Thursday, March 06, 2008

Lessons Learned or "Says You?"

A "Washington Post" piece entitled "Clinton's Strengths Aren't Lost on Obama Team" came as welcome news before bedding down Thursday night.

It's never been clear why the media and, unfortunately, the Obama campaign allowed Bill Clinton to set the standard of importance relative to Ohio and Texas. In retrospect, maybe Barack should have stayed out and not contested the former quite so hotly. What did he get in the Buckeye state for his investment?

But that's hindsight.

In "Clinton's Last Stand," highwayscribery noted that the New York senator would head to Ohio for a photo opportunity she might or might not get.

She got it and milked the cow for everything she was worth.

But "fighting on" means just that, and new contests are approaching to dull the impact of what was largely a public relations coup. To wit: That's a lot of work and money for a 15-delegate gain which is looking somewhat fragile with Mississippi looming.

Columnist Eugene Robinson noted that the Clinton team are trying to cast Pennsylvania as the "new Iowa" in an effort to minimize all of Obama's prior, historical gains.

What kind of momentum requires you to look six weeks ahead while dropping in on Missippians who won't be for you, just to say you're for them? When what you're really saying is their votes don't count as much as those of big state folks?

highwayscribery has always held that the Clinton crowd drinks too much of Kool-Aid visions suggesting the whole campaign is taking place on a mediated canvas, rather than in caucuses with real people pledging staunch support in Denver.

So it's right and good that the Obama campaign play up the importance of states where it hopes to do well, because they learned that from the champs of self-cheering across the way. And it's wiser to admit some places are less friendly to his message.

Then the folks in those places can spend the days prior to voting explaining what it is about hope and a new vision for America that repulses them so.

As Robinson noted, the Clintons' just-formulated "new Iowa" will be something of an insult to those in the "old Iowa" who braved the winter winds in support of the Senator from Illinois.

But at the convention, they will have their say.

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