By Scott Cavanagh
The razor-thin margin of victory in yesterday's Indiana Primary more than likely sealed the fate of Hillary Clinton's presidential aspirations. I believe today, as I have all along, that Senator Clinton and her supporters will now begin to wind down their activities in the remaining undecided states and try to begin the process of uniting the party in time for the August convention.
These developments however, will not change the facts that Clinton has won virtually every vital battleground state in play this November, would have had the right to contest the nomination if she had so chosen to due to Obama's inability to close the deal, and would be conceding without any representation from two huge, vital states that could swing the nomination to her.
The attitude from Obama supporters that the Clinton people's arguments lack logic (while they pretend the rules regarding super delegates don't exist) and there is no need to fix the Florida and Michigan mess is just so frustrating. That attitude smacks of every stereotype the GOP has about the pompous left.
Is it illogical to think that a candidate whose opponent cannot lock up the nomination in the traditional way, might take advantage of established rules to garner the nomination rather than concede to someone she sees as a loser in the general? Is it illogical to think that it might be in the best interests of my party and my country to have a full accounting of the wishes of two large key general election swing states before conceding the nomination to a candidate that has lost all of the others?
Let me state a couple of things emphatically. I am not now, and have never been, a lackey for Hillary Clinton. I supported Joe Biden at the beginning of this process and leaned towards Edwards after that. I came to her when left with the two candidates we have now. I firmly believe that the rise of Obama, coinciding with the rise of McCain, is the GOP's dream scenario--and I've been saying so for months. The moment all the racial crap started in South Carolina everything changed. Obama was turned overnight from the candidate of everyone (which I truly believe he was) to the candidate of black people and the far left. While at the same time, Hillary Clinton--our frontrunner and the candidate with the greatest African-American poll numbers in history (to go along with enormous popularity with working people and seniors) --was turned into the candidate of the right wing of our party. That worked great for Barack in the immediately approaching southern primaries--where the Democratic primary voting populations are more than 60% black--and carried on through a couple of other smaller states, but what did it produce for our general election chances in November?
When that smoke cleared, the GOP must have felt they had all died and were Raptured to Heaven. The Clinton Coalition--the strongest Democratic voting conglomeration since FDR--had been severed and destroyed forever. Win or lose, blacks and many on the left will never embrace the Clintons as they once did. Combine that with the idiocy in Florida and Michigan and it's like Republicans wrote the script. All that's left is to gin-up some fear mongering for a foreign-born black guy with a Muslim name, friendships with Farrakhan, the PLO and American terrorists (no matter how slim), a loose cannon wife, and a family preacher (the guy married him and baptized their children) that says 9/11 was an inside job and the US government created AIDS. They didn't even have to worry about Hillary making a Clintonesque comeback for the nomination, because the left wing of the party and the press put a public relations pooh-pooh on a totally legal super delegate fight and revotes in Florida and Michigan months ago.
Anything Hillary did from that point on (other than simply quit) was portrayed as "hurting the party" or some kind of underhanded Clinton scheme--which of course only plays that much more into the hands of the GOP--which desperately needs to paint as bad a picture of the Clinton years as possible. Our ONLY successfully completed Democratic presidency of the past 50 years belonged to Bill Clinton. Playing along with the "the Clintons are lying, manipulators that are no different from the other corporatists" crap, as the left has done, is just idiotic. (Claiming, after reading that last sentence, that she was "just the First Lady" and had nothing to do with policy--when you know she was her husband's top advisor for 35 years--is also totally disingenuous--but if you must make it, then all the bashing over NAFTA and Health Care should cease.)No eight years of Clinton peace and prosperity for McCain to fight against. No "Here's what we did, here's what you did" comparisons between the Clinton years and McCain's voting record. Nope, it will simply be the maverick, All-American, POW war hero against the black Muslim friend of Farrakhan and Qaddafi (their words and images, not mine), whose entire national stage experience consists of one senate term - half of which was spent running for President.
I understand full-well that Obama is most likely going to be the nominee, I hate however, the fact that his people have, for quite some time, tried to lay down this preventive strike against Hillary going to the super delegates by insinuating that it would somehow be cheating or trying to twist the rules. That is not the case at all. If it went to the supers, it would do so for only two reasons--because we did not count the votes in Florida and Michigan and he cannot close the deal and get the 2,025 he needs to win. If you are Hillary Clinton and you believe, as I do, that Obama is going to be a very weak McGovern-ish character in the fall, and you do not fight for the nomination to try and prevent four-eight more years of these horrible Bush policies--you should be ashamed of yourself.
We (Dems) are being set-up like Andruw Jones with a 0-2 count. Do you think the GOP does not have many Reverend Wright-ish dudes out there just waiting to be trucked out to the public? Are you not worried that he cannot close the deal (with Dems for crying out loud) when ALL of the left is on his side? Were you comfortable with what happened to this guy's poll numbers and popularity the minute even these minor attacks started? Do you honestly think its just coincidence that the Right has not been tearing Obama to bits? They are just waiting for the left to kill Hillary. Then they will pounce and it will be ugly.
Does none of this scare you? Only four years ago, we ran a three-time Purple Heart winner against the worst president in modern times and lost. The key states in the past two elections (and virtually every one since 1964) were Ohio, Pennsylvania, Indiana, Michigan and Florida--states Obama has either lost to Hillary or we are not counting (and pissing off). The GOP's case in '04 against Kerry? He was not a brave enough hero and was out-of-touch with regular people. Obama is not only going to win this nomination, he is going to win it (thanks to all the Hillary bashing by the left) as the undisputed candidate of the left wing of the left party (a traditional prescription for disaster in itself), which will only add to his, albeit undeserved, reputation as an elitist. He will be treated as the candidate of minorities and people too liberal for the Clintons.
I hope Senator Obama can overcome smallmindedness and fear mongering this November. I don't think he has shown, thus far, that he can. One commercial--just one--featuring Michelle Obama talking about her views on America and the irrefutable fact that an American terrorist bomber held a fundraiser for Rev. Wright's best buddy--and we are done--TOAST. Two more Scalias, here we come. Sorry if that upsets me.
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Wednesday, May 7, 2008
By Scott Cavanagh