Thursday, April 24, 2008

Hillary Wins PA By 9%

Obama Continues To Close The Deal

Congrats to Hillary for a good win in Pennsylvania. Tally in PA as of 10:30 am EST Thursday is:

Clinton: 54.6%
Obama: 45.4%

That's a pretty solid win for Hillary. But what does it mean for the overall contest?In the days before the PA primary, it was painful watching the tv people try to peg some sort of over/under point for expectations that would determine whether Hillary's margin of anticipated victory would be "enough" to keep the contest alive. This sort of game is mystifying to me. The chatteratti couldn't seem to make up their minds on what the magic number should be. The idea of basing it on actual math didn't catch fire anywhere. Is it just a matter of "winning" if you do better than the very last "conventional wisdom" estimate of your vote tally? How about saying that if she closed the delegate count by 50 or 100 delegates, that would really make the race close enough to matter?

No, that will never do, because everybody knows that the race will not become close. Obama is cruising to victory and everybody knows it. But there is this pretending going on that somehow the "Super" delegates to the Democratic convention will all get together and decide to nominate Hillary anyway. Why is this story alive?

For this scenario to be viable, there is strongly implied that the party insiders have a pre-existing desire to give the nomination to Hillary instead of Barack, and that all Hillary has to do is give them a straight faced excuse to do so. Is this true? Is there this quasi-plan to get Hillary nominated? I doubt it and I hope not.

I think Hillary is full of baloney, as far as having a legitimate chance to win the nomination. The Super delegates will not vote as a block. The two thirds of them, over 500, who have declared so far are split, but have tilted toward Hillary. But the recent trend is toward Obama.

So what is Hillary's plan? Basically to stay alive and hope Obama either wrecks or runs out of gas, while her campaign plants doubts that he can win in November. At the same time she is putting forth various premises that would seem to justify her getting the nomination. Like her fuzzy math on the popular vote, and multiple "if the rules were different I'd be winning" arguments.

"Can't close the deal." This is the Hillary phrase of the week. Obama just can't seem to close the deal, so the Super delegates should vote for Hillary. This is the kind of idiocy that drives people to not bother to vote.

First of all, what's up with all the newsies parroting the same phrase? Aren't they embarrassed when they do this? It may not be plagiarism, but it is copying.

Second, why is nobody pointing out the utter lack of logic with this idea. Hillary is further away from "closing the deal" than Barack. In fact, Hillary is the one who mathematically "can't" close this deal, while Barack is cruising along toward closing it very nicely. He's winning. When you're winning, you just keep doing what you're doing until you win. You don't change a winning strategy just to win faster.

It's a 50 state contest. Just because Hillary hasn't been eliminated by a skunk rule yet, doesn't mean that she's somehow not losing. She is losing. And she has no legitimate path to victory.This contest looks like it will go the whole nine innings. There's nothing wrong with that.

What Obama needs to do is to stop reacting to Hillary so much, and just boldly steal her thunder. All of this talk of working class Catholics not voting for Obama because he's an elitist is off the mark. It's not because he's elitist. Catholics actually love elitists! Think Kennedys, Popes, The Vatican, Notre Dame. His problem is that he's not talking about their issues.

Do you know what working class people, and Hillary's old ladies, are really worried about more than health care or variable rate mortgages or Iraq or NAFTA? SOCIAL SECURITY!!!! They are afraid of not having any money when they are old. Obama should dust off Al Gore's old "lockbox" and promise to stabilize the program and GUARANTY that social security will be there for all of us when we get old.

The Republicans are vulnerable on this issue because they have raided the Treasury for the last 7 years and failed to fix social security. This is the issue that Hillary's base will really care about. And Hillary, with her "eight years in the white house" and eight more in the Senate, hasn't done Jack Squat to make social security secure.

Obama needs to steal this issue and make it his own.

Working class Catholics going the full nine innings, while adoring their elites.

It's time to change the way politicians are dealing with social security. And Medicare, too.

Can we fix it? Yes, we can!
(Credits to Bob the Builder.)