Wednesday, April 23, 2008

Hillary won the battle, but lost the war

(bd: Hillary and her backers celebrating her "victory" in Pennsylvania, is a little like the lousiest team in football, the Miami Dolphins, being down 56-7, scoring a touchdown...and then doing an endzone dance & celebration! You kind of feel sorry for them, and are a little embarrassed for them! Maybe Senator Casey's endorsement of Obama cut her early lead from 20% down to 10%, thank you, Senator Casey! And was officially a 9.2% victory, NOT a 10% victory. And that's after an early 20% lead in a state with an outspoken, staunch Hillary supporter for its governor! I guess Hillary couldn't "seal the deal"! American voters have Obama ahead by an insurmountable lead. The "tide DIDN'T turn"! Reality vs. corporate media fiction!)

The Pennsylvania Primary was Hillary Clinton's last chance to deliver a game changing blow to Obama's campaign for the nomination. She failed to deliver.

Pennsylvania provided her with her final real opportunity to knock the wheels off the Obama campaign. She needed a crushing victory of 18% to 25% to have any real chance of altering the math or the psychology. Demographically, Pennsylvania was made for Hillary: the second oldest state in the nation, heavily blue collar, Catholic and rural -- Hillary's voter profile. She started with a lead of almost 20 points. But her final margin -- which the Pennsylvania Secretary of State says was only 9.2% -- fell far short of what was needed to stop Obama's nomination. Here's why:

1). Pledged Delegates. By CNN's count, Clinton netted about 14 pledged delegates in Pennsylvania. That still leaves Obama up by 151 pledged delegates. It is likely that after Guam, Indiana and North Carolina, there will be no net change in pledged delegates, even if Clinton wins Indiana, since Obama will certainly pick up delegates in North Carolina. But at that point only 251 pledged delegates will remain to be chosen.

Even if she got 80% of all of the pledged delegates that remain after Indiana, she would still trail Obama at the end of the day.

The battle for the pledged delegate advantage is over.

2). Popular Vote. Pennsylvania was her best opportunity to really close in on Obama's popular vote lead. She picked up about 216,000 net votes. But that still leaves her over 600,000 votes behind, and Obama will likely increase his popular vote margin further after the contests on May 6th. Her failure to blow Obama out in Pennsylvania makes it almost impossible for her to close the popular vote gap.

3). Electability. Clinton's entire strategy rests on the premise that she can convince Super Delegates that Obama is unelectable. Only a massive win in Pennsylvania would have credibly made that case. Clinton's victory did little to enhance her argument.

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