Saturday, February 09, 2008

campaign news wire 2/8/08

Latte liberals v Dunkin Donut democrats
By Gerard Baker / Times London
Mr Obama wins disproportionately among people who may be considered the winners in the global economy: the well educated, the mobile and the financially secure. Mrs Clinton's voters are the strugglers, the class that feels itself left behind by an increasingly unfair global economic system.

Can Mrs. Clinton Lose?
By Peggy Noonan / WSJ
Mrs. Clinton is losing this thing. It's not one big primary, it's a rolling loss, a daily one, an inch-by-inch deflation. The trends and indices are not in her favor. She is having trouble raising big money, she's funding her campaign with her own wealth, her moral standing within her own party and among her own followers has been dragged down, and the legacy of Clintonism tarnished by what Bill Clinton did in South Carolina. Unfavorable primaries lie ahead.

He's got Obamaphilia
By Joel Stein / LATimes
Obamaphilia has gotten creepy.[...] He's a politician so soft and safe, Oprah likes him. There's talk about his charisma and good looks, but I know a nerd when I see one. The dude is Urkel with a better tailor. All of this is clear to me, and yet I have fallen victim.

Gloves off: The Dem plan to hit McCain
By Jeanne Cummings / The Politico
From the economy to Iraq to immigration to abortion, the Arizona senator's lengthy voting record and his primary season offerings to the Republican Party's conservative wing provide a deep vein for opposition researchers to mine for shifting positions and policy inconsistencies.

The Nightmare Scenario for Democrats
y Chuck Raasch, USA Today
Hillary Clinton is running an heir apparent campaign that is heavily connected to the successes of her husband's administration. There are too many Democrats who view the 1990s as Happy Days, and there are too many others who believe she is a candidate of destiny as the first serious female contender for the White House.[...] Obama's campaign is the closest thing to a movement the Democrats have had in a long time and one that appears to be on the upswing. There is evidence that the longer Obama is exposed to Democratic primary voters, the better he does. The primaries and caucuses over the next four weeks favor him and should boost his fundraising. If you have money, momentum and parity in delegates, why even talk about giving in for the good of the party when your movement is all about a generational takeover of that party?

Taking Issue With the Democratic Race: An empty primary
By Jonah Goldberg / NRO
Obama is "the one" — in Oprah's words — not because of his policies but because his is a transcendent, unifying, super-nifty-cool personality. Hillary, meanwhile, is staying aloft largely through her ability to guilt-trip female liberals into sticking with her. Her cultivated weepiness and dour lamentations about how she's been so picked on sometimes make it seem like she's setting up a political version of one of those "how-does-a-Jewish-mother-change-a-lightbulb?" jokes. Answer: "It's all right; I'll just sit in the dark."

McCain Disdain: Why some Republicans won't vote for the senator
y Mona Charen / NRO
"There is a strutting self-righteousness about McCain that goes hand-in-hand with a nitroglycerin temper. He flatters himself that his colleagues in the Senate dislike him because he stands up for principle, while they sell their souls for pork. Not exactly. He is disliked because on many, many occasions he has been disrespectful, belligerent, and vulgar to those who differ with him."

Left Wing and a Prayer
By R. Scott Appleby / NYT
In short, the Democratic Party's long string of counterproductive responses to the enduring influence of the religious right has had the cumulative effect of driving away any type of base with the word "faith" attached to it, and opening the door to the Republicans' shrewd, if cynical, courting of religiously conservative white Christians. It's been a self-defeating failure, since there are millions of moderate and progressive Christians ready to embrace a reasonable alternative.

Beyond Bush
By Alan Ehrenhalt / NYT
Frum's fundamental thesis is that Republicans must move beyond the policies and ideology not only of the Bush years but of the past three decades, even if this means repudiating some of the political axioms that brought it to power under Ronald Reagan in 1980. But it is never quite clear just how much renovation Frum is willing to undertake. Loudly denouncing government, as Reagan did, will not be enough in the 21st century, he proclaims. "There are things only government can do," he argues, "and if we conservatives wish to be entrusted with the management of the government, we must prove that we care enough about government to manage it well."

Questions for Dr. Retail
y David Brooks / NYT
The next states on the primary calendar have tons of college-educated Obamaphile voters. Maryland is 5th among the 50 states, Virginia is 6th. But later on, we get the Hillary-friendly states. Ohio is 40th in college education. Pennsylvania is 32nd.

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