ELECTION ’08: Super Tuesday Aftermath

Election ’08: Super Tuesday



First off, anyone who tells you

that they know what happened on Tuesday  is probably full of it, especially if

they’re this guy. The last episode of the Sopranos had more closure than Super Tuesday. Five people went in and five came

out with no clear favorite, but one clear winner: Mike

Huckabee.Huckabee, considered the spoiler for Mitt Romney, did more than

just take away votes from Mitt, but won nearly all the southern states that

participated last night. These wins did more than just elongate Huck’s

candidacy, but virtually guaranteed him either a VP spot on the McCain ticket,

or a cabinet post. Why? Because in a battle to shore up the Republican base Huck

is the CLEAR favorite. Come election time, McCain is going to need these votes

to have a fighting chance and only Huckabee will be able to deliver them. If the

Huckster isn’t around the evangelicals will stay home since it’s extremely

unlikely that they’ll rally around Micky C who they consider a traitor to the

social conservative movement. His wins, by the way, were really the

only surprise of the night.Mitt Romney is in a WORLD of hurt, bleeding

out his behind like the dude who got raped in American Me. Though he managed to snatch up more

delegates than Huck, he trails McCain by a significant amount; he’s lost

Mittmentum and his attempt to become a face of mainstream conservatives. Losing

Cali was a huge blow, and really showed that for all his money he just can’t

shore up voters. According to MSNBC, Romney’s campaign said today will be a day

of “frank discussions” regarding the rest of the

race as they crunch the numbers to see if they still have a shot.McCain

is doing A-ok, finally conceding that he is the front runner. As long as his body holds

up, it looks like he’s got the GOP nod.But, for the

Democrats, things aren’t nearly as obvious, as the race has become nearly a dead

heat. If you take the Obama’s campaign at face value, everything is going

according to plan as they reported to Ambinder:”We fully expect Senator

Clinton to earn more delegates on February 5th and also to win more states. If

we were to be within 100 delegates on that day and win a number of states, we

will have met our threshold for success and will be best positioned to win the

nomination in the coming months.”‘Binder thought they were aiming low

(probably trying to get some of that underdog Giants momentum) and sure enough

they did do slightly better, garnering more states and slightly more delegates than Hillary, although

they’re still behind by about 70 or 80 delegates.

Clinton tried to claim that she was gaining momentum, but what we’re seeing is

an Obama surge, pushing against her ingrained supporters, especially the Latino

community that gave her a big push in California. What happens when an

immovable object meets an unstoppable force? Well MSNBC.com claims they might go negative, and I’m sure they will as the

spin war intensifies to tornado proportions. But what really has

been bobbling around in my mind today is how the picture is looking for the

general election. If you’d asked me a year ago how the GE would go I would have

given you the same answer I gave in 00 and 04: all Democrats, all the time. But

with the Huckabee surge, and the impact of Latinos in the Democratic primaries,

I’m not so sure. Let’s say it’s Hillary and McCain and let’s say McCain takes

Huckabee as his running mate. Huck shores up the South, Hil takes Cali and the

strong Northwestern Democratic states, which leaves the East Coast open.

Assuming she’s able to take white women and blacks from McCain, and split the

white male vote (which is definately not guaranteed) , that puts Latinos in

the driver’s seat and they tend to be more pragmatic while socially

conservative. Still I can’t say that they wouldn’t go Hil’s way since they like

her. But now substitute in Obama for Hil and the picture changes. Not only do I

think he’ll do worse with Latino voters, but he’ll, most likely, bring the war

up as his focus since his early opposition is his strongest point, and he

definitely lacks experience versus McCain. Now here’s where it becomes VERY

tricky.See there’s two ways you can look at the war: a) we shouldn’t

have been in there in the first place, and we should withdraw at the earliest

possible time (Obama) or b) Yeah, yeah we shouldn’t have been there, but screw

it, we’re there, Middle East = Terrorist, ‘we need to fight them over there so

we don’t have to fight them over here’ (trademark Don Rumsfeld 2003) and the

real issue isn’t should we be over there but we’re not fighting them competently

and we want to ‘win’. (McCain). While I totally agree with item a–I see that b,

strategically can work. It worked for Bush in 04, and considering that Americans

don’t like to ‘lose’, and McCain has a war hero ‘presidential’ image, b can be

enough of a polarizing argument for McCain to make against Obama to win if he

can siphon off enough white men and Latinos.Of course it’s too early to

tell, and most of this is mere speculation. Obama has shown himself quite able

to bring out votes from no where, McCain has hung the Bush albatross around his

neck, some of those southern voters wouldn’t vote for McCain if Jesus Christ was

running with him, and I’m underestimating Latinos’ adherence to both the

Democratic party and progressive ideas. But even the Death Star had a weakspot,

and although it was no bigger than a womp rat, the rebellion was

able to exploit it. We may be entralled in watching ‘history unfold’ (tradmark

Wolf Blitzer 2007), but we shouldn’t forget what lies down the

road.The Wolf runs a blog on political matters at www.wordofthepeople.blogspot.com. His first novel, The Intellectual Prostitute, will be dropping this Fall

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