Friday, December 28, 2007

Obama vs. Hillary

It is a bit frightening to find myself agreeing with an editorial in the Washington Times, but this opinion piece ( does a good job at explaining what I fear if Hillary is the Democrat nominee based on my former years in the GOP. Rational or not, she ignites huge negative reactions and will motivate some to vote who might otherwise stay home. The piece also comments on some of Hillary's dirty trick tactics that I believe only come back to hurt her. Who the Hell is advising her on this? If the Democrats do not understand the opportunity before them, then the party is hopeless. Here are some. highlights:

What part of "anyone but Hillary" Clinton do Democrats not understand? The surest and best path for Democrats to defeat conservatives in 2008 is to elect Sen. Barack Obama as their nominee. Mr. Obama is leading in Iowa, and the race is now a dead heat in New Hampshire and South Carolina. In response, the Clinton camp has insisted that Mr. Obama is not electable by the general population. They maintain that his opinions are too liberal, that Republicans will use the issue of his past drug use against him and that he has insufficient experience. Yet this negative approach has thus far failed to resonate with Democratic voters.

Moreover, it is Mrs. Clinton, not Mr. Obama, who cannot be elected. In last week's Fox 5-The Washington Times-Rasmussen Reports poll, 40 percent of Americans state they will vote to prevent Mrs. Clinton from becoming president. She gets the largest "anti-vote" of any candidate in both parties: 64 percent of Republicans, 42 percent of third-party or independent voters, and 17 percent of Democrats insist they will vote against her. Hence, the Clinton camp's recent attempt to malign Mr. Obama as unelectable is pure farce. It is like telling Democrats to be afraid of a toy pistol while ignoring a bazooka which is being aimed at them. In a general campaign, Republicans will go nuclear against Mrs. Clinton.

Barring the nomination of Mrs. Clinton, the Democratic Party is poised to capture the White House in 2008. This is mostly because there is no Republican candidate on the horizon who can unite the right. Thus, any Democrat but Mrs. Clinton, can peel away enough conservative, Republican and independent voters to win the next election.

Once Mr. Obama secures the Democratic nomination, he will enter the general election with the liberal base highly mobilized. With a running mate who has good foreign-policy credentials, he can convince moderates that he will be effective in international affairs. Also, Democrats generally attract 88 percent of the black vote: Mr. Obama may make even greater inroads as these voters embrace the prospect of electing America's first black president. Finally, he will capture the two vital swing-voter groups: women and Hispanics.

The secret among conservatives is that many are rooting for Mr. Obama — and many will even vote for him in a general election no matter how liberal he is. Why? He will be heroic for defeating Hillary; he is authentic, and he is likeable even in disagreement. In essence, all the stars are aligned in favor of a remarkable American story: Barack Obama's historic march from Iowa straight into the White House in Washington, D.C. If only Democrats had enough sense to get Hillary Clinton out of his way.

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