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[UPDATE] State NARAL affiliates react

Received within the hour, a “Very Important Message from Karen Cooper ” (Exec. Dir., NARAL Pro-Choice Washington) re this morning’s NARAL endorsement of Barack Obama:

… None of us here, myself included, knew about it until a phone call this morning from D.C., and at that point it was a done deal. To be clear, we at NARAL Pro-Choice Washington remain neutral in the race … We strongly disagree with NARAL Pro-Choice America’s decision to endorse at this time.

… To endorse Obama at this point in the race is an unconscionable slap in the face to Senator Hillary Clinton.

Furthermore, I want to make sure you know there is no transfer of funds between our affiliate and NARAL Pro-Choice America. We are separate entities.

… our Board of Directors is planning a meeting to discuss our affiliate’s next steps.

Closed with a link to NARAL Pro-Choice Washington’s press release on the subject.

Kudos, Karen! Any other blindsided affiliate sightings out there?

[UPDATES] Likewise New YorkMissouriPennsylvania … others unofficially sound insulted-not-consulted, like Texas … while Oregon issues a firm statement of neutrality.

Hey! Sweetie, don’t let the door hit you on the way out!

I guess I left NPR on the radio this morning when I got to work. And when I got back, it came right on, “I guess this just slams the door shut on a campaign where the door was already pretty much closed,” some guy said while thinking, WWTSBQ, I’m sure.

Yep, Obama getting beat by a record number of primary voters in a blowout-landslide was successfully overshadowed by the endorsement of a has-been Presidential candidate who didn’t have the nerve to make an endorsement until he was all but certain to be on the winning side (Fred Barnes just called it a Meaningless Profile in Caution). John Edwards endorsed Barack Obama today.

So what? Yesterday, Hillary blew Obama out of the water by the only measure that really counts: Votes. As ronkseattle said, it was, 3-1. Three to One. THREE to ONE. — don’t let THAT door hit you, Barack!

It’s pretty obvious that this endorsement was planned for the day after Obama’s Humiliating Defeat in West Virginia. And (Just like the New Hampshire Debate) the boyz are ganging up on Hillary in a way meant to show just how much more powerful they are than her. I don’t know how successful all this who-ha is. When I got home, they’d just finished showing The Sweetie Clip, it looks like Obama really can’t stop himself.

When will that stupid bitch quit? Well, you fucking, fuckers — Hillary’s NOT going to quit.

[UPDATE] I don’t know how I left this out but, it’s particularly disgusting that they did this in Michigan where both Obama and Edwards totally screwed us all by removing their names from the ballot.

And Edwards?  He’s not worth my spit.

Whew! eRiposte is back at TheLeftCoaster

I was getting worried there for a moment. He/She has a great post today titled, “It Ain’t Over Yet” that summarizes the state of the campaign. I especially liked this bit:

[Big bonus for Democrats if Sen. Clinton becomes the nominee: She is building a massive base of Democratic voters who don’t trust the media to tell the truth about Democrats (like her) and who have deep contempt for the gasbags in the media. This is a dream come true for me because building voter skepticism about the media has been one of the principal failings of the Democratic party for a long time and she’s almost single-handedly accomplishing what to me should be one of the holy grails of Democratic and progressive politics, i.e., making voters realize that the media is elitist and often dishonest in how it transmits false, often Republican (and increasingly fake “progressive”) talking points about Democrats. Another holy grail that she’s on the right side of – she has been long been firmly in support of funding alternative progressive institutions and groups outside the Democratic party apparatus that are critical to ensuring the long term success of the progressive movement; contrast that with Sen. Obama’s inclinations.]

Yep, she could be a winner for us in so many ways one of the biggest being making the media narrative completely useless. Therefore, Donna Brazile will have her crushed.

The scoop on NARAL

I confess that I don’t visit Firedoglake like I used to so I have no idea how much in the tank they are for Obama. Probably quite a bit, right?

The NARAL endorsement of Obama made me think of Firedoglake but I’ll get to that in a second. Here’s the endorsement money quote from Nancy Keenan:

Sen. Obama has said, “A woman’s ability to decide how many children to have and when, without interference from the government, is one of the most fundamental rights we possess. It is not just an issue of choice, but equality and opportunity for all women.”

Further, I believe Sen. Obama is going to be the Democratic nominee. He leads in pledged delegates, superdelegates, the popular vote, and cash-on-hand. As a former elected official, I know that having the three “m’s” of a campaign – money, message and manpower (or womanpower!) – are how we win elections. Sen. Obama will be our next president.

And this part is laughable:

Sen. Obama is the leader who can unify Americans on both sides of our issue. He has reached new generations and energized young voters, independent voters, and Republican voters. He’s the candidate of the future, and today we are proud to put the power of NARAL Pro-Choice America’s one million strong members, activists and supporters behind Sen. Barack Obama.

Gee, Nancy, I don’t know how he’s going to do that seeing as he’s the one who helped create the rift in the first place. Ok, this is part of the Roe haka that they are going to try to roll out to use against us. I’m not buying it for two reasons: a.) NARAL could have endorsed the woman in the race if they weren’t so venal about money. and b.) Nancy Keenan has a history of making reprehensible endorsements. In 2006, she backed “Rape Gurney” Joe Lieberman in CT even while the local NARAL group backed Lamont and despite the fact that Joe Lieberman didn’t think it was necessary for all hospitals in CT to carry emergency contraception for rape victims if they objected to it because it was only a short ride to another hospital.

Jane Hamsher was livid. It’s one of the reasons she tried so hard to take Lieberman out. Then there was Keenan’s passivity in the Alito nomination. Time after time, Keenan has let women down and backed conservative candidates with less than stellar records on choice. So, you’ll forgive me if the endorsement leaves me non-plussed.

To get a full flavor of what Nancy Keenan’s NARAL is all about (hint: it’s money), check out these fine posts from Jane in the past:

Nice Going, NARAL
NARAL Lying for Lieberman
Please Try to Pretend You Care
Don’t Reward Failure by Giving Money to NARAL
Donating to NARAL is not Going to Protect a Woman’s Right to Choice
Third Way= Screw the Ladies
What’s Wrong With Nancy Keenan?
Can Someone Explain this to Me?

Now, the question is, will NARAL’s endorsement of Obama have Jane seeing red or has she now become one of those people who believe that “the enemy of my enemy is my friend”? Strange year. Strange year, indeed.

It’s different this time

I want to come back to Bob Casey’s comment last night about how he’s heard about defections before but everyone comes around in the end and unites behind one candidate. That may have been true in the past, but Barack Obama will not be a candidate who will benefit from such good will. Not this time.

In the past, I was willing to embrace the nominee, even if he, and it was *always* a he, wasn’t my first choice. I was a Clarkie in 2004 but I got behind John Kerry. Mondale and Dukakis didn’t inspire me like some of the other candidates like Paul Tsongas or Gary Hart but I cheerfully pulled the lever for them. But the difference is that back then, the races were not that close. Someone was always a clear frontrunner and locked it up decisively. And so the messiness of the Democratic party was hidden. Ted Kennedy’s outrageous behavior at the 1980 convention was the only time I can remember someone trying to highjack a result and even then it wasn’t really a contest except in Kennedy’s head.

This year, however, we are witnessing the prejudices and contempt in our own party structure. And it is all directed to the benefit of one candidate at the expense of the better candidate. That’s the thing that is so revolting about this year. Barack Obama is simply not a very good candidate. He is unseasoned and inexperienced. Next to Clinton, he looks and sounds like a child when it comes to policy. And while she keeps going and going, winning on a shoestring budget, he can’t even eek out 30 points in a state where he had twice the resources that she had.

He has benefitted from a sycophantic media that has applauded everything he does. And everyone knows why they are doing it. There is no mystery here. They want the weaker candidate against McCain this fall. But instead of fighting the media, the party leadership is aiding and abetting it. It has tolerated and sometimes even engaged in blatant sexism. The candidate himself has also done this, dogwhistling to men and never once rebuked his media fan club for piling on Clinton. To her credit, she doesn’t complain. But it’s not like we haven’t noticed that and the lopsided double standard. Then there is the charge of racism directed at us.

But the straw that is breaking the camel’s back is the way that Florida and Michigan is being treated. Donna Brazile and the Rules and Bylaws committee seem determined to give voters the finger and deliberately suppress Clinton delegates with the expectation that they can swing the nomination for Barry. They are telling us all who voted for Clinton so go to hell and then simultaneously telling us we have to vote for Obama or else. That plus the gaming of the caucus states and the media haka proclaiming the race over is revolting.

The point is, we can see it all now. Nothing is hidden. If there were levers pulled before for one of the other candidates that I voted for, I was unaware of it. I thought the Democrats actually sood for something, like Democracy. Like giving everyone a chance. Like treating people like equals. And here I see the exact opposite embodied in the person of Barack Obama, a man who is willing to get to the nomination by riding this wave of Clinton media hatred and his own party’s contempt for voters.

This is supposed to make me want to unite behind him? By lowering the bar from 2209 delegates to 2025, the weaker candidate benefits from one of the biggest affirmative action programs there is at the expense of the better candidate. And I’m, supposed to approve of this when there is a very real possibility that repercussions will spread throughout society as a result of taking out the most powerful woman in America in such a brutal manner? That’s supposed to be Ok with me?

No, Senator Casey. I have to draw the line somewhere. You guys have gone too far.

3-1. Three to One. THREE to ONE.

74.3% to 25.7%. THREE to ONE. That’s how badly West Virginia rejected Barack Obama, when John Edwards 26,000 votes are included.

173,000 votes, and counting. That’s the raw margin by which West Virginia rejected Barack Obama.

Continuing with our Numbers Game commentary — sometimes a number just jumps out at you. Here’s another (from RedState via MyDD):

Do you notice one number that sticks out like a sore thumb? That +37, in among the +60’s, +70’s and +80’s. Obama’s margin among African-American voters in Massachusetts.

What’s special about Massachusetts? Deval Patrick is what’s special. His campaign, his candidacy was a clone, an off-Broadway opening run of the Obama candidacy. The same David Axelrod slogans, the same Change and Hope and Yes We Can on the same short resume, the same old school ties and then … dismal results in office. They’ve heard it before, they’ve seen it before, and a lot of them have seen through it a long way back.

Voters age 18-29 gave Obama a -1 margin in the MA primary. Voters with postgrad education gave him only a +4. Voters whose families were “Getting Ahead” financially gave him only +2. Voters with incomes on $100,000 or more gave Obama a -10 margin in Massachusetts.

Obama’s core support all comes from AA’s. African-Americans. Affluent-Americans. And Adolescent-Americans. And they’re all capable of buyer’s remorse.

Wednesday: The voter’s have spoken, the bastards.

I’m listening to WNYC for the past hour and not one word about West Virginia. It’s been pledge drive, earthquake, cyclone and Palestine. Nada about Obama’s humiliating defeat in West Virginia where he lost 67-25.7. Hmmm, let’s see, that’s a 41.3 point difference. Not pretty for our presumptive nominee.

I broke down and caught a bit of CNN last night when Bob Casey was cocky about how the party will be unified and, yeah, Hillary supporters *say* they won’t turn out in the fall for Obama but he’s heard this kind of thing before and they’ll fall in line by November, they always do.

Oh, Really?

I got a moment of deja vu for a second there. It seemed familiar. Sort of like, “I can’t understand why you’re so mad. You’ve got no reason to be. Get over it.” or “You’re nothing without me. Where else are you going to go?” Yeah, keep on like that, Bob. Every time one of you mouth off that we’ll come crawling back instead of apologizing to us for calling us racists and stupid old women, I get a little more determined to teach you a lesson you will *never* forget.

If we’ve learned one thing from West Virginia, it’s that voters do not like to be told that their vote is meaningless. They don’t want to hear it is over before they have a chance to vote. And they overwhelmingly like Hillary in states where they snobby DINKS and AA’s don’t have a critical mass for Obama. There are many more regular working people, even working creative class, who do not think Obama is ready to be president. There’s nothing racist about that. Last night, she won the majority of college educated in WV as well. So, apparently, not all of the “smart” people are part of Obama’s fan base.

Donna Brazile and her rules and bylaws committee seem determined to drag the Democratic party to the brink. Her insistence that the magic number if 2025 instead of 2209 is a clear signal that she has no intention of letting FL and MI delegates that Hillary won go into her column so that they have some kind of critical mass to the rest of the states that voted for her. And that’s the most evil part of her whole scheme. Without those delegates, the rest of us Hillary voters might as well have stayed home. It doesn’t matter that we live in the most crucial states for the party in the fall. They have decided for us.

I don’t know how that decision can stand before someone blows a carotid and pushes Donna off a cliff but the Rules and Bylaws committee shouldn’t get too comfortable with the idea that they can get away with it. And if I were Obama and had any hope of winning in November, I’d walk back that haka right now.

In other news:

Anglachel goes over the West Virginia results and marvels at the stupidity of the Democratic party in Presence and Absence and WV Exit Polls.
Taylor Marsh has Donna’s number in Michigan and Florida. I’m getting the feeling that Donna is getting to be really unpopular.

Appreciating Obama’s Humiliating Defeat in West Virginia

With 65% or more of the vote, Hillary Clinton did very nearly as well in West Virginia as McCain – with 76% – did.  Well, he had more opposition. So, I guess I should also say that it took 3 or more Republicans (Huckabee, Ron Paul, Romney & Other) to do as well as the Democrat’s “Presumptive Nominee”, Senator Obama who got just over 25% of the vote.  (giggle) I guess I’m just a cheap laugh.

If you saw any of the cable coverage, you already know that this election was totally and completely meaningless.  Obama’s delegate lead is so commanding, he’s won so many states and amassed so much money — it’s almost absurd that they had to waste money counting the votes! 

Obama lost every single county in West Virginia. (Photo by hlr)

Her speech was one of the best ever:

. . . Now, in a campaign, it can be easy to get lost in the political spin and the polls or the punditry, but we must never lose sight of what really counts, of why all of us care so much about who wins and who loses in our political system. An enormous decision falls on the shoulders of Democratic voters in these final contests and those Democrats empowered to vote at our convention. And tonight, in light of our overwhelming victory here in West Virginia, I want to send a message to everyone still making up their mind. Continue reading