February 6, 2008

Don’t Be Fooled, Don't Get Played


Senator Clinton was supposed to use her base in the Northeast, California, and Arkansas to come out of February 5th with a 150+ pledged delegates lead. It did not happen. Senator Barack Obama will come out of last night vote with more pledged delegates.
Hillary advisers also disputed the Obama camp's claim of a lead among delegates, arguing that they were ahead when you factor in superdelegates.
Who are theses superdelegates? Democratic Party insiders and elected Democratic officeholders. The Clinton campaign is ahead in the delegate count based on superdelgates only. Which is not shocking, the Democratic Party has been the Party of Clinton for the past 15 years or so. If Hilary Clinton wins the Democratic Nomination base on superdelegates rather than pledged delegates her victory would illegitimate.
Well, whoop dee doo that you lead in super delegates, considering that most of those enodrsements were racked up when your campaign was the clear frontrunner. After this weekend, when three of the four states, and 126 of the 185 pledged delegates are determined via caucuses, Obama will stretch out his pledged delegate lead further. On Tuesday, no matter who actually wins the popular vote in Virginia, Obama will stretch out his pledged delegate lead even further by racking up large wins in D.C. and probably Maryland. And then, on February 19th, there is another caucus in Hawaii, and a primary in the non-partisan registration state of Obama's neighboring Wisconsin. Yes indeed, the February calendar is very favorable to Obama.

A campaign that is now on course to be down by more than 100 pledged delegates in two weeks didn't "tie." Just like Mitt Romney, any campaign that is talking about changing delegate allocation rules didn't "tie." A campaign that is plugging its website to try and raise money didn't "tie." A campaign that talks about stopping the momentum currently enjoyed by its opponent didn't "tie." That is a campaign back on its heels. As I wrote last night, this was not a tie, and Obama clearly has the edge.

Now, Clinton can still make a stand in Ohio and Texas on March 4th, where the electorate could be favorable to her in both states. If she fails to score victories there, however, there is no way she can win the pledged delegate count in this nomination campaign. At that point, her only other path to the nomination would be through super delegates and controlling the Michigan / Florida delegation seating process. At best, that is a backdoor path to the nomination that will force a crisis of legitimacy in the Democratic nominee.


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