Monday, March 31, 2008

For Want of a Nail... and a Brain Cell

So Ed "We don't vote for blacks here" Rendell decides to play Utau (if the Watcher was a whiny white male) and gives us an issue of What-If... Obama Was the Poor Loser:

"Just flip it for a second," Mr. Rendell said. "Let’s say Senator Clinton was ahead by about 110 delegates and ahead by less than 1 percent of the vote cast, and she and her supporters started to call on Senator Obama to get out. Just picture what the media would be saying. They’d be saying you’re being racist, you’re being everything in the world. It’s nuts! It’s nuts!"

Forget the fact that the mainstream media, in all their racial sensitivity, has been using the Wright controversy to hammer Obama as a dangerous black man come to roost his chickens because whitey gave us all the AIDs. That alone makes me suspect they'd be less likely to call an Obama a consumate survivor and scared to declare his chances over, even if the math makes it so - which has been the MSM line on Clinton even in this late hour.

No, the most salient point here is that the right course for alt-Obama is the same one for the Clinton in our timeline: quit. Alt-Obama would be in the same position, whose only hope is that alt-Clinton stumbles into a scandal big enough to wreck their inevitable victory. And, presuming that alt-Michelle Obama doesn't engage in gender-baiting after their upset loss in South Carolina and alt-Samantha Power doesn't spew bigotry about how the only way alt-Clinton got her position was because she was a woman, alt-Obama would actually be in an even better position than actual-Clinton, because he'd still have enough goodwill to negotiate a vice-presidency.

Clinton is quickly waning as a threat to Obama, so whether she stays in or quits really only hurts her at this point. And it is hurting her - dirty politics has manuevered her out of the vice-president position on Obama's ticket (unless he seriously swallows his pride and offers it to shore up the base); she is quickly destroying her goodwill in Congress through hard-selling the superdelegates, which creates enemies that block her chances of eventually becoming Senate Majority Leader; and if Obama does go on to lose in November, she will be painted as the Democratic Nader, whose political ambition caused her to tear the party apart, so that she has no chance of coming back to win it in 2012. She might still salvage her career by going after the governorship in New York, but does a state that has now had one governor fall and another one tarnished by sex scandals really want to invite Slick Willie to Albany?

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