Sunday, January 27, 2008

Sunday Whirl

So much to talk about in the wake of the South Carolina primary, some of it actually printable.

Unprintable is our frank opinion of Billary. Having participated in seeing to it that his wife was trounced in South Carolina, Bill decided to keep to his path on the low road. How to minimize Obama's win? Let's see. Ah, yes, compare Obama to Jesse Jackson. You see, South Carolina Democrats ... you voted for a giant LOSER!

The grin on your face didn't help, Bubba.

The emergence of the co-campaign of Bill & Hillary is one of the harder things to figure. These people are supposed to be so smart, no? Yet there's Hillary trying to pivot toward "change" while throwing out that weighty anchor of a troubled past (named Bill). How does she win, becalmed in all that old, deep silt?

Frank Rich sees the reemergence of Billary as one miracle of the two miracles that the Republicans will need to rewin the presidency this year. Hillary's putting Bill to the plow insures that everyone is reminded of what they didn't like about the 1990s, and she will unify the presently fragmented Republican Party like no one short of Satan himself. The other miracle would be the nomination of John McCain. Which is precisely why we're rooting so enthusiastically for Virginia Foxx's choice in Florida on Tuesday. You go, Mittens!

Obama's win in South Carolina was impressive. He got more votes yesterday than the total Democratic turnout in the primary of 2004 (and Democratic turnout in this primary far exceeded Republican turnout last week, in one of the most loyal Republican states in the Union). Only time -- now on a very short leash indeed -- will tell whether this win can change the dynamic on Super Tuesday. The S.C. rout will certainly help, plus perhaps Obama's new determination to stand up and get back on the offensive against Billary. No one watching Obama's acceptance speech in S.C. last night could miss how fundamentally angry he was, and it's a justified anger. The Clintons have evidently decided that the only way to beat him is to kill hope itself, to beat back the enthusiasms of the young, to strangle the very notion that people might reach across political chasms for mutual benefit.

The point is that the Clintons are angling for a 50% + 1 win in November in a two-person race or a 43% win (or even less) in a three-person race, and that would satisfy their peculiar ambitions: more divided government, more partisan paralyzing rancor.

Obama, on the other hand, could lead a landslide election for change.

John Edwards needs to bow out. He must have his reasons for soldiering on ... a determination to influence the party in a more populist direction, pure old stubborn pride, or angling for a prominent spot in somebody else's cabinet ... we don't know. We like him. We note that he got more of the white vote in S.C. than did Hillary, which means -- simplistically -- that he could help significantly to stop the Billary juggernaut ... if he quit and endorsed Obama. He's not going to, but he should.

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