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March 04, 2008

Comments

I'm not sure that the argument about swing states (which of course aren't something you came up with) makes that much sense. It's not obvious to me why doing well in the Democratic primary or caucus would translate into doing well in that state in the general. The general election is mostly decided by swing voters, most of whom would not be participating in the Democratic primary or caucus, especially in states where such contests are closed.

The remaining primary states include several -- like Mississippi, Oregon, and North Carolina -- where Obama is likely to rack up major wins.

PA is the only primary in April. NC's and Oregon's primaries are in May.

who here wants 8 more weeks of this ?

Speaking of expectations games. The latest spin this week has been that Clinton has won the majority of Democratic votes so far and thus should be the nominee. Not delegates, but votes, and not just votes, but Democratic votes. Those state parties that allow open primaries: irrelevant. I haven't seen anyone show the math behind this, it's just asserted as a given.

hilzoy: for states important in the General Election that Hillary won, you left out the electoral votes (why am I not surprised) from Florida (27) and Michigan (17).

So according to your calculations of state electoral votes important in the general election, Obama has 76 and Clinton has 41 + 27 + 17 which equals 85, putting her in the lead.

who here wants 8 more weeks of this ?

Me me me me me!

Well, I'm afraid. She's been successfully playing the "Poor me, the meanies are picking on poor little female me" game. It worked for her in New Hampshire and seems to have gained her some last minute support in Ohio and possibly Texas.

Makes me sick. REAL feminists don't fake victimization.

I think that thhere already is blood on the floor. Chait is quite righht: the only way for her to get back in thhe game was to smear Obama, so she has. For her own benefit. Screw the party. Screw the othher Democfrats. It's all about Hillary. This self-aggarandizement is bad for the party in every way. She has poisoned our party discourse with the same kinnd of up is down dishonsety which the Republianns have been using for years to poison our national political discourse. She pretennds to be a victim while attacking. Her attacks are dishonest and out of bounds and done in the interests of personal ambition. In order to continue to support her, her supporters have to go along withh her lies by inventinng thhe kind of rationalizations annd distortions of reaason that typify the diaries on MyDD, for example. Then she annd her supporters blame anyone who calls them on their crap for the the discord that they, thhe Clintonistas, have created! Rovism reigns in our party now. All this because Hillary thinks thhat she ougtht to be the Presidennt.

She doesn't give a damn about thhe Democratic party.

If I have to I will vote for her, but I will not give money or time to her campaign. She will probably lose inn a fight with McCain for a variety of reasons, but one big reason is that by her behavior shhe is demonstrating that she merits her high disapproval ratings.

148.875

That poor 7/8 of a delegate.

Jay, please don't tell me you're going to play the "FL & MI" game. Especially, Michigan, where Clinton barely beat "Uncommitted." Florida is dirty, too, since all the candidates pledged not to campaign there, but Clinton reneged on that pledge. That's a non-starter. Now, if you want to argue for do-overs, I could get behind that, but trying to seat delegates from a patently unfair election stinks of desperation (and Soviet-era politics, to boot). Is that how you want her to win? Really?

Zing:

Watch in amazement as Hillary Clinton specifically cites her experience as First Lady as confirming her view that Saddam Hussein has links with al-Qaeda and active chemical, biological, and nuclear weapons programs (and no she didn't read the classified intelligence that might have cast some doubts on her Bush administration talking points) that we had to address through war...

I couldn't watch.

Oh, it was nice of WJC to stop by above. Hi Fmr. Pres. Clinton!

At least the Clinton campaign is doing what it can to prevent the unreasonably favorable media coverage I fear for tonight.

Did Hillary also major in miracles, not math?

Zing:

gack. i really don't understand Hillary supporters.

Jay Jerome. You appear to think that elections where only one name was on the ballot are fair and free. Is that correct?

The most insightful post of the week was on Marc Ambinder's blog, along the lines of "I admit it. I can't tell any more who's for Clinton and who's trying to be funny." I've seen many versions of the following:

A: How, how, is Clinton going to close the pledged delegate gap?
B: When will you realize pledged delegates just don't matter?

Also, Wyoming and Mississippi are now invisible. Losing a 20-point lead while you campaign signals powerful positive momentum. Coming from way behind to almost close a 20-point lead is a sign that Obama's star has faded. (Variation: he must agree that if he loses PA, he'll back out.) These can now be added to Charisma is bad; Winning elections is not what we look for in a candidate; Who wants to attract independents and republicans; and The big thing is to win the same states Kerry got, not new states.

Like Hilzoy, I see no signs the supers plan to overthrow the pledged delegates. And mathematically Obama's won, barrring the alien abduction of everyone who planned to vote for him in upcoming elections. I just can't look away from the train wreck as the Clintons refuse to go down....as Andrew Sullivan noted, it's a lot like a zombie movie.

hilzoy,

Just for the sake of being mischievous, I have to ask: who is your intended audience, in this post?

If you are just thinking out loud and letting the rest of us enjoy a window into your thought process, then by all means carry on. From my viewpoint your position appears to be very similar to Bill Richardson's recent statement to the effect that we (the Democrats) need to wrap this up soon and that he who has the most pledged delegates should be declared the victor starting sometime tomorrow, if by your reasoning the remaining primaries are unlikely to shift the results much and the superdelegates are not permitted to overturn a non-trivial lead in the pledged delegate count.

On the other hand, if you are trying to encourage one side or the other in the debate over this issue to relinquish their current position, it seems to me that the group of persuadable Obama or Hillary partisans who read and comment on political blogs is rapidly converging on the null set, if not already there.

Do you have any evidence that there are any open minds left on this question? I realize that absence of evidence is not evidence of absence, so I'm just asking.

Also, while I'm a little worried people might be getting carried away, there's speculation that the slow but steady super endorsements and the failure to release the Feb fundraising are a strategy to deliver several blows on Wednesday.

Which makes sense: Richardson is right that his endorsing someone probably wouldn't move any voters over the weekend. But his endorsing Wednesday, as he pretty much indicated he would, and a string of following endorsements, would blunt a Clinton "win" that involved little shift in the delegate gap. A big fundraising number would dwarf the "momentum" of hers. It's a good strategy if it's there. My only doubt is from the NAFTA dustup--no there there, but not the smooth damage control I'd come to expect from a nigh pitch-perfect campaign.

John of the Dead: "please don't tell me you're going to play the "FL & MI" game."

I was responding to hilzoys comment that: "Either candidate might pick up an edge if he or she seemed likely to win states that seemed likely to be close in the general election."

So, unless you think Florida and Michigan are going to be excluded from the general election, Hillary's more likely to carry those states then Obama.

And a recent mid February Rasmussan poll shows McCain with a six-percentage point lead over Hillary but a substantial 16% lead over Obama.

Moreover, the poll indicates that Floridians are pissed off at having their votes nullified by the tsars at the DNC, and a lot of their ire is directed at Obama: just "55% of Sunshine State Democrats say they would vote for Obama over McCain. Thirty-one percent (31%) say they would vote for McCain. These results are especially striking given that Obama leads McCain among unaffiliated voters in the state."

And by the way, by what dysfunction of logic do you assert that the Florida election was 'patently unfair?' It was a level playing field. All the candidates were on the ballot. None of the candidates campaigned there. It was, therefore, an election exempt from the distortions and spin of excessive tv and radio and newspaper ads based on an influx of campaign and special interest money.

TLTIABQ: Mostly, I was hoping to provide useful context for tonight. I just got frustrated reading one after another goalpost-moving thingos, and decided to figure out for myself where the goalposts actually were.

It was, therefore, an election exempt from the distortions and spin of excessive tv and radio and newspaper ads based on an influx of campaign and special interest money.

Or it was an election based upon name recognition alone.

OMFG, please. not the FL and MI nonsense again

Why, Jay Jerome, as an independent who has repeatedly stated his contempt for Democrats, and for having Democrats in power, are you so interested in telling Democrats who they should vote for for the Democratic nomination? Why should Democrats be interested in the opinions of someone who hates Democrats, exactly?

After all, you think that "if the Democrats take over the reigns of power and there's a disaster comparable to Katrina, they'll screw up as badly."

That "With Democrats in charge, it won't be any different. All the government agencies -- FEMA and DOD and DOJ and ETC -- will still be saturated with graduates from the same colleges, inculcated with the same values, the same views, the same way of talking, writing, gossiping, emailing, and covering their ass when they screw up. In other words, the same ole you know what."

And so on and so forth. So your opinion about who the Democratic nominee should be is relevant to actual Democrats, why?

But out of curiosity, when Obama is officially the nominee, what will you do, then? Sit on your hands? Denounce the Democrats some more? Work for McCain? Or what?

Deborah: "I just can't look away from the train wreck as the Clintons refuse to go down....as Andrew Sullivan noted, it's a lot like a zombie movie."

Your views don't reflect the opinion of most Democrats:


"Two-thirds of Democrats say a victory in either Ohio or Texas would be reason enough for Sen. Hillary Rodham Clinton (N.Y.) to keep her historic bid for the party's presidential nomination alive, according to a new Washington Post-ABC News poll."

Smug Obama supporters like Andrew Sullivan and those who parrot his views are the real Zombie's, walking in lockstep with dazed eyes, howling at the moon.

With the truth about Obama finally getting some media exposure Clinton should do well today and even better in PA later. The super delegates need to pay careful attention to the poor judgement Obama repeatedly displayed thoughout his career with Rezko. As the media begins to actually provide the public with some actual knowledge about Obama it will become clear he is not electable in November. Hillary should win the nomination on merit and go on to win the general elecion as well.

i can't wait to see how the Clinton supporters rationalize away all those Republicans crossing over, on Limbaugh's orders, to vote for her today.

"Smug Obama supporters like Andrew Sullivan and those who parrot his views are the real Zombie's, walking in lockstep with dazed eyes, howling at the moon."

Jay just can't restrain his contempt for Democrats for a moment.

Anyone want to start a pool on the probabilities of Jay, after Clinton finally withdraws, switching to McCain, the candidate with the most experience, and the least like a "yuppie," and the one who can defeat the hated "skinny ass" Obama and the despicable Democrats?

Sorry, everyone. It looks like I fed the trolls, re: FL & MI. My apologies.

G. Farber: "Why, Jay Jerome, as an independent who has repeatedly stated his contempt for Democrats, and for having Democrats in power, are you so interested in telling Democrats who they should vote for for the Democratic nomination? Why should Democrats be interested in the opinions of someone who hates Democrats, exactly?"

It's not that confusing, Gary. I'll try to explain it simply, and hope you can grasp the obvious:

I don't have contempt for ALL Democrats ALL of the time; just for some Democrats some of the time.

I mostly like and respect working-class Democrats, and old-time labor-union Democrats-- in other words, the other half of the Democratic-leaning voters who support Hill-Bill. This time my contempt is focussed on the cohort of namby-pamby whishy-washy Obama groupies who think the big-eared identity-confused nerdy-dweeb can take this nation anywhere other than a ride on a one-term carousel (assuming he beats McCain, which is doubtful) for no apparent reason other than an ability to ululate the word "change" and it's synonyms in a voice as convincing as a radio announcer pitching the efficacy of herbal medicine as a cure for incontinence.

G: "Anyone want to start a pool on the probabilities of Jay, after Clinton finally withdraws, switching to McCain, the candidate with the most experience, and the least like a "yuppie," and the one who can defeat the hated "skinny ass" Obama and the despicable Democrats?"

What to start a pool on the probabilities of Michele Obama supporting Hillary if she gets the nomination?

Thanks, Jay.

So, anyone have any ideas on the sources of Obama Derangement Syndrome?

Remember, you saw it here first!

Jay Jerome @ 2:55PM

What makes you think Hillary didnt campaign in Florida? See: Miami Herald (1-28-08) On 1-27-08, Clinton appeared at a fundraiser at Lucky Strike Lanes, in Miami,and talked about Hralthcare, alternative energy, and student loans. This was one of three stops in Florida just before voting on 1-29-08.
She was all over local media for two days prior to the vote.

Here I'll note only that Jay seems to have problems distinguishing the possessive 'its' from the contraction of 'it is', and that he seems never to have heard anyone actually ululate.

G: Farber: "So, anyone have any ideas on the sources of Obama Derangement Syndrome?"

Well, they're all hinted at, there, in his poetic-license bio, "Dreams from My Father."

I know this is an inappropriate feeling, but there we are...

I'm so glad to see through this whole Obama thing that hilzoy and publius can get whacked-out people from the leftish side of things attacking them. It makes me feel like when the whacked-out people attack me that it isn't that big of a deal.

I'm almost tempted to post! ;)

Sebastian: I'm so glad to see through this whole Obama thing that hilzoy and publius can get whacked-out people from the leftish side of things attacking them.

Could you point out which comments in this thread are an example of "whacked-out people from the leftish side of things" attacking hilzoy or publius? Or are you referring to some other threads?

hilzoy: "Here I'll note only that Jay seems to have problems distinguishing the possessive 'its' from the contraction of 'it is', and that he seems never to have heard anyone actually ululate."

I have a 'visual' problem with the possessive 'its' hilzoy, or more specifically spotting spelling/grammatical errors that aren't underlined in red during spell checks -- I had an eye operation last month, and since then have been using drops every two hours which blur my vision and make it difficult to spot those mistakes; but also because I assume people like you are smart enough to catch the meaning even if the words are grammatically challenged, without falling into fits of picayune condescension.

And as to hearing someone actually ululate, I believe I have, as recently as last week, at a funeral for my friend's mother, when her Iranian daughters, during the ceremony, let out a series of anguished wails of sorrow.

I may have missed it, but I think Clive Crook's post about the popular vote deserves some mention.

I don't think anybody has done the math in a complete sense regarding the popular vote, but it strikes me as plausible that if HRC cuts Obama's pledged delegate lead significantly, has the momentum, and wins the popular vote then Superdelegates break for her and she gets the nomination... even if she is still behind in pledged delegates.

Speaking of math: Server apparently overwhelmed at the moment, but Obama partisan Al Giordano made delegate predictions for Ohio and TX at The Field, based on analysis of the districts by which they're actually awarded.

I'd link to the specific posts but can't get on the site right now to get the urls.

crimelord: "What makes you think Hillary didnt campaign in Florida? See: Miami Herald (1-28-08) On 1-27-08, Clinton appeared at a fundraiser at Lucky Strike Lanes, in Miami,and talked about Hralthcare, alternative energy, and student loans. This was one of three stops in Florida just before voting on 1-29-08. She was all over local media for two days prior to the vote."

And Obama wasn't doing fund-raising there too, right? In fact, he "appeared to violate the pledge" he made only a day after he made it:

TAMPA - Barack Obama hinted during a Tampa fundraiser Sunday that if he's the presumptive Democratic presidential nominee, he'll seat a Florida delegation at the party's national convention, despite national party sanctions prohibiting it.

Obama also appeared to violate a pledge he and the other leading candidates took by holding a brief news conference outside the fundraiser. That was less than a day after the pledge took effect Saturday, and Obama is the first Democratic presidential candidate to visit Florida since then.

Obama also appeared to violate a pledge he and the other leading candidates took by holding a brief news conference outside the fundraiser. That was less than a day after the pledge took effect Saturday, and Obama is the first Democratic presidential candidate to visit Florida since then.

I think there's other examples of his fundraising, but I don't have time to look for them; and of course, there was the national ad his campaign slipped in the back door in Florida right before the primary --

And don't you find that Obama hinting if he's the "presumptive nominee he'll seat a Florida delegation at the party's national convention" hypocritical?

He'll seat them only as a symbolic gesture, but not before, when their votes have meaning. If Hillary wins (she's the best of the three to govern) maybe she can give Barak a director's chair with his name on it, to sit in when he comes to visit in the oval office.


"This time my contempt is focussed on the cohort of namby-pamby whishy-washy Obama groupies who think the big-eared identity-confused nerdy-dweeb can take this nation anywhere other than a ride on a one-term carousel (assuming he beats McCain, which is doubtful) for no apparent reason other than an ability to ululate the word "change" and it's synonyms in a voice as convincing as a radio announcer pitching the efficacy of herbal medicine as a cure for incontinence."

So, Jay, are you, at this time, a registered Democrat, or are you still what you were when I last saw a public declaration from you, a registered independent?

DNFTCT

Donation count to Obama, 9 comments x whatever your unit of donation is.

G. Farber: "So, Jay, are you, at this time, a registered Democrat, or are you still what you were when I last saw a public declaration from you, a registered independent?:

I'm one of the 20% (and growing) number of 'decline to state' California voters 'unaffiliated' with any party, and one who voted for Bill-Hill in the primary.

Jay Jerome: "I'm one of the 20% (and growing) number of 'decline to state' California voters 'unaffiliated' with any party, and one who voted for Bill-Hill in the primary."

Thanks.

So, in the purely hypothetical, impossible to imagine, totally won't happen, circumstance that the big-eared identity-confused nerdy-dweeb unfairly stole the Democratic nomination from the rightful candidate, how would you vote in the general election, and what efforts would you make to obtain your desired result between the conventions and the general election?

As a separate question, Jay, here is the Slate delegate counter.

Assume Florida and Michigan also hold primaries in June and give Clinton big wins.

By what math and combination of states -- since that's the theme of Hilzoy's post -- do you get Senator Clinton to the nomination?

This is not a rhetorical question: which states and numbers do you suggest will get her there?

Thanks!

Seeing how close the candidates are and how ... eh... varied the election process is I think you should go for a real American solution; let HRC and BHO play a game of poker to determine who will win the nomination.

dutchmarbel: : let HRC and BHO play a game of poker to determine who will win the nomination."

A similar idea was suggested at my Local Pub yesterday: but instead of a poker game, they thought it should be a nationally televised Coin-Flip, like the kind they have at the start of the SuperBowl.

It would take place in Denver's Mile High Stadium, accompanied with pomp and circumstance (ie: media hoopla). All the elected primary and caucus delegates would be seated in the stands, holding synchronized placards with the DNC Logo on one side, and their candidate's face on the other -- which they'd flip in time to the music of their respective candidates' campaign songs (Hillary's">http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ionFwC1UUUw">Hillary's and Obama's.) At mid-field, two rows of SuperDelegates would line up behind Hillary and Obama, and as the names of campaign staff members were announced over the PA system, each one would come trotting across the field, to high-five their candidate.

Next, a contingent of party leaders past and present -- Ted Kennedy, Bill Clinton, John Kerry, Jimmy Carter, Nancy Pelosi, Harry Reed, Charlie Rangle and the other 40 Black Congressional Caucus members (standing together - or apart - depending on your perception) -- would solemnly march behind the U.S. Marine Band, who would then accompany the Dixie Chicks in a stirring repeat rendition of their own 2003 Super Bowl Star Spangled Banner performance (America at its best).

Then, after more adulatory speeches from Obama and Clinton supporters, Howard Dean, carrying a solid gold 6-inch diameter coin (Oprah's profile on one side; Jack Nicholson's on the other), walks up to the candidates (waiting with forced smiles of nonchalance) ; whereupon John Edwards -- after a quick search by campaign managers Maggie Williams and David Plouffe (rhymes with soufflé?) to make sure "Honest-John' hadn't hidden a mickey-moused coin in his pockets) tosses it in the air (captured in slow motion video perpetuity like the bone in 2001: A Space Odyssey) and calls out the winner's name.

After that, the winner (he or she) will be lifted on the shoulders of party leaders and carried waving to the people in the stands (and to the TV viewers watching with relief or stunned disbelief), while delegates from both sides shake hands, embrace, sing America The Beautiful, and promise to unite for the good of the Party and the Nation.

Until they get to the parking lot, that is - whereupon they will curse each other to the four-winds, slash and smash each other's tires and car windows, and try to run over opponent stragglers on the way out of the stadium --.

G. Farber: re: Unanswered questions:

What would I do and how would I vote if the nerdy-dweeb gets the nomination?

That depends on how the general election is shaping up in California.

If Big-Ears (a Reggie Miller look-alike) is the nominee and nationally it looks like the Dems will take both houses, I'll vote (mostly for Democratic candidates) but not for Prez.

If it looks like Dems will win only one or the other house, or neither, I'll screw up my resolve, bite my lip, and vote for Identity-Crisis Obama...

If Obama wins (a long shot in the general election -check out this evaluation of his weakness as a presidential candidate) I'll get drunk for the next four years and hope nothing major goes wrong before my kidneys fail and I start seeing little green creatures with long antennae hiding under my bed at night.

But if McCain wins, I'll spend the next four years bitching at you and the others here for the sappy rationalizations you all made about Obama's electability.

I answered your 'delegate counter' follow up question in one of my posts above: I said neither candidate is going to have enough delegates to win, and that the SuperDelegates will decide who gets the nod. The importance of HC's victories in Florida and Michigan are that they, like all the other victories she's had in big states crucial to victory in the presidential elections, show that she's much more likely to win them in the general election then the 'other guy.' And I've said for months now that disenfranchising those Michigan and Florida voters was going to come back and haunt Democrats in the general election: voters don't like getting screwed by party hacks (Republican hacks like Katherine Harris in 2000; or Democrats hacks like Howard Dean this time around-- his statements and actions show he's more interested in voting calendars than voting rights),

Truth is, if Obama hadn't pushed himself into this election cycle, Hill-Bill would have been a slam dunk. And if the election goes down the tubes for Democrats, you can blame it on him.

Thanks, Jay.

"But if McCain wins, I'll spend the next four years bitching at you and the others here for the sappy rationalizations you all made about Obama's electability."

If that happens against Obama, fair enough. I can't say I'll be a happy camper either, if that happens.

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