Monday, May 12, 2008

Michigan Will Vote

In what is the clearest acknowledgement by Barack Obama of his deep troubles in the general election, the Senator has begun actively campaigning in a state that he has stridently sought to disenfranchise:
Democratic presidential candidate Barack Obama will visit Michigan on Wednesday -- his first visit to the state since last July.

The Obama campaign announced today that the Illinois senator will make two stops, in Macomb County and in Grand Rapids. More details on the trip are expected later today.

Obama has refrained from campaigning in Michigan because of a dispute over Michigan's Jan. 15 primary, which violated Democratic Party laws. He also removed his name from the ballot for the primary.
In other words, Obama caved in on his promise because he's about to get a mud hole stomped in his campaign tomorrow in West Virginia and he has to make some inroads in the "bitter white vote".

Obama has also announced campaign swings through Florida.

Now, granted, he's all but sewed up the nomination and really has no choice but to start mending fences, but I wonder how he's going to handle the enormous heat regarding his vehement opposition to seating any delegation to the convention floor in these states?

"Sorry, I don't think we need more bitter white folks in the Democratic party"? "Um, well, you people don't count"? "I wanted to seat you before I didn't want to"?

A preview of the rules fight on the convention floor, headed by Clinton capaign strategist (and the guy who wrote those rules) Harold Ickes was unveiled over the weekend:
The campaign "certainly might" accept a compromise that seats half the states' delegates, based on their disputed January primaries, said Clinton campaign chairman Terry McAuliffe. A former chair of the Democratic National Committee, McAuliffe made the case that the DNC should only have penalized the states half their delegations, as Republicans did when Michigan and Florida violated both parties' rules on scheduling primaries.

"The rule is 50 percent," McAuliffe said on NBC's "Meet the Press." "Had they done that, we wouldn't be having this discussion."

Another Clinton aide, chief spokesman Howard Wolfson, repeated on Sunday the campaign's new position that clinching the nomination requires 2,209 delegates -- the total including Michigan and Florida. The party and the Obama campaign set the magic number at 2,025, excluding the two disputed states.
A number Obama cannot possibly achieve, even if he wipes up the superdelegate map going forward.

Meaning the vote would go to a second round, and Clinton makes her case in front of the convention about how Obama's early victories needed to be revisited anyway, given the revelations of his blatant elitism and anti-patriotism towards the base of the party that skewed to the right to take back the House and Senate in 2006.

It's a long shot, to be sure, but I'm always reminded of Al Gore in 2000 and how angry all of us got at him for not fighting it until the bitter end, caving in simply because it was "the right thing to do."

He was wrong, and so would Hillary be if she dropped out.