Wednesday, March 5, 2008

It's Not "Still Up In The Air", It's Just Strung Out...

UPDATE, MARCH 24: While Clinton campaigns in Pennsylvania and Obama takes a well-earned rest day, both of their campaigns continue to trade press releases keeping the heat on each other -- and John McCain campaigns in California, a state Democrats should be able to win in November, without a clear Democratic frontrunner to contest him and ensure that those indispensable 55 electoral votes stay in the Democratic column. It's agonizing: individual ego may well cost Democrats the White House -- and enable a Republican to replace at least one or two of the three remaining Democrats on the Supreme Court with Republicans, making the Court 7-2 or even 8-1 Republican. Women supporting Hillary Clinton should think hard about the impact her extending her losing campaign all the way to August may have on women's rights, because it's not just the White House that's at stake.

UPDATE, MARCH 20: No matter how well Hillary Clinton does in Pennsylvania, it's increasingly clear that she can't mathematically win the popular vote, and will need to rely on "Superdelegates" overriding the will of the voters. Not good for the Party or the country, as discussed below...

ORIGINAL POST: It's not "still up in the air", as a CNN piece says; it's just strung out now, probably all the way to August, to the party's detriment and McCain's gain. In the past, Clinton's campaign itself has said repeatedly that it's not about the number of states, it's about the number of delegates -- and given how close the margins were yesterday, plus the fact that Obama may actually have WON Texas when the primary and caucus votes are combined (!), Clinton probably gained only four net delegates, not enough to cut deeply into Obama's roughly 100-delegate lead.

So the math hasn't changed, just the P.R. spin. And the only way the nomination is "up in the air", mathematically, is that there still is a possibility that Clinton will be able to broker the convention and receive the nomination even though Obama will win both the popular vote and the majority of "pledged" delegates chosen by the popular vote. (In a press conference today, Clinton's campaign manager said flat out that that's fine by him -- the popular vote doesn't matter and if they can get the Michigan and Florida delegations seated, or sway the "superdelegates" whose votes are equivalent to roughly 10,000 real voters', they'll consider that fair. Do you agree?)

UPDATE, MARCH 13: Readers shouldn't be fooled by Clinton's current pretense that all she wants is Florida and Michigan's voters to be heard. That isn't what she's said in the past, it isn't what she's said in her press releases or press briefings, and it isn't even what she's saying now, if you read carefully enough. What I wrote above, and immediately below, still hold true: Obama wants either the rules followed as-is or a real re-election held, and Clinton only wants those options that give her an unfair edge -- which is why she still calls the Michigan election "fair" even though Obama's name wasn't even on the ballot. And don't trust the MainStream Media (MSM) to tell the whole truth -- they can't fit nuance into soundbites!

UPDATE, MARCH 6:
Clinton's campaign has repeatedly said that there's no need for Florida or Michigan -- which were disqualified by the Democratic Party by the DNC, with Clinton's assent, in which the candidates all pledged not to campaign, and in which, in one case (Michigan), Obama's name didn't even appear on the ballot -- to hold valid votes or caucuses. No -- Clinton wants those two states' delegations (even Michigan's) seated at the national convention WITHOUT fair votes. Why? Because those states' skewed primaries resulted in Clinton racking up big "wins" (of course -- how hard can it be, for instance, when your opponent's name isn't even on the ballot?). I've listened in on the press conferences, and they're not even trying to hide it. FURTHER UPDATE: Just one example of Clinton campaign's about-face here.

What everyone (but Clinton) wants, of course, is for both states to hold legitimate primaries or caucuses, decide for real which candidate they prefer, and take their rightful place at the national convention. One job of true patriots is to fight for this to happen, against those who would rather benefit from a rigged system than actually abide by the will of the people. There is, happily, some hope -- far from certain, but hope, according to a CNN piece -- of the establishment "machine" losing and the right thing actually being done. I'll have an action plan (including contact info for the Democratic National Committee Rules Committee members and other power brokers who will make the final decision) up here in a few days, so please bookmark and check back. Thanks!
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10 comments:

KAR in Bakersfield said...

How about this voters:

"Campaigning in Spartanburg, South Carolina, Friday (Jan. 25, 2008), the former president (Bill Clinton) brushed aside suggestions his wife would prove to be a divisive nominee for the Democratic Party, pointing out how she has successfully worked with Republicans in the Senate — including one of the current GOP presidential candidates.

"She and John McCain are very close," Clinton said. "They always laugh that if they wound up being the nominees of their party, it would be the most civilized election in American history, and they're afraid they'd put the voters to sleep because they like and respect each other." --CNN filing, 01/25/08

Hillary's big MO is modus operandi.
I cannot believe how she shovels lies and innuendo to elevate herself.
* lying about the Obama Canada "deal"
* falsely positioning herself as the person to "answer the phone"--I wouldn't trust her to walk my dog....
* Publicly stating Obama "gave a speech in 2002" and she and JOHN McCAIN bring years of tested experience.
* Hemming and hawing about Obama is a Christian, "as far as I know."

Hillary has the integrity of an oil spill...smearing the political environment with her brand of muck that oozes lies, falsehoods, deceit and obfuscation. It would be a crime--LITERALLY--if she gets the Democratic nomination. And, if she does, we have just elected John McCain as President of the U.S.

John McCain: W Redux

Unbelievable how ignorant people are....

Bryan M said...

I agree with your entry. After all is tallied up Obama will have lost no more than a few delegate lead (6-9total). I also find it exceedingly frustrating that the Clinton's are exhibiting this "anything it takes to win" attitude. Her spin machine has somehow made her out to be the victim of the media and the primary fiascos in Michigan/Florida. When in fact the press hasn't said a word about the ongoing Peter Paul scandal she is currently entrenched in, her tax forms withheld, and whitehouse documents. The Clinton's also keep trying to seat delegates in Michigan where Obama wasn't even on the ballot for them to vote for him. This is insane, they are taking the democratic process and saying, "to hell with this, we want to win and we'll do anything to achieve that" while half of america sits by and applauds her actions. She has some really good issues she is fighting for but the way she is going about it is too much like Bush has gone about running the country the last 7 years. The fact that the media is trying to play the spin game and claim "the race is still up in the air" basically gives Clinton cart blanche to do whatever it takes to win the nomination without any repercussions. That is until November comes around and McCain carries the Independant and Concervative vote, while about a quarter of the democratic base supporting Obama obstains due to a feeling of being dissenfranchised. This is looking better and better for the Repubs as Clinton gets dirtier and dirtier.

Anonymous said...

Well that tells you exactly what the Clinton campaign thinks of the american people. the popular vote doesnt really matter????? Excuse me!!!! I think it matters greatly.

Anonymous said...

To big rounds of applause, three of the world’s richest men — Richard Branson, Ronald W. Burkle and Vinod Khosla — trooped onto a New York ballroom stage with former President Bill Clinton to pledge support for renewable energy projects to combat global warming and create jobs.
And sitting in the audience was an influential public official who had also taken an active interest in renewable sources of fuel: Senator Hillary Rodham Clinton.
Several months earlier, Mrs. Clinton had sponsored legislation to provide billions in new federal incentives for ethanol, and, especially in her home state of New York, she has worked to foster a business climate that favors the sort of ethanol investments pursued by her husband’s friends and her political supporters.
One potential beneficiary is the Yucaipa Companies, a private equity firm where Mr. Clinton has been a senior adviser and whose founder, Mr. Burkle, has raised hundreds of thousands of dollars for Mrs. Clinton’s campaigns. Yucaipa has invested millions in Cilion Inc. — a start-up venture also backed by Mr. Branson, the British entrepreneur, and Mr. Khosla, a Silicon Valley venture capitalist — that is building seven ethanol plants around the country. Two are in upstate New York.
A Cilion executive said Mrs. Clinton’s office had been helpful to the company as it pursued its New York projects. More broadly, by steering federal money, organizing investor forums and offering the services of her staff, she has helped turn the upstate region into an incubator for ventures like Cilion’s, while providing a useful showcase for her energy proposals on the campaign trail.Yucaipa’s partnership with the rulers of Dubai and its investment in a Chinese media company drew attention to Mr. Clinton’s connection to the fund when his wife was preparing her presidential run last year. In December, aides to Mr. Clinton said he was taking steps to end his relationship with Yucaipa to avoid potential conflicts of interest or political imbroglios for his wife, should she become the Democratic nominee.
Representatives of the Clintons declined repeated requests for comment that included a detailed set of questions submitted to Mrs. Clinton’s campaign more than a week ago.
Because Mr. Burkle’s Yucaipa funds are private, and the Clintons have refused to release their tax returns, details of Yucaipa’s investments and Mr. Clinton’s potential to profit from them are not publicly available
Wake up America

Mark My Words said...

The Democratic Primaries are definitely perplexing. Regardless of that, it's going to work out for them in a huge way, all thanks to the public's thirst for the head to head campaigns of both Hillary and Barack. Their ongoing campaigns are all that the media cares to talk about which is perfect in drawing full attention to the Democratic Party. Just look at the fundraising each of these candidates are doing each month. It dwarfs that of the Republican candidate, whose $12 million in February is pittance versus his potential Democratic counterparts. The continued media coverage of the Democratic nomination only bolsters each candidate's popularity and recognition throughout the country. Look at why the other former candidates had to drop out of the race, they received very little to no media coverage and hence their messages weren't heard, and no one cared to support their campaign (especially financially).

The country is at a turning point. We're in a "war" that has no direction or proper planning which continues to drain the American tax payer that is having a hard enough time to find ends meet within a lack luster economy and bubbling inflation. America requires a much needed change in direction. That change will be from the Democratic Party, no doubt. Seven plus years of a failed Republican president has finally allowed for America to wake up and see the light. Bush's endorsement of McCain is only going to hurt his upcoming campaign. Sure it'll win some conservatives sitting on the fence, but when you think about receiving support from a President that has an approval rating in the low 30's, it does no one any good.

The Democratic Primaries will open up some wounds here and there (which are sure to heal), but in the end the longer it continues, the less media coverage goes to the Republican candidate. Either way by the end of August 2008 the Democratic Party will have its nominee, who'll be riding on months of fantastic national media coverage and exposure, which will equal to enormous contributions and support from the general public that will only propel their campaign into the White House and bring forth a viable Democratic President to the United States.

Mark my words.

Anonymous said...

If Hillary wins the nomination, she cannot beat McCain without Obama on the ticket. The scores of new voters inspired by Obama's campaign detest the negatives and tricks employed in the political process for so long. I personally would welcome a woman President, but someone OTHER than Hillary Clinton. Furthermore, neither of the candidates can tout "experience", or being "ready from Day One", as neither of them have ever been President. Cut the BS please, there is much to be done. The political process is broken, trust in our government is near non-existent. The economy is in a downward spiral, jobs are leaving the country, and our standing in the eyes of the rest of the world is at an all-time LOW. We are mired in two wars, one of which should have never happened. Can one person really fix all that? We need a President that will not only work to fix things, but to inspire us all to pitch in together, the United States of America. Key word being, UNITED.

Anonymous said...

Just a thought:
Per CNN's website (http://www.cnn.com/ELECTION/2008/primaries/results/candidates/#1746), Clinton has lost all but 1 of the caucauses so far; and only 13 out of 27 valid primaries so far; 14 total states; with 1424 total delegates.

Compare with Obama's (http://www.cnn.com/ELECTION/2008/primaries/results/candidates/#1918) who has won 14 out of 27 valid primaries and all the caucauses apart from the Nevada one - 14 out of 15; 25 total states won so far; with 1520 total delegates

I'm not a political analyst but aren't these numbers something that could work for President-to-be Obama and be used against Senator Clinton???

Emphasis on these numbers could help unseat the notion that it is a 'dead-heat' between the 2 candidates. Obama has doubled Clinton's effort, I think its enough to edge her out...We've had enough of her!

Switch them around, if it was Obama in Clinton's shoes now, they would be saying he's an irrelevant candidate. Do I detect some bias somewhere?

Anonymous said...

Did Clinton Win Ohio Primary On a Lie?
By PAUL ROGAT LOEB

Suppose someone in the North Korean government released a false story that shifted a key American election. If Bush were negatively affected, we might be bombing Pyongyang by now. But this just happened with what Hillary Clinton called “NAFTAgate” Without it, she might never have won Ohio, or her margin would have been minuscule.

But as a Canadian Broadcasting Company story reveals, practically the entire story was a lie, one that played so central a role in Clinton’s Ohio victory that any claim she raises about emerging with a swing state mandate is thoroughly tainted.

As the Ohio primary approached, Obama was steadily closing what a month earlier had been a 20-point lead in the polls. He argued that the NAFTA trade agreement, a centerpiece of Bill Clinton’s term on which Bill had staked his entire political capital, cost massive numbers of industrial jobs in Ohio and other manufacturing states. Instead of creating a trade-fueled boom, it helped hollow out America’s industrial base, with over 200,000 manufacturing jobs disappearing in Ohio since the 2000 election. Even Republicans I talked with while calling Ohio before the vote made clear that they thought NAFTA was a disaster.

Given these sentiments, Hillary chose not to defend her husband’s actions, but instead claimed Obama was distorting her position because she’d privately opposed the agreement at the time, had “long been a critic” and now similarly supported stronger labor and environmental standards. Echoing her reinvention on the Iraq War, these claims were flat-out nonsense. As David Sirota points out, she’d praised NAFTA repeatedly in public settings from the time of its inception. And as Obama highlighted their contrasting positions and approaches on this and other issues, he was gaining in the polls

Then, on Feb 27, the Canadian network CTV reported that even as Obama was publicly attacking Bill’s role in NAFTA, and arguing for a drastic overhaul, he’d had key economic advisor Austin Goolsby arrange a meeting with the Canadian ambassador where Goolsby reassured them that this was all just “political positioning,” pandering for campaign trail. The likely source of the anonymous Valerie Plame-style leak was right-wing Prime Minister Stephen Harper’s Chief of Staff, Ian Brodie, and US media jumped all over it as proof of Obama’s hypocrisy. The Canadian embassy denied the story and Obama also said it was false. A follow-up March 3 leak then sent a supposed memo summarizing the meeting to the major US media outlets, quoting Goolsby as saying Obama’s statements were more “political positioning than the clear articulation of policy plans.”

Clinton made the controversy a centerpiece of her home stretch speeches and ads, saying “You come to Ohio and you both give speeches that are very critical of NAFTA and you send out misleading and false information about my position regarding NAFTA and then we find out that your chief economic advisor has gone to a foreign government and basically done the old wink wink, don’t pay any attention this is just political rhetoric.” She even ran a radio ad that misleadingly presenting itself as a news story, which concluded, “As Senator Obama was telling one story to Ohio, his campaign was telling a very different story to Canada.” John McCain similarly attacked Obama for the presumed contradiction in his stand, as did Machinist’s head Tom Buffenbarger, one of Clinton’s key labor allies.

The supposed scandal shifted the election by flipping voter perceptions on an issue where Obama should have had a key advantage. Instead, Clinton ended up getting a majority the 55 percent of Ohio voters who expressed a sense “that trade takes jobs away,” a majority of those worried about their family’s economic situation, and a majority of union members, whom Obama won in his recent victories. She won a 10 percent plurality in a state where Ohioans overwhelmingly picked the economy as the top issue. And she won overwhelmingly with late-breaking voters, the opposite of practically all of Obama’s other campaigns. Most important, by casting doubt on Obama’s integrity, the cornerstone of his campaign, they made him seem like just another hack politician who’d say anything to win. This gave the supposed scandal a probable impact in Texas and Rhode Island as well, even though NAFTA was less of a central issue there..

But as the CBC report makes clear, the core of the story turned out to be false. The Canadian government contacted Goolsby to clarify Obama’s position on trade, not the reverse. Although Goolsby did meet with Canada’s Chicago consul general George Rioux (not, as was reported in the original leak, Ambassador Michael Wilson), there’s no evidence that he ever described Obama’s position as mere political posturing. Instead, Goolsby responded to Canadian questions by clarifying that Obama wasn’t pushing to scrap the agreement entirely, but that labor and environmental safeguards were important to him. The memo was simply inaccurate, as even the Harper government now acknowledges after a firestorm of criticism by opposition parliament members, calling the leak “blatantly unfair,” and saying “there was no intention to convey, in any way, that Senator Obama and his campaign team were taking a different position in public from views expressed in private, including about NAFTA.”

Ironically, the day before the story hit American TV, Brodie, told reporters questioning him on trade that “someone from (Hillary) Clinton’s campaign is telling the embassy to take it with a grain of salt. . . That someone called us and told us not to worry.” But that never made the US headlines.

As Matt Wallace writes in the Daily Kos, “this scandal was manufactured out of whole cloth. Goolsbee said something consistent with Obama’s official position–that he wanted protections added, but it wasn’t going to be a fundamental change or revocation of NAFTA, and that Obama was not a protectionist. This was morphed somewhat going into the memo, and now the embassy admits they “may have misrepresented the Obama advisor.” Even after the memo misrepresented Obama, the Harper government took it a step further and then leaked a completely fantastic version of the story to the press, in order to maximize the bloodletting.”

The Harper government has now apologized for any interference in an American political campaign, but the damage is done. Clinton had other lies and distortions that benefited this last round. Her 3:00 AM ad echoed the worst of Dick Cheney and Rudy Giuliani. When asked if she’d “take Senator Obama on his word that he’s not a Muslim,” she left the door open to the right wing lies by saying “there’s nothing to base that on. As far as I know.” She just handed McCain his campaign script by saying, “I think that I have a lifetime of experience that I will bring to the White House. I know Senator McCain has a lifetime of experience to the White House. And Senator Obama has a speech he gave in 2002.”

These, taken together with a week of media framing that the respected Project for Excellence in Journalism described as overwhelmingly critical of Obama., and initial twenty five-point margins based on name familiarity and insider connections, also contributed strongly to her Ohio victory. Back-to-back sympathetic Saturday Night Lives shows (the first after the strike) probably helped as well. And Clinton may even have benefited from Rush Limbaugh’s exhortation to his listeners to cross over and vote for her to keep the Democrats bloodying each other up. But “NAFTAgate” was key. Without it her victory would have been non-existent or minimal. The nine delegates she netted from Ohio can’t be changed, but the salience of this lie in her victory makes everything else she says about it questionable.



Paul Rogat Loeb is the author of The Impossible Will Take a Little While: A Citizen’s Guide to Hope in a Time of Fear, named the #3 political book of 2004 by the History Channel and the American Book Association. See www.paulloeb.org

Anonymous said...

As a Democrat, the Governor and leaders of the MI Dem Party are to blame for violating the rules which they won't acknowledge, rather they are shrewdly blaming the RULES from keeping the delegates from the process because their original plan backfired. They knew the rules, did what they wanted to do, so NO delegates should be seated nor should the superficial votes count and they (MI and FL Dem Party Leaders) should be held responsible even if it cost them their political careers, so be it. They have disenfranchised the voters, not the rules. They have provided a disservice to the voters who put them in office, not the rule itself. If 48 states obliged, then so should have MI and FL. Are we an exception to the rule? Stop playing the blame game! It's time for CHANGE and integrity with the leaders of our states and country. This is what Senator Obama talks out against. Silly Season of Politics. I agree with Chairman Dean, PLAY BY THE RULES. Let's be honest here, the Governor and MI Chair are PRIME Clinton supporters so that's why they now want the votes to count because HILLARY DESPERATELY NEEDS THEM. I didn't vote because my candidates name was NOT on the ballot and I was told that MI was disqualified and the vote wouldn't count anyways. Hillary even acknowledged the same early on but now she FLIP FLOPS and wants them to count because only her name was on the ballot of the final frontrunners. Nonsense! Sen. Obama or Sen. Edwards names weren't even on the ballot so how can she even think the votes should count? Oh, "her" votes should count, but Obama wouldn't get any votes because he played by the DNC rules and had his taken off. And she had the nerves in her speech Wednesday after her long-awaited victories to add MI and FL to her list short list of victories knowing these states did not count, but now she's pushing for those disqualified votes to count. That's why MI Dem leaders counted the votes because they wanted THEIR NOMINEE OF CHOICE to have votes and the other frontrunners who chose not to violate the DNC rules to have zero and call that "fair play". HILLARY CAN'T BE TRUSTED! SHE PLAYS BY HER OWN SET OF RULES and pretends like she doesn't know what's going on! First she publicly says the votes won't count, now that she needs them she says, I own Michigan, the votes should count. This is politics as usual.

Anonymous said...

While I am cautious of all political personalities, I am voting for Obama because he is: 1) a breath of fresh air, 2) not entrenched in years of political sewage, 3) honest-appearing, 4) young, 5) a man of his word.

The last could be the most important for the American people. The Clinton's have a history and it is not a pretty one. Why do you think Hillary has her first name on all her banners rather than her last name? She is trying to escape the dark cloud of being associated with her shady husband.

People are fickle and easily manipulated which is why they have all fallen under the spell of her so-called "35 years" of experience.

1) You can't claim legislative experience as a first lady.
2) You can't claim you will be a better president because you worked on different projects for many years.

You would have to have "SUCCESS" not just experience TRYING to get things done.

I think perhaps Amy Winehouse is not crazy after all. I'm loving the song,

"They tried to make me vote for Clinton but I said NO, NO, NO!"