Wednesday, January 30, 2008

Florida & Beyond!

by shamanic

This primary season has been a very quick lesson in not putting too much stake in any particular state's outcome, but obviously Rudy Giuliani's withdrawal is great news for the country. The Constitution probably couldn't take another authoritarian in the White House in 2009, so his loss is everybody's gain.

I congratulate John McCain and I congratulate Florida Republicans for giving him their delegates. I can't help but feel that if Mitt Romney had run a campaign truly centered around his business experience and leadership skills, so far the contests would have played out very differently and we'd be talking about Mitt Romney as the likely presumptive nominee. The fact that McCain's campaign was about as dead in the water as pundits could imagine as recently as a few months ago says a lot about the old warhorse's ability to get it done, and yesterday's victory (like his victory in South Carolina) should be seen for the massive win it is.

On the Dem side, obviously Hillary Clinton wants the press to run with the storyline of her victory, and the press seems to be rightly wary of that. I will say that I haven't seen too much of Bill Clinton since her South Carolina humiliation, so I guess the campaign has decided that sneering, race-injecting churlishness is not the best face for their aspirations.

So now we who watch and wait on election results cast our eyes one week forward to Super Tuesday, or Super Duper Tuesday, or Tsunami Tuesday, or whatever we're calling it this year. 24 states are in play in some form or another, on one side or another, including California, New York, New Jersey, Illinois, and my very own, slightly less delegate rich Georgia.

Will either side know who its nominee is on Wednesday morning? That's a great question, and one I'm going to answer with an authoritative "maybe". "Perhaps," says the blogger. "Perhaps they will." Doesn't it make me sound like an objective observer? I wear stylish but understated glasses, if that helps to add a bit of brainy to your mental picture.

Andrew Sullivan, ever hopeful, has published a reader letter showing how Barack Obama could win the delegate count in New York, but Andrew will pretty much publish anything showing Obama favorably or Hillary (or Bill) Clinton negatively. TPM Election Central has the universe of polling data here, which might help still your shakes as your head starts to explode with the anticipation of this monster electoral contest next week. (I wrote that sentence for Cernig, who is beyond frustrated by the shallowness of our political process and the way it dominates -- but still shallowly -- the news cycle.)

Enjoy the week. Obama has been airing pretty rocking ads here in Georgia with a great soundtrack and well-selected soundbites. I'm sure he's got buys in most if not all Super Tuesday states, but I haven't seen any sign of Clinton television expenditures here in Georgia. Will that begin this week, or has she written off the south? (Florida's not the south, whatever your map implies.) If she has written off the south, what does that tell us about her willingness to work to put states in play in November?

There are so many questions this morning in this unsettled race, but unfortunately we'll have to wait and tune in this Tuesday night for the next exciting installment of... Election 2008!

There you go, Cernig.

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