clinton didn't get everything in MI.  "Uncommitted" got 55 delegates.

    Clinton earned her delegates by getting the votes.  The uncommitted delegates were exactly that:  uncommitted delegates.  They were all completely free to vote for Obama at the convention.  They could have AND should have gone to the convention and voted as they saw fit.  They should no more have gone to Obama than they should have gone to Hillary.  They should have been certified as "Uncommitted" and then voted.  

    Uncommitted is a perfectly valid certification.  Where do you get off thinking it equals Obama?  If they (the DNC) or you were so convinced that they belonged to him then, then why not just follow the rules and let them vote that way?  They were his delegates right?  He could count on that?  Instead, he chose not be on the ballot, and had the uncommitted given to him.  

    We're the Good Guys, da*n it!  That's what I've always believed.  To see this obviously corrupt play in the process take place out there in PUBLIC is really hard for me to forgive.

    Had she lost fair and square I would feel very differently.  You may have convinced yourself that there was nothing unethical about it, but I know better.  And I would know better if it had been Senator Clinton who was so favored.  It was wrong.  Period.


    The DNC changed the rules (5.00 / 11) (#174)
    by tree on Tue Aug 12, 2008 at 11:31:13 AM EST
    on May 31st. They took votes from one candidate and gave them to another in violation of their charter.

     And prior to that Donna Brazile did her best to undermine one candidate and support another while claiming to be neutral. I look forward to her resignation after the convention, since it is clear that the superdelegates  decided the nomination, something that she swore earlier in the year would cause her to resign, when it looked like the supers would tilt it towards Clinton.


    Is it okay to call Hillary presumptious? (none / 0) (#173)
    by Maria Garcia on Tue Aug 12, 2008 at 11:29:22 AM EST
    ...I'm just checking cause I thought that was a dirty word these days.

    Insightful (2.00 / 7) (#19)
    by Spike on Tue Aug 12, 2008 at 07:00:57 AM EST
    The memos prove that the Clinton campaign failed because it bought its own inevitability hype -- it had no money, ground forces or strategy if she didn't swamp the field on Super Tuesday. When she actually lost ground on Feb 5 in terms of delegate count, she faced a dozen straight losses that put her in a hole so deep that her eventual defeat was inevitable. That she battled back to make it as close as it was is a tribute to her as a candidate -- not to her campaign.

    Finally, these memos put to rest the notion that Clinton can blame her defeat on her victimhood. Her partisans can't continue to claim that her defeat was primarily the result of anything untoward by the Obama campaign or the media. As these memos indicate, her demise was largely self-inflicted. If the campaign had been managed well, Obama and the media would have been minor distractions.

    No , they don't (5.00 / 19) (#22)
    by cmugirl on Tue Aug 12, 2008 at 07:07:49 AM EST
    This is an incomplete list of emails and were only selectively released. Obviously they were released to paint the HRC campaign in the worst light.

    I'd love to see an incomplete list of Obama campaign emails - such as ones discussing the infamous SC memo to paint the Clintons as racists so as to tear into her AA support.


    whats interesting.... (5.00 / 17) (#40)
    by p lukasiak on Tue Aug 12, 2008 at 07:39:57 AM EST
    is that if you don't have CDS, the memos actually paint the Clinton campaign in a positive light in terms of tactics.  (Money management is another thing -- and Solis-Doyle was rightfully fired for her problem-solving approach...if people disagree, throw money at both of them.)  

    This idea that the memos reflect some kind of unusual level of discord in the Clinton campaign is complete nonsense.  These are internam memos -- the kind of things where people express their individual opinions.  Disagreement is supposed to happen in these kinds of communications (and anyone who thinks that even worse memos weren't circulated in the Obama campaign is kidding themselves.  I mean, can you imagine the memos that were sent in Obamaland before and after Obama announced that he would be attacking Clinton in the Times?)


    Unusual Level of Discord (5.00 / 1) (#101)
    by daring grace on Tue Aug 12, 2008 at 09:21:51 AM EST
    Well, unusual for this campaign. Nobody covered discord in the campaigns of Gravel, or Biden, or Dodd or Kucinich if, indeed there was any.

    And if there was this level of discord in the Obama campaign they masterfully masked it, because the image they continually projected was that theirs was a staff and an operation that worked well together or that reasonably hammered things out.

    That's not true of team Clinton. Even before these memos--in fact throughout the primary season, winning or losing--there was continual leaking and sniping between the different factions played out noisily and publicly in the press.


    It's been an eye-opener to read (5.00 / 1) (#107)
    by brodie on Tue Aug 12, 2008 at 09:35:35 AM EST
    about the inner workings of her campaign.  My takeaway so far is that a couple of people -- Penn and PSD -- were both given top jobs they were not suited for.  Penn because of his caustic, divisive attitude, PSD because she was utterly out of her depth.

    And again it's surprising to me, given the very long primary season, that HRC didn't step in earlier in the season, no later than the fall of 07 one would think, to make some mid-course corrections to the campaign, as I would think the complications resulting from the two warring campaign factions would have showed up before the voting started.  

    It's also not clear how it was that so much money pre-IA and NH was spent with so little to show for it, and why it was that the $25m reserve wasn't maintained.  Was that Ickes' responsibility or PSD's?

    I have a personal stake in this one, having sent her campaign a fair chunk of change from my pocket, then seeing to my horror that her campaign was announcing that it basically wasn't able to compete in the Feb contests.


    That part was crazy (5.00 / 1) (#114)
    by samtaylor2 on Tue Aug 12, 2008 at 09:45:19 AM EST
    They actually did a great job of hiding their inability to get information and launch a campaign.  If that information had gotten out, those string of loses could have been HUGE.

    Yes (5.00 / 11) (#45)
    by frankly0 on Tue Aug 12, 2008 at 07:48:41 AM EST
    the real memos we need to see would be from the Obama campaign, and addressing the issue of playing the race card. What lay behind the SC memo, or JJ Jrs "Hillary didn't cry for Katrina" comment?

    Despite the obvious negative selection in the memos released, there seems to have been no memo from the Hillary campaign that even hinted at using racial appeals of any kind.

    As dirty laundry goes, these memos seem pretty tame.

    I'd like to see what was going on behind the scenes at the Obama campaign.


    Ditto! (5.00 / 1) (#60)
    by tek on Tue Aug 12, 2008 at 08:16:05 AM EST
    Oh please. Spare us. (5.00 / 10) (#24)
    by rooge04 on Tue Aug 12, 2008 at 07:10:12 AM EST
    No one here is saying if this or that hadn't happened she would have won see! We ALL agree that they mis-managed her campaign. We ALL wanted Penn fired after Iowa. We ALL know that there were problems within her campaign. NO ONE is saying that she lost due to "victimhood" as you and many other Obama supporters have claimed. PLEASE.

    The point today is: Why are they bringing this up now?!?!?!? SHE LOST. WE KNOW.  They are only bringing it up to put a large stick into wounds that had started to heal.  Yesterday I was almost ready to vote for Obama.  The economy is just better under a Dem.  For that reason alone, I was going to do it.  Now these memos come out. And the same media that propped Obama up, that tore Clinton down (and she got millions of votes in spite of it!) is doing it again. And I'm back to abstaining out of utter disgust. So, good work media!!


    Penn.... (5.00 / 5) (#32)
    by p lukasiak on Tue Aug 12, 2008 at 07:29:59 AM EST
    Penn was a public embarrassment -- but the fact is that if Clinton had listened to Penn, she'd be the nominee.  Penn should have been sidelined well before Iowa -- stayed with the campaign, but told not to talk to the media under any circumstances -- because he was incapable of staying "on message".

    The fact is that Penn told the truth (which Jeralyn praised when it came to Obama's criticism of the United States) when he spoke on TV (and wrote memos).  The fact that "the truth" he was telling on TV was off-message should have kept him out of the public eye, but that truth should not have kept him off the campaign.


    Penn was a backroom embarassment (5.00 / 0) (#161)
    by inclusiveheart on Tue Aug 12, 2008 at 11:15:52 AM EST
    too though.  He was a bad influence on the campaign all around.  If he had a shred of decency he'd give the money back that he took from the campaign.

    The way I understood it (none / 0) (#167)
    by tree on Tue Aug 12, 2008 at 11:21:49 AM EST
    was that all the ad buys went through him, so what is on the surface a payment to him is in large part a payment for an ad buy. His salary was much less than what he was paid because he was dispersing money. I thought I read that he is planning on writing off his own salary if need be.

    The ad buys are income earnings (none / 0) (#181)
    by inclusiveheart on Tue Aug 12, 2008 at 11:37:10 AM EST
    he made based on his "strategy" and polling work.  It isn't separate - its gravy - gravy he should ladle back into the debt ridden campaign imo.

    You think he only paid himself (none / 0) (#197)
    by tree on Tue Aug 12, 2008 at 12:05:36 PM EST
    to get ads on the air? He doesn't own any TV or radio stations. Those are costs that were paid through him. They aren't his gravy.

    And don't be fooled. (5.00 / 6) (#64)
    by tek on Tue Aug 12, 2008 at 08:18:21 AM EST
    It isn't just the media behind this, the Obama campaign and the DNC is behind it all the way.  I actually read on TM that they're hoping this will disillusio the Hillary people so they'll vote for Obie.

    LOL (5.00 / 7) (#75)
    by Valhalla on Tue Aug 12, 2008 at 08:24:31 AM EST
    Yeah, this will do the trick.

    Yes. It's totally working! (5.00 / 6) (#76)
    by rooge04 on Tue Aug 12, 2008 at 08:28:00 AM EST
    If anything people that were finally warming up to Obama are just being frosted out again.  Way to go Champs!

    Why (5.00 / 4) (#79)
    by RalphB on Tue Aug 12, 2008 at 08:38:23 AM EST
    was anyone warming up to Obama?  Did he do something I missed?

    Only reason I was getting warm to (5.00 / 2) (#82)
    by rooge04 on Tue Aug 12, 2008 at 08:44:12 AM EST
    him was that I was not paying attention for a bit. Every time I start paying attention again, I'm back to cold as ice! LOL.  

    Maybe it is their ingenious plan (5.00 / 4) (#87)
    by ruffian on Tue Aug 12, 2008 at 09:03:21 AM EST
    to help her retire her campaign debt.  Whenever they try to make her look bad she gets another 5 mil in contributions.

    Well, I'm certainly (5.00 / 2) (#126)
    by nemo52 on Tue Aug 12, 2008 at 10:05:01 AM EST
    feeling warm about O now!  I don't think I could getany MORE tepid, but I'm pretty radically tepid on him now.

    Illogical (4.00 / 4) (#29)
    by Spike on Tue Aug 12, 2008 at 07:28:48 AM EST
    The reason this is being brought up now is to sell magazines. You were almost ready to support Obama but you changed your mind because of something the media -- not Obama -- have done? I don't see the logic in that. If it's better to have a Dem in the WH for economic reasons, that shouldn't change because a magazine is pushing product.

    It's people like YOU! (5.00 / 14) (#34)
    by rooge04 on Tue Aug 12, 2008 at 07:32:39 AM EST
    It's not illogical first of all. I own my vote. Not the Democratic party.  And in spite of Obama himself, it's supporters like YOU that make me NEVER want to reward these types of behaviors and lies.  It's not LOGIC, it's PRINCIPLES. And when people like you say "this proves that HRC was not a victim!" it enrages me. It makes me SEETHE with anger at your lies and your continuation of DESTROYING a woman that is RIGHT NOW campaigning for Obama while he suns himself in Hawaii. This is how they thank her? The media has been on his side the entire time.  That's fine. But there is no way I'm rewarding this type of behavior. Destroying the Clinton legacy and LYING relentlessly about Hillary?  UNACCEPTABLE. And it goes against MY principles. Party politics be damned.

    Clarification (3.00 / 2) (#43)
    by Spike on Tue Aug 12, 2008 at 07:44:21 AM EST
    I never said that Clinton wasn't a victim. I said she could not blame her defeat on being a victim. The dysfunction of her own campaign was the primary reason for her inability to secure the nomination. And I assure you that I am not a Clinton hater and have no interest in destroying the Clinton legacy. I worked in the Clinton White House for eight years.

    Well, the media being (5.00 / 3) (#51)
    by rooge04 on Tue Aug 12, 2008 at 07:55:53 AM EST
    solidly behind Obama and having the help of Edwards and every other opponent in attacking her kind of helped too, don't ya think?  Not to mention that she STILL got more votes in spite of it.

    Then you've set up a straw man (5.00 / 1) (#83)
    by gyrfalcon on Tue Aug 12, 2008 at 08:47:54 AM EST
    and knocked it down decisively!  Well done!

    LOL! Do we look stupid to you? (5.00 / 17) (#115)
    by goldberry on Tue Aug 12, 2008 at 09:48:09 AM EST
    The reason she "lost" has everything to do with reapportioning the caucus delegates, withholding Florida and Michigan, the relentless attacks by the media and the sophisticated psy ops that Axelrod used whenever Hillary scored a point in order to make her look like she could never win.  And she came damn near close to beating him anyway.  

    Where were you from Feb 5 onwards?  Hillary became an uber candidate.  She was amazing.  People started to respect her and loved her by the end. In any other year, the candidate who won FL, MI, CA, NY, NJ, and MA by Feb 5 would have cruised to an easy victory.  

    She never lost.  She was bludgeoned by her own party. Obama is the real loser here.  He won only a couple big states decisively, he was never able to close the deal in spite of his delegate lead and now he's looking at the devastation he wrought on the party through his divisive race baiting tactics.  This is why these memos surfaced.  He's in big trouble and he has to kill off Clinton before she is resurrected to take her rightful place as nominee.  He stole the nomination from her.  Instead of a Madam President, we are looking at a fraud and a thief as a nominee and a losing one at that.  He can't win because we don't want him.  We wanted HER. No amount of spinning is going to change that.

    Well, you reap what you sow.  Cheaters never prosper.  


    exactly (5.00 / 6) (#138)
    by ccpup on Tue Aug 12, 2008 at 10:21:23 AM EST
    but these memos aren't as newsworthy or devastating as the Obama Camp and the DNC were secretly hoping.  If anything, a SD would read these and recognize that Hillary was running the Primary with the General in mind.

    If they were hoping to sink her with these, they failed miserably.  I don't think the DNC and Obama realize the American Public is keenly aware of the overarching Clinton Bias in the news.  So, anything they hear which is anti-Clinton is accepted with a big grain of salt.  

    Not only that, they're more aware of who Obama really is and are less likely to support him regardless of how he tries to destroy Hillary.  If bringing her supporters into the fold was their intent, they've failed miserably.

    The SDs aren't stupid and plainly see what the Obama Camp and the DNC are up to by beating the dead horse of Hillary Hate.  

    And no amount of "look at the shiny object/change the conversation from his abysmal poll numbers" is going to mask that the SDs are now moving closer to the realization that the downticket races are going to suffer with him on the ticket and THAT'S what they REALLY care about.


    It isn't necessarily better to have a Dem in the (4.40 / 5) (#33)
    by Angel on Tue Aug 12, 2008 at 07:30:59 AM EST
    white house (especially if that Dem is Obama) if we have a Dem Congress.  All we need is to have the majority and for that majority to grow a spine.

    what a pile.... (5.00 / 11) (#28)
    by p lukasiak on Tue Aug 12, 2008 at 07:23:50 AM EST
    first off, the memos make it clear that the campaign did not buy into the "inevitable" meme, rather, the focus was on making her "inevitable" as soon as possible.  That is the difference.

    And if Clinton's problems were "self-inflicted" the damage was done because of Clinton's decision to not go negative in response to the brutal attacks on her character by Obama and Edwards -- and the resultant failure to have a cash reserve after Iowa.   A couple of negative ads against Obama, even if only released on the net, would have been a much more efficient way of eating into Obama's support, because those ads would have been the equivalent of free national advertising.


    EXACTLY. (5.00 / 18) (#31)
    by rooge04 on Tue Aug 12, 2008 at 07:29:54 AM EST
    How is "refusing to attack Obama" going with the inevitable meme?  The leaps and bounds that people make with regards to their CDS is rather incredible.  And never mind that Hillary herself was NEVER keen on the attacks somehow this will be blamed on her completely.  See? I LOVE how they add that she was a bad executive decisionmaker (huh!?) as in : See?! She's way too bad at this to ever have been a good president.

    I remember this:   That fateful October 30 debate. She had 7 competitors and 3 newsmen attacking her. And she won that debate.  The woman took on the media and the DNC and she beat their as*.  


    Not just the debates (5.00 / 12) (#55)
    by Valhalla on Tue Aug 12, 2008 at 08:04:19 AM EST
    This campaign, which the Atlantic author would have us believe was the most evil, mismanaged and disorganized on earth, had everyone arrayed against it:  the relentless MSM, the 'let's gang up on her!' sneering other candidates, the netrootz, the DNC and their 'we don't need any stinkin' democracy' RBC pets, all with their assorted severities of CDS and wielding sexism like a double-headed axe.  Not to mention going up against the disproportional representation within cong. districts and everyone's longtime fav, the caucus system, plus stern arm-twisting of those in the last-day SD stampede.

    And guess what?  She still almost won.  She lost by a hair.


    Clarification (5.00 / 0) (#36)
    by Spike on Tue Aug 12, 2008 at 07:35:48 AM EST
    The fact that the campaign had no cash reserve -- was actually insolvent -- after Iowa is evidence that they thought her nomination was inevitable after Super Tuesday. The only other explanation was that they were trying to throw the election. And I don't think anyone believes that.

    Absolutely false. (5.00 / 3) (#41)
    by rooge04 on Tue Aug 12, 2008 at 07:41:29 AM EST
    No one thought that they NEEDED the money. Especially HER supporters that were mostly working-class and older people that do NOT do email and do not give money as easily as many Obama supporters did.  You honestly think she didn't WANT more money in the coffers for that? You are fooling yourself in an attempt to bend to your CDS.

    that's just silly.... (5.00 / 4) (#50)
    by p lukasiak on Tue Aug 12, 2008 at 07:55:01 AM EST
    Its like saying that a business that goes bankrupt thinks that it will be a huge success.

    Fiscal mismanagement is separate and distinct from "inevitability".   Front-runners' campaigns are always more expensive, because everyone assumes that the campaign is flush with cash, and wants to get paid in full (second and third tier candidates get a lot more services and labor either free or discounted, but if you are the front-runner, you are expected to pay 'retail').


    And she can thank VP-vetter Solis Doyle (5.00 / 2) (#52)
    by rooge04 on Tue Aug 12, 2008 at 07:57:47 AM EST
    for not keeping track of it!

    False dichotomy (5.00 / 0) (#56)
    by Valhalla on Tue Aug 12, 2008 at 08:07:46 AM EST
    Even the Atlantic article doesn't try to make that false argument.

    The spent millions in Iowa because her campaign couldn't get it together.

    Did you even read the Atlantic spinning top of an article?  The campaigns projections on ST were that she would win but not by much.  Only certain other campaigns would characterize that as 'inevitability'.


    What about obama outspending Hillary (4.00 / 4) (#143)
    by PssttCmere08 on Tue Aug 12, 2008 at 10:33:44 AM EST
    3 to 1 in some states and still couldn't win them....how do you answer that?  Edwards did all he could to undermine Hillary by participating in taking his name off the ballot in MI and just running, in general, when he knew damn well he could never be elected after his "affair" came to the forefront, coupled with the fact he was not a good candidate.

    Or maybe they had no money (5.00 / 1) (#116)
    by LatinoVoter on Tue Aug 12, 2008 at 09:49:34 AM EST
    because it was wasted by the likes of Patti SD or because her supporters believe people like Edwards and Obama who smeared her as the candidate of big business with their money backing her and figured she didn't need it.

    Hey Spike. If/when Obama loses in November (5.00 / 2) (#30)
    by Angel on Tue Aug 12, 2008 at 07:29:03 AM EST
    what will your excuse for him be?  

    Sorry... (5.00 / 1) (#38)
    by Spike on Tue Aug 12, 2008 at 07:38:13 AM EST
    I'm not a clairvoyant. I don't do post mortems in advance. I expect him to win. But if he doesn't I will be glad to share my analysis on Nov 5.

    I will look forward to more clarifications in Nov. (5.00 / 1) (#207)
    by DFLer on Tue Aug 12, 2008 at 12:28:21 PM EST
    Clinton (5.00 / 5) (#42)
    by ccpup on Tue Aug 12, 2008 at 07:43:38 AM EST
    Had Hillary not run, Obama would have been stronger.  Had Hillary dropped out after Iowa, Obama would have been able to focus on the General.  Had Hillary not caused Rev Wright to happen, Obama wouldn't have been politically wounded.  Had Hillary not made Obama call Americans bitter and clingy, he wouldn't have had that bad Press.  Had Hillary just let Obama win OH, PA, FL, CA, NJ, NH, NY and NM he would have been a much stronger, more effective candidate in the General.  Had Hillary been worse in debates, Obama wouldn't have been embarrassed with his own poor performance.

    Do I need to add snark after all of this?



    I Doubt It (5.00 / 0) (#46)
    by Spike on Tue Aug 12, 2008 at 07:49:47 AM EST
    That may be the way you see it. But if Obama loses it won't have anything to do with the primaries. In fact, the primaries made him a much stronger candidate. There would be an entirely different set of forces as work that won't have anything to do with Clinton.

    Yes, the voters will FINALLY have their say (5.00 / 3) (#123)
    by goldberry on Tue Aug 12, 2008 at 10:00:28 AM EST
    After going through the apparently pointless primary system where the process was rigged to produce a predetermined outcome and had to be rejiggered at the end to ensure that outcome, and after they have been effectively shut out of the convention where the delegates they elected to represent them are given ceremonial roles complete with a "I voted PRESENT!" commemorative mouth gag, the voters will finally get a chance to pull the lever in a manner that will move the nation.  They will finally be able to even the score and get revenge on the people who deprived them of a real choice and called them racists.  They will be itchin' to go to the polls on November 4th just so they can watch Howard Dean scream.  
    Cause, effect.  Push the button, watch what happens.  Very satisfying.  

    oh man (5.00 / 5) (#141)
    by ccpup on Tue Aug 12, 2008 at 10:32:28 AM EST
    do you not know what snark means?  Obamas Boyz in the media are already pushing the theme that if Obama loses in November, it'll be Clinton's fault.

    Yes, I know the idea is ridiculous.  But we are talking about Obama Supporters here.


    Who cares what they say? (5.00 / 6) (#148)
    by goldberry on Tue Aug 12, 2008 at 10:47:55 AM EST
    The people responsible for Obama losing in the fall are the ones who pushed an unacceptable candidate on us in the first place and did everything they could to make sure that voters had no say in the matter.  

    The fall losers can say whatever they want.  To me, it will sound like the equivalent of "It's all your fault that I got hurt,  You made me do it."

    I have no patience for children and I'm not going to feel badly when they learn their lesson.  We told them not to do it.  We told them there would be consequences.  And now there will be consequences.  They have to learn to live with their mistakes.  


    I agree (5.00 / 2) (#170)
    by ccpup on Tue Aug 12, 2008 at 11:24:48 AM EST
    There will be those who will backflip their way out of assigning Obama the blame for his loss in the Fall.

    But Obama himself rarely takes responsibility for anything.  Instead of saying "I apologize for saying that", he'll say "I'm sorry you didn't understand what I was saying".  The onus is on US to understand what he means, not on HIM to be clear or honest.  

    At the end of this all, I believe "WORM" (What Obama Really Meant) will be in the National lexicon and used by all to cover up their own inartful statements.  

    And it'll be one of those "made up" words which will be understood shorthand in conversation.  Much like "wannabe".


    Hey Spike (5.00 / 5) (#44)
    by standingup on Tue Aug 12, 2008 at 07:45:21 AM EST
    Comments like yours are the reason I hate articles like the one in the Atlantic.  You take an article critical of the campaign and twist it to dismiss sexism in the media.  Sorry but the campaign did make mistakes and the media was sexist.  How much one verses the other contributed to Clinton's loss is not the point here.      

    Clarification (5.00 / 0) (#47)
    by Spike on Tue Aug 12, 2008 at 07:51:10 AM EST
    I never said the media wasn't sexist. I only said that wasn't the reason the Clinton campaign failed.

    Most of us.... (5.00 / 2) (#48)
    by Maria Garcia on Tue Aug 12, 2008 at 07:54:11 AM EST
    ...never said that sexism in the media was the reason her campaign failed either.

    Find me a Clinton supporter on this site (5.00 / 1) (#49)
    by rooge04 on Tue Aug 12, 2008 at 07:54:42 AM EST
    that ever said anything of the sort. Acknowledging that there was sexism does not mean that we believe that's why she lost.

    Why She Lost? (3.00 / 2) (#157)
    by Spike on Tue Aug 12, 2008 at 11:12:13 AM EST
    Here's one Clinton supporter on this thread who doesn't even buy your premise that Clinton lost:

    "She never lost.  She was bludgeoned by her own party. Obama is the real loser here.  He won only a couple big states decisively, he was never able to close the deal in spite of his delegate lead and now he's looking at the devastation he wrought on the party through his divisive race baiting tactics.  This is why these memos surfaced.  He's in big trouble and he has to kill off Clinton before she is resurrected to take her rightful place as nominee.  He stole the nomination from her.  Instead of a Madam President, we are looking at a fraud and a thief as a nominee and a losing one at that.  He can't win because we don't want him.  We wanted HER. No amount of spinning is going to change that."


    Pretty obviously (5.00 / 6) (#159)
    by Steve M on Tue Aug 12, 2008 at 11:13:42 AM EST
    that is not a claim that Hillary lost because of sexism.

    Your choice (5.00 / 7) (#54)
    by standingup on Tue Aug 12, 2008 at 08:03:25 AM EST
    of the term "victimhood" tells me all I need to know, no clarification necessary.  And can you provide any examples of where Clinton blames her defeat on her victimhood?  

    Sorry (5.00 / 0) (#184)
    by Spike on Tue Aug 12, 2008 at 11:38:11 AM EST
    That was a poor choice of words on my part. I never meant to imply that Clinton herself blamed her defeat on her "victimhood." I have no idea what she attributes her loss to. I was referring to what is probably a small subset of her supporters who cannot accept that the Clinton campaign was responsible for its own defeat.

    Thanks (5.00 / 2) (#202)
    by standingup on Tue Aug 12, 2008 at 12:13:32 PM EST
    It's a very sensitive issue.  Also, try to remember that some of these supporters are not just supporters but women whose own lives have been adversely impacted by sexism too.  For some it cuts deeper than just observing it as a political supporter.  I'm fortunate myself to not have had it happen to me personally but have witnessed it with others.  

    I will never feel the same about the Democratic party after the way sexism was dismissed, overlooked and in a few cases condoned in the 2008 primaries.  


    I'm confused... (5.00 / 7) (#112)
    by TimNCGuy on Tue Aug 12, 2008 at 09:41:52 AM EST
    Does there have to be only ONE REASON why she lost?  Can't there be more than one contributing factor?  Can't one of those factors be sexism, even if by itself it didn't cause the loss?  Can't the same be said for lack of money after Iowa, that by itself it didn't cause the loss?  Or, the same be said for thoughts of "inevitability"?

    How about this....  If Obama and the media hadn't painted the Clintons as race-baiters, then Hillary's support in the black community would not have completely disappeared.  If Hillary had carried 40% of the black vote, she would have been in a clear lead after super tuesday because the states she won, she would have won by MORE.  And, the states she lost, she may have won or at least have been closer.  Both of these would have given her more delegates on super tuesday than she got.  And, it certainly would have stopped her from losing 11 straight contests after super tuesday.


    You've got to be kidding me (5.00 / 1) (#69)
    by zfran on Tue Aug 12, 2008 at 08:21:15 AM EST
    with what you've said. Funny how your comments reflect the same words as many who have written about this. Are these your opinions, of which I respect, or are these opinions of others you have taken? P.S. When did Sen. Clinton claim "victimhood" due to the Obama campaign?

    camopaign management (1.00 / 1) (#210)
    by OldCity on Tue Aug 12, 2008 at 02:14:29 PM EST
    At no time before the primary bagan did ANYONE think that HRC was going to lose, let alone even be significantly challenged.  When she was, her campaign responded poorly.

    I don't know the work capacities of other posters, but I can say that a manager, an executive, is judged by the team he/she puts into place and the execution of that team.  That's the hard world of business.  

    Somehow, the fact that her organization failed at what was supposed to be a fait accompli is being attributed to Obama, the DNC, the Rules Committee, etc.  Come on.  This race was never supposed to be even close.  The fact that it was so close tells you reams about her executive abilities.  They're not good.

    I was a supporter.  I remain an admirer.  But I won't alibi her for the failures of her organization or her defective strategy.  Neither should anyone else.

    And, I should point out, the fact that she is a woman has zero bearing on her poor execution.  A poster above summed it up best when they noted that their central problem is that HE is not HER.  At least that's an honest assessment of their opposition.  Frankly, it's unimpressive as a reason for allowing for the possibility of a Republican administration, but there you go.

    There is sooo much of it. (none / 0) (#9)
    by weltec2 on Tue Aug 12, 2008 at 04:19:19 AM EST
    It's exhausting. I'm going to take a break.

    Since my wife is off at a resort with my daughter and a German foreign exchange student, I'm going to have dinner at Denny's down the block. Yes, we do have Denny's in Tokyo but the menu is quite different.

    Can't come up (5.00 / 1) (#74)
    by tek on Tue Aug 12, 2008 at 08:24:15 AM EST
    with an example so go to Denny's?  

    My comment was #9 (none / 0) (#180)
    by weltec2 on Tue Aug 12, 2008 at 11:36:39 AM EST
    and it was made hours ago. Yours was #74.

    Someone wrote and there is some question (none / 0) (#62)
    by delacarpa on Tue Aug 12, 2008 at 08:17:46 AM EST
    that was circulating on the internet about his BC so maybe that is what was meant here. Seems again this has come up again.

    (about the strategy to turn Obama into a "foreigner."  I really don't see that as having shaped the Clinton rhetoric much at all, and certainly not effectively.)  

    Definitely racism in Penn memos (none / 0) (#84)
    by Exeter on Tue Aug 12, 2008 at 08:54:22 AM EST
    I think the story is that, for the most part, the Clinton campaign did not go down that path. As far as tapes, I would guess those are most likely the Wright tapes, which were publicly available and not all that hidden.