Thursday, January 31, 2008

Hugh Hewitt’s Advice for Obama:

If It’s Not Close, They Can’t Cheat. Well, from a slightly different context perhaps, but where the Clintons are involved, the point remains.

The Democratic Party really needs this to be a decisive victory for either Clinton or Obama, well before the convention.

If it’s close, and Clinton wins via cajolery of the super delegates1, Obama’s people will feel like the insiders have stolen the nomination from their man.

The nightmare scenario will be for Clinton to win via getting the Michigan and Florida delegates seated against party rules. The Obama’s supporters will know without a shadow of doubt that the nomination was stolen from their man.

Would having Obama run as Veep on a Clinton ticket help? Perhaps, but perhaps not. I have a tough time picturing Hillary putting someone in the Veep spot who would take the limelight away from her. I also have a tough time seeing Obama take the number two slot from someone who he perceives as winning by stirring up racial bias against him, and then going on to swipe the nomination via backroom deals or rulebreaking. He’s personally better served by maintaining his postion as a fresh new face in Democratic politics, rather than pickup the inevitable guilt by association that seems to follow the Clintons.

The obvious downside for Clinton is that with her high negatives, she really can’t afford to alienate more of the electorate than she already has. If African American voters feel that their man has had the nomination stolen, they may well stay home in droves. This will likely impact not only the presidential race, but down ticket races as well.

1. Given the Kennedy & Kerry endorsements of Senator Obama, these may not break nearly has heavily for Senator Clinton as was once expected. The tenor of the Clinton campaign may turn even more of these folks over to Senator Obama.