I said I would update the last post with concluding thoughts on the Democratic debate, but as it turns out no real analysis is needed. After watching the coverage on CNN and MSNBC, I realized that the Democratic race was indeed over, and apparently only Hillary Clinton and her campaign is tragically unaware of this fact.
Keith Olbermann in particular seemed positively and justifiably incensed (and nobody does righteous indignation like KO) that Clinton is continuing a hard scrabble fight for every vote and delegate, behaving for all the world like - I dunno - she is running hard to win the nomination for the Presidency of the United States. Bitch.
OLBERMANN: "Richard, there is a handshake in there, there’s a standing ovation. It sounded not just polite, it sounded conciliatory. In that answer, did we find out ultimately which part of her camp, which elements in her campaign group won the battle? The go nuclear camp towards the stretch run here, or the preserve dignity camp?"
OLBERMANN: Well, interpret that, because obviously that’s the headline question before we go nuts and bolts on the individual answers, was there a message in there? Was there some sort of door being knocked on even if Hillary Clinton has gone from great favorite to long shot underdog, was she knocking on the door saying, you know what, we don’t have to be enemies, here, if you’re going to beat me, I’m not going to drag the ticket down, I’m not going to drag the Democrats down, I would be even willing to campaign for you, I might even be on your ticket? Is it too much to read all that into a simple handshake and a “we’ll be fine” answer at the end?
WOLFFE: We’re reading a lot into it, but I think it was striking. Look, that was by far and away her best moment of the debate. It was the very last moment of the debate, so if she was really trying to deliver that message, she could have done it right at the very start...
OLBERMANN: Just as we speak, an e-mail has gone out from the Clinton campaign. Let me ask you about this. This is from Howard Wolfson about that very last moment.“What we saw in the final moments,” said Wolfson of the Clinton campaign, of course, “in that debate, is why Hillary Clinton is the next president of the United States. Her strength, her life experience, her compassion, she’s tested and ready. It was the moment she retook the reins of this race and showed women and men why she is the best choice.”I don’t know of anybody who would have seen that who would have thought of that in terms of a commanding moment other than Howard Wolfson. Does that suggest that when she got off that stage, somebody in her camp said: why did you do that? And was outraged, surprised, shocked, whatever term you’d want to use?
WOLFFE: Well, look, the campaign has got to continue to fight and project some confidence in their own victory ...
It really should be enough for all of us that THE OLBERMANN has rendered judgment on the race. But for those who, for reason beyond all understanding, do not think that Keith Olbermann's assessment is definitive, there is a virtual unanimity of similar views in in the blogosphere and mainstream media:
Kristopher at The World Around You says to "Put a Fork in Her", while Bill Quick of the Daily Pundit prefers the "stick a fork in her" phrasing as does pundit guy and the Hub Blog. GPC justs ruminates about the nature of Hillary and forks over a Friday Lunch. Doug Mataconis is attending to the "Hillary Clinton Death Watch" , while Kos says "no need, she is already dead". Larry Kudlow also says it is over, over, over, and The New York Times metaphorically sees a darkening horizon, but I am not sure if they are invoking a setting sun or an approaching storm or - you know - that thing that always happens before the dawn. The Seattle times prefers a boxing metaphor, putting Hillary Clinton "on the ropes". Sully finds that Hillary Clinton in the rear view mirror is still closer and larger than he would like.
Hillary Clinton is also getting a lot of advice. Gordo advises that "Clinton should back off" and Jonathon Alter wants her to "get out now". Carl wrote an open letter to the Senator as did the Zaftig Redhead, posting her open letter at TPM and saying "Cease campaign operations -- NOW. Call a press conference. Preferably before the Ohio and Texas contests. "
All this advice. All this certainty. All this unanimity. What is Hillary thinking? Why would she continue to subject us all to this completely pointless campaign? It is so so sad.
After all, the only way she could win is if she won in Texas, Ohio, and Pennsylvania. Even Bill understands that and has said as much. There is just no reason to think there is any possibility of that happening, unless you want to put some stock in the meaningless fact that SHE IS LEADING THE POLLS IN ALL THREE STATES (although a virtual tie in Texas). Why does she not understand that she must get out of the race with dignity even though SHE IS LEADING IN PENNSYLVANIA, LEADING IN OHIO, and LEADING IN TEXAS? Nobody knows. After all, that outcome would only give her victories for EVERY SINGLE BIG CITY STATE IN THE COUNTRY INCLUDING NEW YORK, NEW JERSEY, CALIFORNA, MASSACHUSETTS, TEXAS, OHIO, PENNSYLVANIA, FLORIDA*, and MICHIGAN*, excepting only Illinois. ALL OF THEM.
Not sure what is wrong with this Caps Lock key. It appears to be sticking. Whatever.
Now some silly, uniformed amateur political dilettantes might think that three big state victories in a row would bring the Obama "10 in a row" momentum to a full, four wheel lockup, tire screeching stop. Some might think the momentum would then be in Clinton's favor, just in time to provide political cover for the super delegates to “vote their [arm-twisted] conscience” about what is best for the Democratic party in November. You know, like winning all the big states.
Rasmussen says that Obama has an insurmountable lead in the polls, The Huffington Post says the Shaken Clinton Camp facing trench warfare after probable defeat and Keith Olbermann says "All right, if the polls are on the money there, it‘s Obama by at least a dozen... In that construction, what could possibly happen later on that would make this statement false: when the polls close... Barack Obama will have cinched the Democratic nomination?"
Oh wait. All of the links in that last paragraph were from just before New Hampshire primary, which umm... Clinton won. My bad. No matter. That's irrelevant. Just get out, Hillary. Just quit now for the good of the party and the country.
Senator Clinton - let me add my voice to the chorus and net this out for you:
We don't want a president that can pull off a come-from-behind, against-the-odds, back-against the-wall victory using old fashioned hard ball politics. The Democratic Party does not want a fighter that is building momentum at the end of the process with wins in Texas and Ohio and Pennsylvania.
Finally, we the American people don't want a president that can cut deals, trade favors, twist arms, and pull every trick in the book to win the nomination. If Obama has more elected delegates earned in a byzantine undemocratic nomination process that is over-weighted with caucuses that ignores Florida and Michigan, well that should be definitive. I mean, in this world (It's a small world after all) , who would want a hard eyed, ball-cutting, arm-twisting, politically sophisticated, articulate, scary-smart policy wonk, who is a cutthroat negotiator, never gives up, figures every angle, a political realist and ruthless bitch sitting in the oval office and leading our country?
No, no, no - we don't want that.
What we really want is the inspirational leader of a children's crusade.
Can we fix it? "Yes we can."