Tuesday, March 11, 2008

Who's Winning??

Obama or Clinton????

To listen to the momentum argument and chatter (which is at least 50 if not 65% of the election process) one would have to say that Clinton is winning.

She won 3 of the 4 contests on 3/4; and did two things very effectively:
1> She won the large state argument: Excpet Illinois (Obama's home state) and Virginia; Hillary has now won all of what are usually considered "big" states: California, New York, Texas, Florida (disputed), New Jersey, Massachusettes, Ohio and Michigan (also disputed). this was VERY important--more important than breaking Obama's momentum--because it served to showcase her electability; ability to carry the big states and trivialized his wins----even though he currently is in the lead with the most delegates, most states, and most of the poplar votes--but Preception is such a HUGE factor in this era of politics; it is hard to make that argument as definitive because of the facts I just stated above.
2> Hillary found a way to make the attacks stick--Hillary has been attacking Obama since prior to the SC Primary; but he has rebutted, parried and deflected every single one. What happened this time was in a two prong approach (well really 3) she was able to make the attack stick--1> she questioned his ability to be Commander In Chief with her 3:00 am ad--which he rebutted with his own 3:00 am ad about having the judgement to answer the phone--but her damage has already been done. 2> She spun the NAFTA debacle as NAFTA-gate and turned an unpaid advisor of Obama's talking without direction into a statement that Obama was "two-faced" on NAFTA--a point which in the days following the Ohio Primary received SCADS of attention in Canada (but do we know that--of ocurse not, because most people in America barely realize Canada is NOT part of the US, much less has its own gov't!!!) The Prime Minister got involved and the two leading newspapers in Toronto and Montreal ran cover stories on how it was actually Hillary's people who contacted them about ignoring the political "anti-NAFTA" rhetoric-and Obama's guy said the wrong thing at the wrong time. Not a great thing, but remember he was an unpaid advisor, not actually part of the campaign or acting on any official capacity. this is what helped Clinton, because Obama made an unequivocal deny that any of his people had been in contact with the Canadian government or said anything of the like--only problem, he didn't know about the unpaid advisor opened his mouth at a random meeting, where he was NOT representing the Obama campaign. 3> She succedded in "roughing up the refs" she pushed the press for being too light on Obama and after two appearances on SNL, convinced America that she was more hip than she looked and that she had a point--negative news to follow. . .

BUT--Obama has an argument:
He has won more delegates, more states, more of the popular vote; cut her lead in super delegates to a little over 20; WON the Texas delegate race, Ensured Clinton walked away from her "big" victory with a net gain of 2 delegates, and still well behind him, and went from being 20 points down in both Texas and Ohio to being 9 points in Ohio and 2 points in Texas--the problem then??? he didn't deliver like people thought he would, the momentum, the zeitgeist, everything was on Obama's side--and he fought close, but just enough to cut her lead to fractions, but not enough to win.

So what's to do--Obama won Wyoming and will probably win Mississippi. He will also probably win very well in NC; but the battle will be Pennsylvania. He has to get momentum back, convince the superdelegates he is still well ahead and going strong, and he has to WIN Pennsylvania. If he just breaks even or cuts her lead; his case for electability will be weak no matter how many delegates he has.
BUT--the good news comes two fold--this race (longest in american political history) has shown 2 things 1> Clinton is often the recipient of "reversed momentum"--that is she wins and pulls into the front; but people don't respond to her winning with more winning--usually its a "we just didn't want her getting beat up so bad; but we don't want her to win." this happened in Iowa; New Hampshire, after Super Tuesday and looks to be happening now--Hillary's comment about offering Obama the Veep job (as she lags behind in states, delegates and votes) has set A LOT of people talking again about arrogance and entitlement--2 things Americans don't like to support or reward--we'd rather have ignorance (current President . . . but that is another blog) :)
and 2> time is on Obama's side-he has proven to be the better candidate when it comes to winning people over, he learns from mistakes and fixes them. Ohio and Texas taught Obama a lot about what to expect; and chances are his strategy will prove effective in neutralizing any argument or points she has--Point in case--her push for more "negative" stories on him have been massively deflected in the light of the press. while they still try and tie him to Rezko, they cannot find any misdeeds on his part; and he continues to cooperate. He has turned her remarks on his suitability into "fear-mongering" and the worst thing Dateline could get on him was a former Republican Illinois Senatorial colleague who said Obama is pretty much tried and true; but while he passed a lot of bills-he didn't have any "big" movements--of course the Republicans controlled the Illinois Senate during most of his tenure and as the former colleague admits--"It was hard for any democrat to get anything done, much less a "big" movement."

That's it; that seems to be the worst thing they can say that actually has merit and sticks--the rest is just propaganda.

So, who do YOU think is winning?

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