Friday, April 25, 2008

Is the Tide Turning?

While the Obama camp would have us believe that Clinton’s win in Pennsylvania on Tuesday was of little consequence, it looks to me – and, apparently, to many in the media who started to sing a somewhat different tune this week – that the tide may be turning in Hillary’s favor. For awhile, I was among those who felt she should quit lest the party become hopelessly divided. Then, I decided that was bullshit and the interminable length of this campaign should not stop us from seeing the election process through to the end. What’s wrong with giving every state an opportunity to have its primary, then choosing a candidate at the convention? Isn’t that what conventions are for?

With each passing day, The Pragmatist is looking better than The Idealist, mostly because Clinton has never said she wants to transcend politics; she wants to play a good political game, fight a good political fight. Obama, on the other hand, is starting to fray around the edges. His fatigue is showing and his strategy is weakening. We now know that when things don’t go his way, he can be petulant and imperious. And when political push comes to political shove, his team will try to play a traditional political game, even if he resists. Earlier this week, Hillary told Larry King she’s been enjoying the campaign process, which is entirely believable, given her history, perspective and style. She likes it in the trenches. Barack clearly does not, he prefers it in the bully pulpit – but he hasn’t won that prize, yet.

Last week, Clinton’s campaign sent an email to supporters asking for our input on the campaign so far and for suggestions for the future. I wrote back saying that from hereon in, she should just ignore Obama and go after McCain. A few days later, the Obama campaign announced they would [essentially] ignore Clinton and henceforth go after McCain. Good idea. That’s what they should both do.

Obama is not the enemy, it’s the clueless (and often heartless) Republicans who are. I say again: if Hillary doesn’t make it, I will vote for Barack, because I believe he is a caring person and a true Democrat who can be a good President. I greatly prefer Hillary, but I’ll take any Democrat I can get. In my voting lifetime, I’ve had to choose between far less palatable lessers of two evils. Of course Obama can beat McCain – if Democrats don’t forget on which side they’re increasingly expensive bread is buttered. But Hillary has a good shot now. Here’s hoping she gets a chance to aim at the real target.

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