Posted by: coloradokiwi | March 21, 2008

How do you kill a brainless zombie?

Many wags compared Clinton’s wins in OH and RI (and sorta win in TX) to a zombie or similar monster, rising from the grave just when Obama was filling in the last bits of dirt.  The comparison seems inapt now because zombies you can kill by destroying the brain or removing the head.  But it seems to me that the Clinton campaign is not operating with a lot of brains.  I don’t want to start turning into one of those anti-Hillarycranks in the blogosphere, but I have to rant for a moment:

Both campaigns have traded some extremely nasty barbs.  I can’t say who’s on the moral high ground there, so we’ll just say they’re even.  However in the process, the Clinton campaign managed to denegrate states Obama won as being “insignificant,” which would mean they are write-offs for her in the general.  That’s a problem, because Dems will probably need states like VA, CO, MO, WI, and IA in the general in order to win.  So, not only was it a failed strategy for taking down Obama, it was a disastrously stupid thing to say for in the future.

But that’s in the past.  Here’s what’s brainless in the present:  Hillary is fighting damned hard despite that it’s now pretty much impossible for her to win.   As noted below, and posted in excruciating detail elsewhere, the only way Hillary can get the nomination is by a superdelegate landslide in her favor.  By some estimates, assuming public commitments maintain their commitments, she’ll need 64-75% of the remaining superdelegates to win the nomination.  Even with lingering questions about Rev. Wright, are that many superdelegates going to go for Hillary?  That’s also leaving aside the fact that even with Obama doing more poorly than expected, he’ll still be ahead in both popular vote and pledged delegates (probably the former, definitely the latter), potentially even including do-overs in MI and FL.

Let’s break this down:  at this point Hillary remains in the race hoping that something so catastrophic happens to Obama that all his ardent support evaporates, and two thirds of the superdelegates will side with her.  I mean, what must they be cooking up to take him down with?  Surely they’re not going to wait for something to crop up?  She is not a gambler in that respect.  In short, the sort of thing that they’d need to pull off in order to take Obama down will not endear her to the independents, who she’ll need in order to beat McCain.  I’m truly afraid of what they’ll try, because frankly it won’t just hobble Obama, who I think you can tell I slightly prefer as a candidate—it will undoubtedly hobble her in the process.  I mean, just when we thought all that crap from the ’90’s was the “old” politics, and we could forget the little things that the Clintons did that irked a lot of people, we are suddenly reminded all too clearly, and the fuzzy butterflies of peace and prosperity give flight to the ugliness of those pitched battles, still being fought by the Boomers.

God, fuck that.  Bring on the old timer and the upstart.  Boomer politics can suck it.

One last rejoinder.  While I understand precisely why Obama’s team is dragging their feet on Michigan and Florida, I don’t think they should.  I think they should play ball on this, not only because it’s the right thing to do, but because Clinton’s extremely unlikely to maintain the 55% margin she had there before (a recent Rasmussen poll has them tied there).  Obama, the math favors you even with re-votes.  You’re statistically tied with Clinton in Michigan.  If you win or tie her in that state you’ve blunted her so-called “momentum.”  And maybe at long last you can put her down.  You know, I had the wrong metaphor.  She’s not a zombie, she’s a bit more like Jason or Michael Meyers: no matter how much damage you inflict, no matter how far ahead you run, she just keeps coming.


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