Why Clinton could not beat Obama

Because of a team of terrible advisors such as this guy:

By the end of the campaign, I was seeing the Drudge siren in my sleep. As people in politics know all too well, Matt Drudge, the Internet provocateur who runs the Drudge Report Web site, posts a flashing siren whenever he wants to alert readers to major campaign news or rumors. The siren haunted my dreams and was always in the corner of my eye -- except when it was in plain sight, on my computer screen, signifying success or, more often, terrible failure and impending doom. As soon as that siren started flashing, instant messages would pop up, just below the siren, one after another -- each one beginning with "Seen Drudge?" until my entire computer screen was filled with instant-message boxes illuminated by the light of Drudge's siren. It might have been beautiful if it hadn't been so frightening.

http://www.politico.com/blogs/bensmith/1 108/Dreaming_of_sirens.html

I hope to never see his name associated with another Democratic candidate.  How can you win an election when you spend your time waiting to see what a right wing gossip site has to say?

Tags: clinton, obama (all tags)



Re: Why Clinton could not beat Obama

I am still mad at those stupid a-holes like Penn and crew.  They destroyed her campaign.


by gil44 2008-11-27 05:05AM | 0 recs
I think it was that no one saw

Obama becoming a contender from a mile away. I remember when he announced, I was thinking to myself "why is he wasting his time?" He won because there was a degree of arrogance on the Clinton campaign's part, and that there was too much of a disconnect between Hillary and the "netroots." She should have taken them more seriously.

by Lakrosse 2008-11-27 06:57AM | 0 recs

The primary was Obama's to lose, just as it was Howard Dean's to lose (which he did spectacularly).  Think about it, who votes in the primary?  Party activists.  Who fits the party activist mold better than Obama?  

All the the media hype and Clinton camp speculation and assertion was just that, assertion.  Clinton was doing what any candidate in her position would have done, tried to give a sense of inevitability in order to depress the opposition.

Obama's campaign did nothing that hadn't been done before by other politicians (just ask any of Axelrod's other clients).  What was different was Obama's amazing ability not to make a major rookie mistake like say, Howie did.

by linc 2008-11-27 08:29AM | 0 recs
i agree

especially with your point on obama's lack of major mistakes. at the end of the day, obama's "bitter" comment was probably the only real self inflicted mistake he made during the campaign. i think even more importantly, it seemed like the campaign never fell into the trap of constantly reacting to outside events - whether it came from the media, hillary's campaign, or even his own supporters. finally, never hurts to raise damn near a billion dollars :)      

by highgrade 2008-11-27 09:18AM | 0 recs
Re: Nah

this is so totally wrong i wont even tell you why.

cause if you believe what you wrote you are beyond help.

by JadeZ 2008-11-27 11:31AM | 0 recs
Re: Nah

What JadeZ said.  I was going to try to explain, but PUMA-bating is a waste of time.

by username 2008-11-27 04:07PM | 0 recs
Are you refering to me as a PUMA?

If so, you are wrong.  Again, if you can't explain or care not to, why engage in the debate by commenting.

What is a waste of time are people who obviously cannot get over the primaries and get along, I suspect by the tone of the comment that you are one of them.  PUMA?

by linc 2008-11-28 01:11PM | 0 recs
If you can't explain

then why bother with the comment? "that is so totally wrong i wont even tell you why" what the hell does that mean?

It sounds like you are the one who has the issues, not me.

by linc 2008-11-28 01:09PM | 0 recs
Re: Nah

JadeZ, do you not, believe Wolfson actually said this?  Is Ben Smith misquoting him?

by calwoman 2008-11-28 07:16PM | 0 recs
Re: I think it was that no one saw

If you could raise $100+ million before Iowa as Obama did, why would you not run?  At the least you'd get to speak your mind about the things you value and to live like a king while you did it!

by SuperCameron 2008-11-27 09:11AM | 0 recs
Edwards had...

...a built-in ceiling (no money, IA-centric strategy) and Biden/Dodd was too much of an inside baseball figure.  Richardson was associated with the Clinton camp.  Any strategist should have seen it coming that any halfway reasonable candidate was going to take off because of an under-served market (people who didn't have Sen. Clinton as their first choice).  So Pres-elect Obama was going to start with 35% of the vote which is the ticket to a protracted primary challenge in a proportional allocation system.

It could have been Boxer, Napolitano, Schweitzer, Warner, Edward Kennedy or anybody else with sufficient star power, center or left.

by AZphilosopher 2008-11-28 06:13AM | 0 recs
I was going to...

...support Edwards but when I saw what he was doing strategically, I said "Why?".

by AZphilosopher 2008-11-28 06:15AM | 0 recs
i disagree

none of the people you just mentioned would have raised anywhere near as much money as obama did during the primaries.

by highgrade 2008-11-29 05:46AM | 0 recs
Re: Simple... The black vote...

If Howard Dean were black he would have won the Primary. He had the same constituents as Obama with the exception being black voters.

Obama ran a superb campaign but Hillary lost it because of a configuration of demographics that favored Obama (Deanies + AA). Very timely for Obama and unfortunate for Hillary.

by meliou2 2008-11-28 05:14PM | 0 recs
Re: Simple... The black vote...

Deanies plus AA doesn't win you Iowa.

by Jess81 2008-11-29 01:26AM | 0 recs
It Was the War Vote

I know most Hillary supporters don't want to hear this, but I honestly think she lost the Dem nomination on October 11, 2002--the day she voted for the Iraq War.  I'm telling you, had she voted against the war Hillary would have sailed to the nomination.  Obama wouldn't have even bothered to run against her.

I think most Dems cringed watching John Kerry try to thread the needle in 2004 as he explained how he was for the war before he was against it (or whatever) and simply didn't want to go down that road again.

by Will Graham 2008-11-27 07:24AM | 0 recs
you're dead on

that for all their arrogance and sense of inevitability, it was the war vote, stupid. It was a bad political move, made by many Democrats, not to make the same mistake they made with Desert Storm. They thought "Iraq," they thought a thousand points of light. The sense of media invincibility of Bush probably was a big factor as well. The John Kerry thing hurt too, tho Hillary was much better at sounding more confident about her vote than John Kerry. She didn't have the whole "I actually DID vote for the 87 billion, before I voted against it" deal going on. I don't think she would have run into the same problems as Kerry at all, but many Dems on the Kos were scared she would. If she had voted against Iraq, she would have been the presumptive nominee by 2006 like Bush was in 1998.

by Lakrosse 2008-11-27 07:37AM | 0 recs
Re: you're dead on

that was an early reason Barack got a head start in vote getting.  
As it played out, that vote mattered less, partly because she finally spoke about it, and partly because according to the media that surge was working.  That's a reason she began to overtake him in the second half.  

Penn wanted her to run as the iron maiden, and Ann wanted her to run as herself.  In time she did run as herself, which was probably the main reason she started to catch up and close in on his lead.  

Another reason was that Barack had a brilliant ground game and he was out getting super's from the beginning.  So he had more of the party insiders behind him, which is what broke the virtual tie.

Another reason is that Hillary is rather obvious, she was not going to sink the GE win by playing hardball. No one was so sure about Barack.

I don't think the cheap shots he took at her, or the cheap shots she took at him mattered a bit. I think they could each have been as nice to each other then as they are now and it would have turned out the same way.

I think there was a feeling in the party leadership that a man would get more world respect. There was clearly the idea that electing a man from a minority group would be an incredible message to the world about democracy in action.  

Here's my apostasy.  

I think Barack is doing pretty much exactly what Hillary would have done.  He's bridging divides, not holding grudges, going for the excellence and experience that will have the best chance of putting together plans that work. He's being open, he's been very much  like she was in the primary, directly and specifically addressing the problems to show the direction he'll take once he takes office.

Those who are disappointed by his early choices and decisions are thinking out with the old and in with the new. He's even got volker on, he's tapping our retired really really old experts, and we have limited time to tap them.  He says the vision is his. It is, but it was also Hillary's vision and she was clearer during the primary than he.  Bill said he's a roll of the dice, which was true, no one predicted he'd be this kind of a prez-elect, I hoped he would, I blogged my hope.

so, in a weird way i'd guess both Hillary and I are pleased with his start. He's going for ready on day one. He's cleaning up the Bush mess. He's seeing it as a job, not as a coronation.  

He said they were the same on 99 percent, which makes me think the one percent was only which one he wanted to be president.

So, hey, I'm a die hard Hillary supporter and I could not be more relieved that Barack sees the world the way I do, and the way she does. No wonder he tapped her for SoS.  He wants that job done properly, with no hacks, no favors, just competent brilliant professional leadership.

Go Obama!

by anna shane 2008-11-27 07:56AM | 0 recs
Re: you're dead on

One minor point: Obama did not have the majority of supers behind him. The NYT site always had Clinton ahead with superdelegates, until they finally removed that counter because it was unofficial. Barack did win some key endorsements from Kennedy and Kerry, but the vast majority of supers backed Hillary.

by Lolis 2008-11-27 08:28AM | 0 recs
Re: you're dead on

of the ones on record.  She has a majority of the ones that had committed, most early on for her.  But there were more than enough outstanding to give him the edge there, that he needed to win the nom.  He was working them, his campaign didn't sleep on that one. I don't think Hillary was, I think she thought she'd be able to make a case for herself on the pattern of votes, and on her plans and experience.   He had the ground game covered, she was working the expertise faction, her  money was on competence, and his was on running a campaign.  Bill gave him very high praise for that, and cited it as experience for being the top executive, great experience, when he was out campaigning for him.  

by anna shane 2008-11-27 08:39AM | 0 recs
Might Not Be True

Part of Clinton's strategy was to get the Supers who supported her to go public right a way to give her the appearance that she had an invincible lead. But the Clinton's burnt a lot of bridges with the Congressional Democrats while Bill was president. A lot of the congressional democrats (and perhaps a majority) were never going to support Hillary for president. Those Democrats tended to wait toward the end to declare their support for Obama.

by Zzyzzy 2008-11-28 08:32AM | 0 recs
Re: Might Not Be True

and that's a case for anyone but Hillary. And, it's also sexist in that it conflates her with her husband, erases her, as if the real candidate was Bill.  

by anna shane 2008-11-28 12:05PM | 0 recs
What Bothered Me

Was how easy George W. Bush got out of the shadow of George Bush, SR. Yet, Clinton couldn't get out of Bill's shadow. I agree that sexism did play a role. Nevertheless, I'm very impressed how Obama has handled the transition. The signs are good that Obama is going to make a very good president.

by Zzyzzy 2008-11-28 03:08PM | 0 recs
Re: What Bothered Me

However, keep in mind that there was a lot of the same staff.  At least some of the centrist playbook was being used too (e.g. the AUMF where both Clintons agreed for many of the same reasons).  

by AZphilosopher 2008-11-28 05:00PM | 0 recs
Big time HRC supporter here

and I agree completely.  As I noted above, primaries are for activists- what was the number one activist issue for the last five years?  Iraq.

The nomination was never Hillary's to lose, but quite the opposite.  If it were anyone other than HRC with her insane political skills, Obama would have won in early February.  He was and is the activist candidate.

by linc 2008-11-27 08:33AM | 0 recs
Re: Big time HRC supporter here

It was over by late February.  Only those who were willfully blind or bad with numbers couldn't/wouldn't see it.

Here are some of the reasons:

The DLC does not represent the change that voters are in the mood for.

Non-neocons were so desperate to simply not lose the White House to another idiotic arch conservative administration that they didn't want to motivate the GOP base by putting a person named Clinton on the ticket. Yes, the hatred of all things Clinton on the right is irrational, but it is real and to tempt it by putting her on the ticket would have been
stoo-ooo-ooo-pid and would have resulted in a President McSame.

Also, Hilary needs to learn how to not look so manufactured on the stump.  Her delivery isn't as good as her ideas are. It comes across as less than genuine.

When running for president (or any other elected office) there is one way and only one way to get votes and that is to tell voters why they should vote for your candidate.  Al Sharpton got stuck running as a black candidate which is a discussion seperate from "why you should vote for me".  He lost.  Jessie Jackson got caught up in discussions around being a black candidate making the same mistake as Sharpton.  He lost.  Hilary tried her damnedest to campain on why you should vote for her.  Many of her supporters just had to make it about gender.  She lost.  (I agree.  There was a huge amount of sexism going on.  It was unwise strategically for her supporters to distract from the campaign by fixating on it.)

The griping about Caucuses (which have worked just fine for ages) and trying to rewrite the rules in the middle of the game with regard to Michigan and Florida only served to remind everyone of all of the drama, semantic tom foolery, and egocentrism that characterised Bill's presidency.  It didn't come off right with many voters.  (and I say that even though I believe Bill to have been the best president in my lifetime so far.)  In the end everyone, even the folks around here who still won't admit it, knew that Hilary and the rest of the candidates had an agreement and Hilary was trying to pull a fast one upon the realization that she'd already lost if the rules were obeyed.

I know that this list is going to anger some people, but I'd like to see a president Hilary Clinton some day and I think that people stiffle improvement if they allow whether or not they like a reality to determine whether or not they will acknowledge it.

by lockewasright 2008-11-28 11:47AM | 0 recs

I agree with a lot that you say, but there is no way that the primary was over in mid-February- unless you mean 'in retrospect'.  If you truly believe this then you believe that the votes that happened thereafter didn't matter, that HRC winning almost as many votes as Obama didn't matter.  Its a discounting of the process, which, 'in retrospect' did more for our party than a mere crowning in early February would have done.

And, just so you know, HRC barely lost. Just barely.  It wasn't some spectacular failure of a candidate, but a contest that barely proved a winner- or did you miss the delegate and vote counts from the primary?

by linc 2008-11-28 01:19PM | 0 recs
Re: Hmm

We looked at it 2 different ways you and I.  By late February the chance that Hilary could collect enough of the remaining delegates to close the gap was almost nil.  While most people were looking at the quantitative difference between his and her votes, I was looking at what percentage of the remaining delegates she would need to gain in order to win.  From that perspective she would have needed to sweep from march on out by epic margins.  Margins that only a live boy or a dead girl situation on Obama's part could have provided for Hilary.  From that perspective it was so improbable as to be over for Hilary by late February.

In retrospect, the fact that the campaign dragged on did help the party by exposing all 50 states to democratic campaigning and by creating offices all over the place.  Still, as much as folks would like to see it differently, the probability of a Hilary win was extrememly low and dropping by early March.

With regard to popular vote and Michigan and Florida:

1)  Niether of those states was part of the contest until after it was clear that letting her back out of the deal that she and everyone else made ahead of time wasn't going to change the outcome.  It was cheating, but oh well... it didn't change the outcome.  

2) Without that, the popular vote wasn't close either.

What I would like to see now is for the only legitimate complaint that Hilary supporters have IMO to be addressed.  That is the sexism the pervaded the media and the sexism that both did and didn't exist but was accused so often as to not let Hilary run on her merits. (The complaints about Fla and Mich and the whining about caucuses is garbage.)  I am not foolish enough to think that we can do away with intollerance in any form any time soon.  We can, however, become better at defeating it by employing better strategies for doing so and by uniting and organizing against it.  For starters I think that we need latinos, blacks, atheists, women, jews, asians, gays, transgendered, muliti-racial, right minded whites, etc. to join forces against intollerance of any sort instead of fighting on as islands despite the standing room only here at the back of the bus.  Of course our primary didn't lend itself to that because it was a black man against a woman, but you get the point.  You seem pretty smart for a girl.  (That last part was snark)

by lockewasright 2008-11-28 01:45PM | 0 recs
Re: Hmm

If you ask me it was over on 19 February when Obama convincingly won Wisconsin by 18%.

by Shaun Appleby 2008-11-28 05:20PM | 0 recs
Re: Hmm

I thought it was over the night of Super Tuesday when Chuck Todd scribbled out the final delegate count, and then it was OVER OVER OVER when Ohio and Texas weren't big enough wins.  But I think that's basically how a lot of Obama people looked at it - that by late February he was so far ahead that it was over, barring the intervention of superdelegates.  The campaigns knew it, it's why even in early February they were framing their "Superdelegates should vote with the pledged delegate leader" vs. "Superdelegates should be independant" arguments.

The media obscured the delegate count, which made what was happening not as clear as it could have been.  The official results from Super Tuesday were very slow to come in, they came in from the big states first, and the official tally also included superdelegates which gave Clinton an artificial cushion of about 200, so the morning after Super Tuesday if you were just going by what the AP said, Hillary Clinton had like a 400 delegate lead.  But she didn't.

by Jess81 2008-11-29 01:37AM | 0 recs
But this didn't seem to impact

Obama's decision about his VP.

by iDemocrat 2008-11-27 08:33AM | 0 recs
Re: But this didn't seem to impact

Barack keeps his cards to himself. I thought that was a mistake because I thought he'd surely win with her on the ticket, but it's true that it was not the best use of her talents.  One suspects he had SoS in mind all along, but kept his cards to himself.  

by anna shane 2008-11-27 09:17AM | 0 recs
obama didnt choose hillary

IMO, because the campaign really never thought they would lose. the reporting goes that whenever they discussed VP, obama would ask if they should keep hillary in mind, and his people always answered "no." now, even if there were some clinton haters in that room, no one is going to let that get in the way of the white house. if they really felt that the only way to win would be with hillary, they would have chosen her the day after he won the primary. they don't seem like the kind of people that are going to cut off their nose to spite the face - for all the talk of hope/change/post partisan etc, deep down it was one of the most ruthlessly efficient, pragmatic and professional organizations - dedicated to one thing only, electing obama president.

all the time we (and i count myself in this group) were yelling that he needs to go strongly negative against hillary or mccain, they were picking and choosing their spots and staying on message. and from the time the GE started, they  never forgot about the fundamentals - that something like 80% of the country felt we were heading in the wrong direction, that the GOP is to blame and that mccain's phony "independent" moniker would no longer work.  

by highgrade 2008-11-29 05:55AM | 0 recs
Re: obama didnt choose hillary

I hope so.  But until John picked Sarah and she started yapping, I thought John might win,  And until the economy tanked I still thought the pugs might pull it off.  John's campaign was terrible, could anyone have counted on that?  The pug machine backfired, did we know they would?  So, I do hope there was sound thinking and not the idea that his win would be diminished if she were on the ticket and was given any credit.  The stakes were too high for that kind of idea.  

by anna shane 2008-11-29 11:43AM | 0 recs
Re: It Was the War Vote

I dont know if it lost it for her... She did ALMOST win and if Obama wasn't in there, she would have won easily... But you are right in that it didn't help her, especially against a charasmatic like Obama.  

by yitbos96bb 2008-11-28 04:31AM | 0 recs
Re: It Was the War Vote

I don't think there's any reason for anybody else to run if it isn't for that vote.

by Jess81 2008-11-28 04:48AM | 0 recs
Re: It Was the War Vote

Another good reason not to stay in the Senate too long. I think our president-elect was keenly aware of that.

by JimR 2008-11-28 11:14AM | 0 recs
Re: Why Clinton could not beat Obama
Isn't worrying about why Clinton lost sort of beating a very dead horse?
Time to move on and all that.
by skohayes 2008-11-27 07:46AM | 0 recs
Re: Why Clinton could not beat Obama

don't you want to help write history? This is interesting and now that the GE is over and we're not fighting, we can all put our noggins to work.  

by anna shane 2008-11-27 08:30AM | 0 recs
Re: Why Clinton could not beat Obama

Hmm.  Put noggins together or knock them together?  Why bother voting?  This diary demonstrates the influence the MSM has on our polictics.  Instead of reporting news, we have a MSM that seeks to make news.  Pravda, anyone?

by ChitownDenny 2008-11-27 02:57PM | 0 recs
Re: Why Clinton could not beat Obama

Some of the honest answers to the question of why Hilary lost are ones that her supporters refuse to acknowledge as if that changes the facts.

by lockewasright 2008-11-28 06:20AM | 0 recs
Re: Why Clinton could not beat Obama

her supporters are diverse, don't all think exactly the same way.  It was a very interesting primary and a lot of things went down. In the end it was the super's since there weren't enough pledged deletates to decide and on pledged delegates they were within a hare's breath of each other. some Barack supporters refuse to acknowledge that she won the popular vote, they get into some fancy counting.  Whatever either side says, it was a virtual tie, broken by the super's.  

by anna shane 2008-11-28 12:04PM | 0 recs
Re: Why Clinton could not beat Obama

Say hi to the Oompah Lumpahs for me.

by lockewasright 2008-11-28 12:09PM | 0 recs
Re: Why Clinton could not beat Obama

I rest my case.

by lockewasright 2008-11-28 12:10PM | 0 recs
Yeah, I laughed when I saw that

They should have been paying more attention to Huffington Post which was solidly in Obama's corner.

by Lolis 2008-11-27 08:21AM | 0 recs
Re: Why Clinton could not beat Obama

as a hardend former hillary supporter myself i agree about her iraq war vote losing the nomination for her. but i was never a single issue voter. let's not forget obama barely won the nomination over her. he did not win the nomination in a walk.  the general was easy over mccain after the wall street meltdown late sept.  i was anti-iraq war from the start. that said i thought she was the best of the lot. the race is over so i hope she will flourish at the state dept.

by terrondt 2008-11-27 08:28AM | 0 recs
Re: Why Clinton could not beat Obama

I understood her vote as not for war but for negotiation. Bush was going to do it, the only thing that slowed him was that vote that required him to wait, our troops were in place in December, and he wanted to start the war then to beat the heat.  I assume Bush really thought they'd find WMD so he went along with it.  I rather think Hillary (privately) thought there were not, but that we'd need to prove it to stop Bush.  

But I was for her cause I wanted an adult in charge, so I could sleep better. Barack has been doing a very soothing job so far, I'm more than fine with him. My biggest concern was that he'd get the nom but lose the GE.  He might have, but turns out he got some help from the economy and from Sarah Palin.  And some help from the pugs who make voting seem like it could turn out dangerous.  

I predicted the low pug turn out, for that reason.  

by anna shane 2008-11-27 08:34AM | 0 recs
i think a lot of Dems

thought we'd go in there and find a trove of WMDs, and they didn't want to be on the "wrong" side of history - against the war that ended up discovering enough anthrax etc to wipe out los angeles, or whatever. the reason being that most politicians have no interest in digging into research, intelligence reports, historical accounts etc etc. the first thing they thought was how it would affect their next election. that being said, even if they did suspect wmd's would be found - IMO it was still a dereliction of their duty to put 150K soldiers into iraq at the same time we were trying to subdue the taliban and al qaeda in afghanistan. the main reason being that nothing since gulf war I ended suggested that iraq was ever inclined to support a wmd attack against the US.

by highgrade 2008-11-27 11:54AM | 0 recs
Re: i think a lot of Dems

i consider it a war crime, a violation of the geneva convention and a murderous use of our troops.  They faced something impossible to win, and yet kept on doing what they were asked. Talk about patriotism or bravery or whatever, they ought never to have been asked. Even the troops who never believed in 'the mission' fought as if they did.  I thought all of congress ought to have gone on a hunger strike, or marched on the white house, or did something to show that it was wrong. But, I expect given those times they'd have been arrested and sent to Gitmo.  

by anna shane 2008-11-27 12:14PM | 0 recs
Re: i think a lot of Dems

There was ample evidence in advance of the vote that the WMD issue was at least overstated if not downright false, see the contemporary, and widely reported, views of Hans Blix and Scott Ritter.  That was certainly enough to raise a 'reasonable doubt.'  Not to mention the reluctance of our European allies which we gleefully derided.

by Shaun Appleby 2008-11-27 12:24PM | 0 recs
Re: i think a lot of Dems

but bush had already decided, according to Condi, in June, long before the vote, and he had the troops in place before that vote too. It was a done deal, only that vote, that required inspections and gave Saddam a way out, slowed up Bush.  In the end he had to pull the inspectors before they'd concluded the search, and while they'd found nothing.  Turns out Saddam had offered exile too, through the Spaniards, and Bush turned it down. We only found out about that betrayal after Spain elected a new government.  

If he'd been honest and allowed the inspectors to complete the job, or had accepted Saddam's offer, we would not be in there, with so many of our brave soldiers dead and wounded, and so many of their civilizations killed in our cross fire and in their civil war.  

by anna shane 2008-11-27 02:00PM | 0 recs
Re: i think a lot of Dems

I don't disagree with the evidence of Bush administration unilateralism, but that AUMF vote was something they badly needed, and wanted.  Read Hillary's floor speech again is all I can say in the context of her hedging her bets.  And consider the dissenting votes, almost half of the sitting Democrats at the time.  I am not trying to start a fight over this but I think we do ourselves a disservice when we customise history in a way that obscures it's lessons.  

by Shaun Appleby 2008-11-27 02:15PM | 0 recs
Re: i think a lot of Dems

yet the claim was that they didn't, and so going back to congress was a sign of something.  I think she tried, and it didn't work, but I think that there was no chance of defeating it, and getting something from the vote was the only possibility of stopping him.  

by anna shane 2008-11-27 02:19PM | 0 recs
Re: i think a lot of Dems

I'm prepared to agree to disagree for the sake of party solidarity, though you seem a lot more confident about her motivations than I am about anything.

by Shaun Appleby 2008-11-27 02:29PM | 0 recs
Re: i think a lot of Dems

Bush (and his neo-con buddies) had decided to invade Iraq 10 days after his inauguration.  The only question was how he would convince people that we should go back into Iraq and depose Hussein.  9/11 gave him his opening, his Reichstag fire, to do what he had been longing to do.  WMD was a not-so clever hoax perpetrated on the American People, the Congress, and the world.  The political climate at the time was one where any opposition was demonized.  If a sitting Senator (Hillary Clinton) wanted to go up against the fires of public opinion, probably lose re-election, and (as conventional wisdom would have it in 2002) destroy her political future, she would have voted against the AUMF (which conveniently included some laguage to try to bolster inspections although that was summarily disregarded).  By 2006 (some might say by 2004, but Bush refuted the argument and convinced enough people to vote for him) the WMD hoax was clear to everyone watching, and it was then that this vote became the real anchor to sink Clinton.  

For the record, I think that Edwards had the right approach to dealing with the AUMF vote.  He acknowledged the error (not that it did him much good later on).  Obama was really in the perfect position, he could come out openly against the war without fear of losing his seat, and he ran on the anti-war ticket in 2004 and prevailed.  This gave him a unique and distinct advantage when arguing about the Iraq war, and got him the full backing of the ideological left that was against the war from it's onset (if not shortly there after).  All that needed to happen was Edwards backing off (which he did before super Tuesday) and the whole left wing of the party would consolidate behind him.  I will add that if Edwards had left the race earlier (before Iowa) or later (after super Tuesday) Clinton would still have won the nomination.  In Iowa Obama needed Edwards to make it a competitive 3 way race which he eventually won.  During super Tuesday Obama would have split the anti-war vote with Edwards, and Clinton would have won.  It really came down to that two week period between the two where Edwards essentially gave Obama a fighting chance.

The prolonged campaign through every state increased the eventual winner's hand in the General Election, so it was not all for naught.

by Why Not 2008-11-28 01:19PM | 0 recs
I have noticed

That when Clinton people are discussing issues related to the primary there is a loud shout for them to shut up and get over it she lost.

But when Clinton is being criticized about something related to the primary, there seems to be an endless need to dwell on every detail and minutia.

I find that interesting.

When was the last time someone posted a diary about all the people who never got to vote because of caucus scheduling?

Can we discuss that too?

by iDemocrat 2008-11-27 08:38AM | 0 recs
Are you fucking serious?

There's this great site called "Google" that lets you search the interwebs.  "OMG Caucus robbed Our Girl" was done to death here, and is still being done to death on many PUMA sites.

by username 2008-11-27 04:12PM | 0 recs
I think that sort

of makes my point about what can and can't be talked about regarding the primary.  Just dipping a toe in the water and "too cold."

by iDemocrat 2008-11-27 05:01PM | 0 recs
Re: I think that sort

More like sticking a finger in your nose and "too gross," or choking on your own tongue and "too dumb."  But anyways...

by username 2008-11-27 06:38PM | 0 recs

neener neener neener.

by iDemocrat 2008-11-27 06:46PM | 0 recs
Re: Phhttttttttppppp

wokka wokka

Seriously though, "let's retroactively eliminate caucuses" was done to death.

by Jess81 2008-11-28 04:58AM | 0 recs
Re: Phhttttttttppppp

Every single candidate who has run for the nomination in the democratic party has had to run in caucuses ever since the first time they were used in the process and yet Hilary is the one who suffered unfairly.  Puhlease.

by lockewasright 2008-11-28 11:59AM | 0 recs
Re: Phhttttttttppppp

But they were all men, so caucuses are sexist.  Well, and Shirley Chisolm was black, which cancels out.  ;-)

by username 2008-11-28 04:35PM | 0 recs
I didn't say

There was unfairness.

I only said people who would have voted in pop. vote primaries were not included in caucusses.

I'm well aware that every nominee in the history of the Dem party won vis a vis an undemocratic process.

Even Bill Clinton.

by iDemocrat 2008-11-29 01:26AM | 0 recs
Re: Phhttttttttppppp

I don't think the unfair argument was new for this election, but it's the first time the caucuses decided the nominee, and not the big dem states.  These were the rules in play, so unfair isn't a credible way to look at it, but I'd like to see the caucuses go the way of the dodo's and let every vote count as one vote. We can't reform the electoral college but our party could use some reform.  

by anna shane 2008-11-29 11:46AM | 0 recs
Not retro-actively

Just going forward.

So we can have a nominee that's elected by democrats going forward.

by iDemocrat 2008-11-29 01:24AM | 0 recs
Re: Not retro-actively

If you actually cared about having "a nominee that's elected by democrats," you would be talking about closed elections and rules for changing party affiliation, not primaries vs. caucuses.

by username 2008-11-29 02:50AM | 0 recs
Those are good issues


by iDemocrat 2008-11-29 11:04AM | 0 recs
Re: Why Clinton could not beat Obama

The Clinton camp, and ultimately HRC, made many mistakes as every large organization does.  However, only two of those cost them the primary.  Those mistakes were:

1) When you are the frontrunner, you have to kneecap the nearest competitor as soon as he or she is out of the gate.  Bill Clinton understood this.  W understood this.  Reagan and Roosevelt understood this.  Obama understood this--he tarred the Clintons as racists the first chance he gog.  HRC did not get it.  Her campaign could have dropped the Jeremiah Wright tapes a week before the Iowa caucusses and run commercials based on them 24-7 in every local market in Iowa.  Every Democrat over 30 would have walked out on Obama, leaving him with 20% of the caucus vote.  HRC didn't want to get anywhere close to a charge of racism, and figured she could play it safe.  She made this estimate based on a second expectation:

2) They presumed Edwards would stay in the race through Super Tuesday.  Everyone did, even Edwards.  I got a fundraising e-mail from him THE DAY BEFORE he dropped out.  He stated that the odds were long, but the message of the campaign and the things "we are fighting for" were too important to quit.  The next morning he called up the press and gave a suspension speech.  

I was flabbergasted.  But now we know why he quit.  Obama was Kennedy's man.  Edwards was Kennedy's man.  Kennedy knew they would split the non-Clinton vote.  Clinton was set to haul 52% of California's primary with Edwards and Obama splitting the rest 20% and 25%.  This alone would have netted Clinton 50+ delegates.  If Edwards stayed through February, Clinton would have come out of it ahead of Obama in the delegate count.  

As it turns out, the goods had been gotten on Edwards.  He had been having an affair.  I am 100% certain Kennedy got on the phone to good ol' John and told him to quit or become a national disgrace.  Edwards did what many of us would have done--walked out with his head held high.  Obama and Clinton came out of Super Tuesday in a virtual delegate tie.  

55% of Edwards supporters went to Obama.  Clinton's support came disproportionately from the poor, disabled, and elderly: the people caucusses are designed to exclude.  They were not trained to play fast and dirty as is imperative when it comes to winning caucus delegates.  Ultimately, Clinton could not overcome a 120 delegate difference.

So really, it comes down to one bad decision that we know was made by HRC herself.  She made that decision based on one incorrect assumption on which she and her staff likely agreed.

by SuperCameron 2008-11-27 08:46AM | 0 recs
Re: Why Clinton could not beat Obama

she wasn't going to go there, and instructed her staff to not go there. She didn't want to hurt his chances should he become the nominee, that was made clear in that Atlantic Monthly piece, that exposed her so-called dysfunctional campaign.    That was her decision, but it wasn't tactical for herself, it was tactical for the nation and the party. She'd rather have lost than have won the nom but taken down the party or made Barack and what he was standing for look bad. When it was exposed she kept mum, the only thing she said, eventually, is that he would not have been her pastor.  Of course that was spun into an 'attack' by our intrepid media, but there were no Hillary quotes that tarnished his image that John could use, because she made none.  

By the way, Bill's comparison of him to Jackson was meant to marginalize him (Bill didn't realize that black Americans would take it personally) but it was off-the-cuff, not approved by his wife who made no such marginalizing statements.  But Barack had goaded Bill, who fell into the trap, by joking a week earlier about Hillary's experience being married to Bill, an allusion to the Monica thang, that got a lot of laughs at Hillary's expense.  Barack is very tactical.  A good thing, I suspect, in a president.  

But Hillary always showed Barack respect, even when he went after her rather ruthlessly.  Remember, she was being taunted for staying in the race and she was asked at every turn why she didn't drop out and wasn't she hurting our chances in the GE by not dropping out.  She used one comparison, the primary in '68, and when she mentioned Bobby, the media took it to mean that she hoped Barack would be assassinated, a nasty allegation that Barack did nothing to dispel.  He instead fueled it by saying, 'that kind of talk does not belong in a campaign.'

But yes, he did understand he had to knee-cap her, and painting her as a racist did the job handily.  She came back because in time that kind of talk didn't belong in the campaign.  

by anna shane 2008-11-27 09:14AM | 0 recs
Re: Why Clinton could not beat Obama

Well, hell, someone agrees with me.  So much for being right ;)

I also think this election cycle will be the last time we see a successful use of the race card in a national campaign.  The McCain camp showed how you set the trap and crush the race card in 72 hours or less.

As for the poorly veiled old-age and misogyinistic insults, we may have a long way to go.  I hope I live to see that sort of "defining" get reversed.

Bigotry has a double edge.

by SuperCameron 2008-11-27 07:42PM | 0 recs
Re: Why Clinton could not beat Obama

You mean when the McCain camp pretended to be outraged when Obama said "they'll say 'he doesn't look like all those other Presidents on all the bills'", only to run later run an ad putting Obama's face on money in an attempt to show how funny the thought is?

That was pretty cynical, but I don't think it's effectiveness was as much as the "race card" people think it was.  People were genuinely horrified by what was going on at the Palin rallies, which shows that that move didn't give McCain a free pass to race bait their way into an election.

by Jess81 2008-11-28 03:13AM | 0 recs
Re: Why Clinton could not beat Obama

yes, even John got horrified. It's one reason pugs stayed home on election day.  Still I think the main was was all the pug hype about challenging votes and long lines.  The only ones listening were pugs, but there were also pugs horrified by Sarah that stayed home.

by anna shane 2008-11-28 06:29AM | 0 recs
Re: Why Clinton could not beat Obama

I think we're referring to two different incidents here, so I appreciate your input.  I hadn't taken it into account in my comment.

The line "because I don't look like all those other Presidents on all the bills'" was actually a change up the last line of a series BO began repeating in early June.   It was the final line and it was changed from "because I'm black".  Of course, he used the "because I'm black" line just enough to get it in people's heads.  Change ups like this work well in advertising.  They also work well in music--Buddy Holly created an entire songwriting process based on it and 3/4 of the crap we hear on the radio is still based on it.  It's also the basis of Tony Robbins entire line of self-improvement/advertising courses.  Human brains often run like record players.

However, my compliment to the McCain campaign was their handling of it after BHO's trip to Europe.  They ran the Paris Hilton/Britney Spears commercial knowing 80% of the country would see nothing racist about it, but that it would provoke a charge of racism from Axelrod and Co.  When they predictably did, the McCain camp threw out some manufactured outrage of their own and 5 points evaporated off Obama's lead in three days.

I was glad to see the Obama camp beaten in this exchange.  Not because I particularly care about BO or JM.  I just don't like Obama's style of making veiled insults.  In fact, I find it repugnant.  Some people like it, and I hold nothing against them for that.  Just a personal taste.

by SuperCameron 2008-11-28 08:12AM | 0 recs
Re: Why Clinton could not beat Obama

Could you please show me where the Obama campaign complained about racism over the celebrity ads?  I believe you're making it up.

Thanks in advance.

by Jess81 2008-11-28 03:12PM | 0 recs
Re: Why Clinton could not beat Obama

Glad you mentioned this.  As it turns out, all of this is quite conflated.  Obama was running with his "did I mention he's black" line for a couple weeks.  Then the campaign switched up its "message" a bit while he took his trip to Europe, the Middle East, etc.  When he came back, the McCain camp ran its Paris Hilton ad.

This set off a hullabaloo among many editorialists and blog writers; many claimed the McCain campaign was dog-wistling to racists.   22% of those who were dumb enough to think TV commercials are important thought the ad was racist.  63% did not.

After those ads ran, Obama reprised the "did I mention he's black" line, but changed it to "he doesn't look like the Presidents on dollar bills".  And when called out on it, the campaign's responce was "Call the other guy racist?  Moi?  Surely you jest!"

In the end, you are probably correct.  The events were conflated at the time and intertwined.  Nevertheless, no one who was openly on the Obama campaign's payroll charged the ad itself with being racist.

So you've troll rated me just for stating my view of facts, ostensibly because you did not believe those facts existed.  Thank you in advance for removing them upon receiving the links.

I've enjoyed the conversation, and thank you for having it.  Now I need to study, write, and inspect an investment property (it's a great time to buy distressed assets).


by SuperCameron 2008-11-29 09:04AM | 0 recs
Re: Why Clinton could not beat Obama

document this too:

The line "because I don't look like all those other Presidents on all the bills'" was actually a change up the last line of a series BO began repeating in early June.   It was the final line and it was changed from "because I'm black".  Of course, he used the "because I'm black" line just enough to get it in people's heads.

I don't want this to be a case where just because I never heard of it it didn't exist, but given how lustily McCain jumped on "he doesn't like all the other Presidents on all the other bills" (right before running an ad where he put Obama's face on a dollar bill), there's no way that McCain wouldn't have triumphantly jumped all over that and milked it for every vote he could.

In other words, I think you're making this one up too.

by Jess81 2008-11-28 03:22PM | 0 recs
Re: Why Clinton could not beat Obama

Fair enough.  I initially saw the speech in passing on some dumb tv show.  Most likely cable "news".  Here's the exact quote:

"They're going to try to make you afraid of me. He's young and inexperienced and he's got a funny name. And did I mention he's black?"

Here's the link from Reuters. A google search yields 53,900 results, including "objective" news sources (if such is possible), commentary from left, right, center, and thousands of blog posts.

by SuperCameron 2008-11-29 08:09AM | 0 recs
Re: Why Clinton could not beat Obama

You're right!  I admit it: "did I mention he's black" has a different ring to it then "because I'm black".

The McCain campaign jumped all over that.  But I think he was right - when you get the opposing campaign referring to a tax credit as a giant welfare program there's not much subtlety involved.

by Jess81 2008-11-29 04:04PM | 0 recs
Re: Why Clinton could not beat Obama

I don't think you understand what playing the race card means. McCain tried and failed miserably to accuse Obama of playing it while he was using it by evoking Bill Ayers, Rep. Lewis's comments, spreading the wealth (to poor minorities), etc.

Why would Obama play the race card when the majority of voters are white? He wouldn't. McCain evoked Obama being black or Muslim because those grups are in the minority and face a lot of resentment/fear from the white community as a whole. McCain played any card he could and he still lost.

by Lolis 2008-11-28 06:25AM | 0 recs
Re: Why Clinton could not beat Obama

in the primary Barack used the technique of manufactured outrage.  He'd assume he knew there was some racist intent and then his campaign would be outraged, it was like a passive attack and it worked in the beginning.  He was seen as on the high road from that technique, but, it had a shelf life. The dem's aren't racist or at the least don't wish to be, and so that reaction worked.  The bobby thing might as easily have referred to her being assassinated as him, Bobby like her was behind and wasn't giving up.  But it really referred to no assassination, just a long primary with someone coming up from behind and not giving up.

But in the end Barack showed that he didn't mean it, they worked together to get him elected, and there's the SoS thang.  And she wasn't perfect either, she attacked his hope message and his experience.  Just, she never attacked his character.    

by anna shane 2008-11-28 06:37AM | 0 recs
Re: Why Clinton could not beat Obama

What you're seeing as his campaign assuming outrage was people actually being outraged.

I've said this a bunch of times, but you always need to give the aggreived party the benefit of the doubt: I would never tolerate a man telling me what I should and should not consider sexist, so I don't understand where all these white people get off tripping over themselves declaring that the Obama campaign could fool an entire population into thinking that the Clinton people were being underhanded in dealing with Obama's race.

If a huge majority of the black population reacts negatively to what someone says, there's probably something to that.  Don't assume you know better: it's insulting.

Also, and you may not have done this, characaturing it as "calling the Clintons racist" is missing the point: you can be totally prejudice free and still practice underhanded politics.

by Jess81 2008-11-28 07:56AM | 0 recs
Re: Why Clinton could not beat Obama

if it came only from the people then so what, everyone has a right to see things they way they do. but, that came from his campaign too.  In contrast Hillary never called his words sexist, although I did.  And she never took a shot at his character, although the person just below this comment thought she'd made a subtle attack.  he said so directly, she's polarizing, divisive, untrustworthy, as well as over-inflating her experience which wasn't much according to him, and misrepresenting her position on NAFTA and he used the harry and louise jab at her mandates for universal health care.  Since she got that polarizing reputation from pugs, and their reasons were sexist, how dare a wife have gotten involved in advising her husband or playing any role in health care reform, and saying she didn't stay home and bake cookies, those things came from sexist memes, and I was all, fruit of the sexist branch, thank you.  But she never said anything about sexism directed to him at all, and it took her some time before she mentioned the sexist stuff in the press, and probably only then because people like me wanted someone to speak to it, and Howard Dean, who I asked, wasn't doing it. (he did it later though, once it had already been decided)

She wasn't perfect, she mocked his hope message and she called him naive.  She had to misrepresent or misunderstand what he was saying to go there, and I didn't like that. Xerox for change I didn't like.  But, they were both trying to win, and Barack warned her that he played Chicago Smack Down.

I think it did give him an early advantage, with white people who believed him.  But in the long run I think it didn't keep working, and so whatever advantage he'd gained he didn't hold on to.  there were plenty of reasons to want him and plenty of reasons to want her that had nothing to do with cheap shots, and he won, and that's great, because he also won the GE. Had not not won the GE, I would have been very pissed at him, and very worried about the future of this country.  

by anna shane 2008-11-28 11:58AM | 0 recs
Re: Why Clinton could not beat Obama

Her campaign criticized him for sexism.  There's no fault in that if there's any truth to it.  But my point is that African American voters were getting increasingly angry at the Clinton campaign regardless of what the Obama campaign was doing.  You can only say that the campaign was making that argument if you expand the definition of surrogate to just include people who were sympathetic to Obama - by that rationale you can say that the Clinton campaign not only accused Obama of being personally sexist, but that they were engaged in a "gang bang".  

SuperCameron, and others like him, are doing that - they're taking the words of every black person and quoting it with "the Obama campaign said..."  There was a front page diarist over at Alegre's now who put "Hillary ain't never been called no nigga" into the mouth of "the Obama campaign".  That's an extreme example, but I'm fascinated by how often Donna Brazile's words get twisted and put into the mouth of the Obama campaign.

Incidentally, I think the lowest point for either one of their campaigns was when Clinton personally tried to link Obama to Louis Farrakhan.  There's really no charitable light that you can put that in.

by Jess81 2008-11-28 12:50PM | 0 recs
Re: Why Clinton could not beat Obama

no, I can't defend that.  Just her, she's okay.  And him, he's okay too.  

by anna shane 2008-11-28 12:52PM | 0 recs
Re: Why Clinton could not beat Obama

I consider her comments on Rev. Wright to be a subtle attack on his character. "You don't choose your family, but you choose your pastor" and "I wouldn't go to that church."

by Lolis 2008-11-28 11:13AM | 0 recs
Re: Why Clinton could not beat Obama

she didn't offer any response and she was repeatedly questioned. I think her answer was fair, she wouldn't have, but so what was how i read it.  I didn't think Wright was a big deal.  he had his reasons. If she'd said no comment that would have been seen as worse, like so bad she wouldn't even go there. So, she tried to just not comment.  her response did not make me think less of either of them.  

Hillary was constantly asked adversarial questions, that she tried to deflect, like why didn't she hurry up and drop out and wasn't it clear she couldn't win, and wasn't she really trying to sabotage him. The press was generally unpleasant to her, which is well documented. Whatever she said would be spun by the press. that wasn't Barack's fault, he didn't diss her for saying he wouldn't have been her pastor.

So, here's a challenge for you. What should she in your opinion have said in answer to that question.  

by anna shane 2008-11-28 11:46AM | 0 recs
Re: Why Clinton could not beat Obama

Ok, I agree with regard to the mysoginy.  Why is age not a fair thing to consider?  It is not a stereotype to say that the older a person is, the less likely it is that they will survive the next 4 years.   It is not a stereotype to say that the older a person is, the more likely they are to develop cognitive mental health issues in the next four years.  These are statictical truths both of which are legitimate factors in choosing wisely who should be our next president.

by lockewasright 2008-11-28 12:06PM | 0 recs
Re: Why Clinton could not beat Obama

we can all get old, but we're not all female or all of color. Age is true, people are more likely to die when old, and so is medical condition, for the same reason.  Race and gender don't mean anything about how well a person can do a job, and neither does age, but the old are more likely to die.  Is it fair?  Maybe, maybe not, but it's something to consider if the running mate is unqualified and nutty.  

by anna shane 2008-11-28 12:30PM | 0 recs
I have been thinking

about what Clinton or Edwards could have done to stop Obama from  winning the Iowa caucuses.

That is one of the few scenarios I can think of that could have really hurt his momentum in Iowa. Many people supported Obama because they thought he was the most electable candidate. If Reverend Wright had become a household name in November or December, I am not sure what would have happened on caucus night.

by desmoinesdem 2008-11-27 12:55PM | 0 recs
Re: I have been thinking

November or December would have been too soon.  Early January, and only in Iowa.  When she said she was "in it to win it", she apparently wasn't serious.

by SuperCameron 2008-11-27 07:43PM | 0 recs
the caucuses were on January 3

The news would have had to come out before the holiday season, and there would have had to be at least a week or two for the most damaging video clips to make their way onto people's tvs and computer screens.

Early January would have been too late.

by desmoinesdem 2008-11-27 07:53PM | 0 recs
Re: the caucuses were on January 3

Ah...you are correct.  For some reason I had mid January in my mind.  Thanks.

I look forward to running a campaign with you in the future.

by SuperCameron 2008-11-27 08:05PM | 0 recs
Re: Why Clinton could not beat Obama

"Obama understood this--he tarred the Clintons as racists the first chance he gog[sic]."

You need to let this go, because that didn't happen like you say it happened.  People who continue to blame Obama or his campaign for playing the race card are continuing to insult the  collective intelligence of African Americans in this country.  I take that insult personally.  Stop it.

by shalca 2008-11-27 08:56PM | 0 recs
Re: Why Clinton could not beat Obama

I mean no insult to anyone when I say his campaign attempted to tar the Clintons as racists, and succeeded for a few weeks.  Contrary to the lines from the Obama campaign and it's surrogates, Bill did not call Obama's attempt at the Presidency as "a fairy tale".  He referred to Obama's opposition to the invasion of Iraq that way.  Yet I was still seeing his multi-millionaire surrogates making the charge even after HRC had conceeded.  Before that exchage made the rounds, HRC was leading BO in support from AAs 60-35.  After the blowup BO was pulling 90%.  

The intent of the campaign and Obama himself was to circulate a falsehood long enough that a majority of AA voters would take it as truth.  It worked.

Incidentally, I took it personally when Obama and his supporters responded to every minute criticism of him with a charge of racism.  Of course, it wasn't intended to be personal, but human minds work the way they do.

by SuperCameron 2008-11-28 07:48AM | 0 recs
Re: Why Clinton could not beat Obama

Before that exchage made the rounds, HRC was leading BO in support from AAs 60-35.  After the blowup BO was pulling 90%.

And you're blaming that on.... the Obama campaign?  How exactly does that work?

by Jess81 2008-11-28 08:01AM | 0 recs
Re: Why Clinton could not beat Obama

Actually, I think they would consider it a credit.

by SuperCameron 2008-11-28 08:13AM | 0 recs
Re: Why Clinton could not beat Obama

You don't understand the problem with your statement.  That's amazing.

by Jess81 2008-11-28 12:34PM | 0 recs
Re: Why Clinton could not beat Obama

Jess, the average person is a dim bulb--white, black, or otherwise.  History has shown again and again that any falsehood, repeated enough, is taken as truth.  Look how many people actually believe Washington really did cut down a cherry tree, or that Licoln cared a whit about ending slavery.

The only people to blame for it are HRC and her campaign.  They claimed to want the job but didn't do what they had to do to get it.  Like my first post said, they made many mistakes, but only two that cost them the primary.

by SuperCameron 2008-11-28 02:19PM | 0 recs
Because, you see

African-Americans (unlike the hard-working white people) are gullible and easily misled.

by JJE 2008-11-28 11:51AM | 0 recs
Re: Because, you see


by Jess81 2008-11-28 12:34PM | 0 recs
Re: Because, you see

Hillary didn't say it, and it's white voters who may have been led to doubt her character. I think it's weird to say black voters came out for him because they thought Hillary was racist. I think black voters came out for him as soon as they formed a favorable opinion of him and saw he had a good chance to win.  I saw it like the favorite son, and also for many as him being the kind of leader we want right now.  And why wouldn't black Americans vote for the first viable black candidate, what could possibly be wrong with that.   It's not l like he wasn't a great candidate, whatever his color.  

by anna shane 2008-11-28 12:37PM | 0 recs
Re: Because, you see

No, but it's the assumption of the people who keep complaining about "the race card" - that Black voters went to Obama because the campaign accused the Clintons of being racist - even though they didn't - and the entire population fell for it.

There's really no way to make that argument unless you think that Black people are incapable of critical thinking, and yet the argument is made.

by Jess81 2008-11-28 12:42PM | 0 recs
Re: Because, you see

I've never made that one.  I am very guilty of thinking he led white voters to view her as racist, but then I met some.  I was ultra sensitive to anything sexist, but sadly not as sensitive to the sensibilities of African Americans who were offended that Bill would try to marginalize him as an identity candidate.  Go figure.  First viable candidate of color, first viable girl candidate, and we didn't always understand each other.  Or, at least, I didn't.  

by anna shane 2008-11-28 12:48PM | 0 recs
Re: Because, you see

If you look at it that way, it's pretty amazing that it didn't get much uglier.

by Jess81 2008-11-28 12:53PM | 0 recs
Re: Because, you see

Which way?  In retrospect it wasn't very ugly, not compared with past primaries and it ended with the party unified.  I don't think either of them were comfortable taking jabs.  I think Hillary believed she would win and that he only might, and I think he always knew he would win.  Most Democrats were fine with either one.  I admit I was very sensitive to the sexism in the media and held him perhaps too accountable for adding anything to that at all.  He said they agreed on 99 percent of everything and I'm quite soothed by the way he's running things, there is a grown up president who is selecting experts and professionals to carry out his vision.  I like competence. Bringing Volker back from retirement, that works for me.  Can you imagine what it would be like right now if John and Sarah were expected to manage the mess Bush left?  OMG?  

by anna shane 2008-11-28 01:31PM | 0 recs
Re: Because, you see

Actually, I never said anything to that effect.  Thanks for calling me a racist.

Oh, ooops!  You barely veiled it.  How dare I make such a scurrilous charge against an upstanding person like yourself?

This is America, and the average American is a moron.  2000, 2002, and 2004 confirmed that for me.  There is probably no population on planet earth so suceptible to advertising science and willing to be misled by its government.

So, no.  I don't think any less of African Americans than I do of any of the other dolts that are so lovingly referred to as "average voters" or "ordinary Americans".

I don't think of anyone here in that way because the folks on sites like this one tend to be substantially more intelligent and better informed than is "average" (read: dumb as dogshit).

Finally, I'll thank you not to call me racist.  If you wouldn't say it to my face, please don't do it over the 'tubes either.

by SuperCameron 2008-11-28 02:11PM | 0 recs
It's a necessary premise

for your argument.  You're either not swift enough to see it or not brave enough to say it outright.  The rest is just hand-waving.

I'd be happy to say it to your face.

by JJE 2008-11-30 11:45AM | 0 recs
Re: Why Clinton could not beat Obama

This impotent conversation is missing the fact that Soros, City of London parasites, Caman Islands, Wall St.& Company put $200 million into Obama's campaign.

Without that money, there is no Obama. They did not want the Clintons in power as their system disintegrates, as it is today. If you read the London papers, they openly talk about this along with the threats on Obama's life.

Just thought I would inject some reality into this dull and useless conversation.

by dantch 2008-11-27 09:06AM | 0 recs
Re: Why Clinton could not beat Obama

that was his advantage, that he was able to get that kind of money support as a new guy who hadn't the best chance of winning the GE. That shows his talent.  It didn't just drop from the sky, he had to show what he had.  

by anna shane 2008-11-27 09:19AM | 0 recs
Re: Why Clinton could not beat Obama

I'm convinced the main reason Obama was able to raise this type of money was because of his early opposition to the Iraq War.  Liberals were incredibly hungry for a viable anti-war candidate and Obama filled the void.  

He successfully combined the "Wine Track" voters with the African-American vote to create a coalition just large enough to overcome Hillary.  No other candidate could have beaten her besides Obama.

by Will Graham 2008-11-27 09:29AM | 0 recs
Re: Why Clinton could not beat Obama

I do not disagree, although I expect there was more to it.  I think there was also a sizable stop Hillary coalition, that backed him because he had the best chance to beat her.  And for better reasons too, this was the one the dem's were nearly surely going to win, and so the best time for a woman or a person of color to run.  

I think his picking her for SoS makes the story complete, it's the real dream team.  Those who just wanted to stop her are likely not so very pleased.    

by anna shane 2008-11-27 10:05AM | 0 recs
Re: When did you reach that conclusion

It was a grassroot movement from progressives and young people that funded his campaign. Soros had nothing to do in helping Obama winning the nomination.

by Alistair74 2008-11-27 09:21AM | 0 recs
Re: When did you reach that conclusion

I intend no disrespect to you when I say you're leaving out something very important.

The seed money for any successful campaign 99% of the time comes from one of two sources:

1.  Personal funds

2.  A promise from a successful politician or successful bundler to bring in several million.  In this case, Obama had backing from Ted Kennedy.  As I mentioned previously, he is Kennedy's man, as Kerry and Edwards both were.  Obama hauled tens of millions before he drew even his first "small donor".

Don't mean to be rude, but that's the way politics is done in the United States.

by SuperCameron 2008-11-27 07:35PM | 0 recs
So dull and useless

you felled compelled to comment on it.

Your argument has LESS rigor than Newsmax and Redstate crap about George Soros buying elections.

Your verb tenses are incoherent and I haven't seen so many non sequiturs packed into four sentences since the Simpsons episode where Ralph Wiggum ran for president.

Reality?  You don't know what the word means.

by corph 2008-11-27 10:18AM | 0 recs
Re: Why Clinton could not beat Obama

Not sure why you think Wall Street would prefer Obama over Clinton. Bill Clinton presided over gluttonous deregulation in the 90's. Plus, Obama had stricter regulations on who he accepted money from. Wall Street was not threatened by the Clintons. Seems like lots of conspiracy theories.

by Lolis 2008-11-27 11:42AM | 0 recs
Re: Why Clinton could not beat Obama

the explanation was the Barack would get less done than HIllary. they did not count on Barack's use of professionals, experts, the retired brought back, taking over it's competence stupid. they were wrong, but that's why they wanted him over Hillary. At least according to the right-wing businessman emails I received.  

by anna shane 2008-11-27 02:06PM | 0 recs
Re: Why Clinton could not beat Obama
Just thought I would inject some reality into this dull and useless conversation.

By blaming the Jews?  FOAD, moron.
by username 2008-11-27 04:14PM | 0 recs

"felt compelled".

by corph 2008-11-27 10:19AM | 0 recs
Yeah, I wondered who hired this guy....

Sorry, the accountability rests with HRC. Both Wolfson and Mark Penn were miserable hires, and Hillary is responsible for them.

This may be a way of saying that in politics--like everything else--you make your own luck. She was running to be the nation's chief executive, and one of the core competencies for the job is the selection and management of good people. To that end, the campaign/primaries are a vital part of the selection process....the campaign's backbiting/warfare, lack of message, shifting strategies, don't speak well for Clinton's ability to lead people.

by BJJ Fighter 2008-11-27 10:29AM | 0 recs
So in essence

you're saying she's a poor judge of character and/or talent.  So, in a broader sense, not very good at running a campaign.

Did you realize this when you wanted Hillary Clinton to be president?

She had:

1. Big fundraising network

  1. Huge reservoir of electoral goodwill caused by her husband being the first repeat Dem president since Roosevelt.
  2. 100+ super endorsement head start from the get-go
  3. Near universal name recognition.

A couple of paranoid advisors can't reverse structural advantages like that on their own.  Maybe Clinton fans could entertain the possibility that she's simply not a very good politician.  I've come to accept that myself as a diehard Kerry loyalist, incidentally.

by corph 2008-11-27 10:36AM | 0 recs
Re: So in essence

As a Clinton fan, and someone who worked on her campaign, I have chalked it down what I suppose most of the people who directly helped her in her campaign and who passionately wanted her to win... an inadequate message conveyed by inadequate advisers.

Particularly, Mark Penn and his decision to pay no attention to Hillary crafting a message around her character and instead choose on themes of Experience. Granted, it was ultimately Hillary's call to keep Penn and his message for so long. The last chance to twist it around would have been after New Hampshire.

This was a year when people wanted change, and she could have helped herself the most by focusing on the kind of change she offered. She did her best when she talked about being a Fighter for Change toward the end of the campaign.

by Beet 2008-11-27 11:19AM | 0 recs
Re: So in essence

Did you realize this when you wanted Hillary Clinton to be president?

I thought that she was average at running a campaign, but I thought the structural advantages you mentioned would enable her to win.

One other point of note is that it's not every day you get someone like Barack Obama, who draws crowds of tens of thousands, raises $50 million in a month, and is loved by the journalistic elite. If she had been facing almost any other opponent she would have won, despite all her flaws. And then everyone would be crowing about what a genius she is.

Retrospective analysis tends to be to deterministic.

by Beet 2008-11-27 11:24AM | 0 recs
Good point

She obviously did some things right, structural advantages or no.  She may have done the best anyone could expect given the phenomenon she was up against.  I can't say for sure what caused her comeback in New Hampshire or her huge margins in Appalachian states.

But the poor strategic planning and burning through cash are harder to forgive than any inevitable slip-ups or even war votes.  Thinking California was winner-take-all?  Deemphasizing caucus states, where activists are exponentially more important?  There is no doubt those factors significantly hurt her campaign, and they were easily avoidable.

by corph 2008-12-01 10:42AM | 0 recs
Re: Why Clinton could not beat Obama

I love you all people, but anyone saying HRC lost because she didn't court the "netroots" or "activists" or because of Iraq is engaging in wishful thinking. The netroots candidate was John Edwards, and he lost easily.

Obama won because he carried 85% of the African- American vote, a bloc that makes up about 25% of the Democratic primary electorate. Otherwise he would have gone down like Gary Hart, Eugene McCarthy, Jerry Brown, Bill Bradley, and most of the other 'activist' candidates in Demo primaries. Do the math...

by Beet 2008-11-27 11:11AM | 0 recs
Re: Why Clinton could not beat Obama

Do the math yourself: Your argument doesn't explain why he won all those states that hardly had any black people around.

by Aris Katsaris2 2008-11-27 01:04PM | 0 recs
Re: Why Clinton could not beat Obama

he won those states like the upper rockies because Hillary was not gonna spend her resources where Democrats could not win in November. Also, those people are in such Dem hating states they went with the new guy. states that are really white, where Dems can win, like AR, KY, WV went for Clinton. She ran a GE campaign in the primary.

by Lakrosse 2008-11-27 02:58PM | 0 recs
Re: Why Clinton could not beat Obama

States in the upper Rockies like Colorado?  Or Montana, which Obama very nearly did win in the GE?

Also, this line

Also, those people are in such Dem hating states they went with the new guy.

doesn't make any sense to me.  What does it mean?  The shorter version of this comment seems to be "Clinton ran a poorly thought-out campaign, Obama ran a well thought-out one," which I happen to agree with, but would be surprised to learn is also your analyis.

by Koan 2008-11-27 04:10PM | 0 recs
I meant Utah, Idaho, Wyoming,

in the upper Rockies. Nebraska, Kansas, North Dakota are also included.

by Lakrosse 2008-11-27 04:47PM | 0 recs
Re: Why Clinton could not beat Obama

he won those states like the upper rockies because Hillary was not gonna spend her resources where Democrats could not win in November.

Yeah, like Colorado, Virginia, North Carolina... states we'd never win!  It's that closed-minded, 14-state strategy that doomed her campaign...  We needed to expand the map and we did!  In 2012, when most of the kerry states lose electoral votes, that expansion will be vital!

by LordMike 2008-11-27 04:12PM | 0 recs
she had a far better chance to

expand the map. In June, before the economic meltdown, she was expanding the map in Appalachia and Southern States, where Obama lost as bad or worse than Kerry. Even in this map, which was before the Convention where the party would solidify, and the economic crisis, she was expanding the map. I'll take West Virginia, Kentucky, Arkansas, Missouri, plus all of Obama's other states minus indiana as our map. Winning Appalachia is sustainable due to economics, as opposed to Obama winning IN because of Bush hate alone. Hillary would have done far better in more geographic regions.

by Lakrosse 2008-11-27 04:49PM | 0 recs
Re: she had a far better chance to

Honestly, doesn't leaving the post-Confederacy South to the Republicans and taking the West leave them with a bigger dilemma?  Have a look at the growth rates and population age statistics in those respective areas.  Nixon's 'Southern strategy' is dead, let's put a stake through it's heart and be done with it.

by Shaun Appleby 2008-11-27 05:58PM | 0 recs
Only WV

If you think she could have won KY you're dreaming.  She had a shot in AR because of her history there.  AR is not viable for a Dem not named Clinton.

by JJE 2008-11-28 05:23AM | 0 recs
I'm dreaming?

Well this map does look like a dream, even in June before the markets crashed, when she was ahead in AR, WV, Missouri, where Obama lost, and YES Kentucky, with a 9 point lead, where Bill won twice, but narrowly. She was also very close in Colorado, and would have caught up, and solidly ahead in Nevada, plus ahead in all the blue states, while MI and WI were beginning to go heavily Dem anyway. If you think she woudln't have carried Kentucky, YOU'RE dreaming.

by Lakrosse 2008-11-28 07:24AM | 0 recs
We all know

how accurate a June map is for a November election.  But don't let me interrupt your worship service.

by JJE 2008-11-28 11:39AM | 0 recs
actually, it would have

underestimated, as it did with Obama. So the won states would likely have been accurate, plus a few, given the economic crash and the increased Bush hatred, with a united Dem party.

by Lakrosse 2008-11-28 11:42AM | 0 recs
Woulda coulda shoulda

Projections based solely on conjecture about 5 months of a campaign that didn't happen aren't persuasive to anyone not predisposed to buy them.

by JJE 2008-11-28 11:59AM | 0 recs
According to the Polls

Clinton would have won by 11 points. She probably would have won around 395 electoral votes, a little more than Obama. However, it probably doesn't make much difference. You win the presidency by winning 270 electoral votes.  Moreover, big landslide victories don't necessarily mean that the winning side wins the next time around. Ask Herbert Hoover, Lyndon Johnson and George Bush SR. about this. Also, after the Republicans swept 49 states in 1972, Jimmy Carter won in 1976.

I got a feeling that Obama is going to be a quite popular president especially after the economy begins to turn around and will win a landslide victory in 2012.

by Zzyzzy 2008-11-29 08:38AM | 0 recs
We'll see

he has a good shot to take charge of foreign policy when he hits office. The changing of the guard alone in such times in which we live should inspire confidence, but its still gonna be tough.

The reason I bother mentioning Hillary is that people are acting like Obama transformed the electoral landscape for time to come, when he really just won blue states plus a few, whereas Hillary would have won blue states plus a whole new region of America: Appalachia, as the polls showed she could have won WV and KY, possibly put Tennessee into play, won Arkansas, Missouri, along with FL, OH, etc. The economic populism could have been the new FDR coalition with respect to the blue states and Appalachia. Instead, we're left with the same east coast/upper midwest/east coast plus NM and NV which Dems who win carry anyway, and shaky electoral results in OH and FL. I do laud VA, but NC is still hard to know if it is a fluke. But the map shows Hillary could have won NC, and I did the calculations, and if she had carried 38-40% of the white vote there, and 89% of blacks, she'd have carried it 51-48.

But I'm happy Obama beat McCain, and maybe he can build a lasting electoral coalition. But when Bush hate subsides, and if black and youth turnout stay the same, and whites increase next time, as they were low this time, he could have real problems in 2012. Whites are still the vast majority, and Hillary was also loved by Latinos. Not to mention, if she had won by 11 points, which the exit polls showed, she'd have a massive mandate, could more easily do health care, and put to rest the Ross Perot shitmyth the GOP and the left wing say about the Clintons, as the exit poll, showing her 52-41-5(not voting) translates into 55-43, the first double digit win since Reagan, and nearly as big as Eisenhower v. Stevenson 1952.

by Lakrosse 2008-11-29 11:13AM | 0 recs
Re: We'll see

"when he really just won blue states plus a few, whereas Hillary would have won blue states plus a whole new region of America: Appalachia"

What whole new region? That's the exact same region that Bill Clinton won in '92 and '96.

It's Obama that won North Carolina that hadn't been won since '76, Virginia that hadn't been won since '64, Indiana which hadn't been won since 1960.

Since Clinton had already bankrupted herself during the primaries, I doubt she'd have that much success in expanding the map to these states, btw.

by Aris Katsaris2 2008-11-29 01:52PM | 0 recs
Why Obama Won

There are several reasons why Obama won. First, you have to realize that this was the closest primary fight ever since the modern day primary system began in 1972. Thus, it isn't as if Clinton could not beat Obama. Had certain events or conditions been different, Clinton could have won the presidency.

First, people were dismayed over how Bush was leading the country. People wanted change. Since Clinton was the husband of Bill Clinton, symbolically she never could be considered to be the agent of change.

Second, Democrats in general like new faces. This is the opposite of Republicans who like the seasoned politician who waits for his turn. Democratic fights are often framed as the establishment versus the anti-establishment candidate. This year favored the anti-establishment candidate.

Third, Obama's speeches was more inspiring than Clinton's speeches. Obama understands that people want optimistic vision. In giving stomp speeches, talking about general direction trumps specifics. Talking about values trumps lists of programs. By being more inspiring, Obama inspired the youth.

Fourth, by inspiring the youth, Obama was able to recruit the biggest army of volunteers. Moreover, because the youth was such a big part of Obama's campaign, the Obama campaign better understood how to make modern day technology work for them. They understood the power of the internet and effectively used facebook as an internet campaign tool.

Fifth, Clinton lost the black vote. Intitially Obama's constituency was virtually the same as Bill Bradley's constituency in 2000 and Paul Tsongas's constuency in 1992. Clinton actually had the majority of the black vote until Obama proved that he could win by winning Iowa, and when Clinton made the statement that it took LBJ to pass civil rights legislation. The Bradley coalition plus the black vote gave Obama the slight advantage.

Sixth, Clinton's vote on supporting the Iraq War hurt with the progressive wing of the party. She could have apologized for her vote, but I don't think it would have worked because such an apology would have not been credible. Such an apology would have been viewed as changing a position just to win votes.

Seventh, Florida and Michigan. The effect of Florida and Michigan is harder to analyze. But I suspect that had Republican rules had been in place to count half of the delegates, Clinton would have gained enough momentum to fight off a challenge from Obama. However, had the Michigan primary been resceduled to a date after Super Tuesday, Obama probably wins the Michigan primary. So timing is important in the analysis.

This race was close enough so that had any one factor changed, Clinton could have won the presidency. Had the economic crisis occurred one year earlier, then her Iraq vote might not have hurt her so much. Had Bush been more populsr then the prospects of  Bush-Clinton-Bush-Clinton might not have been such a big negative.  Also, Clinton should have gotten speech coaching just like what Obama did in the early 2000's. Obama became a much better speaker as the result of the coaching.

by Zzyzzy 2008-11-27 11:38AM | 0 recs
Re: Why Obama Won

You put a lot out there to pick apart or add to.  A fair synopsis.  Thanks.

by SuperCameron 2008-11-28 08:20AM | 0 recs
Re: Why Clinton could not beat Obama

I agree it was the AUMF vote that was the telling factor, and the whole strategy of not repudiating it and maintaining a stern stance on international policy to combat the perceived advantage of the Republicans on this issue.  It allowed Obama to get around to the left of her during the primary from the time of the 'naive and irresponsible' narrative which Obama had the good sense to fight head on.  That was a turning point for his campaign.

I know that I never wearied of bringing up the AUMF vote during the primary wars, to the almost universal annoyance of her supporters.  It is good to see a cordial discussion on all of this now, it seems we have healed a lot of rancour.  Incidentally, if anyone hasn't seen the Newsweek Secrets of the 2008 Campaign series it is a compelling read, it's practically a book and was written by sequestered journalists who had exceptional access to the participants throughout the primary and general election campaign.  It goes a long way to resolving some of these post mortem questions.

The thing about Hillary's long-term strategy which I always wondered about was why didn't she run in 2004?  And what price did she possibly pay for not necessarily wanting a Democratic victory in that year because she chose not to run?  I think that has a lot to do with the early success of the Obama campaign as far as institutional support.  From memory he inherited a lot of the Kerry '04 staff and contacts very early in the piece.

by Shaun Appleby 2008-11-27 12:20PM | 0 recs
That was the trump card

Talk about helping Americans.

Bring up the war vote.

Talk about mandates.

Bring up the war vote.

Talk about preconditions.

Bring up the war vote.

Etc. etc. etc.

Of course, I don't see anyone ever talking about the war vote now (Is it cause Biden is the VP?), so I've sort of concluded that while there may have been a few true believers (those who are now speaking out against Clinton as SoS), Obama himself never questioned the judgment of someone who voted "for the war", and used it really just pretty much the way you described above.


Exploited it.

Brilliant strategy.

by iDemocrat 2008-11-27 12:53PM | 0 recs
Re: That was the trump card

It was.  But it was also symbolic of something substantial, however, which Obama did deliver.  Democrats had suffered since the seventies from a perception of being 'weak' on national security.  Using the Iraq debacle as leverage Obama articulated an alternative posture which was neither Republican nor weak.  It was a tremendous relief for most Democrats, I'm guessing, and left Hillary's posture seeming very 'old school' and almost a partisan appeasement.  And she was flogging that horse right through the late primaries with the 3AM phone calls and so forth.

In this respect I think that message was valid.  Instead of opposing the neo-conservatives from a classic anti-war stance or being partially co-opted by them Obama showed us a 'third way,' it was a high risk approach which paid off.  And it played into the other powerful message of his campaign which Hillary walked straight into, of 'change' versus 'experience' where 'experience' is equated to the 'old ways of Washington.'  He had her there and she couldn't shake it off, her short-lived 'change with experience' slogan notwithstanding.

But why didn't Hillary run in 2004?  The conventional answer is that she had promised to complete her first term in the Senate but I'm doubtful that the whole story.

by Shaun Appleby 2008-11-27 01:08PM | 0 recs
I like the conventional

Answer.  It might be hard to believe this for some, but I also think she might have thought she wasn't ready yet.  Of course that begs the question what would transpire between 2004 and 2008 that would make her more ready?  Who knows.  Maybe she thought America was still too whipped up in a post-terrorist attack mindset for a Dem to win.  Or she could have just been fulfilling her promise.  Could be a combination of all these things.

I don't spend as much time as I should mulling over the motivations of the Clintons.  I'd have to give equal time to everyone then, and then I'd have no time left at all for anything else at all.

Either way, I have now concluded that Obama thinks someone who voted "for the war" has the judgment to be a heartbeat away from president.  And now even has the judgment to be run point on Diplomacy.

So that's about the end of that whole story, as far as I can tell.  It lasted just as long as it needed to last.

Just to add, I think Obama countered "Dems are weak" stuff by talking very tough indeed on Pakistan and OBL.  Even to the point where people like Chris Hitchens started jumping on the Obama bandwagon.

It's been a long strange trip.

by iDemocrat 2008-11-27 01:17PM | 0 recs
Re: I like the conventional

It has been strange but quite refreshing.  I don't want to incite a speculative food fight over Hillary's motives either but I'll bet, looking back on it, she wishes she had run in 2004.  She doesn't seem to have too much reluctance to leave the Senate at this point, though her 2000 election promise is indeed fulfilled.

I'm not to concerned about the AUMF vote among positions which aren't the policy making executive, though your point about Biden is well taken.  It seems more a question of judgement than morality in the final analysis.

by Shaun Appleby 2008-11-27 01:25PM | 0 recs

I don't think she looks back and wonders "what if" much at all.

Just my two cents.

by iDemocrat 2008-11-27 01:40PM | 0 recs
Re: Ok

We won't know until the memoirs are published, if then.

by Shaun Appleby 2008-11-27 01:45PM | 0 recs
What if?

There's nothing there to know.  Yesterday. Today. Or tomorrow.

by iDemocrat 2008-11-27 02:19PM | 0 recs
Good points, but remember

Biden also sponsored an amendment to the AUMF which would have required Bush to do certain diplomatic steps before war. That means something.

Plus, Biden criticized the handling of the war before either Clinton or Obama. Everyone knows Biden will not be running for president so he is not the next in line, so to speak.

by Lolis 2008-11-27 03:01PM | 0 recs
Re: Good points, but remember

Good point.  I didn't mean to indite Biden, though I thought the Iraqi partition proposal is best forgotten.  I like him a lot and his gaffes during the campaign didn't bother me one bit, he's virtually gaffe-proof given his public persona, it's almost a positive.

by Shaun Appleby 2008-11-27 06:01PM | 0 recs
I kind of hoped it would mean something

If Clinton sponsored an amendment rescinding Bush's authority after a certain period of time, but I don't think that ever meant anything.

by iDemocrat 2008-11-27 06:52PM | 0 recs
Re: I kind of hoped it would mean something

No, it didn't.  And Obama's 2007 Iraq legislation never flew either but it looks not unlike the SOFA from a distance.

by Shaun Appleby 2008-11-27 07:12PM | 0 recs
Re: Why Clinton could not beat Obama

The war vote issue was always a farce because

1.) the netroots supported Edwards, who voted for the war, and why they would prefer a faker who basically switched his position just to pander to them, is pretty baffling

2.) the economy is a much, much bigger issue than the Iraq war. We lost 3,000 troops in Iraq... a lot but much less than the 60,000 troops in Vietnam, 50,000 in Korea... and this is with no draft. The economy was a much bigger issue

Another reason the economy is a bigger issue-- what was the reason Ronald Reagan was able to have his Republican revolution? Because the economy was bad in 1980 and all through the 1970s.

What was the basis of the New Deal coalition? The Depression.

Long-lasting majorities are built on effective economic management, which affects everyone directly; not wars, which affects only military families who have members deployed to Iraq.

3.) At the end of the day the Dem party must be more than the anti-war party. That leads into 2 directions-- we become "anti American" and accused of wanting the US to lose. At the end of the day most Americans want to win wars, thats what makes us happiest. Positioning ourselves as the anti-war party, the "best" we can hope for is for things to go badly. The other possible direction is, it leads us to become an isolationist party, which would be bad.

4.) See my posts above.

by Beet 2008-11-27 01:06PM | 0 recs
Re: Why Clinton could not beat Obama

Yeah the economy was the issue in the general but national security was still a hurdle the Democratic candidate had to clear.  Hillary realised this and attempted to do so by sticking pretty close to some of the postures of the conservatives and projecting a very tough image.  Obama did it by perfecting a new set of moves which left her isolated from the strong anti-Iraq trend in the electorate.

And who the 'netroots' supported strikes me as almost irrelevant, they sure didn't pick a winner that time around and were determined to have a partisan battle.  Obama finessed it instead.  Can you remember all the bandwidth wasted on the debate over his 'electability?'  That was the bottom line for supporters of either other major candidate in the primary.

A lot of the conventional wisdom of 2007 is lining bird cages these days.

by Shaun Appleby 2008-11-27 01:14PM | 0 recs
It was a farce

But it was an excellent talking point.

A conversation about stem cell research would end up in the "war vote" cul de sac.

It was the card that could not be overplayed.

by iDemocrat 2008-11-27 01:19PM | 0 recs
Re: Why Clinton could not beat Obama

and edwards was a hawk, wrote an op ed in favor of invasion, while Hillary maintained that we needed teeth to get inspectors into Saddam's palaces, to show whether or not there were WMD.  

by anna shane 2008-11-27 02:10PM | 0 recs
Re: Why Clinton could not beat Obama

Just for the record:

Clinton clearly stated: "my vote is not, however, a vote for any new doctrine of pre-emption, or for unilateralism, or for the arrogance of American power or purpose - all of which carry grave dangers for our nation, for the rule of international law and for the peace and security of people throughout the world."

But this doesn't put Clinton in the clear. The fact remains that the president asked the Senate for the authority to wage war on Iraq, and Clinton voted to give him that authority. What's more, on March 17, 2003, George W. Bush gave a nationally-televised address signaling his intention to use the authority Clinton granted him in order to wage a unilateral preventive war against Iraq. "Saddam Hussein and his sons must leave Iraq within 48 hours," the president said. "[T]heir refusal to do so will result in military conflict, commenced at a time of our choosing." Clinton released a statement of her own that day, supporting the president's position. "Tonight," she said, "the president gave Saddam Hussein one last chance to avoid war, and the world hopes that Saddam Hussein will finally hear this ultimatum, understand the severity of those words, and act accordingly."

On the question of unilateralism, Bush said that "under Resolutions 678 and 687 - both still in effect - the United States and our allies are authorized to use force in ridding Iraq of weapons of mass destruction. This is not a question of authority, it is a question of will." Clinton, similarly, argued in favor of unilateralism, saying that "while we wish there were more international support for the effort to disarm Saddam Hussein, at this critical juncture it is important for all of us to come together in support of our troops and pray that, if war does occur, this missiion is accomplished swiftly and decisively with minimum loss of life and civilian casualites."

Matthew Yglesias - Hillary Clinton's history lesson Guardian 12 Feb 07

Where was the inspection issue in that statement on the eve of war?  I would have quoted from her floor speech as well but her Senate site appears to be unavailable.  We could do this all day.

by Shaun Appleby 2008-11-27 02:51PM | 0 recs
Re: Why Clinton could not beat Obama

and Saddam offered to, and bush refused and never told us.  

by anna shane 2008-11-27 04:31PM | 0 recs
Re: Why Clinton could not beat Obama

Yes, that's an interesting wrinkle, isn't it?  But the unilateral demand, which Hillary clearly endorsed, remains unobstructed by messy inspections issues.

But never mind, I feel uncomfortable arguing these points now, I have really enjoyed your posts in the past few months and you are obviously a well-informed and insightful observer.  Not to mention outspoken, bless you.  I'm happy to let matters rest, we have lots of work to do.

by Shaun Appleby 2008-11-27 06:05PM | 0 recs
Re: Why Clinton could not beat Obama

She refers to the inspectors in her speech more than once:

Some people favor attacking Saddam Hussein now, with any allies we can muster, in the belief that one more round of weapons inspections would not produce the required disarmament, and that deposing Saddam would be a positive good for the Iraqi people and would create the possibility of a secular democratic state in the Middle East, one which could perhaps move the entire region toward democratic reform.


Even though the resolution before the Senate is not as strong as I would like in requiring the diplomatic route first and placing highest priority on a simple, clear requirement for unlimited inspections, I will take the President at his word that he will try hard to pass a UN resolution and will seek to avoid war, if at all possible.


While there is no perfect approach to this thorny dilemma, and while people of good faith and high intelligence can reach diametrically opposed conclusions, I believe the best course is to go to the UN for a strong resolution that scraps the 1998 restrictions on inspections and calls for complete, unlimited inspections with cooperation expected and demanded from Iraq. I know that the Administration wants more, including an explicit authorization to use force, but we may not be able to secure that now, perhaps even later. But if we get a clear requirement for unfettered inspections, I believe the authority to use force to enforce that mandate is inherent in the original 1991 UN resolution, as President Clinton recognized when he launched Operation Desert Fox in 1998.


War can yet be avoided, but our responsibility to global security and to the integrity of United Nations resolutions protecting it cannot. I urge the President to spare no effort to secure a clear, unambiguous demand by the United Nations for unlimited inspections.

http://clinton.senate.gov/speeches/iraq_ 101002.html

by skohayes 2008-11-28 05:17AM | 0 recs
Re: Why Clinton could not beat Obama

Yes, I know, but in that statement supporting Bush's eleventh hour ultimatum, not so much.

by Shaun Appleby 2008-11-28 05:00PM | 0 recs
Re: Why Clinton could not beat Obama

You cherry pick one sentence out of a speech several minutes long, and chastise Hillary for not addressing the inspectors in that one line?

by skohayes 2008-11-29 01:43PM | 0 recs
Re: Why Clinton could not beat Obama

No, I refer to her entire March statement in reference to Bush's last gambit ultimatum to suggest that the inspection issue was irrelevant to her on the eve of war and that she was then committed 'boots and all' to unilateral action.

by Shaun Appleby 2008-11-29 01:56PM | 0 recs
Re: Why Clinton could not beat Obama

No CEO would get away with blaming the management team he or she picked for their failure. Saying that the candidate was better then their campaign staff is really absurd. The candidate gets the campaign they hire and manage.

Obama out managed, out thought and out organized both his opponents.

by hankg 2008-11-27 01:36PM | 0 recs
Re: Why Clinton could not beat Obama

It was the war vote combined with Obama running a great campaign in relation to Hillary.

by obama4presidente 2008-11-27 05:25PM | 0 recs
Re: Why Clinton could not beat Obama

I like the Newsweek articles, although I think they take too many of their sources at face value from all three of their campaigns.

Ryan Lizza has a good piece about it in either this New Yorker or the last one.  

by Jess81 2008-11-28 03:06AM | 0 recs
she already did and she will win in 2012 anyway

she won in 2008, but it was stolen from her by RBC, DNC and supers, and i even not talking about caucuses which are crime by itself. And she won DESPITE all bad advise.

And by the way it is crystal-clear of how big liar Obama is:
all his BS about change end-up with cabinet full of Clinton's people but with wrong name on the top ticket.
He even managed to preserve W's DoD chief. These lies will help her a  lot in 2012.
She may work for SoS for a while but she will be back I hope in full swing for 2012 campaign.
And do not forget that all those Obama-supporters already very upset with him braking all "Change" promises - this will cost Obama a lot in 2012 and it will big shssift to Hillary, because he will not deliver health care etc.

by engels 2008-11-28 06:44AM | 0 recs


You make a lot more sense than some people trying to rewrite history upthread my love.

by spacemanspiff 2008-11-28 07:50AM | 0 recs

http://www.mydd.com/story/2008/6/26/1631 38/335

I don't think there's been a better thread in the history of ever.

by Jess81 2008-11-28 08:15AM | 0 recs

You rock Jess.

I'm lighting up and rereading that over and over again.

{chrismatthews] HA! {/chrismatthews}

The word "epic" was made for threads like that.

by spacemanspiff 2008-11-28 08:45AM | 0 recs
Re: she will win in 2012 anyway

What a bunch of bullshssift.

by Jess81 2008-11-28 08:03AM | 0 recs
Re: she already did and she will win in 2012

The Royal Bank of Canada stole the nomination from Clinton?  Wow!  Impressive!

by bottl4 2008-11-28 08:16AM | 0 recs
Ladies and Gents ...


by spacemanspiff 2008-11-28 08:46AM | 0 recs
Re: Ladies and Gents ...

Teh engels makes me shssift my legs together.

by Jess81 2008-11-28 03:25PM | 0 recs
Re: she already did and she will win in 2012

your ignorance about RBC crime on May 30 (RBC is DNC's Rules and By Laws Committee) is a good indicator. Even god will not help you if you choose to be ignorant; just remember that punishment will catch the crime (of course you capable of remembering)

by engels 2008-11-29 01:12AM | 0 recs
Re: she already did and she will win in 2012

Royal Bank of Cameroon then?

by Jess81 2008-11-29 01:19AM | 0 recs
Re: she already did and she will win in 2012 anywa

Of course, she won, that explains everything.  Why didn't I think of that?

by Shaun Appleby 2008-11-28 05:06PM | 0 recs
Re: she already did and she will win in 2012 anywa

because you did not think?

by engels 2008-11-29 01:12AM | 0 recs
Re: she already did and she will win in 2012 anywa

Well setting aside your conviction that the states shouldn't have counted at all, how does that make Hillary Clinton not just... lose by more?

One of us is confused.  I think it's you because of the guffaws that accompany your posts, but I'm open to persuasion.

by Jess81 2008-11-29 01:44AM | 0 recs
Re: she already did

there is one way she won, she didn't give up until it was over, she didn't throw in her hand, she stayed upbeat and cheerful, she kept talking to the press even though they were very unpleasant to her, and she showed women how to keep trying, not cry over spilled milk and move on to the next task.  

by anna shane 2008-11-29 11:56AM | 0 recs
Re: she already did

Yes, she was a sore loser definitely. That's a way of "winning", never bowing out graciously until she's forced to, arguing that she was cheated out of this or that, offering her support in the end only for exchange of what we now see must have been so many numerous and prestigious positions for her and hers.

Now we see how scumbags like engels are encouraged by her sore loserdom to be sore losers themselves.

I only wish Obama had thrown everyone who'd ever shaken hands with the Clintons out. Then her defeat would have actually meant something definitive to clean out the worst that the Democratic Party has to offer. Obama ought have reached out to the best that the Republicans had to offer, instead of reaching to the Clintonians. He ought have forced those scumbags to found their own "hard-working people, white people" Appalachia-based party.

Now Obama's merely gonna be fighting the Clintonian obstructionism during his whole term, the same way that MyDD is now being forced to refight the primary wars with the Clintonista losers since they came back to bash the rest of us "Kool-aid drinkers" all over again, and spew how unelectable Obama really was, how we all simply got lucky for picking him, how he'd never have won if he wasn't lucky.

Clintonian losers and scumbags.

by Aris Katsaris2 2008-11-29 02:03PM | 0 recs
Re: she already did and she will win in 2012 anywa

your are not just confused, you are wrong but it is your duty to correct your mistakes, not mine...

by engels 2008-11-29 05:03PM | 0 recs
Re: Why Clinton could not beat Obama

Maye it's because Obama lied about getting us out of Iraq??

He sure has changed THAT tune!  :mad:

by wblynch 2008-11-28 08:23AM | 0 recs
Re: Why Clinton could not beat Obama


by Jess81 2008-11-28 09:01AM | 0 recs


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