Who Got a Tan in Florida?

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First of all, the Democrats as a party scored big in Florida. Turnout was huge among Democrats — just truly impressive in a state that knew that it was being neglected by Democratic campaigners for moving the date of its primary ahead of February 5th.
Second, Hillary Clinton — despite those who say it didn’t matter — scored a win that matters. To some degree, Florida neutralizes the momentum Obama achieved in South Carolina and gets both back to a position where they both have tail winds going into February 5th.
Third, John McCain has now won New Hampshire, South Carolina, and Florida. Giuliani is out and giving his loyalty oath to McCain tomorrow morning. Romney is still in — but he’s going to be struggling going into Super Tuesday.
Still much farther to go to know who the finalists will be.

— Steve Clemons

Comments

18 comments on “Who Got a Tan in Florida?

  1. J. C. Wolf says:

    If first time voters in Florida and Michigan would make a video telling how it feels to be excited about voting and then find out that someone can just make that vote not count. Send the video to MSNBC, FOX NEWS, CNN AND THE DNC. AND OF COURSE U TUBE

    Reply

  2. J. C. Wolf says:

    If first time voters in Florida and Michigan would make a video telling how it feels to be excited about voting and then find out that someone can just make that vote not count. Send the video to MSNBC, FOX NEWS, CNN AND THE DNC. AND OF COURSE U TUBE

    Reply

  3. J. C. Wolf says:

    If first time voters in Florida and Michigan would make a video telling how it feels to be excited about voting and then find out that someone can just make that vote not count. Send the video to MSNBC, FOX NEWS, CNN AND THE DNC. AND OF COURSE U TUBE

    Reply

  4. J. C. Wolf says:

    So many college kids who are first time voters here in Florida must be disappointed with the voting crap they have experienced during the primaries.
    I wish these beautiful, wholesome, smart looking kids would produce a video about HOW IT FEELS TO BE A FIRST TIME VOTER IN FLORIDA AND HAVE YOUR VOTE NOT COUNT.

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  5. bob h says:

    “Posts like this one almost make me wonder if the author has a gig lined up in a prospective Clinton administration.”
    Both prospects are pleasing.

    Reply

  6. BillB says:

    You know, I like this blog a lot but have been surprised at Steve’s posts on Clinton, which seem to be coming from some kind of alternate reality. Posts like this one almost make me wonder if the author has a gig lined up in a prospective Clinton administration.
    The trend lines have not changed a bit – Obama is gaining rapidly in national polls, and in the Feb 5 states. The empirical evidence is strong and continues to come in, even after the alleged “win” in Florida.
    Now we can argue over whether Obama has enough time to catch up sufficiently. But in no conceivable way can any sane person say that Clinton’s embarrassing, desperate, and revealingly abrupt promotion of Floridian suffrage somehow affected the primary. BTW, as a Las Vegas resident, I’m enjoying the symmetry of a candidate who pushed to disenfranchise 60,000 casino workers b/c they endorsed the “wrong” candidate, then turning around and agitating righteously to count voters under a decision that she signed on to months ago. How is this level of intellectual dishonesty not embarrasing to any thinking person?
    The MSM has mocked her, the blogosphere has mostly hammered her, while her supporters have become, if anything, more shrill and reality-defying.
    One thing that has been interesting about this primary is watching how it has warped the usually clear thinking of many of my favorite bloggers. Some have avoided even mentioning some of the ridiculous lying and dirty tricks in this campaign, others have excused it as “politics” and mocked many of us as naive idiots who just don’t get how elections work. Just today I see that Digby slammed the MSM for dismissing Florida voters in condescending fashion, but apparently voters in the four early states aren’t equally important, and when this is pointed out by voters (like me), we are dismissed with almost exactly the same brand of condescension.
    Still others, including this site apparently, have openly spun reality in favor of their preferred candidate, even defending tactics that they had previously slammed when employed by Republicans.
    This has been one of the more disappointing outcomes of this primary season for me… seeing bloggers whom I really respect lower their intellectual standards.
    Dr. B.
    Las Vegas, Nevada

    Reply

  7. jim miller says:

    Richard,
    Mr.Obama’s base is a little broader than the 2 groups you reference, but I doubt either group would enthusiastically turn out for HRC….please read their comments at other blogspots or watch their you tube remarks….not sure if they identify themselves as democrats, though they definitely dont favor HRc over McCain at this point….without those groups turning out significant numbers then HRC will not, under any circumstance, put together a winning coalition….not a negative HRC commentary…just statistical analysis….

    Reply

  8. Richard says:

    Say, Jim… So those blacks and under-thirties, etc. will do what? Vote for a 75-year-old Republican, or sit on their hands?

    Reply

  9. jim miller says:

    1. momentum==30 point south carolina win/kennedy clan endorsement, despite Bill’s begging/endorsemnt’s from significant latino’s and 2 prominent female govenors….
    or
    2. A 17 point win in florida….a loss in florida from nonabsentee ballots….bad press regarding desperation of declaration of winning a contest that lacked other competitors…..
    you claim to be impartial?
    A vote for HRC is A VOTE FOR MCCAIN in the general…The Obama base( african americans/under 30/educated affluent whites) will NOT vote for HRC…..
    What are her current negatives with Independents?
    What is her national negative?
    without perot 43% will not punch a ticket to 1600…
    bottom line: McCain captures majority of independents from HRC coupled with the Obama base sitting on their hands or even voting for Uncle Fester( see interview w/ MSNBC from Monday) results in a BIG MCCAIN victory….HRC cant beat McCain….romney she can, but not McCain….

    Reply

  10. plainbrown1 says:

    The FL Democratic race was a win, but that wasn’t what motivated Clinton to try to bring it to the fore. She desperately wanted/needed to break the narrative that arose out of SC – that of the co-presidency candidacy that was unravelling. She also needed to interrupt the Obama MSM wave. She got only middling results. The Kennedy endorsement sucked a lot of the air out of the room and the Edwards announcement this morning took up a lot of what was left. So, she got some coverage, but not a significant amount and some of it wasn’t positive. I don’t think she’ll get enough of a PR bounce to substantially slow the Obama roll. It will be interesting to see which way Richardson breaks later this week and if Edwards will endorse in a timely fashion.
    HRC and her team are quick and facile, I just wish they had more of a principled approach to their strategy and less of a cynical one.

    Reply

  11. Liz says:

    I find it troubling that Steve only noted the 80% black turnout in South Carolina, ingnoring the fact that Obama and Clinton had equal percentages of white men and that Obama captured the majority of whites under 30. So he concludes results in SC to be no big deal and then claims that the Florida vote with no assigned delegates is a significant win for Clinton. I am a little confused by the logic frankly.

    Reply

  12. PissedOffAmerican says:

    Justin Raimondo pretty well says it all about these posturing jackasses………
    http://www.antiwar.com/justin/?articleid=12289
    An excerpt……..
    The president’s State of the Union speech was pointedly ignored, even while it was going on, according to the report filed by The Hill, the Beltway’s newspaper of record. All eyes were on the two Democratic presidential aspirants, whose closely watched nonverbal cues acted out a political pantomime:
    “When Bush proclaimed, ‘Ladies and gentlemen, some may deny the surge is working, but among terrorists there is no doubt,’ Clinton sprang to her feet in applause but Obama remained firmly seated. The president’s line divided most of the Democratic audience, with nearly half standing to applaud and the other half sitting in stony silence.”
    So here the lines are clearly drawn. In the presence of Power, a candidate who spun and twisted her own rapidly shifting position on the Iraq war is suddenly struck with an attack of wordless honesty: applauding the mythical “surge” and the war she’ll inherit and prosecute to the fullest, while her challenger sits on his hands and stares into futurity.
    Ah, but she still had the presence of mind to calculate her responses somewhat, even as the truth serum worked its way through her system:
    “In one instance Clinton appeared to gauge Obama’s response before showing her own. When Bush warned the Iranian government that ‘America will confront those who threaten our troops, we will stand by our allies, and we will defend our vital interests in the Persian Gulf,’ Obama jumped up to applaud. Clinton leaned across Sen. Joseph Biden (D-Del.), seated to her left, to look in Obama’s direction before slowly standing.”
    A kumbaya moment for the Democrats, as they all stood and saluted the main plank in the War Party’s platform: the centrality of our newly conquered Middle Eastern possessions. If Obama wins, his “New Frontier” will be a new frontier of empire, and he’s cool with that. So are his followers, or the great mass of them: they’ll follow him into battle in yet another overseas crusade to make the world safe for America’s hubris. As he enunciates platitudes as if they were profundities, his fans swoon. They’ll fall for practically anything he says, as long as he says it as if he were John F. Kennedy channeling Martin Luther King. Once in office, President Obama will be declaring that we’ll “pay any price, bear any burden” faster than you can say “we shall overcome.”

    Reply

  13. Nobcentral says:

    So Hillary gets stomped in a state in which there was an all out campaign war from both sides and then a week later, when neither side campaigns, she “wins” and you think it means something? Step away from the Clinton Cool-Aid Steve. You’ve had enough already.

    Reply

  14. Leo says:

    Don’t believe the pundits, Hillary looked desperate claiming “victory” in Florida and hoping to claim Florida delegate votes at the convention.

    Reply

  15. Maxwell says:

    More of interest from Huffington Post:
    Despite losing the state overall by 17 points, Obama actually won more support than Clinton from voters who made up their minds in the last three days (46 percent to 38 percent), in the last week (39-31) and in the last month (47-40).
    Clinton did defeat Obama among Floridians who decided on a candidate on the day of the primary. But overwhelmingly, Clinton’s support came from those who made up their minds over a month ago (63 percent to 27 percent), and from early voters who used absentee ballots (50-31). Floridians began receiving absentee ballots in late December.
    According to the exit polls, those early deciders and early voters made up fully 59 percent of Florida’s Democratic electorate.
    The results seem to indicate that Obama picked up significant momentum in Florida following his victories in Iowa and South Carolina, as well as his high-profile endorsements (49 percent of Florida voters said Ted Kennedy’s support was important to their decision).
    “But any momentum seemed to run out today,” Clinton strategist Mark Penn countered in a memo emailed to reporters Tuesday evening. “[A]mong those who decided on Election Day, a plurality of those chose Hillary.”
    True, indeed. But critically — and perhaps as an indicator of close elections to come — Clinton’s margin of victory among Election Day deciders was the narrowest of all: 34 percent to 30 percent.

    Reply

  16. Maxwell says:

    From McClatchy:
    “Exit polls in Florida showed voters who made up their minds within the past month favored Obama, while those who decided more than a month ago favored Clinton.”
    When the great majority of the vote was cast prior to Iowa, it’s a bit deceptive to suggest this is a momentum-changer. Moreover, take a sample of the major headlines out of this:
    CNN – “Hillary Clinton trumpets win in Florida despite lack of delegates”
    Wash Post – “Obama Camp, Tongue in Cheek, Declares Fla. Tie”
    New York Times – “Florida�s Democratic Delegate Mess”
    AP – “Clinton Wins Primary but No Delegates”
    Yahoo! News – “Clinton Wins Florida, But the Numbers Are Ominous”
    Bloomberg – “Clinton Wins Florida Primary; No Delegates Awarded”
    LA Times – “Breaking News: No Democrat wins any Florida delegates”
    CBS News – “Clinton’s Florida “Win” ” (double quotes in source)
    Those are the headlines from the nation’s primary news publishers. Any sound flattering to you? A few of them are almost sardonic, more negative than positive.
    If one wants to derive momentum from a symbolic contest, you better convince the media it matters first. Among progressives and DNC loyalists (see Simon Rosenberg’s response), Hillary’s antics in Florida have given her some pretty black press in the past 24 hrs.

    Reply

  17. Lee Mortimer says:

    Democratic voters did turn out given that they won’t get any delegates for the effort. Nonetheless, Republican turnout was significantly higher–1.92M votes to 1.69M votes for the Dems. And does that include some 1M early and absentee votes, and if so, how did they divide up by party?

    Reply

  18. Carroll says:

    Pat says McCain is Bush on steriods.
    I agree.
    Please God anybody but McCain.
    The way this country’s luck is running McCain will be elected with Lieberman as VP and die half way thru his reign and leave us with Lieberman.

    Reply

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