Barack Obama’s past few weeks of Hillary sliming have earned him a continuing plunge in election polls. Obama’s gay bashing tour in South Carolina should deflate his election prospects further. We discuss the latest developments in Barack Obama’s gay bashing tour later today.
Hillary Clinton continues to shine and to put forth a positive agenda. No matter how much Hillary Clinton is slimed by Obama and his Chicago Circus, she shines. In Iowa yesterday, Hillary said she understood what was going on with the piling on. Hillary said: I am well aware this is ‘pile on.’ I used to play touch football with my brothers and my friends, and I am on the bottom and they are piling on, and I’m thinking how am I going to get out of here?
Hillary does not have to worry, she has many friends and supporters and her election prospects grow ever brighter:
Democratic candidate for president New York Senator Hillary Clinton is solidifying her support from the many different demographic groups that make up the Democratic primary voters. Her support comes at the expense of Illinois Senator Barack Obama. He has lost strength in such groups as those with higher education and the affluent, which were mainstays of his candidacy. In the current LA Times/Bloomberg poll, nearly half of Democratic primary voters said they would vote for Clinton, while 17% would vote for Obama. In a challenge to Obama, former North Carolina Senator John Edwards receives the support of 13% of voters (an uptick of five points from a June LA Times/Bloomberg poll). The other candidates are in single digits, with no movement from earlier polls. Fifteen percent are undecided. In the same June poll, Clinton received a third of the vote to Obama’s 22% (in the earlier poll former VP Al Gore was mentioned and he received 15% support). The Democrats are much more satisfied with their presidential choices than the Republicans. Three-fifths of Clinton’s voters and more than half of Obama’s supporters are certain that they would vote for their candidate (nearly half for Edwards), while most Republicans said they could change their mind and vote for someone else. [snip]
Clinton appears to be the presumptive frontrunner in the Democratic primary, according to the results of the poll. She has managed to get the support of most of the demographic groups, making big inroads into groups that were aligned with Obama. The expectations are very high for the NY Senator because of her commanding lead in national polls. However, in early primaries like Iowa and New Hampshire her lead shrinks. But, if she doesn’t do as well as the media or pundits perceive she should in the early primaries and caucus, the media around her will go very negative endorsing people’s views that she is too polarizing or that she cannot win a general election.
One thing for Obama to consider during the gay bashing tour in South Carolina is Hillary’s growing strength with college graduates (Hillary 40%, Obama 21% – up from the June poll – Hillary 25%, Obama 26%). Obama also lost support with younger voters, 18-44, (Hillary 42%, Obama 20% – up from the June poll – Hillary 25%, Obama 26%). Keep bashing Hillary and gays, Obama, you’ll soon be in single digits.
But see if you can spot the problem. Conservatives are fraught, angry at their traditional party, unable to decide on a standard-bearer, unsure even what they stand for. They don’t think this is the year to sort those problems out. They’re counting on a short-cut when the Democrats nominate an unelectable cold fish who has infuriated the Right for a decade and a half. Millions remember how they felt when she belittled other wives for “staying home and baking cookies,” and Bill Clinton promised voters “two for the price of one” if they sent his family to the White House.
On the Right, the list of grievances was even longer. Both Clintons were seen as ambassadors of 1960s radicalism and cultural decadence, and Hillary was the worse of the two: a pro-choice feminist who didn’t take her husband’s name until pollsters told her it would help him make a political comeback.
Yet for all of that outrage, Republicans lost that election to the Clintons. And the hope that voters will see what they see and reject what the Clintons stand for resembles the plan Democrats clung to in 2004. They choose John Kerry on the theory he would be the least controversial general-election candidate, then counted on an electorate fed up with George W. Bush to deliver the election.
In the nearly three years since, Hillary has been the de facto Democratic candidate. The Right’s efforts to attack her have fallen completely, pathetically flat. Her popularity is low, but not much lower than Bush’s was in 2004. If the linchpin of a 2008 campaign is unifying Republicans in the cause of defeating Hillary, it might be enough to stitch together most of the conservative movement—but not enough to win.
Hey, they really do get it:
Compare the efforts of 2007 to the efforts of 1999 and 2000. After First Lady Hillary Clinton started seeking a Senate seat, Republican donors practically sprained their wrists signing checks. Rudy Giuliani, a social liberal whom Republicans weren’t as comfortable with then as now, raised more than $20 million. When Giuliani left the race, Rep. Rick Lazio raised $4.5 million in six weeks.
That wasn’t the limit of the Hillary effect. The National Republican Senatorial Committee saw its donations surge when it asked supporters to banish the Clintons from Washington once and for all. By the middle of 2000, the committee raised $20 million, twice as much as it had raised in 1998 and triple what it raised in 1996. “She’s now the Republican Party’s No. 1 fundraiser,” said a spokesman for the National Republican Senatorial Committee to a reporter from The Hill.
It was a simpler time. This past July, the National Republican Senatorial Committee sent out a “quiz” to donors that warned, “Hillary Clinton is calling Senate Democrats to push a passage of measures to institute government-run healthcare.” Imagine, a President Hillary Clinton with a massive Senate majority to do her bidding! But appeals like that have done nothing for the NRSC: their Democratic counterparts have out-raised them by $34.1 to $18.1 million. The month of the quiz letter, the Democrats beat them by $2.7 to $2.2 million. [snip]
And those efforts have been absolute triumphs compared to the third-party anti-Hillary efforts and PACs. The first sign that conservative donors were growing less animated about the Clintons was the launch of Stop Her Now in February 2005. Republican strategist Arthur Finkelstein planned on raising $10 million for a campaign along the lines of the Swift Boat Veterans for Truth, the 2004 group that raised $27 million to attack John Kerry’s Vietnam service and his homeland antiwar activism.
Finkelstein failed. The group recorded a radio ad that was never broadcast and from its founding through June 2005, reported only one $500 donation. Over the next year, Clinton glided to her Senate re-election as the group raised only $25,000, and she out-raised her opponent by nearly ten to one.
Stop Her Now actually survived that election after Texas philanthropist Richard Collins (a Swift Boat donor) bought it and hired a new crop of media consultants. Now the group offers a news feed that collates Hillary headlines and a series of cartoons that mock the senator as a humorless, power-mad talk-show host. Collins wants to raise about $8 million before the end of the race—a much more modest goal than Finkelstein’s $10 million for a race in New York—but there will be no mention of family problems or sex scandals. “We want to define the radical ideas of Hillary Clinton,” he says, “but not in a mean-spirited way.”
Hey, they really, really do get it:
That might be one reason the Right can’t rally against Hillary. Conservative division has led to depression, a sense that a Clinton restoration is inevitable, and that the best plan going ahead is to wait for her election and watch as, like her husband, she stumbles and seeds a GOP comeback. A mid-July CBS News poll revealed that 53 percent of Republicans thought it was very or somewhat likely that Clinton would win the presidency. Few Republicans think the party can win back Congress in 2008. Combine that with the anger that between one-third and one-quarter of the GOP base feels toward George W. Bush, and the relentless negativity starts to make sense.
“There’s a big difference between 2000 and 2007,” says John LeBoutillier, a former Republican congressman from New York and the head of Stop Hillary PAC. “In 2000, everyone on the Right hated Clinton and Gore, and we rallied to the guy we didn’t know: Bush. It’s different now. We hate Bush, and we hate the Bushes. We hate watching the Clintons palling around with the Bushes on goodwill tours and the like.”
There is another reason conservatives can’t count on Hillary: she offends and irritates them so deeply that they have trouble actually strategizing against her.
Obama take note, force Axelrod and Gibbs (you better tell Michelle too, if you dare) to read this:
Obviously, 2008 is not going to lack for anti-Hillary campaigns. There will be more books, more speculation about scandals, more digging into financial records—a treasure hunt for some silver bullet that will finally end her career. This is exactly what the Clinton campaign is ready for, and they’re in luck: the swing vote that will elect the next president is far angrier at Republicans and George W. Bush than it is at her right now. It’s moved on. It wants to hear some new arguments.
Hooray for Hillary! The most powerful union in Iowa caucus politics gets Hillary:
ABC News’ Eloise Harper and Teddy Davis Report: Citing labor sources, Newsweek’s Howard Fineman is reporting that Sen. Hillary Clinton, D-N.Y., will receive the endorsement of the American Federation of State County and Municipal Employees (A.F.S.C.M.E.) next week.
A.F.S.C.M.E. cannot confirm that the endorsement is going to Clinton.
But the powerful public employees union, which has 1.4 million members, says that it will either go to her — or to no one.
Its search committee is meeting Tuesday, Oct. 30, in Washington, D.C., to determine if they will make a recommendation for a presidential endorsement, and if so, for whom.
The search committee’s report will then go to A.F.S.C.M.E.’s international executive board which will make a final determination on Wednesday, Oct. 31, in Washington, D.C.
Now, for the bad news. Hillary had a major loss this week. As much as she tried it looks like she lost a big demographic group to Dennis Kucinich. Hillary did her best for this group. Treated them like family. But they went with a candidate closer in spirit to them.
We’ll keep trying for that vote, but it looks lost for sure. Again, Hillary tried her best.
We can’t win them all. Congratulations Dennis.
In her [Shirley McLaine] new book, “Sage-Ing While Age-Ing,” the actress recalls the Ohio congressman standing on the balcony of her Washington state home when “he saw a gigantic triangular craft, silent, and observing him. It hovered, soundless, for 10 minutes or so, and sped away with a speed he couldn’t comprehend. He said he felt a connection in his heart and heard directions in his mind.”