ALBUQUERQUE, April 6 -- Mark J. Penn quit Sunday as Sen. Hillary Rodham Clinton's chief strategist, the second shake-up in her campaign's top ranks since the onetime front-runner for the Democratic presidential nomination began trailing Sen. Barack Obama (D-Ill.).Good riddance, don't let the door hit you on the way out, blahblahblah...
This moron is nearly singlehandedly responsible for the mess the Clinton campaign finds itself in. As opposed to having comfortably secured the nomination last month with victories in Texas and Ohio, Penn's idiotic "strategy" of banking it all on SooperDooperTuesday, rather than laying the ground troops in in January in states after the big red letter day, Penn's shortsightedness and hubris has put Hillary in the position of really having to bust humps in the last three months of the campaign in order to take the nomination in a subjective and therefore suspect fashion.
Neither candidate can win the delegates out in the field, and right now, while Obama has been seeing some movement towards him in superdelegates, it's clear that the SDs have been holding their fire out of respect for and fear of the Clinton machine.
After all, deals will now have to be made, and the campaign with the most to offer is the campaign that is going to get the lion's share of the SDs. Clinton, should she lose the nomination, will be among the most powerful Senators and will likely extract retribution against those SDs who cross over to Obama (listening, Leahy?)
Obama does not have that kind of stroke in the Senate, and my suspicion is, should he lose the nomination, he'll not seek re-election from Illinois.
Why do I say this? One word: Rolodex.
Sure, Obama is gathering up campaign contributions from first time small donors (altho my sense is that he's getting PAC and special interest money in some form that he's not disclosing because he doesn't have to), but those are not carryover contributions: those folks won't give to the Senate campaigns of a Chuck Schumer or a Diane Feinstein, or Ken Salazar, or...
Clinton's will. And there's the rub. Snub Clinton, you snub the money you need to run for re-election.
Which leads me to one other facet of this story: Tim Russert on The Today Show this morning mentioned that, privately, several large campaign contributors had already warned the Clinton campaign that they would only donate and solicit more donations if they could be assured that the funds would not be used to support Penn or his work.
So basically, this was just the trigger that fired the cocked weapon off. Penn was gone, long before he met with Colombian officials.
Good riddance to bad rubbish, is my thinking, and for you hockey fans out there, Game on!