Pelosi Poo-Poos Barack-Hillary and Hillary-Barack

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bush pelosi.jpg
Neither Hillary Clinton nor Barack Obama can publicly acknowledge that either would accept the 2nd slot on a Democratic ticket because it would spell the end of their campaign.
But I have to take exception to House Speaker Nancy Pelosi’s comment that a joint ticket is impossible. Dems in total are screaming out for a hybrid between experience and vision/hope — and Pelosi’s prognostications on what is possible or not possible in an election that simply has no precedent actually gives an assist to the Republican rivals of her party.
The chances of a major train wreck for Democrats who adopted primary mechanisms that seem to be paralyzing and potentially deeply dividing their party just got a bit worse.
— Steve Clemons

Comments

75 comments on “Pelosi Poo-Poos Barack-Hillary and Hillary-Barack

  1. Nobcentral says:

    Will – Obama’s got at least a 700,000 lead in the popular vote (not counting Wash, Nevada, Iowa, and Maine which have not reported the vote totals). He’s won just over 50% of the announced popular vote. No matter how large Florida and Michigan are, it’s statistically improbable that she could win them at margins large enough to overcome his lead in the popular vote.
    Further, I have never met, nor am likely to meet Mr. Obama and I am not one of his “fellows”. Nor do I subscribe to his seeming “no attack” philosophy. But I really didn’t think that what I wrote was particularly rude. In fact, I found it kinda funny. In fact, I set you up with the Han Solo line since he, you know, always beat the odds.
    At any rate, my point remains: It’s extremely unlikely that HRC can overtake Obama in ANY of the necessary measuring sticks aside from DLC Friends and Secret Handshakes. Her only path to the nomination at this point is the Fracture Strategy.
    (I HATE Captcha!)

    Reply

  2. Will Bower says:

    Jim.
    Since your pushing me towards that corner, I’ll simply say that, yes, the smear -is- about Obama, and that, no, the Clinton campain -hasn’t- used it. (Nor am I sure that I would -want- them too.)
    Rove, however, very well might.

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  3. Will Bower says:

    Nob.
    1. I’m not talking about Michigan and Florida as they -currently- stand. I’m talking about Michigan and Florida once they’ve had -new- elections. I still haven’t been shown cold, hard numbers to suggest that she cannot retake the lead in the popular vote wants all the contests have been concluded, if/when including revotes from the very-populated Florda and the almost-as-populated Michigan.
    2. I’m neither ‘hot’ nor am I ‘bothered’ about Ohio. At least not at the moment.
    3. I professed freely that my intuitional take on the situation doesn’t merit “cred”. For you to go out of your way to reiterate that — only with an insulting overtone — amounts to little more than a personal attack. Again, I ask, is that the Obama way you and many of your fellows have been talking about?

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  4. jim miller says:

    will-
    1. I am basing my count on mutually agreed upon dnc rules..you cant count michigan b/c his name wasnt on the ballot and you cant count florida b/c who knows what the actual vote would have been with a primary that counted…the democratic party evolved from thomas jefferson, not bush and rove….
    2. the smear isnt about obama b/c if it was then hrc would have already used it….the clintons southern strategy is disgusting, believe me if they had legit other dirt they would have used…though I am sure they are floating as many smears as possible….open your eyes…she would not even say he was not a muslim….how many prayer breakfasts were they at together…come on, is this the type of leader we need representing 1600? no different than the last 8 years…the last 3 weeks speak for themselves…

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  5. Nobcentral says:

    Will – Forget Michigan. Obama wasn’t even on the ballot. And forget Florida. He didn’t campaign. Any effort to include them in Hillary’s favor can only be described as the Fracture Strategy and likely signals the death knell of a Dem President in 09. The passions and intensity on both sides are too heavy to accept anything other than a revote or an even split 50-50 (which actually would help Hillary since she’s only won about 46% of post-Edwards delegates).
    Anyway, I know you’re all hot and bothered by Ohio but I think two things should be clear.
    1. The dem primary was a choice between Dems not between a Dem and a Repub. Any conclusion that Obama can’t win Ohio because he didn’t win the primary is without merit. There may be legitimate reasons why he could or could not win the state, but you serve no one by mindlessly repeating the latest HRC meme.
    2. Ohio is a swing state that can be won by either HRC or Obama. It’s still a long way out but you can’t expect to get much cred on any blog by saying “screw the polls! my gut says that Obama can’t win Ohio and that’s that!” which is what you essentially said above with your Han Solo “never tell me the odds” moment. Here’s an excellent site that, when working, shows a comparative analysis between Hillary and Barack vs. McCain (Obama 47-McCain 44, Clinton 52-McCain 42). http://www.270towin.com/
    My point being – The more you post, the more your pro-HRC partisanship trumps your arguments. Any objective analysis suggests that it’s extremely unlikely that HRC can take the lead in delegates OR popular vote. Her only path to the nomination, at this point, appears to be a back room deal that would likely fracture the party. I’m not ruling it out. She has shown a cutthroat ruthlessness that many find extremely unappealing and has virtually clouded her message beyond repair. It would be extremely difficult, in my opinion, for HRC to win the nomination and maintain any sense of party unity.
    Ultimately, I’m in it to win it. Four more years of Repub no accountability, foreign adventurism, and economic insanity is not something we can risk. All things being even, Hillary’s path to the nomination makes that reality much more likely than Obama’s.

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  6. Will Bower says:

    JohnH. I can write out a lengthy list of Hillary accomplishments. The matter at hand was specifically her Senatorial record, and I freely admit to have little memory-retention when it comes to Senatorial records. I merely thought Steve would be the smarter person to speak on that one particular issue.
    Jim. Are you including Florida and Michigan in your scenario in which Hillary can’t retake the popular lead?
    Jim. Re: Upcoming smears by the RNC. I’m not going to be the one to promote it… but there’s a certain story out there about a certain candidate that hasn’t yet been brought the public’s attention. I honestly don’t mean to be coy, but it’s not pretty for that certain unnamed candidate. I’ll also add that certain other candidates -could- have promoted this certain story, but -haven’t-.
    Weldon. By no means should the electorate vote our of fear of a white backlash. My original point was to highlight the ramifications of Hillary’s win in Ohio last week. But you’re correct that — in an ideal situation — none of those things would matter.

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  7. Tahoe Editor says:

    What personal attacks?

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  8. jim miller says:

    Tahoe,
    The personal attacks are unnecessary but indicative of your canidates leadership style….but I suppose when the numbers are absolut and definitive you must resort to this….
    in math when all reasonable probablility is eliminated of someone achieving 2025 pledged delegates or winning a majority of states then they have been mathematically eliminated…

    Reply

  9. Carroll says:

    I cannot imagine a worse marriage made in hell than Obama as Pres. and Bill and Hillary as VP.
    And if Obama was the VP with Hillary as Pres he would end up like Gore.

    Reply

  10. Linda says:

    There are two Lindas who post at TWN, and the “Linda” who posted around 10:30 this morning is not this one.
    Pelosi was one of 126 Democrats who voted in 10/02 against the resolution allowing Bush to use military force in Iraq. She is going to officially stay neutral probably because of her position. But at least on this issue of judgment, she agrees with Obama. I hope the debate over the next six weeks with rise to a higher and more substantive level. Clinton waffles when asked about this vote talking about the best information available. But I want to know if she is such a hard worker for long hours why she didn’t avail herself of the opportunity every member of Congress had to go to a secure room and read the NIE reports.
    I also hope that by March 15 Clinton releases her prior years’ tax returns and that the MSM and Obama campaign stop accepting her lame claims about “we’re getting them together” and some of her surrogates excuses that taxes aren’t due until April 15. That’s only for 2007. Indeed if IRS contacted any of us to question an item on our tax returns, we could produce them in five minutes.
    I do think that regardless of who is at the top of the Democratic ticket, there are real concerns for anyone running with Hillary because they will be running with Bill and Hillary. Also I think it is important to consider that a lot of people in both parties want somebody other than a Bush or a Clinton in the White House next January.

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  11. weldon berger says:

    Will, I’m not opposed to gut reactions so long as they’re not used to start wars or hire FEMA directors.
    That was someone else saying that Clinton is engaging in scorched-earth politics, although now you mention it, her implication that McCain is better qualified to be president than Obama comes as close as I care to see and will undoubtedly play a role in the general if Obama gets the nomination.
    Regarding racism, though, I get the impression that you think Obama supporters should view the possibility that it will play a role among Democrats in the general election as a factor in deciding whether or not to vote for him in the primaries. In a sense that’s just another facet to the electability question, but it’s one I find disturbing—should some Democrats bow to the threat of a white backlash among other Democrats?—and I will predict that if Clinton takes the nomination at the convention and that line of thought is perceived to play a significant role in her prospective success, something that seems increasingly likely with the likes of Geraldine Ferraro running amok, Democrats will be well and truly (and deservedly) screwed.

    Reply

  12. Nobcentral says:

    I hear Puerto Rico is winner take all. Is this true?
    Tahoe –
    Not true. Traditionally it’s spoke of that way because traditionally there is only 1 candidate by the time the vote. But the truth is, they apportion delegates just like every other state.
    http://blog.washingtonpost.com/fact-checker/2008/02/will_puerto_rico_decide_everyt.html

    Reply

  13. Tahoe Editor says:

    Nicholas:
    I disagree. There’s hardly any daylight between their policy positions, and that’s why so much of this campaign is coming down to personality and identity politics. Newcomers to the process may be consumed with “The Sorrow and the Pity Party,” but anyone who understands this process knows that once this contested race is over, BHO & HRC will be 100% on the same team. Even BHO has said they’re both just trying out for quarterback.
    http://www.vanityfair.com/politics/blogs/wolcott/2008/03/look-i-understa.html

    Reply

  14. Tahoe Editor says:

    “Case closed” comes with 2,025. Trying to close the case now smacks of desperation and disdain for voters who haven’t yet had their say.
    jm needs emergency treatment for CDS.
    I hear Puerto Rico is winner take all. Is this true?

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  15. Nicholas says:

    I think that Nancy Pelosi is correct; a Clinton-Obama ticket or an Obama-clinton ticket make no sense. The idea of unity assumes that Obama and Clinton are in agreement about the solutions to our problems and in how to exercise leadership.
    Barack Obama and Hillary Clinton do not agree about priorities, programs, or ways of governing.
    Each would hate serving as vice-president with the other.

    Reply

  16. jim miller says:

    will,
    1. Hillary cant win the popular vote unless she goes 70-30 in all remaining contests…probability is zero thus your premise is mathematically flawed….HRC HAS BEEN MATHEMATICALLY BEATEN ON ALL 3 LEVELS….CASE CLOSED…..
    2. vetted against fear/hate—no I havent forgotten the 90’s….remember bills anti gay radio ad….hrc supporters will not discuss documented fact. but point 3 will gove you a taste of the new rnc playbook
    3. RNC future fear/smear/hate of hrc:
    1. Her orientation
    2. Monica—see number one.
    3. impeahment
    4. clinton talk—all lies all the time
    5. 911—billy received major donation committments from major mid east players with bin laden ties in 98—-around the time he had the shot…
    6. 911—bill and hill gave obama a free ride b/c of the donation commitment and b/c of impeahment/monica…
    7. Hrc enabled bill as a sexual predator..and then punished the victim by removing her from her job…gender triangulation…
    8. The clintons are responsible for 911 b/c of 5 and 6….this will be backed into….
    9. Bill continues to do business with terrorists….
    10 the clintons are draft dodgers…clinton’s own letter….
    I dont support or agree with the above but Obama campaign has resisted this garbage and frankly deserves more credit…with her negatives as high as they are…lee atwater could destroy her coalition from his grave…the 90’s were a cake walk compared to what we would have seen iof hrc had not been mathematically eliminated….
    After the past 3 weeks havent you grown tired of trying to defend/apologize for their fear/smear/hate ?

    Reply

  17. Tahoe Editor says:

    Nob:
    When the crapcha f’s up (1 in 10 times for me), hit “back” then “refresh” — your comments should still be there with a new crapcha to try.
    Steve, this is a problem. Crapchas are fubar 10% of the time — and I have to enter my personal info each time, too. Anyone else?

    Reply

  18. Nobcentral says:

    Well the stupid security captcha crapcha ate my comment so I’m going to give the short version this time.
    HRC established the following criteria:
    1. Nat Sec experience is #1.
    2. She and McCain have the experience.
    3. Obama doesn’t.
    Ergo, McCain is a better candidate in the general than Obama AND would make a better president (since you need experience voting for illegal and ill-advised wars to be Prez and all).
    That’s Lieberman politics. Buddy up with the opposition party over your own. Enough said.

    Reply

  19. linda says:

    i’ve often suspected that nancy’s only real interest was her historical appointment as first woman house majority leader. from her behavior, she much prefers minority party status. that way, she’s not responsible for anything; and she can make all the foot-stamping, outraged policy statements her heart desires without worry that anything will be implemented.

    Reply

  20. JohnH says:

    Will Bower: As I suspected, when supporters are pressed to defend Hillary’s experience, they can’t. They have to appeal to others. BTW it’s Hillary who’s touting her experience, not Obama, so the onus is on her and her supporters to defend that claim. So far I’ve seen them deliver nothing but assertions–hot air.

    Reply

  21. Tahoe Editor says:

    Nob:
    The Obama camp now has a memo out saying Hillary hasn’t passed the CIC threshold, either. This is politics. I’ve said it before, I’ll say it again: They’ll be puffing up each other’s skirts by the summer.
    Let’s get real.
    James Wolcott | The Sorrow and the Pity Party
    http://www.vanityfair.com/politics/blogs/wolcott/2008/03/look-i-understa.html

    Reply

  22. Will Bower says:

    Jim.
    1. Hillary hasn’t been vetted against the politics of fear and hate? Have we forgotten the 90s?
    2. Mathmathematically eliminated? It would not be a “changing of rules” for the Superdelegates to parallel a popular-vote win on Hillary’s part. In fact, it would be -more- of a Bush-Gore scenario is Hillary -were- to win the popular vote whilst Obama won the nomination because of the more arbitrary delegate count.
    Nob.
    Hillary has said -repeatedly- that either she or Barack would be a better president come November. Her statement about McCain was -not- an endorsement. Her statement was stating that Obama would lose the “experience argument” come November.
    I must add here that most of the more-vocal Obama-supporters here — like Ms. Power — use such hateful, bilious speech towards the Clintons. This doesn’t correspond very will with the Obama pledge of Hope and a New Era of Politics.

    Reply

  23. Nobcentral says:

    Will/Tahoe Editor –
    Hillary prefers John McCain for President than Barack Obama.
    That’s your party split, your scorched earth strategy, your Lieberman Democrat.
    Everything else she has done *could* be considered the norm for a primary season. But nothing excuses her from clearly stating that John McCain would be a better president than Obama.
    The objection is not that she is just “attacking Obama”. That is to be expected. It’s that she’s actively rooting for a GOPer over Obama. There is no excuse or explanation that can justify that.

    Reply

  24. jim miller says:

    Will,
    1. Primary results are not accurate indicators of GE results…you are fooling yourself if you think HRC would perform better against mccain in ohio….she has not been vetted by fear/hate politics yet…obama has….but I digress. A majority of qualified political scientist think that HRC will be fortunate to carry 8 states if she is the nomineee…her laden negatives b4 the primary were at 49%…add in a % of african americans and progressives that will vote against her in a fairy tale ge coupled with mccains bedrock coalition and she struggles to get to 6…I dont this factual analysis will matter b/c of point 2….
    2. HRC HAS BEEN MATHEMATICALLY ELIMINATED: I reject the premise of popular vote count—democrats dont change rules mind game…unless she is bush….it’s a best of 3 model for the democratic nomination: number of states/pledged delegates and popular votes…game over!!! I am a gentleman so I will humor the hillaryland nutjobs(not you but definitely a large contingent—see point 3) Populsr vote: we must also use a proportional analysis for counting the caucus states…hrc wants all of them to count….thus the model would be the % of the win times the sum of the total party membership multiplied times the caucus turnout percentage….bottom line is that both the clinton argument and the mutually agreed upon dnc rules produce the same result: mathematical elimination of HRC—numbers dont lie…
    3. Politics of fear/hate/smear: I reject the sexy expression the “kitchen sink”..my granddaddy would say no matter how much lipstick you put on a pig…it’s still a pig…or something like that…I wont list the 20 different examples of the hate politics that the clintons have ascribed to over the last 3 weeks but it has been overwhelming and powerful(until 3 weeka ago I loved and admired both clintons..I am not part of the I hate the clintons moonies)2 perfect examples…First ferraro goes race on obama by dismissing his accomplishments as race based, then obama denounces, next hrc says she disagrees and then maggie williams frames it as obama playing the race card…wow…might work but wait ferraro made THE IDENTICAL comments about Jesse in 1988 to washpost….ouch….clintons are about to get burned triangulating working class whites/soccer mom whites against obama…perfect…this episode is who the clintons are…it’s why I cant vote for them on moral principle much less common sense…the second example comes via andrew sullivan linking to billy’s 1996 anti gay radio ads that he ran in the south in the GE…filthy bile crap and no place for either of these in the democratic party….these are 2 brief snapshots of the type of leaders the clintons are….no thank you…I have been an apologist enable for the last 16 years and it ended 3 weeks ago, while I will never join arms with the right wing moonies, I certainly will not respect/admire/vote for someone who wants to lead our country that thinks this type of activity is part of electoral process….no thanks

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  25. LBH says:

    Steve,
    I agree with: “Dems in total are screaming out for a hybrid between experience and vision/hope”.
    But is either of them really the best hybrid partner to the other? There are plenty others with much more experience than Hillary to accompany a vision/hope ticket. There are better pairings than Obama to a Clinton “experience” ticket (quotation marks because I think Sen. Clinton’s experience will not hold against McCain’s as a ticket).

    Reply

  26. TonyForesta says:

    If only Pelosi would focus more on placing IMPEACHMENT on the table, and less on undermining the democratic candidates.

    Reply

  27. Will Bower says:

    Weldon, unfortunately I must fall back on what is an unarguable,
    visceral, intuitive take on my fellow Ohioans. I’m sorry to
    disappoint you by not putting forth only sound intellectual
    arguments, as one -should- do in this forum. If I’m wrong, I’ll
    humbly come back here in November and let you bury me in “I
    told you so”s. That said, my experience of my home state tells
    me that Ohioans would give the election to McCain before they
    would give it to Obama… and, yes, probably much of that does
    come from what I sense to be closeted (and not-always-so-
    closeted) racism.
    As for what you are calling a Scorched Earth policy on the part of
    Hillary… Where do you see this? The loudest argument I’ve
    heard is that she tried to marginalize Obama as the “black
    candidate”… but was he not the first to take exception to what
    was otherwise her rather harmless praise of LBJ? Her statement
    had nothing to do with race. The -Obama- camp made it about
    race, in an attempt to paint her as a racist. To me, -that- was
    the first foul in this race.
    One could say that Bill Clinton was being racist by pointing out
    that Jesse Jackson won South Carolina. He wasn’t. He was
    pointing out that candidates who don’t have a chance at winning
    the White House often win in South Carolina. I’ll admit that he
    was marginalizing the Democratic party’s voice in South
    Carolina… but he was fighting against a media that had become
    so indulgent of — and promoting of — Barack Obama. In the
    short term, it looked bad on Bill’s part. But, in the long run —
    and with a little bit of help from the likes of Saturday Night Live,
    of all sources — others came around to see the same point of
    view. …that the media has created a candidate called Barack
    Obama… a candidate built who had built his career on a series
    of free passes… on sound bites… on demagogery… and of
    meatless — albeit oratorically potent — rhetoric.
    At the risk of sounding like Lloyd Bentsen… Barack Obama is no
    JFK… and the media seems to be Scorching Earth of its own in an
    attempt to -make- him a JFK. This election is as much about
    how we’ve become beholden to the media’s power over us as it
    is about anything else… and Hillary has the difficult, ugly task of
    dowsing us with cold water… before we buy an otherwise empty
    commodity that the network marketers want us to buy.

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  28. JonU says:

    Dan has it, I believe.
    Clinton slashing at Obama has the potential of fracturing the
    very coalition that is going to elect Obama(or Clinton).
    McCain slashing at Obama will do damage no doubt. But I don’t
    believe it will have the same breadth of impact that Clinton
    doing it will. McCain will lose independent voters when he does
    this, who are interested in Obama because he is not doing this
    and is pitching unity.
    As well, the Dems have a huge fundraising advantage this cycle.
    Clinton hitting Obama with these types of pit-fighter attacks is
    doing McCain’s work for him, and blunting that advantage.
    The negative attacks have basically also set up an ideal
    argument for McCain if there was a “dream ticket”:
    “Clinton called Obama unfit for Presidency. Clinton prefers
    McCain over Obama as Commander in Chief.”
    Even without the “dream ticket”, she’s handed McCain sound
    bites that are going to suck up endless media space down the
    road.
    It’s scorched earth. But not scorched earth with a wider view
    where it can at least be argued ends justify means. It’s narrow
    and blindered and looks no farther than playing up her chances
    of a back-room-deal nomination. She’s really done an awful,
    awful thing here. I don’t know how many have seriously
    considered how much damage she has done against the Dems
    in the GE, with these attacks.
    She’s attempting a scorched earth policy against her own people
    and her own production capacity, if you will. Morality aside,
    scorched earth only makes sense against enemies.

    Reply

  29. weldon berger says:

    Will, Cokie Roberts? Yikes. The woman has a custom-built pipeline to Drudge’s subconscious.
    What I’m asking is whether there’s anything to indicate how much of a factor race was in the white vote for Clinton, and whether there’s anything to indicate whether or not those Democrats for whom it was a factor would 1) vote for McCain over Obama or 2) stay home or 3) shrug and vote for the black guy. And I guess a followup question would be whether you think Democratic voters should be adjusting their preferences on the basis of the possibility that other Democratic voters might break out in sheets come November. Which is to say, is there any practical value to the speculation?

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  30. Tahoe Editor says:

    Why is it that Hillary is splitting the party by staying in, and not Barack? Please. They both have enormous and nearly equal support — calls from either camp for either candidate to drop out are desperate and pathetic.

    Reply

  31. Dan Kervick says:

    Again Will, my point isn’t that Clinton is injuring or dirtying up Obama in particular, but that she is injuring the Democratic party in general, including her own cause should she be the nominee, by dividing the party into antagonistic groups. You might think this would be self-destructive, short-sighted behavior. And you’re right. But the Clintons have a history of self-destructive, short-sighted behavior. It’s always been about *them*; and if HRC is going down, she won’t stop short of vindictively dragging down everything around her.

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  32. Will Bower says:

    Dan.
    Just this week, TPM gave Hillary at 6% lead over McCain. Unless,
    of course, you mean a hard 50% when you say “half”.
    I’m not sure that it can be argued that -Hillary- can be hurting
    Obama now in a way that -Rove- won’t be able to do so doubly
    in the Fall. Even if Hillary -is- injuring Obama now, she’s having
    to do so in a way that doesn’t alienate those undecided
    Democrats that are still out there. Rove and McCain will not be
    restricted by such concerns in the general.
    And I make the following point respectfully — as I myself am
    often a numbers man — but it seems as if so much of the
    Obama campaign has been about numbers as of late. Delegates.
    Percentage points. Margins… all those things that are the polar
    opposite of “hope” and “inspiration”. If Hillary -is- crippling
    Obama, it’s that she’s forcing him to be a number-cruncher out
    there on the trail, and not an orator. Being a wonk didn’t do –
    Gore- too much good back in 2000.

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  33. Dan Kervick says:

    Attacks by Karl Rove are no problem. You can fight back vigorously against them, and the only division you create is the division between the 30% of the country on the Rovian right and the the other 70% of the country on the left and in the middle. The problem with Clinton’s tactics is that they seek to divide Democrats: blacks against whites, men against women, young against old. Every day she stays in the party gets weaker.
    No polls have shown that more than half the country is prepared to vote for Clinton over a Republican rival. She hit a public approval ceiling long ago that she has never surpassed it. Why would a potentially victorious Obama campaign want to attach itself to that ball and chain? Pelosi is just articulating a cold truth that more Democrats need to hear and get through their heads.

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  34. Will Bower says:

    And I just need to add this…
    If you think Hillary is hurting Obama with her “knives” -now-…
    …just -wait- ’til Rove pulls out -his- cutlery in the Fall.

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  35. Will Bower says:

    JohnH.
    Firstly, any attack you can make about -Hillary’s- level of
    experience can only be returned in spades towards Obama.
    That said, I -must- appeal to the Higher Powers (Steve Clemons,
    where are you?) when you say “Hillary’s record of accomplishment
    in the Senate is virtually non-existent”. That’s just flat out wrong…
    but I know that there are people out there who can better defend
    her career as a Senator than can I.

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  36. Will Bower says:

    And I must agree with MarkL:
    A 100-delegate-lead does -not- a nominee crown.

    Reply

  37. JohnH says:

    Will Bower: you’re baffled at people’s questioning Hillary’s “rather impressive resume”? Could you elaborate on that resume? Where is the evidence that Hillary has made things happen any more than Laura Bush, Barbara Bush, Nancy Reagan, or Rosalynn Carter? Keep in mind that bearing witness to history is different from participating in it or shaping it. If it were as easy as having been there, Bill Moyers and other press secretaries would have made great presidents.
    Hillary’s personal track record–unless you assume a co-presidency (shudder)–is negligible. Her record of accomplishment in the Senate is virtually non-existent.

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  38. Will Bower says:

    JonU.
    Fantastical? Perhaps. Possible? Possibly. 🙂
    And the media has done Hillary few favors. It was the media
    that declared Hillary the presumptive heir almost two years ago.
    Is it any wonder that her supporters were slow to motivate and
    to rally to her? The people who are strongly for Hillary… well,
    they were in a deep slumber brought on by a hypnotic media.
    And then, to shake things up and sell more stories, they usher in
    “The Contender”. What was a girl to do?
    And, yes, I would much prefer to see Hillary as Senate Majority
    Leader than to see her as Vice President.
    Likewise, yes, I would much rather see Barack Obama as Vice
    President than to see him as President. Better yet, as Governor
    of Illinois… and then a comeback down the road.
    Hmmm… as fantastical as it was, my Gore/Obama/Hillary
    scenario is seeming more and more enticing.

    Reply

  39. MarkL says:

    Yes, Dan, it’s so unfair that Clinton actually campaigns. Doesn’t she realize that you personally have decided that Obama is the winner?
    How tacky.
    Puhleaze.
    With a few exceptions, I thought this blog was mostly frequented by grown-ups. This is an ordinary campaign. Except for the Obama campaign’s attempt to deflect legitimate criticism with complaints of racism, nothing particularly outrageous has happened.
    Does anyone remember the ad that Kerry used against Dean? The one using Osama’s picture? Now THAT was dirty politics.. but Democrats still voted for Kerry.
    Funny thing—the last few days have made me glad that Dean did not become the nominee, and I was a big fan of Dean before this. He can’t even handle the DNC job. President? No way.

    Reply

  40. Dan Kervick says:

    Personally, I haven’t met these folks who are screaming out for an Obama-Clinton ticket, although I know polls say they’re out there in substantial numbers. I’m guessing the sentiment is a bit softer than the media promoters of the “dream ticket” idea would have it. I’s a dumb idea, and I’m glad a prominent party leader has finally stepped up to the responsibility of nipping it in the bud. Now that we are getting some clear statements from the leadership, maybe the support for this silly fantasy will begin to dissipate.
    The Democrats need to do something to bring this thing to a resolution. The campaign that never ends is now about to go into a six-week deep freeze of suspended animation while we sit around and wait for the damn Pennsylvania primary to happen, with no other contests between now and then. By the time this is over, the country is going to be thoroughly bored and overdosed on the Democratic candidate, whichever one it is. And every week, the Clinton campaign pulls some new trick to try to divide Democrats and divide the country, in the pursuit of short-term electoral gains. She’s slow poison to the party, and a November car wreck waiting to happen.

    Reply

  41. Beth says:

    Steve,
    I don’t know if you’re aware of how divisive the Clinton campaign has been. The latest with Ferraro, and their responses–go read what your colleague Josh thinks about it and see how the Clinton campaign is sending purposely mixed signals.

    Reply

  42. JonU says:

    Will Bower
    “What you call “knives”, I call “the spotlight”.
    Interesting that there was no “spotlights” when Hillary was ahead and running the inevitable campaign. Remember, when she said she didn’t want the Dems tearing each other apart? I remember, as do many others.
    And you’re Gore/Obama/Hillary scenario is a fun one, no doubt. But rather fantastical, no? And people call Obama supporters idealistic… 😉
    I stand by the assertion that Obama pulls in independents while Clinton drives them away. And how the nomination is won matters intensely. Nothing will be more fracturing of the Democratic Party/progressive/youth/African-American/independent coalition that currently looks so promising, than Clinton continuing to conduct herself as she has been with the Rovian attacks and attempting to overturn Obama’s very likely significant delegate lead.
    I also think Clinton is a serious albatross as VP candidate, for the very same reasons.
    Unlikely as it may seem to this lifelong cynic, this year, how someone wins the Democratic primary is more important than who wins it.

    Reply

  43. Will Bower says:

    Weldon.
    Cokie Roberts has been discussing the phenomenon of a
    Democratic defection in the case of an Obama-McCain match-up…
    and, yes, it’s -speculated- that some of that defection would be
    racially motivated.

    Reply

  44. Will Bower says:

    There *is* one other solution.
    In desperation, the party convenes a summit:
    Al Gore, Barack Obama, and Hillary Clinton
    Recognizing him as the true heir-apparent from 2000 — and as
    the only way out from the otherwise poisonous deadlock — the
    delegates vote for -Al Gore- at the convention.
    In the brokering, Obama gets placed as Gore’s Vice-President,
    and Hillary is secured the Majority Leadership of the Senate.
    Obama would lose none of his star-power by being second to Al
    Gore. Hillary could flourish as a modern-day LBJ in the halls of
    the Senate. Al would handily beat McCain in November, and
    history would repair itself by restoring 2000s rightful President
    to the Oval Office.

    Reply

  45. plainbrown1 says:

    Now let me see…
    Sen. Obama could become president with Pres. Clinton and Sen.
    Clinton as vice president… or…
    Sen. Clinton could become president, with Pres Clinton co-
    president and Sen. Obama vice president…
    Gee… why wouldn’t anyone want those to happen?
    I for one would just love to be second guessed for 4 years by the
    Clintons, or even better – to be relegated to obscurity by co-
    president Bill…
    What a dream… if you like nightmare scenarios!
    If either of them seriously considered the other it would be
    grounds for instand disqualification@

    Reply

  46. weldon berger says:

    Will, what Pelosi could have been down the road is, I think, foreshadowed pretty well by what she’s been in the past, which isn’t anything to crow about. Re Ohio, I don’t understand: is there data suggesting that significant numbers of white Democrats will vote for a white Republican over a black Democrat?

    Reply

  47. Will Bower says:

    I must admit — all bias aside (I think) — that I’m baffled when
    people question Hillary’s rather unique history and (what I consider
    to be) her rather impressive resume’.
    Had Obama not run this year (as he originally said he wouldn’t),
    would his supporters be so disparaging of what has been a rather
    fascinating career?

    Reply

  48. JohnH says:

    For some time I’ve been challenging the notion of Hillary’s experience. But I haven’t seen any convincing posts supporting Hillary’s claims. Come to find out, her foreign policy experience may be very, very thin indeed:
    http://www.mcclatchydc.com/homepage/story/30048.html
    Hillary “wasn’t privy to the president’s daily intelligence brief, nor did she sit in on National Security Council meetings.” It’s not even clear that she had a national security clearance.
    Sounds like she’s just another politician inflating her resume in hopes of a big job…

    Reply

  49. Will Bower says:

    Ps — Pelosi’s “perfectly clear” comment was -not- the statement of
    a statesman who was making a declaration. She realized her slip-
    up and and scrambled back to the microphone in a attempt to put
    a facade of ownership on her gaff.

    Reply

  50. Jenny says:

    I think this polls speaks for itself about Obama’s electibility in Ohio, and is another reason not to assume primary results will necessarily foreshadow general election results (Source: Institute for Policy Research University of Cincinnati):
    2008 Presidential Trial Heat: Obama vs. McCain
    Barack Obama 48%
    John McCain 47
    Other 1
    Don’t know 4
    (N=) (968)
    2008 Presidential Trial Heat: Clinton vs. McCain
    John McCain 51%
    Hillary Clinton 47
    Other 1
    Don’t know 1
    (N=) (979)
    “In Obama v. McCain, few groups are more than a few points over or under for either candidate, even among younger voters, and many are near even (meaning close to 50-50). The exceptions are:
    -African-Americans who indicate a preference for Obama 99% to 1% for McCain
    -Southeast Ohio which was at 60% for McCain (36% for Obama down there) but with only 75 or less respondents
    -Democrats at 80%-16% for Obama
    -Republicans who are 85%-13% for McCain (which, we will see below, seems to indicate that Obama is preferred by more Republicans than Clinton and cuts more into McCain than she does with that group, none of which should be a surprise given the hatred we’ve heard coming at Clinton for a long, long time)
    -”Others” and “Don’t Know” numbers – a total of 19% – are very big compared to the Clinton, McCain race in which those numbers total 9%. I’d interpret this as meaning that Independents are taking their time and not automatically leaving McCain, but definitely thinking about it. I don’t see voters brought out by Obama’s run as heading to McCain, but rather, they are McCain’s to lose and it is in that group that he does much better (that is, he gains more of them) against Clinton.
    But with Clinton v. McCain, there’s more swing overall among the demographics. Here are the standouts:
    -Clinton garners 3% more than Obama does among Democrats (at 83%), but McCain garners 8% more Republicans (at 93%) when Clinton is his opponent
    -Males prefer McCain 60%-38% over Clinton
    -YOUNG VOTERS, 18-29, go for McCain 61% to 39%, whereas when McCain is against Obama, this demographic goes for Obama 52%-47% over McCain.”

    Reply

  51. Will Bower says:

    If you’re correct, Nob, then I fear November is already McCain’s.
    I still assert that — if Hillary wins the popular vote, she’ll retain the
    Super Delegate lead. If she has both of those, she has the
    nomination… and peaceably.

    Reply

  52. Nobcentral says:

    With all due respect, I think Will Bower is coming at this from the wrong frame. Every single point or argument you make assumes that a meeting is necessary between the two candidates because they are so close (or that there is a compelling argument for why HRC should be the nominee even when she’s gonna lose the delegate count, the state count, the popular vote, and a majority of superdelegates).
    Look – A meeting down the road isn’t going to be necessary. The knives are coming out from the Dem leadership because the HRC Campaign has just committed collective suicide. She’s become a Lieberman Democrat. This race is over. It’s just a matter of time. And Pelosi essentially said exactly that, even coming back to the camera to add the “i just wanted to be totally clear on that” or whatever line.
    Bottom line: You don’t call a Republican a better candidate than a Democrat and hope to make friends and earn favors.

    Reply

  53. Will Bower says:

    JonU
    What you call “knives”, I call “the spotlight”.
    And Hillary could still (easily) end up with the lead in the
    popular vote.
    And going back to Ohio-as-Bell-Weather: I believe that Ohio
    and the Clintons have forged a strong relationship over the last
    16 years. Ohio put him over the top in June of ’92, in November
    of ’92, and in November of ’96. Throw Independent -women-
    into the equation… especially all those over-50 white-ones… I
    see a very-conceivable win for Hillary over McCain in November.
    I repeat: I accept that Ohio won’t -always- be the Bell Weather
    State… but, until there’s it’s -not-, it’s how I run my
    calculations.

    Reply

  54. Tahoe Editor says:

    I disagree that “Barack has
    dedicated this week to destroying” the notion of a joint ticket.
    Steve said, “Neither Hillary Clinton nor Barack Obama can publicly acknowledge that either would accept the 2nd slot on a Democratic ticket because it would spell the end of their campaign.”
    They’re just playing the politics we should expect until someone reaches 2,025.
    Pelosi, on the other hand, is a blatherer.

    Reply

  55. JonU says:

    Excuse me, in that first sentence I should of said “precisely relevant who is responsible”, not “precisely because of who is responsible”. The latter phrase is redundant and nonesense.

    Reply

  56. JonU says:

    “JonU.
    At this point, the Dems are pretty much split -anyway-. I hate to
    be negative, but it’s not looking good. As I see it, -only- a joint
    ticket we’ll keep the halves from splintering — and Barack has
    dedicated this week to destroying that idea… regardless of whose
    fault it is that we’ve come to this.
    And now Pelosi is backing him up in that.”
    If the Dems are “pretty much split”, it is precisely because of who is responsible. The Clinton team for breaking out the knives. That is the truth of it, in my opinion.
    Unfortunately, the meme that the MSM sources are running the most is the only way to heal this split (created by Clinton) is to have them both on the ticket with Clinton on as Pres (despite her being substantially behind in both delegates and popular vote, and having a shriking lead in supers).
    Stop propping up this meme. Start arguing against this travesty. It will seriously undercut an Obama presidency, and give McCain his only real chance at winning. Most Dems are going to line up behind whoever wins with the most delegates. Only a small portion will harbor sour grapes about it.
    But independents won’t care. McCain is praying for Clinton on the ticket, as it will drive swing voters and indies into his arm in droves. Clinton’s negatives and choice of behaviour are just too damaging. Her entire persona undercuts Obama’s persona. And yes, persona does matter. Just ask John “Maverick” McCain.

    Reply

  57. Will Bower says:

    Weldon. It’s more the loss of what Pelosi *could* have been down
    the road. She could have been provided a Safety Zone where the
    halves could could have meet. She’s given that up now.
    As as for Obama/McCain — I’m willing to concede that it’s
    *possible* that Ohio and the Nation *could* go their separate
    Electoral-ways in 2008. …but I believe that that’s exactly what it
    would take for Obama to win the White House.

    Reply

  58. Erik says:

    The next four years are going to be extremely difficult regardless of who comes out on top in this election. I would rather throw four years to the likely misguided leadership of John McCain than see Hillary and Bill back in the White House in any capacity. Many of us 40 and younger who support Barack Obama are sick of the Clintons and their corporate democrat pals.

    Reply

  59. weldon berger says:

    Who cares what Pelosi says other than a few hundred people in Washington? She certainly doesn’t have the power to influence either Obama or Clinton on the matter.
    I have to disagree with the prognostication upstream that Obama can’t beat McCain. McCain will do well to crack 44%. If the Fed doesn’t manage to fend off a banking meltdown until November 5, he won’t even do that well. His troubles have only begun.
    Steve, someone looking for a juicy little inside baseball scoop might ask around about what McCain had to promise Bush in order to get the latter’s endorsement at the White House. (Never mind why McCain would want it …)

    Reply

  60. Will Bower says:

    JonU.
    At this point, the Dems are pretty much split -anyway-. I hate to
    be negative, but it’s not looking good. As I see it, -only- a joint
    ticket we’ll keep the halves from splintering — and Barack has
    dedicated this week to destroying that idea… regardless of whose
    fault it is that we’ve come to this.
    And now Pelosi is backing him up in that.

    Reply

  61. JonU says:

    Clinton is doing far more damage with her kneecapping of the Democratic frontrunner, than Pelosi could possibly do with her comments.
    I see little rationale at this point for Obama, the frontrunner, to take Clinton on as his VP. She has gone to the gutter, against her own expressed intentions earlier in the race (when she was ahead), and it would make little sense to an Obama presidency to have Clinton part of it. She has set herself up as the antithesis of Obama’s stance. Taking her in would undercut his own message dramatically, and hand McCain sound-bite after sound-bite.
    Whatever positives she brings are well-outweighed by her negatives. Negatives created by Republican hit-jobs AND by her own behaviour.
    At this point, it is also far more damaging for Democrats, lefties and progressives of all stripes to be floating Clinton as the lead on the ticket. Considering her substantial delegate deficit, popular vote deficit, and rapidly shrinking lead in pledge supers, it’s basically an argument to subvert the will of the voters at this point. THAT is a fool’s errand that will split the Dems until Clinton is no longer a factor in presidential politics.
    Perhaps a month or two ago, I could see the wisdom of the “dream” ticket. But since Clinton began to slash at Obama, basically doing McCain’s work for him (and paying for it), she has lost much of her legitimacy for a joint ticket.
    Basically, she’s done it to herself. She’s losing and playing scorched earth and THAT is the only thing doing real damage to the Democratic party and its Presidential hopes. McCain doesn’t have a prayer, unless Clinton continues this scorched-earth campaign, and the lazy and mindless MSM sources continue to prop up this meme instead of casting their supposedly objective and scrutinizing eyes upon it.

    Reply

  62. Will Bower says:

    Hey there, Jim.
    I’m willing to wager good money that the Obama/McCain polling
    will mean -nothing- in November. I may be overly confident in
    my belief that I understand my home-state’s political DNA… so
    I’ll just default to the harder fact that Obama only won 5 of 88
    counties there. That does not bode well for him.
    As for Gore and Pelosi: It is well-known that the Gore — as
    much as I like the man — harbors a thinly-veiled resentment
    towards the Clintons. And, today, Nancy revealed way too many
    of -her- cards. That leaves only Carter.
    As for my article on the Huffington Post, let me point out that
    almost every grouping of five states — at least towards the
    front of the calendar — either breaks 3/2 for Clinton or 3/2 for
    Obama, and in an alternating fashion. I’m not sure how much
    more even-handed it could be.
    And, also, I created 95% of my proposal -before- this year’s
    Iowa caucus.
    And -thank- you for reading it!

    Reply

  63. PissedOffAmerican says:

    My last vestiges of respect for Pelosi left when I saw that photograph.
    How could any self respecting American get that close to Bush and resist going for his jugular???
    (Or, at the very least, biting his ear off.)

    Reply

  64. jackifus says:

    Pelosi’s prognostications on what is possible or not possible in an election that simply has no precedent actually gives an assist to the Republican rivals of her party.
    I felt Clinton gave that assist when she said that the front-runner in her own party was less ready to be commander-in-chief than McCain.
    A dream ticket would be Obama / Hagel …
    I don’t see how the experience half of the equation is filled by Clinton at all.
    note: (Greg Craig, an Obama supporter, but former State Dept official in the Clinton Whitehouse – and so some one who should know)
    http://www.realclearpolitics.com/articles/2008/03/clintons_exaggerated_experienc.html
    If she heads the ticket, I’ll write-in rather than vote for her. (I’m not a Democrat).

    Reply

  65. jim miller says:

    1. Ferraro just crossed the clinton commander in chief threshold…april 15th 1988 said that Jesse Jackson is only in the race b/c he is black…only non whites have merit in electoral politics? Is she trying to overturn the civil rights act?
    2. Will Bower…obama is beating mccain in ohio polling….
    3. Will bower—I agree with Jimmy carter…what about gore? do you diminsh pelosi?
    4. Was that your huffpost piece on the nominating process…interesting piece, I prefer to wait to discuss until this mess is resolved….seems like more clinton talking points…I apologize in advance if I am wrong…..
    5. Question for Lord Ferraro: Would anyone other than someone named Clinton still be getting press coverage after being mathematically eliminated from the nomination elections? Nepotism seems far more powerful than race or gender in and out of the beltway…IMHO…

    Reply

  66. Jim says:

    I don’t think the joint ticket is as “unstoppable” as most seem to.
    For Clinton, Veep is a step down; for Obama, he risks being
    associated either with a loss or a very difficult Clinton presidency,
    while he’s shunted to the side by the Clintons and their inner circle,
    who are no more prone to forgetting grudges than most politicians.

    Reply

  67. Will Bower says:

    Jimmy Carter is the only least-biased Elder left to broker all this. There is no one else.

    Reply

  68. Jason says:

    The news here for me is that Pelosi is supporting Obama. I didn’t know, and this is certainly the strongest public hint of it. She seems genuinely pissed about Clinton’s remark that McCain is better prepared to be CiC than he is.

    Reply

  69. Will Bower says:

    For “…”.
    Hillary’s win in Ohio wasn’t important because it stopped Obama’s -momentum-.
    Hillary’s win in Ohio shows that the white, over-50 crowd of Ohio — and there are plenty of white, over-50-year-olds in Ohio — just will -not- vote for Obama.
    For every -one- Independent he -might- gain in Ohio in November, he will lose as many as -two- base-Democrats.
    Unless Ohio and the United States part Electoral-ways for the first time in 44 years, this is a rather strong prognosticator that Obama would lose to McCain in the general election.

    Reply

  70. JohnH says:

    Hillary is hoping that “this is where this may be heading.” However, under Hillary, Obama would be neutered. At best he would be the traditional figurehead VP, no authority, nothing much to do except be President of the Senate. Bill would assume most of the other political and diplomatic duties of the VP.
    Hillary would accept becoming a Cheney-like VP under Obama, but that would be unacceptable to Obama. He does not need a lone ranger as VP, and he can find a VP candidate without all of Hillary’s baggage.
    Pelosi’s right.

    Reply

  71. ... says:

    This analysis rests on the very wrong premise that Hillary Clinton would have any chance whatsoever in the general election and would therefore add something to a ticket against John McCain.

    Reply

  72. Tahoe Editor says:

    I couldn’t disagree more. What Hillary has said is that “this is where this may be heading,” meaning that with SO much support on EACH side, these two may have less choice in running mate than any candidate in history.
    Nancy — for reasons as yet unknown — is slashing the party. She’s paralyzing & dividing the party from a leadership position, and it’s deplorable.
    Of course anyone who’s following this race knows that the phrase “wrapped up the nomination” couldn’t be more fallacious.

    Reply

  73. Nobcentral says:

    I think you’re missing the forest from the trees. Neither one would accept being on the bottom of the ticket. It doesn’t matter how many democratic voters think a joint ticket would be a good thing. Someone would have to concede to being Vice and you know that Hillary’s not going to do that *ever* and Obama has all but wrapped up the nomination.
    While you may disagree with Pelosi’s statements in the abstract, the facts suggest that there is not dream ticket possibility. It’s time to put that story to bed.

    Reply

  74. Tahoe Editor says:

    This just in from MSNBC’s exit polling in Mississippi:
    55% say Obama should pick Clinton for VP;
    57% say Clinton should pick Obama as VP.
    This just in from polling in my household:
    100% think Nancy Pelosi’s boneheaded “impossible” comment shows a complete lack of leadership.

    Reply

  75. Tahoe Editor says:

    Nancy Pelosi and Harry Reid are embarrassments to the Democratic Party. BHO & HRC are playing politics as expected; Pelosi is the one ripping the party apart with her “impossible” remarks, and for what? She’s reached a new low.

    Reply

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