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April 22, 2008


So, if I'm Obama, and Clinton declares glorious victory tomorrow and on to Indiana, North Carolina, etc., I'm looking for a way to get out of the race without looking like I'm getting out of the race (though this likely won't work). Why? Well, Clinton seems intent on sabotaging any chance the Dems have at winning the general election through a war of attrition between now and the convention and then Gettysburg on the convention floor.

He's only 46. If Clinton loses, he's a shoe-in for the nomination in 2012. If Clinton wins, he's probably a shoe-in in 2016, at which point he's only 54. In the meantime, that's either 4-8 more years experience as a senator, and/or some time in the Clinton cabinet. It avoids a bloody fight this summer, increases the Dems chance for victory in November and, if they don't win, just goes to show that he should have been the nominee after all.

OTOH, if he keeps at it with Clinton and wins the nomination, he limps into the general election, with Clinton still waiting in the wings for 2012 (and perhaps kneecapping him from behind the scenes).

Of course, all of those arguments (except the age one) apply equally well, and in fact more strongly, to Clinton, because, you know, she's fncking losing ("big time," as someone might say).

Ugh, Obama's going to win NC big, and probably win Indiana. We have no real idea what the margin is going to be in Pennsylvania, unless you have access to a breakdown of where the current 15% of the vote is from.

Please, unclench.

Nell: I just wanted an excuse to reference that ESB line.

21% and 53.5% to clinton. Atrios questioning the networks call for Clinton because of what has come in so far.

Where the vote has come in here.

The Clinton Camp is claiming big internet moneyraisin' right now according to Armbinder and The Plank... but The Clinton Camp hasn't been to honest about money since, well, ever... but definitely in the Primary, so I'm not sure I'm so worried about it as an Obama fan. However, if she wins double digits, it looks like its going to be played as a BIG HRC victory... so here's hoping in the 5 point range.

21% and 53.5% to clinton.

44% and 54/46

Ugh: No way. That's silly. If he ducks out he becomes the spineless candidate all Democrats dread.

There's really no reason to think he's less tough than she is. That's all Clintonite spin. He's less nasty. And he's less equivocal ("Oh! Delegates are all that counts!" "Oh! The popular vote is all that counts!"). But he did slow-walk the Michigan revote. That disenfranchised a fair number of people. Pretty tough.

That disenfranchised a fair number of people.

no, the MI Democratic party did that.

Oh, I know what the margin is now, and was aware of the delegate tracker diary. I meant that unless you have pretty solid projections for each Congressional district, and turnout numbers in each county within those CDs, it's next to impossible to predict what the eventual popular vote margin is going to be.

What's ESB?

Nell, follow Ugh's Urban Dictionary link.

55/45 !

i predicted 58/42 today. lesse if i can be right about one of these, for once!

I was saying Clinton by 9, based on nothing whatsoever. (Friends asked, I pulled a number out of my hat.) As of now it seems to be shuttling between 8 and 10 points, according to CNN. Apparently, there's something to be said for stone blind ignorance.

Bank in PA? Empire State Building? Enterprise Service Bus? Bitters, Bond's car?

I'm going with 53/47. Centre County (where I used to live) is likely to turn around, because PA rules require bitter precincts to report first. Montgomery is the wildcard.

"no, the MI Democratic party did that."

So true. And yet, you don't even hear Obama blaming them.

"Apparently, there's something to be said for stone blind ignorance."

Yeah, but if you say it, you're an elitist.

Dana Milbank talked to people in McKeesport, and got some good quotes:

"I don't care too much for Obama," Maria Norgren, the daughter and granddaughter of steelworkers, said in the parking lot of the Giant Eagle shopping center here, near the Obama rally.

"I don't even think he's American," added her husband, Edward, who lost his job when the steel mills closed and now mans the counter at the Puff Discount Tobacco and Lottery shop next to the Giant Eagle.

"His father's from Nigeria, right?" asked Maria, wearing a Pittsburgh Steelers T-shirt.

"I think he just wants to be president because he's black," said Tim Hetrick, smoking a cigarette as he waited for a bus among the crumbling structures of downtown McKeesport. A Democrat, he's thinking about voting for McCain in November.

Empire Strikes Back, apparently. Thanks, Gromit.

Democratic Congressional candidate Travis Childers holds tiny lead, forcing a May 13 runoff in the special election for Mississippi's 1st Congressional District. A Dem victory there would be something.

David Kilmer, What areas are PA's 6th and 7th Congressional districts?

6th and 7th are around Philadelphia. These are areas where the pollsters weren't too sure of their results.


I ask because those CDs show no results yet at all in the delegate tracker, even with 78% of the results in overall (the tracker lags the TV reports since it's one human being entering results into the spreadsheet). Wondering if they're capable of bringing the margin back under 10 points...

Congratulations to Hillary. That is one determined woman and you’ve got to respect her grit.

There were 27,541 foreclosure filings in California in March and 42,704 notices of default. At a loss of $150k per foreclosure (probably low), that’s another $5 billion in bank losses from one month in one state. Thousands more new homes were built last month by developers trying to liquidate inventories of vacant lots.

Total number of new and used homes sold in California during this period was 20,513, far below the number of foreclosures alone.

Thus housing supply is still spiking while demand continues to drop as business and productive people leave California in particular and the US in general. Meaning we’re not close a bottom.

But the housing bubble will end up being a $3 trillion problem. The entitlement bubble is $70 trillion and counting. And none of the presidential candidates are addressing it. Instead of addressing it, they are making more unfunded promises.

It doesn’t matter who wins this election. It is the least important election in American history. Moodys has put the federal government on notice. Moodys has a track record of being too easy on its Clients.

I found a new acronym that I like: TEOTWAWKI (pronounced Tee-Ought-Waw-Ki), standing for ‘the end of the world as we know it’. Post-TEOTWAWKI leadership track students will be shown speeches of the 2008 Democratic candidates and write essays about how their thought processes and universal suffrage led to the collapse.

I'm looking for a way to get out of the race without looking like I'm getting out of the race

Well, Pamuk says,

if... a prince went mad, it was his way of saying, "Count me out of the race"; because waiting for the throne was like waiting for death, and madness, the easiest escape route, was also the perfect expression of his deepest and most secret desires...

(I'll see your Empire Strikes Back and raise you a The Black Book.)

Hm. The del tracker now has 86% of the results in, but still nothing at all in the 6th and 7th Congresional Districts. Can that be right?

Here, where my CD covers about 15 counties, it's hard to imagine that a whole district can be contained within a county or two. But still; what's going on that there are absolutely no results? Do counties not report until every precinct is in?

Yeah, Bill, as usual you've put your finger right on the problem: that universal suffrage was such a mistake.

Quite a night on the Mississippi Gulf coast: Childers (D)lead not so tiny, considering: 2000+ votes, 49%-46%. Other Dems had 700 or so additional votes which presumably will go to him in the runoff. He missed winning outright by about 700 votes.

I think Clinton will end up around 9 points ahead, since most of the polls that haven't reported yet are in Philadelphia (only 3% not reporting, but 3% of the Philly vote is a lot) and Chester. Fwiw.

"Post-TEOTWAWKI leadership track students will be shown speeches of the 2008 Democratic candidates and write essays about how their thought processes and universal suffrage led to the collapse."

What's your predicted date, or range of dates, for the collapse, Bill?

Incidentally, have you any familiarity with the history of survivalism, and predictions of societal collapse? (One might also inquire into a possible larger context of concern about Malthusian catastrophe,

Jared Diamond's thoughts on social collapses, millenial panics, and so on. Or not.)

"Here, where my CD covers about 15 counties, it's hard to imagine that a whole district can be contained within a county or two."

Funny. Here's a map of all the Congressional districts in and overlapping Kings County, NY (aka "Brooklyn"). (See also here and here.)

That's five districts: the 8th, 9th, 10th, 11th, and 12th, but they're not fully contained in Kings County, of course.

The 13th also includes part of Brooklyn (although it's mostly Staten Island).

Los Angeles County has even more - 25, 26, 27, 28, 29, 30, 31, 32, 33, 34, 35, 36, 37, 38, and 39, for 15 total districts.

Cook County, Illinois (Chicago) has ten congressional districts. (1-10)

On the other hand, Montgomery County, PA, includes parts of five congressional districts (2, 6, 7, 8, and 13) not because it's that big, but because of absurd gerrymandering. The largest chunk is in 13, but there are also decent-sized chunks in 6 and 7, Cheltenham Township is in 2, and there's a tiny piece in 8 for some reason. Notice that this is actually more congressional districts than there are in Philadelphia County itself. Philadelphia, despite having twice as many people, only includes four congressional districts (one of which, CD8, has only a tiny piece in Philadelphia). But Philadelphia is of a size that it has to include 3 congressional districts, whereas Montgomery County would only need to be divided among two.

For even more serious ass gerrymandering of this sort, see the Baltimore area gerrymandering in Maryland (this one, unlike PA, which was gerrymandered by Republicans, gerrymandered by Democrats). Baltimore County, I believe, despite being only slightly larger than needing one congressional district, contains pieces of the 1st, 2nd, 3rd, 6th, and 7th Congressional districts. Except for the 6th, I think all of those can be found in Baltimore City (independent of the county) as well.

Apropos of nothing, amusing video of a friend's dog, out for a drag.

Can't she self finance with that $108 million on her tax return?

Some pundit's ask disingenuously, Why Can't Barack Close the Deal? The TRUTH OF THE MATTER, is that Barack is fighting TWO opponents, Clinton & the Republican Machine: Joe Scarborough, Pat Buchanan, Wolf Blitzer, Fox News and they fight a lot dirtier, louder, harder than "light"! They fight with lies, distortions, brain wash and money. Barack is doing something new and necessary, though slower because a loud voice gets a lot more attention than a sane, compassionate, low-speaking one, like Barack's. That is why he is having such a hard time. Look at the unevenness and unfairness of the last debate? The new Republican's and Clinton's talking point is why cannot Barack put it away. The answer is he is fighting a three-headed Giant, the Clintons and the Republican Machine -- it is a Giant compared to Barack and the assault goes on 24/7 starting with Morning Joe and continuing all day with Fox News! Then there are the new swift-boat TV adds and false emails, he is being blanketed with -- and then they smile to themselves and ask smugly, "Why can't he put her away? Knowing the dark answer to this question and the dark seed they hope to plant into the minds of the people who are unable to think for themselves and are influenced by fear and ignorance. But humanity's heart is opening to the light and the energy of goodwill. May be this time, we can overcome these awful forces of destruction to mankind, may be this time.

In Michael Moore's endorsement of Obama, he states "I want to say a word about the basic decency I have seen in Mr. Obama. Mrs. Clinton continues to throw the Rev. Wright up in his face as part of her mission to keep stoking the fears of White America. Every time she does this I shout at the TV, "Say it, Obama! Say that when she and her husband were having marital difficulties regarding Monica Lewinsky, who did she and Bill bring to the White House for 'spiritual counseling?' THE REVEREND JEREMIAH WRIGHT!" But no, Obama won't throw that at her. It wouldn't be right. It wouldn't be decent. She's been through enough hurt. And so he remains silent and takes the mud she throws in his face. That's why the crowds who come to see him are so large. That's why he'll take us down a more decent path. That's why I would vote for him if Michigan were allowed to have an election."

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