America the purple

by twit

via Mark Newman, Department of Physics and Center for the Study of Complex Systems, University of Michigan, “a cartogram, a map in which the sizes of states are rescaled according to their population.”

Here is what the normal [county-level election returns] map looks like if you [use red, blue, and shades of purple in between to indicate percentages of votes]:

And here’s what the cartogram looks like:

As this map makes clear, large portions of the country are quite evenly divided, appearing in various shades of purple, although a number of strongly Democratic (blue) areas are visible too, mostly in the larger cities. There are also some strongly Republican areas, but most of them have relatively small populations and hence appear quite small on this map.

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The Red Dawn Difference

by lestro

For all the talk of the youth vote being the demographic that put Obama over the top, the truth is that while their energy and legwork was unmatched, the real revolution in this election came not in the 20-somethings, but in the 30-somethings.

It is the Red Dawn generation, the forgotten demographic, that made the difference this time around. We are the 30-somethings who in the past eight years have grown into not only the dominant demographic in the media and commercial sectors, but have also started raising families and buying homes – the time when people start to seriously vote.

We are also the first generation to be raised completely under the ideals the Baby Boomer worked so hard to establish. We are done fighting battles of the 60s and don’t see the world the in black and white ways of our parents and we have reached the point in our lives when people become politically active.

The proof is in the exit poll results. This was not a youth movement, but one led by the tail end of Generation X and the Red Dawn Generation, those of us who came of age in the era of Reagan and Thriller and Mutual Assured Destruction.

In 2004, the youth vote made up 17 percent of the electorate. In 2008, they made up 18 percent. In 2004, they went to Kerry 54-45. This year they broke 66-32 for Obama.

The 30-44 demographic, however, where the real Change took place. In 2004 and 2008, they made up 29 percent of the vote, but in ’04 they voted for Bush 53-46. This year, they went 52-46 for Obama.

THAT was the group that won this election for Obama, not the youth vote. Fifty-two percent of 29 is way bigger than 66 percent of 18.

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My Selfish Racism

by the squid

I am not a sentimental person; but Tuesday night I was rocked to the core.

My wife and I are raising three mixed-race children; I am the black, she is the white.  We have a nice life, but sometimes I worried. I worried about how our children were going to identify themselves to others and I wondered how they will feel about me and their mother while growing up.

In our community, I am still a minority; however there is a wide range of people and experiences with which my children interact; but to know going forward, for the next four years, they will see a man of color – one the same hue as their father and uncle – being articulate, being vigorously debated, having state dinners, making decisions that matter for millions of people and who has a wife which reminds them of one of their grandmothers really affected me.

After Obama was elected, my wife and I spoke about race (as it occasionally comes up in our lives) and she said, “He is not African-American, he is half white…”  For the record, she said the same thing years ago when Halle Berry won the Oscar.

My wife’s point asks: What about the mother?  My wife doesn’t consider our children Black, but hers, and she feels the mother’s genes should be considered as well.  So my wife and I came up with a name for my wife’s condition: White woman with Black kids syndrome.

For the first time, Wednesday night, my five year old daughter said she was African-American; but to be accurate, our kids may have to identify themselves as half Black, a quarter Irish and a quarter Italian.

However,  America considers them Black because of me.

Now my children will see someone, who looks like me and who is not an actor, or a sports star or an entertainer, but as a person who has to make important decisions about life and limb much like their father, but only on a smaller scale.

It was a selfish racism which, I felt, would deter America from electing a person of color. There have been times in my life where, as a father, I have held myself back with feelings of inferiority and hoped that my fear would not translate or be seen by my children.

Now I feel I have a little bit of help from Mr. Obama.  He won’t be able to pay my mortgage, but he may be able to alleviate a burden my children would have to bear because of me – and that was a point on which both my wife and I agreed.

The next chapter of American history

by twit

begins with record-breaking voter turnout…

FTW

image via Wonkette

via Politico on November 5, 2008:

More than 130 million people turned out to vote Tuesday, the most ever to vote in a presidential election.

With ballots still being counted in some precincts into Wednesday morning, an estimated 64 percent of the electorate turned out, making 2008 the highest percentage turnout in generations.

via MSNBC on November 5, 2008:

The percentage of Americans who voted was unmatched in at least a generation and perhaps since 1908, according to election experts. Secretaries of state estimated turnouts approaching 90 percent in Virginia and Colorado and 80 percent or more in big states like Ohio, California, Texas, Virginia, Missouri and Maryland.

via CNN on November 5, 2008:

Obama snared about 63 million votes to McCain’s 55.8 million, according to totals early Wednesday.

via MSNBC on November 5, 2008:

Obama won the popular vote, 52%-46% — the first time a Democrat won more than 51% since LBJ did it in 1964.

So how long is this election going to take?

by twit

via MSNBC on November 4, 2008:

… keep an eye on the four states of Florida, North Carolina, Ohio, and Virginia. If Obama wins just two out of the four, it becomes nearly impossible for McCain to get to 270 — even if he wins Pennsylvania.

… if Virginia is called early for Obama, that will be a sign of a possible big night for the Democrats.

… probably the earliest that we might see the election called for Obama (i.e., him going crossing the 270 mark) would be at 11:00 pm ET.

via the Associated Press on November 4, 2008:

Long lines and malfunctioning machines greeted voters Tuesday as polls across the country were deluged by people wanting to cast ballots in this historic race between Barack Obama and John McCain.

this could be a loooooong night…  or maybe not:

ABC News Andy Fies reports: In Manassas, VA where the Confederacy won the first major battle of its war to preserve slavery, Barack Obama held the last rally of his campaign to become President of the United States.

… It wasn’t the Civil War battleground itself — better Known in the North as Bull Run — but it had that feel. Ninety thousand Obama supporters poured over a distant ridge onto a field below, leading up to and surrounding the stage.

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Election Day!

by twit

Wake Up, America!

McCain vs. Compound Questions

by twit

McCain gets confused by a doozy of a question that asks him to explain why he accuses Obama of playing “the race card” and oh, by the way, Senator McCain, what have you done during your decades of leadership to improve the lives of African-Americans?

via Wonkette

morning cartoons

by twit

From drudge, front and center:

headlined “Doesn’t Look Like All the Others” and linking to this:

SPRINGFIELD, Mo. (AP) – Democrat Barack Obama, the first black candidate with a shot at winning the White House, says John McCain and his Republican allies will try to scare them by saying Obama “doesn’t look like all those other presidents on the dollar bills.”

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Obama announces Yoda endorsement

by twit

thank you Wonkette, this just made my day:

Clinton rolls out improved operating system: Jobs v.3.0

by lestro

Despite the flaws and security holes in Inevitability v1.x, Experience v2.0, Fighter v3.3, Commander-in-chief v1.2 (a rush release that was hastily recalled when it was discovered to open the user to the nearly fatal error-inducing internet worm Bosnia Bullshit), the combo pack Experienced Fighter v2.4 and the most recent iteration Gun-Toting Shot Drinker v4.0, the Clinton Campaign has high hopes for the upcoming release of its newest opertaing system: Jobs v3.0.

So every speech she gave in Indiana on Friday and Saturday had the same topic sentence. “My campaign is about jobs, jobs, jobs and jobs,” she said, always to thunderous applause…

Since the race started, Mrs. Clinton has cycled through several political personas: the battle-tested White House veteran, the fighter, the girl — her word — tougher than any boy.

Now she is the Dream Boss: the one who will give you a job, provide health insurance, but also understand just how hard you work and the mundane details of what you do.

The new system is a throwback to the first Clinton system, which wowed the world with a fresh look and took the nation by storm 16 years ago with an effective advertising campaign that highlighted youth and hinged on the brilliantly catchy yet simple jingle “It’s the economy, stupid.”

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no Democrat has won a majority of the “white vote” since 1964

by twit

http://tbn0.google.com/images?q=tbn:JwIefLtY-O17yM:http://www.movieposter.com/posters/archive/main/23/A70-11871

I must be some kind of a twit. I had no idea that “no Democrat has won a majority of the white vote since Lyndon Johnson did in 1964.”

It definitely provides a little perspective to the rest of the McClatchy article, which wonders on April 23, 2008,Would Obama have a chance at a majority of white votes in the fall?

and notes this:

One Obama supporter who’s navigated racial politics for years thinks he will, and that even if he loses some white votes to racist sentiments, he’ll win other whites eager to vote for an African-American.

“There may be some folks who vote against him because he’s black and some who vote for him because he’s black. I think they cancel each other out,” said Dick Harpootlian, a former chairman of the Democratic Party in South Carolina.

“There will be people who wouldn’t vote for a black man come hell or high water. But we’re getting to the point where that is a minority.”

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Hillary “penis-snatcher” Clinton

by twit

what?

Read this and tell me the same damn thing isn’t happening to the Democratic Party:

“I’m tempted to say it’s one huge joke,” Oleko said.

But when you try to tell the victims that their penises are still there, they tell you that it’s become tiny or that they’ve become impotent. To that I tell them, ‘How do you know if you haven’t gone home and tried it’,” he said.

Over at the DNC, Obama needs 100 superdelegates to step forward and the nomination battle is over.

since the primaries will have lifted Obama over 1,900 delegates (elected and super), he’ll only need about 100 more, out of about 300 uncommitted superdelegates.

Yet some otherworldy force convinces them that they are impotent.

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Vote Hillary for Lying Narcissist Bitch 2008

by twit

I agree with lestro:

“I would never vote for her for President, but I think she’d be great for that role.”

http://cache.gawker.com/assets/images/3/2008/04/thumb463x_pacampaignsigns-thumb.jpg

Just because whoever is running the campaign can’t spell the word ‘narcissist’ quite right, it doesn’t mean that Hillary can’t win.

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Obama’s “cling to” might come back to haunt him

by lestro

So at a fundraiser last week in San Francisco , Obama said this:

“It’s not surprising, then, they get bitter, they cling to guns or religion or antipathy to people who aren’t like them or anti-immigrant sentiment or anti-trade sentiment as a way to explain their frustrations.”

Ouch. It’s the “cling to” that really hurts. The connotation on that phrase is not going to play well.

Not that it will matter to the media or most voters, especially those he’s talking about, but here is the full quote in context:

“You go into these small towns in Pennsylvania and, like a lot of small towns in the Midwest, the jobs have been gone now for 25 years and nothing’s replaced them,” Obama said. “And they fell through the Clinton Administration, and the Bush Administration, and each successive administration has said that somehow these communities are gonna regenerate and they have not. And it’s not surprising then they get bitter, they cling to guns or religion or antipathy to people who aren’t like them or anti-immigrant sentiment or anti-trade sentiment as a way to explain their frustrations.”

He tried to better explain on Saturday what he meant to say, and it makes sense:

“Lately there has been a little typical sort of political flare up because I said something that everybody knows is true, which is that there are a whole bunch of folks in small towns in Pennsylvania, in towns right here in Indiana, in my hometown in Illinois who are bitter,” Obama said Saturday morning at Ball State University.

“They are angry. They feel like they have been left behind. They feel like nobody is paying attention to what they’re going through.”

“So I said, well you know, when you’re bitter you turn to what you can count on. So people, they vote about guns, or they take comfort from their faith and their family and their community. And they get mad about illegal immigrants who are coming over to this country.”

After acknowledging that his previous remarks could have been better phrased, he added:

“The truth is that these traditions that are passed on from generation to generation, those are important. That’s what sustains us.

But what is absolutely true is that people don’t feel like they are being listened to.”

That’s a little better, but being right in this case hurts him even more because those same voters he’s talking about will probably only hear the first quote, pack that in with Jeremiah Wright and the flag pin thing, wrap it up with his middle name (which is odd considering the Rev. Wright thing, but it’s still there…) and the allegations of being a Harvard-educated, condescending, aloof guy are right back to the fore.

And Hillary and McCain pounced.

In Indianapolis on Saturday, Mrs. Clinton told voters she was “taken aback by the demeaning remarks Senator Obama made about people in small-town America.”

“Senator Obama’s remarks are elitist and they are out of touch,” Mrs. Clinton told an audience. “They are not reflective of the values and beliefs of Americans. Certainly not the Americans that I know.”

The McCain campaign late Friday evening criticized Mr. Obama for failing to express regret for his remark.

Tucker Bounds, a spokesman for Mr. McCain, said, “Instead of apologizing to small-town Americans for dismissing their values, Barack Obama arrogantly tried to spin his way out of his outrageous San Francisco remarks.”

“You can’t be more out of touch than that,” he added.

Hillary actually went even further:

“People don’t need a president who looks down on them,” she said. “They need a president who stands up for them.”

Ouch again. That’s a haymaker that could very well resonate and only time will tell if it lands or if Obama defense and general fact of his campaign bringing more people together can block it.

The idea that he was too aloof was one of those bad tastes in the mouths of voters that led to Kerry’s defeat as well, something one of Clinton top surrogates, Sen Evan Bayh, was very quick to point out:

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Bubba explains why Obama is the better candidate

by lestro

In defending his wife’s lies about her experiences in Bosnia, Bill Clinton this week not only perpetuated new lies and added a few more half-truths and all-out falsehoods, but also, amazingly, gave the A-No. 1 reason for not electing his wife.

But first, the lies:

“But there was a lot of fulminating because Hillary, one time late at night when she was exhausted, misstated and immediately apologized for it, what happened to her in Bosnia in 1995.”

First, it is not a “misstatement,” because the Bosnia lie came from prepared remarks.

Second, the “late at night” characterization of the Bosnia lie is incorrect, because the most famous version of the Bosnia lie was told by Hillary in the morning.

However, it is possible that the Bosnia lie was repeated at some point late at night, because it was the third or fourth time she’d told it.

Bill, you’re not helping. And even worse, you are hurting your own legacy by doing everything the opposition ever said about you and your wife, like saying anything to get elected.

But what is even more amazing is that Clinton’s explanation of why she “misspoke” late at night (even though she really “misread” in the morning during an event she scheduled) highlights the exact reason one should not vote for Hillary (or McCain):

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Hillary gets it wrong again

by lestro

So the big headline yesterday was “Clinton says Obama wants to stop votes” or something to that effect. According to the AP, Sen. Clinton in a series of interviews today told primary voters that Sen. Obama doesn’t want their votes to count:

“My take on it is a lot of Senator Obama‘s supporters want to end this race because they don’t want people to keep voting,” she told CBS affiliate KTVQ in Billings, Mont. “That’s just the opposite of what I believe. We want people to vote. I want the people of Montana to vote, don’t you?”

Montana holds its primary June 3. The New York senator made similar comments in interviews with stations in Indiana and North Carolina, which hold primaries May 6.

Funny thing is, just two days before, he said almost exactly the opposite and it was all over the damn place:

“My attitude is that Senator Clinton can run as long as she wants,” Mr. Obama, of Illinois, said at a news conference in a high school gymnasium here. “Her name is on the ballot. She is a fierce and formidable opponent, and she obviously believes she would make the best nominee and the best president.”

While it is true many of his supporters have recently reminded Hillary that math is certainly not in her favor and have recently urged her to stop her attacks on the likely Democratic candidate and give up her Quixotic Candidacy for the good of the party, Sen. Obama has not been one of them. Others have also urged the superdelegates to get real (despite threats from the Clinton mafia) and coalesce behind Obama since he will almost undoubtedly finish the primaries with more elected delegates.

Clinton, on the other hand, is getting her advice elsewhere.

Officially, however the campaign has not said such a thing and publicly supported Clinton’s right to continue running. Why should they? They have three times the money, all the momentum and he’s ahead by a comfortable enough margin that he was able to vacation in the Virgin Islands last week.

The AP story also offers this:

“I don’t even keep track of it, I can’t even tell you that figure,” Clinton said when asked by Pittsburgh CBS affiliate KDKA how many superdelegates had endorsed her in recent weeks.

Which is total bullshit, as the next sentence points out:

As she spoke, her husband, former President Clinton, was in Oregon, lobbying uncommitted superdelegates.

But, just to recap, Clinton is not doing well in that race, even losing a longtime friend who owes his entire political career to the Clintons. In thast respect, James Carville’s metaphor was apt, Richardson’s endorsement of Obama really is a Judas-like move if you’re a Clinton disciple.

But really, i suppose some Democrats could say the same thing about a candidate who continues to not only campaign but attack – sometimes viciously – the party’s best hope in nearly a decade to reclaim the White House. (***UPDATE BELOW!***)

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Hillary Clinton has no soul

by twit

is that too harsh? This is a story from February 1999, when Hillary was working on her first Senate campaign, one that we might imagine would require a fair amount of faking a “real” marriage with Bill.

You know, like one where you might be there with your spouse while their political fate is decided? Or maybe just a quick congratulatory call to say, see, I told you not to worry?

The article is pitching the anecdote as an illustration of her ‘iron focus’ on her political campaigns. I was struck by how inhuman it makes her appear, like she may understand how regular people go about their caring and sharing lives, but she’s not having any of it:

Both the loyalty and the focus were on display in February 1999, when the Senate voted not to remove Bill Clinton from office.

In the White House residence, Ickes and the first lady were poring over New York state maps in preparation for her Senate bid.

A call came in informing the first lady that her husband had been acquitted, Ickes recalled. “She puts down the phone and says, ‘Harold, we were talking about Buffalo.’ “

With that, they went back to work.

the other icy frosting to the story is this snapshot from inside her current campaign for President:

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you go, girls

by twit

Pennsylvania Senator Bob Casey Jr. has attributed part of his recent endorsement of Obama for the Democratic Party nomination to his four daughters, who have apparently taken their earlier campaign message on behalf of their dad to heart:

From the Associated Press on March 28, 2008:

“I really believe that in a time of danger around the world and in division here at home, Barack Obama can lead us, he can heal us, he can help rebuild America,” Casey told the crowd in Pittsburgh.

Wait, you mean Hillary Clinton might be an ineffective leader for this country?

When asked if the three presidential candidates could be successful in uniting the country if they were elected president, 60 percent of all voters believed Obama could be successful at doing this, 58 percent of all voters said McCain could unite the country while only 46 percent of voters said the same about Clinton.

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Hillary Clinton has no shame

by lestro

So apparently Hillary Clinton “misspoke” about the whole running-from-snipers thing in Bosnia. Which I suppose is Clintonspeak for “lied through her ass”:

http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/photo/2008/03/20/PH2008032002697.jpgDuring a speech last Monday, she said of the trip: “I remember landing under sniper fire. There was supposed to be some kind of a greeting ceremony at the airport, but instead we just ran with our heads down to get into the vehicles to get to our base.”

According to an AP story at the time, Clinton was placed under no extraordinary risks on that trip. And one of her companions on it, comedian Sinbad, told The Washington Post he has no recollection either of the threat or reality of gunfire.

But wait, there’s more. The statements she made last week also contradict what she said in her book:

Clinton wrote: “Due to reports of snipers in the hills around the airstrip, we were forced to cut short an event on the tarmac with local children, though we did have time to meet them and their teachers and to learn how hard they had worked during the war to continue classes in any safe spot they could find.”

So, caught in this obvious lie, the Clinton campaign did what they do best and tried to obfuscate and distract:

“That is what she wrote in her book,” Wolfson said. “That is what she has said many, many times and on one occasion she misspoke.”

yeah, just this once.

except it wasn’t.

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Feb 28, 1997 will forever be “Stained Blue Dress Day”

by twit

http://www.google.com/images?q=tbn:5SuwW93ZrToJ:www.law.umkc.edu/faculty/projects/ftrials/clinton/lewinskydress.jpgthank you, ABC News.

Some news outlets are complaining that the recent release of Hillary Clinton’s public schedules as First Lady don’t offer much information due to all of the redactions and “heavy deletions” in the documents that have been produced. Perhaps they just weren’t looking hard enough…

ABC News reports: “Hillary Was In White House on ‘Stained Blue Dress’ Day

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Has anyone ever said this about a Clinton?

by lestro

For all the talk about the media being easy on Barack Obama, there is one paper that is not in awe of his celebrity because they knew him back in the day: The Chicago Tribune.

One of the big issues the Chicago Tribune has been all over is Obama’s history with Tony Rezko, a businessman who has been indicted on a number of charges. The Tribune, which did endorse Obama over Hillary Clinton despite their discomfort with the Rezko thing, has repeatedly asked for further explanation and clarification on their relationship.

On Friday, Obama sat down with a whole heaping gaggle o’ reporters and spent an hour and a half explaining the whole situation. Here’s what the Tribune had to say:

The most remarkable facet of Obama’s 92-minute discussion was that, at the outset, he pledged to answer every question the three dozen Tribune journalists crammed into the room would put to him. And he did.

Three dozen journalists, all focused on a single issue for 92 minutes. My lord. Can you imagine Hillary Clinton hosting something like this and making a similar pledge?

Neither could the Tribune, finishing the piece with this:

Barack Obama now has spoken about his ties to Tony Rezko in uncommon detail. That’s a standard for candor by which other presidential candidates facing serious inquiries now can be judged.

A new type of politics indeed. But what was the outcome of the discussion?  In a word, they seem satisfied:

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Olbermann calls Hillary a Republican

by twit

among other things…

a video with better sound quality is available via Raw Story.

thank goodness we don’t have to restrain ourselves here.

pick a day, pick a message

by twit

Hillary Clinton has been asked to explain the contradiction within her idea that Barack Obama would be a great Vice President and her constant refrain that he lacks enough experience to be Commander-in-Chief:

From The Hill on March 10, 2008:

Howard Wolfson, Clinton’s chief spokesman, said during a conference call with reporters that Clinton would not pick a running mate who has not met the “national security threshold” — as Clinton’s military advisers and Wolfson put it on the call — but that it is possible Obama could meet that threshold by this summer’s Democratic convention.

A March 9, 2008 report via MSNBC supplies some context to what Clinton means when she talks about “experience,” at least when it comes to her campaign:

Again and again, the senator was portrayed as a manager who valued loyalty and familiarity over experience and expertise.

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Why I can’t vote for Hillary

by twit

It has come to this. The zen-like realization, thanks to several insightful comments, that a side effect of mercilessly blogging about Hillary Clinton is that it feels impossible to vote for her, if she somehow manages to secure the nomination of the Democratic Party.

Recently, there has been “NAFTAgate,” with the Clinton campaign alleging that the Obama campaign assured Canada that his anti-NAFTA rhetoric was not sincere. It became the issue in the Ohio primary and NAFTA is expected to strongly influence the upcoming Pennsylvania contest. However, now we learn that it was actually the Clinton campaign reassuring the Canadian government that she stands by her earlier support of NAFTA, and she’s simply putting on a show for the voters.

This isn’t the first time that the Clinton campaign has been caught saying something when it was politically expedient, then completely changing course when it suited the constituency of the moment. For example, there is what happened in Florida, with all candidates agreeing to not campaign in the state, due to the early primary scheduled in violation of Democratic Party rules. The agreement to not campaign in the state didn’t stop Hillary, though.

It isn’t just the impossibility of trying to figure out what Hillary Clinton stands for. The behavior of her campaign makes it increasingly clear that the only consistent position she will take is whatever she thinks you want to hear. There’s an implied insult to the intelligence of the American people, as if we can’t watch television or work the internet well enough to see that she is playing fast and loose with her message by tailoring it so closely to the daily needs of the campaign.

Hillary’s campaign has been divisive, focusing on various demographic groups, including attempts to play women against men with her ludicrous assertion that it is her gender that has cost her the presumption that she would be the Democratic nominee. Nothing says ‘elect me’ like ‘I can’t win,’ but that apparently means little to a campaign making an appeal to specific demographic groups.

I also see the conduct of her campaign as a distinct warning about how her administration, if ever elected, would behave, not to mention how painful it would be to experience the meltdowns and infighting during the campaign for the general election. Clinton campaign insiders repeatedly run to the press en masse as they wage their wars against themselves.

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Super Tuesday II: Electric Boogaloo

by lestro

Super Tuesday II: Electric Boogaloo was quite an evening for Hillary Clinton. She won – rather convincingly – in Ohio, eked out a primary victory in Texas and rolled in Rhode Island.

Her campaign really has been on the upswing lately. She has been able to raise more money than before (though not as much as her rival) and finally stopped his winning streak at 12. Vermont, the first to report last night, went for Obama. After that it was all Hillary…

These recent wins certainly do change the Democratic primary map. A quick glance makes it really look like a horse race, with Clinton taking many of the big prizes like New York, California, New Jersey, Ohio and Texas. However, the map includes Michigan and Florida in the Clinton column, which is unfair considering the delegates from those states will not [and should not] count at the Democratic Convention because the states held their primaries in violation of party rules. Clinton won both states, although in Michigan, hers was the only name on the ballot and all of the candidates agreed not to campaign in Florida, making their contest one of name recognition more than anything…

It makes a compelling case for her candidacy when you ignore the larger issues and facts, like the idea that the math does not work in Hillary’s favor unless she goes BIG in every remaining primary.

But even just looking at the states won, it doesn’t really look good for Clinton either. For example, last time around, the Dems won New York, Cali and New Jersey but lost the presidency. Why? Because though they are big, important states, lots of little ones stacked up to beat them.

Part of the Clinton argument is that because she won the big states, the party elders should give her the nomination. It’s a dubious suggestion at best, but let’s look a little deeper.

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why is Bush tap-dancing?

by twit

From Think Progress, including an MSNBC video:

Today, President Bush is meeting with Sen. John McCain (R-AZ) for lunch at the White House, where he is expected to endorse his presidential bid.

… while waiting for McCain to arrive, Bush stood outside on the North Portico and entertained the press corps by tap dancing, doing a goofy walk, winking, and smiling.

http://media.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/photo/2008/03/05/PH2008030501917.jpg

theories abound after the jump…

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Hillary’s big tent

by lestro

No, not her pant suit.

Jesus, you’re horrible. Stop it. That’s just mean and there’s no place for it in intelligent political discussion.

This week the Clinton Campaign launched a new Web site called Delegate Hub to address “The facts and myths about the race for delegates.” It functions mainly as blog to collect articles and clips about the superdelegates that present issues in a Clinton-favorable light.

Here’s the intro statement:

As more voters make their choice for the Democratic nomination, there is growing interest in the facts and myths about the race to reach 2208 delegate votes – the number required for a candidate to secure the nomination with Florida and Michigan included. The Obama campaign is claiming, without precedent or justification, that automatic delegates (commonly referred to as “super delegates”) should switch to Sen. Obama en masse based on arbitrary metrics, with the aim of tilting the delegate balance in his favor. The fact is: no automatic delegate is required to cast a vote on the basis of anything other than his or her best judgment about who is the most qualified to be president.

Did you catch that part about Michigan and Florida? Those are the states whose delegates that Clinton agreed should not count, until she realized she was getting beat pretty much everywhere except the states where her opponent agreed to not campaign in.

One of the first links on the new site is a Slate column in which Christopher Beam reports on some “number crunching” that shows Hillary has actually received 52 percent of the vote among people who identify as Democrats. The post gives some good reasons about why the numbers are a bit hinky, but despite that concludes “Clinton’s lead is still large enough to be significant.”

However, it’s the closing paragraph that disturbs me a little:

It helps you understand why the party gives so much power to its 796 superdelegates. If they didn’t, independents and Republicans could essentially hijack their election. It also makes you wonder whether Clinton should start citing this number, if she maintains her lead through the convention in August. Even if Obama leads in the popular vote and among pledged delegates, it might disturb party gray beards to learn that the nominee has essentially been chosen by outsiders.

While in many ways that is understandable, it is hard to imagine that the Clinton Campaign is actually pushing a message of exclusion. Essentially they say that unless you are a party member, they don’t want you there. The Democratic Party as invite-only.

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Bubba vs. Bubba

by lestro

The Clinton campaign continued the tired experience attack today, with the former president taking personal offense that he is not getting his due for his legacy as president:

Former President Clinton on Friday accused Sen. Barack Obama, his wife’s rival for the Democratic nomination, of trying to ignore any accomplishments they achieved during their years in the White House.

“You have one candidate who’s made the explicit argument that the only way we can change America is to move into a post-partisan future and therefore we have to eliminate from consideration for the presidency anybody who made good things happen in the ’90s or stopped bad things from happening in this decade,” said Clinton

Without mentioning Obama by name, Clinton said the Illinois senator was promoting a position that it’s “actually an advantage to not have any experience because you’ve not made anybody mad.”

But that’s a different tune than he was singing in the first debate of the 1992, when the topic of experience was the first issue they discussed, though nowadays, President Clinton sounds more like his former rival:

President Bush: Well, I think one thing that distinguishes is experience. I think we’ve dramatically changed the world. I’ll talk about that a little bit later, but the changes are mind-boggling for world peace. Kids go to bed at night without the same fear of nuclear war. And change for change’s sake isn’t enough. We saw that message in the late seventies when we heard a lot about change. And what happened? That “misery index” went right through the roof. [...]

Mr. Lehrer: Governor Clinton, how do you respond to the President — you have 2 minutes — on the question of experience? He says that is what distinguishes him from the other two of you.

Governor Clinton: I believe experience counts, but it’s not everything. Values, judgment, and the record that I have amassed in my State also should count for something. I’ve worked hard to create good jobs and to educate people. My State now ranks first in the country in job growth this year, fourth in income growth, fourth in the reduction of poverty, third in overall economic performance, according to a major news magazine. That’s because we believe in investing in education and in jobs.

We have to change in this country. You know, my wife, Hillary, gave me a book about a year ago in which the author defined insanity as just doing the same old thing over and over again and expecting a different result. We have got to have the courage to change.

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