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Yinz got it backwards

All day long, I have been reading some version of Turkana’s plaintive wail:

Many of you passionate Clinton supporters have been in the game for a very long time. You knew what could happen. That the impossible seemed probable makes defeat that much harder to bear, but Hillary Clinton is not going to be president. She was lied about, smeared, vilified and demonized. And that was just by the corporate media. There was never going to be objective reporting. The behavior of many Democrats, particularly in the shrillosphere, was inexcusably petty, dishonest, and manipulative. People exposed themselves in ways that will never be forgotten. But none of that changes either the result or the necessity of salving the wounds, stepping back, and maintaining both composure and perspective.

It isn’t necessary that those who support Clinton now enthusiastically come to support Obama, but it is necessary that they come to support him. Even at the bare minimum level. And that bare minimum level is to vote for him, in November. You don’t have to like doing so, but you do have to do so. The alternative is unthinkable. Many of you like to think of yourselves as wiser and more politically astute than are many Obama supporters, and it is time to make that case for yourselves. Be as graceful in defeat as the worst of them have been graceless in victory. Obama himself, however imperfect, is a far better person than those who do such a terrific job of turning people away from him. Keep that in mind. Keep in mind the irrevocable damage that would be done by four more years of neocon/theocon/kleptocrat autocracy. And keep in mind that the often odious behavior you have seen from online Obama supporters is not the fault of the candidate himself.

Oh, brother. Where to start?
Continue reading

Do You Believe In Magic?

Last night Barack Obama boasted that he was within 200 votes of clinching the Democratic nomination.  He’s wrong.  That boast is premised on the assumption that the “magic number” for clinching the nomination is 2025.

But the “magic” of 2025 is the magic of fake disappearances, conjuring and pulling rabbits out of hats.  Obama’s faux magic number constitutes a majority of the Democratic delegates only if you don’t count MI and FLA’s alloted delegates.  The real Magic Number is 2209 — 50% + 1 of all the delegates, pledged and SDs, alloted to the 50 states, Guam and Puerto Rico.  But by excluding MI and FLA, Obama and Dean and Brazile and the MSM talking heads, not to mention The Blog That Must Not Be Named, seem to think they can lower the bar for clinching the nomination.  In other words, excluding MI and FLA kills two birds with one stone: it excludes Clinton delegates, and it lowers the magic number for Obama.   How conVEEEEEEENient.

Obama, of course, vetoed, stalled and squirmed his way out of permitting a re-vote in MI and FLA back when there was time to do so.  Not only did he fear a repeat of Clinton’s victories, he also feared the daunting task of securing 2209 delegates, rather than a mere 2025. 

The DNC and the talking heads all say that “MI and FLA will be seated in some fashion.”  That’s doublespeak for “MI and FLA will be seated in a manner which makes permanent the disenfranchisement of MI and FLA voters.”  If, for example, the DNC awards Obama the nomination at 2025 delegates, then the MI and FLA delegates will have been rendered meaningless, whether they are “seated” before or after the DNC hands the trophy to Obama.  You can’t say you’re seating MI and FLA, and then permit Obama to claim victory based on a magic number that doesn’t count MI and FLA’s delegates.

Yet this is precisely the sort of sleight of hand that the DNC and now Obama himself are trying to perform.  There are only two solutions to this problem, now that Obama has made it impossible for re-votes to be held.  Seat MI and FLA as is, and seat them now.  Or not.  But in either case, the DNC must make clear to everyone — the candidates, their supporters, the uncommitted SDs, and the MSM talking heads — that there is only one “magic number,” and that number is 2209.  Obama can win it with or without actually giving MI and FLA their tickets to the convention hall.  But he can’t win the nomination with only 2025 delegates. 

Even Albus Dumbledore doesn’t have enough magic to turn 2025 into 2209.

We’ve all wondered today what to do about supporting Hillary, and forcing the DNC to understand the magnitude of the errors it has made during this campaign season.  Spreading this fundamental fact — that Obama can’t win the nomination with 2025 delegates — is one such thing.  When you talk about seating MI and FLA, too many talking heads, not to mention Obamabots, just tune you out with intonations of “The ROOLz, the ROOLz.”  We should short-circuit talk about The ROOLz, and just talk about The Math.  The Math is simple. Nomination = 2209 delegates. Period.  Get them however.  Pledged, SDs, seat MI and FLA, don’t seat MI and FLA. But get 2209 delegates. 

Spread the Mathematical Truth far and wide.  Maybe then Dean and Brazile will get their heads out of their arses.



An Invitation to Democrats in Exile

Welcome all you newly “unaffiliated” voters! If you’re like me, you realized sometime in the last couple of months that you are part of the “old coalition” of the Democratic party. But you’re not cool enough to be courted by the “new coalition” because you’re working class, gay, hispanic, asian, a woman, old or a brilliant combination of an *uneducated* working class, sino-peruvian lesbian. And you said, “Um, that’s not really who I am” Actually, that’s NOT who I am, except for the woman part. (Lemme check *peeking down shirt* Yep, I’m a woman)

I’m getting kind of tired of being written off by my party except for the whole, “We need your vote” thing. I want my nominee to pander to me. I want him to make me promises he does not intend to keep. I want to sit at the cool lunchtable. So, today, I am registering as an “unaffiliated” voter. I mean, I’m a well-paid, suburbanite, college educated, working in a very creative field and I can shoot latte like the best of them. Plus, my boobs don’t sag so I will fit right in with all of the other Sports Illustrated Swimsuit Models with PhDs in Architecture that Obama has in his plus column.

Now that I am “unaffiliated”, I’m like one of those really attractive singles on hot dating sites. Obama is going to want my vote big time. When I was just a Democrat, I was completely unsexy. But I have shed that old skin, sort of like dermal abrasion, and I’m brand sparkling new and beautiful and so much smarter than I was just a few minutes ago. And my mind is suddenly unburdened. Yeah! I’m no longer worried about Social Security because that was the *old coalition’s” problem. Or universal healthcare because shared responsibility means that I might actually have to acknowledge the working class. Or high gas prices, because if people are spending too much on gas to drive to work, they should just buy a house closer to each of their jobs. Duh!

Any day now, Obama supporters will be knocking at my door and ask me to get a membership in their exclusive club. I will be treated like a queen once they scan the voter’s rolls in NJ and see my name. It will be like, “Oooo, Riverdaughter is a “creative class” unaffiliated. Well, we must really ask her to do a round of golf with us or share a latte.” I will be pampered and courted and made to feel better than all of you losers who comment on this blog.

Soon, I will not be able to associate with you or will only be able to sneer disdainfully at you in passing. Who needs real Democrats when you can win without them?

The Game has Changed [UPDATE]

By all accounts this morning, Barack Obama is the Presumptive Nominee.

“The Math” still dictates that superdelegates will decide the nomination. Whatever superdelegates decide next week, or next month, the decisions that stick are the decisions they make in Denver, in August.

HIllary can campaign like hell, or she can go into quiet mode, or she can even try to pull the Unity bandwagon out of the ditch. None of that matters.

All that matters now is how Obama fares in the next three and a half months as “McCain versus Obama” plays out in the national media spotlight. That will be the story, and that will be the polling focus. “Clinton v McCain” head-to-head polling will be harder to find, and the superD’s will have to content themselves with prospects like THIS:

Obama McCain
10.4% probability of winning 89.4% probability of winning
Mean of 249 electoral votes Mean of 289 electoral votes

In short, either McCain will crash, or it’s a giant game of “If all your friends jumped off a cliff, would you follow them?”. Then, in the last week of August, superdelegates cast the votes that count.

As Democrats who think politics is about consequences, and have watched decade after decade as our Party threw away cycle after cycle on the politics of self-approval, we cannot be optimistic.

Still, Hillary is Hillary. Capable. Unshakable. Ready to take the 3A.M. call — any day, any time of day — no matter what.

And August is a long way off.

——- UPDATE ——-

Democratic demographic quant-wonk John Judis, writing in TNR, suggests:

The Democratic primary is over […but…] During the last two months, Obama has faltered as a candidate. He has seen his political base narrow rather than widen, and some of his strengths turn into weaknesses.

With empirical detail, of course.

From my perspective, the shiny side of his coin now is his capacity to pull people in. The dirty side is that The Presumptive Nominee be pressed to deal in particulars, and particulars nourish negatives. Great leader that he is, he has led big factions to expect big slices of big pies at the Unity Banquet … and almost everybody will go home hungry.

Dear SD’s, here’s the only viable solution:

1.) Propose a joint ticket with Clinton on top, Obama as VP. She’s earned the top spot by capturing all of the big states and swing states. He is much more acceptable as a VP than she is. She is more qualified and experienced. You can’t afford to lose her supporters no matter how much you try to talk yourselves out of it, The AA community will come around because Barry can get experience in the executive branch, which he desperately needs, and run as her successor in 2016. They just want to see him get there. Why not do it in stages?
2.) Get the Rules and bylaws committee to waive the penalty on FL and MI so that Clinton gets the delegates she needs. You’re going to have to do this anyway. Ok, have Obama do this at a sunlit tableau surrounded by grateful Floridians and Wolverines. Just get on with it already.
3.) Negotiate the deal before the end of the primary season and before anyone hits the magic number, which is illegitimate without Florida and Michigan. If you wait until someone hits it, the possibility of getting the ticket you need starts to approach a limit of minus infinity.
4.) Fire Howard Dean and Donna Brazile ASAP.

I hate the idea of a unity ticket but that’s the only way I will vote for Obama this year- is if he is VP. Think about it because there are some majorly pissed off members of the “old coalition” out there who you are going to lose shortly.

I’m bumping this up from the comments. I know this person is a REAL Republican and this is what she has to say about the proposal above:

Riverdaughter – you know I’m the Republican lurker here. I was just talking to the hubby last night about what a debacle the primary has been with Michigan and Florida. To ignore people’s votes is just wrong. To say “Florida can’t have it’s primary before …” is just wrong. The election needs to be controlled by the will of the people, not the DNC chairman (and that’s what it will come down to). Hillary deserves top billing on the Democratic Ticket and it needs to be done soon. People like me will then have time to compare McCain and Clinton on the issues and make their objective opinion.

There you go. It’s one but I’ll betcha there are others.

One more thing: The way the Democrats have treated the “old coalition” in the past five months has made me realize that I no longer identify with the people who have seized the levers of power of the party. As of today, I am re-registering from Democrat to “unaffiliated” in NJ. If anyone in NJ wants to join me, here is the link.

Lake County Mayor McDermott says vote count looks improper

I picked this up off of By the Fault, Charles Lemos’ new blog (check it out). I can’t remember a time when I’ve seen one Democrat all but accuse another of corruption on national TV. But he’s got a point. The vote in Lake County, where Gary is located, was held up for hours after all of the other towns in the county had reported. Mayor Rudy Clay of Gary says it took them a long time to count 11,000 absentee ballots.

Sorry, that just doesn’t make sense. If everyone else, including Indianapolis, could get it done pronto, why couldn’t he? Or were they desperately fishing through the ballots, looking for ones to throw away? It doesn’t look innocent to me. It looks like there was a frantic attempt to swing it for Obama and they just couldn’t come up with the numbers.

Wednesday: There is no unity without FL and MI, Don-na

Donna Brazile did an awful lot of eye-rolling last night. I caught her doing it on several occasions when Paul Begala pointed out the obvious. But it wasn’t Paul that made the outrageous statement of the night. It was Donna herself:

BRAZILE: Well, Lou, I have worked on a lot of Democratic campaigns, and I respect Paul.*** But, Paul, you’re looking at the old coalition. A new Democratic coalition is younger. It is more urban, as well as suburban, and we don’t have to just rely on white blue-collar voters and Hispanics. We need to look at the Democratic Party, expand the party, expand the base and not throw out the baby with the bathwater.

***There are a couple good reasons to respect Paul Begala, Donna. He has actually won the presidential campaigns that he’s worked on. You, unfortunately, have not. I think you ought to listen to him.

This is what followed:

Ok, now let’s think about what Donna has just said: *WE* are part of the “old coalition”. We are working class, hispanic, women, seniors, asians. We cut across all socio-economic and education levels. We are over-represented in Florida and Michigan. What sets us apart is that we vote for Clinton. Therefore, we MUST be white trash Bubbas and Archie Bunkers. You can almost hear the contempt she has for us in her voice. That word “old” probably has a double meaning for Donna. (BTW, I happen to fit the Obama demographic but at this point, I’m beginning to think my mom is right. He is the anti-Christ, just with a lot less experience and the inability to win a debate.) Just where does Donna think the “old coalition” is going to go? And how about all of the women in that “old coalition”?

But this is not the only thing that bothers me about Donna. No, I think the thing that bothers me most is her consistent threat that if African-Americans don’t get Obama, bad things will happen. As if race is permitted to triumph over every other criteria we should use to pick a president. And Obama’s campaign has done the most despicable thing you can do to a fellow Democrat He’s destroyed Clinton’s character by manipulating her words and calling her and her supporters racists. But as we can clearly see from the election results, it is the African-American community that votes based on color of the skin, not content of the character. This is the sordid truth behind his win in urban areas, NC and other southern states where he holds 90+% of the African-American vote. In IN, we have the Gary’s mayor deliberately sitting on votes for hours. We can only speculate what was going on there but it doesn’t look pretty.

And here is Obama’s “new coalition”: college students, DINKS, African-Americans and crossover troublemaking Republicans who will not vote for him in the fall. It isn’t a new coalition. It’s a losing one without us. And without Michigan and Florida, it’s an illegitimate nomination. As Begala said, “Count me out”. Oh, that’s right, Donna already has.

Donna needs to be fired.

One More Thing: This race is not over. There is still KY and WV next week. But the late call for Clinton for Indiana didn’t give her the moment she needed last night to make a triumphant speech and ask for money. Forgive my tin foil hat but for all I know, the votes were withheld for just this reason. Now’s the time to make up for that. If you have a few dollars, throw it her way. Contribute here.

One more thing x 2: Yesterday during one of the breaks in my all day meeting, I had several people approach me to say they would never vote for Obama. They are not politicos and the statements were delivered without any prompting from me. They just flat out said, “We’re voting downticket but will skip the presidential if Obama is on the ballot.” So, Donna and Dean better get control of this situation and soon. There are many, many people who do not appreciate being drowned out by caucuses and the monolithic racial Frankenstein’s monster that Obama created.