We Americans are not renowned for our attention spans.

Needless to say, this primary season has gone on too long. Way too long to be helpful to anyone. I no longer buy it being helpful to McCain, because it's exhausting what limited attention for politics most Americans have. It will be harder for him, as well as the Democrat, to get people to pay attention in the general election. Eleven straight months of attentiveness is simply too much to ask.

After our 10th "super Tuesday" and another day of primaries that will "finally settle everything," nothing is settled and this is just going to drag on. Hillary Clinton simply isn't going to quit. Ever. As soon as the Democratic National Committee manages to bring the situation to some resolution (likely with Obama as the nominee) she's just going to start filing lawsuits. She and her surrogates just won't shut up about Florida and Michigan, the states the DNC is trying to disenfranchise.

Let's get one thing straight: MI and FL disenfranchised themselves. 48 states managed to follow the rules. Fuckin' Guam managed to follow the rules. Since Obama wasn't even on the ballot in Michigan (non-Hillary candidates boycotted the race) there's simply no way that the delegates can be seated based on that election. In Florida, no one campaigned. Short of a monumental DNC conspiracy to hand her the nomination, those delegates are not being counted as is.
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That point has been made by people smarter than me. What hasn't been noted in the media is the illogic of Clinton's "I'm doing so much better in rural areas" argument. I have so many problems with that, I don't know where to begin.

First we have the borderline racist (yet incredibly common) implication that it somehow matters more what "good ol' salt-of-the-earth" rural Americans think. Like those are the voters that really count. Fuck everyone else….what does the guy in the flannel and John Deere hat say? The media continues to put that forward as the Average Man irrespective of the fact that 80% of the US population now lives in an urban metropolitan area (not a guess. I have the data.) Rural America has plummeted in every Census since 1940. The claim they keep making is that Obama's only doing well because those colored folk in Gary and Indianapolis like him. Maybe that's true, but what are those people? Do they not matter? Are they not American voters?

The simple fact is that the Democratic Party isn't even competitive in any recent election if they can't bank on A) urban voters and B) black and hispanic voters. There are about 3100 counties in the U.S. and Al Gore/John Kerry only won about 500 of them. Only one out of every six counties. Yet Gore won the popular vote and Kerry came very close. Republicans (and Hillary Clinton) do very well where no one lives. Democrats win by turning out en masse in places where people actually live.
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Picking up the support of 10,000 stragglers spread across rural Indiana could not matter less in the big picture.

You don't need to be much of a cynic to see through her latest argument in favor of the inevitability of her nomination. "Rural white people like me, and that's more important." Don't even get me started on the electability. Let me tell you what hypothetical general election poll questions from March and April of an election year is worth….well, actually, I don't think it's sturdy enough to wipe my ass with.

Watching Lanny Davis on CNN last night (although in fairness any of her surrogates are just as bad lately) was enough to make me puke. The shrill, whiny desperation and entitlement of their demeanor and argument explains everything about why people dislike her. This whole thing is just unfair and a conspiracy against her and the nomination is hers and she deserves it and Obama is some interloper who is stealing it.

I'll say this one last time: the DNC and the superdelegates need to put a stop to this now. It's gone beyond the point where it's hurting the party; now it's simply hurting the entire process. Hillary is not going to stop, ever, until she gets what she believes is hers. They need to do one of two things: relent and agree to give it to her or stop her. We're beginning our fifth month of this process and no remaining primary is going to resolve this. It's time to shit or get off the pot. This can't be left up to the voters. The voters are split. It can't be left up to Hillary, because Hillary is perfectly happy to destroy her party and bring the voting public to a level of disgust that even Bush-Gore couldn't reach. It's time for someone to be the grown-up.


  • I pretty much agree with everything you said here. I started this whole campaign season off slightly favoring Clinton; the woman knows her policy, she's a strong debater, and I felt the early media coverage to be biased against her. That was a long time ago. My opinion of her has been irrevocably tarnished. I've moved beyond being sick of this contest and become exponentially more cynical of the political process and the media's role in it. The saddest thing for me is that this is practically the ONLY topic that the evening news has covered for the past 5 months.

  • I'm an Obama supporter (although I think Richardson was probably the most qualified candidate out of all of them). I don't hate Hillary, nor do I have Clinton fatigue. But I too am tired of the extensive coverage and the flapping heads. Although there was something satisfying about watching Stephanopsnufalapagus saying Hillary's campaign was over.

    I think she's waiting for the DNC to cover the $20million she owes her campaign and a promise of whatever office she wants to sit in come January 09.

    Not that that money couldn't be used in a better fashion to, you know, get people elected WHO ARE ACTUALLY ON THE BALLOT.

  • Fortunately the DNC isn't even remotely hurting for cash this cycle, nor does Obama need the help. I agree with your overall premise, though. At some point she is going to transition from I Can Actually Win mode to Damage Control. If she files one lawsuit or poses any sort of rules-based challenge to the eventual decision made by the party, that will represent scorched earth politics to everyone involved. HRC, her husband, Lanny Davis, Ed Rendell, Begala, Carville…they will all be personae non grata in that party.

    If there is any hope in her being talked into quitting it is that there are a lot of high-ranking, influential people around her who are probably not going to be real interested in going down with the ship. She may be interested in a teeth-clenching, out-in-a-blaze-of-glory kamikaze run that ends with everyone dying a heroic death, but the (increasingly public) comments of her supporters indicate that she is alone (or nearly so) on that point.

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