February 13, 2008


Old policies hurt today's Dems (Peter A. Brown, Feb 13, 2008, Politico)

[4]0 years after the more liberal elements of the party seized control of its presidential selection process from the political bosses in smoked-filled rooms, the Democrats may again pay a big price for those reforms.

Their slavish commitment to representation for all led to rules, still in effect today, that have produced a seemingly unending fight for the presidential nomination. This battle between Sens. Hillary Rodham Clinton and Barack Obama could leave the eventual winner at a disadvantage when it comes time to focus on the November election. [...]

[D]emocrats are playing by rules enacted at a time when the party still dominated American politics. At that point, winning was often taken for granted. Now, Democrats have lived through three decades of GOP White House dominance and have 12 years of Republican control of Congress fresh in their minds.

But the rules enacted back then have the practical effect of lengthening the primary process, thereby slowing the Democrats’ ability to settle on a presidential nominee.

The quicker a party can settle its internal battle and focus on the November electorate, the better its chances of winning. That’s because once a candidate wins over party activists by catering to their ideological priorities, he or she can focus on the much larger and less ideological group of voters who decide the November election.

Had Ms Clinton managed to build a lead a case could have been made that Senator Obama should bow out, for the good of the Party, and he'd be the overwhelming favorite in 2012. But this is her only shot. She has to fight to the bitter end.

Posted by Orrin Judd at February 13, 2008 7:59 PM

"and he'd be the overwhelming favorite in 2012. "

No, he wouldn't. This is his one and only shot. He is a (liberal) empty suit that will stay empty. The only thing that he's got going for 2012 is that he is young. BFD--lots of Americans are young.

Posted by: ray at February 14, 2008 11:11 AM

There are no full suits for him to lose to. The party leaders are too terrified of the base to return to the substance of Clintonism and recognize that voters have rejected the Second Way.

Posted by: oj at February 14, 2008 1:25 PM