Sunday, March 30, 2008


In the neverending conversation with myself that is this blog, I am once again throwing the gauntlet to you, the fictitious readers of this blog!

Prove your non-fictitiousness by participating in the Veepstakes Contest!

Here is how it works: send in who you think the Democratic nominee and John McCain will pick as their Vice Presidential running mates.

Write it as a comment or email it to me.

Whoever wins becomes Progressionsession Reader Of The Month and I will buy you a drink next time I see you.

Let the Veepstakes begin!

PS All entries must be in by the time of the Pennsylvania primary, April 22nd.

Obama pulling ahead in national polls

In the Gallup, daily tracking poll, Obama has been gradually pulling ahead of Hillary CLinton and out of the margin of error. Today's poll gives him a ten point lead, 52%-42%. THis is the first time that Obama has got over 50% in the tracking poll.

I would guess that the general notion that the race is effectively over and that the numbers just don't add up for Hillary is starting to spread, and some people are sending out the message that we should wrap this up. OR, another way of putting it is that Obama is gaining the air of inevitability, which tends to consolidate support.

Friday, March 28, 2008

Scattering of more recent polls mostly good news for Obama

Pew Poll (nationally)

Obama 49%
Clinton 39%
Undecided 12%

Insider Advantage Poll - North Carolina primary

Obama 49%
Clinton 34%
Undecided 17%

Gallup Poll (nationally)

Obama 48%
Clinton 44%
Undecided 8%

Rasmussen Poll (nationally)

Clinton 46%
Obama 44%
Undecided 10%

NBC/ WSJ Poll (nationally)

Obama 45%
Clinton 45%
Undecided 10%

MATCH-UPS against McCain


Obama 44/ McCain 42
McCain 46/ Clinton 44

Quinnipiac poll

Obama would win CT by 17 points
Hillary would win CT by 3 points

Rasmussen Poll

Obama would win OR by 6 points
Clinton would lose OR by 6 points


Obama would win CA by 9 points
Clinton would win CA by 3 points

Rasmussen - nationally

Obama would lose by 1 point
Clinton would lose by 3 points

Gallup - nationally

Obama would lose by 2 points
Clinton would lose by 3 points

And according to that NBC/WSJ poll, the Wright controversy seems to have mainly had this effect. He only went down two points in terms of people with a positive opinion of him, from 51 to 49. The people with a negative opinion of him went up from 28 to 32.

The real shocker was that in that same poll, Hillary's positive rankings took a nose dive, from 45 to 37, and her negatives went up from 43 to 48. So the positive/ negative numbers for the two candidates are now:

Obama 49/32
Clinton 37/48

I was very surprised by this. The consensus seems to be that this is due to her selective memory on Bosnia, but it still seems strange that a relatively minor event would cause such a huge change. I wonder if this has anything to do with the fact that most people now realize that the only way that Clinton can win is to have superdelegates 'overturn' or 'reverse' the decision of the pledged delegates. Or, in other words, that Obama's pledged delegate lead is insurmountable and that the gap in numbers will probably be the same a month from now as it is today. I just think that most voters don't want this nomination to be decided in that way.

I think that unless Clinton does much better than expected on April 22nd and May 6th, she'll drop out. Maybe she'll go through to Puerto Rico. And if something happens and she starts picking up big wins, all bets are off. But if things go as expected, there will come a time when there's just no point in continuing.

I just want to reiterate again that this is not some kind of personal animus against Hillary, and I realize that Obama does not have a huge mandate, but with the system we've got at the moment, the math just doesn't work for Hillary, and dem's the facts.


Siegelman is getting out of jail, on bond, thanks to the Circuit Court of Appeals.

For anyone who didn't see the 60 Minutes piece or the MSNBC follow-ups with Dan Abrams, Siegelman was a Democratic governor of Alabama whose case is typical of the politicization of the Department of Justice under the influence of Karl Rove. This case was first thrown out of court by a federal judge. THen it was brought in front of a new judge, the husband of the US Attorney who was bringing the trumped-up charges. He was marched directly out of court in handcuffs and straight to jail, which never happens in political cases such as this.

Anyway, now he's getting out. It's amazing what can happen when the national media starts doing its job instead of just following the horse-race, cheerleading and doing stories about Britney Spears.

Wednesday, March 26, 2008

Reid: it will be done

The Bookies

David Brooks at the NY Times

"Now, she’s probably down to a 5 percent chance.

Five percent.

Let’s take a look at what she’s going to put her party through for the sake of that 5 percent chance: The Democratic Party is probably going to have to endure another three months of daily sniping. For another three months, we’ll have the Carvilles likening the Obamaites to Judas and former generals accusing Clintonites of McCarthyism. For three months, we’ll have the daily round of résumé padding and sulfurous conference calls. We’ll have campaign aides blurting “blue dress” and only-because-he’s-black references as they let slip their private contempt."

A way to move on.

Let's look a little more at where things might stand after May 6th.

Let's take my earlier scenario and say that Obama does pretty well and loses Penn. by 8 points, wins NC by ten points and Indiana by 4 points. What would the delegate situation be then? Let's also say there's a tie in Guam.

Pledged delegates gained in these 4 primaries:
Obama - 175
Clinton - 174

Each candidate currently stands at (in pledged delegates):
Obama - 1406
Clinton - 1249

Where the candidates would stand in pledged del's on May 7th:
Obama - 1581
Clinton - 1423

Let's add in the superdelegates who have already declared:
Obama - 209
Clinton - 246

Giving a potential total on May 7th of:
Obama - 1790
Clinton - 1669.

Today, the difference between them is 120 delegates.
On May 7th, the difference might potentially be 121 delegates.
So the gap is likely to stay the same.

Now, the total number of votes a candidate needs to clinch the nomination is 2024.

Obama might be 234 votes short on May 7th. There are 339 undeclared superdelegates, not including Michigan and Florida. If 234 of them came out on May 7th and endorsed Obama, this thing would be over.

While that is unlikely, it is true that a significant group of superdelegates acting en masse could wrap things up. I thing this would be better happening in mid-May than mid-June. Even if 100 new superdelegates came out in support of Obama, then we could avoid a months-long protracted battle. If 100 superdelegates came out for Obama, he would have an insurmountable lead of 220, and it would be over.

Who knows? Anything could happen. Thoughts?

Memo to Rush: mind your own business

I wish Republicans would quit interfering in the Democratic nomination process. I am sick of Limbaugh's army of dittoheads trying to sow the seeds of chaos.

Think this whole thing is overblown? Check out this story from the Seattle Times.

The gist: "About 100,000 GOP loyalists voted for her in Ohio, 119,000 in Texas, and about 38,000 in Mississippi, exit polls show."

If Obama loses in heavily Republican Indiana, which has open voting, and this thing gets dragged out another month, I will indeed be dismayed. I really don't have anything against Hillary (I do have a problem with Mark Penn), but it's over.

Actually, I think it's fair to let the voters speak after the whole Wright controversy. But after Pennsylvania, North CArolina and Indiana, if Obama has shown that he has weathered this storm, then let's get to work. We're getting creamed, and somebody has to present the Democratic case on foreign policy, the economy, health care, immigration and other issues to the nation at large.

Polls this week suggest strong recovery from Obama

We have been waiting for polls to come out that show the effect of Obama's big speech on race. Nearly 3 and a half million people have watched that speech on YouTube now.

Anyway, polls are showing a pretty strong recovery.

In national polls against Clinton:

Gallup Tracking: Obama has held small lead (1-3 points) over Clinton since last Thursday, after five days of Clinton taking a small lead. They are for all intents and purposes still neck-and-neck, as they have been for weeks.

Rasmussen Tracking: Clinton has had a 1-3 point lead since the 22nd.

There haven't been any 'one-off' polls with data collected in the last week to 10 days, and these polls have tighter methodologies and a larger sample size. I am curious what the next Gallup, CNN, CBS and Newsweek polls might show, but I'm sure it will still be very close.


The latest polls show McCain opening up a lead versus Democrats. Arguably, this is because Democrats are ripping each other apart while McCain is travelling around the world acting presidential. I still think this isn't something to worry about too much, but Dems need to get their act together soon...


Pennsylvania. The newest poll, a Rasmussen poll taken after Obama's speech, has Clinton 49- Obama 39.

North Carolina. A PPP poll, out today, gives Obama a whopping 21-point lead over Clinton, 55-34. Even if all the undecideds broke for Hillary, Obama would have a ten-point win over Clinton.

Indiana. Like NC, this red state votes on May 6th. There aren't any recent polls for Indiana, but 20% of the state is in the Chicago media market and Obama is favored to win the state, albeit perhaps narrowly.


If Obama closes the gap in Pennsylvania and loses the state by a small margin than predicted, say 5-10%, and wins North Carolina soundly, say 10%, and then takes Indiana, will that have proved his 'electability'? Will Clinton concede at that point? Again, I wouldn't necessarily mind this if I thought Hillary could win this in a way that didn't seem undemocratic and turn off loads of first-time voters. I wouldn't necessarily mind this thing going to a brokered convention if there was an honest path to her nomination. (Yes, Michigan and Florida should have revoted, but that's just the way the cookie crumbles. It was very unlikely after everything that happened that the two campaigns were going to agree on anything) We're getting our asses kicked by the Republicans, and we should be out there fighting them. Instead, the Clinton campaign is out there implying that McCain would be a better president than Obama.

What do you think? How big would Obama have to win for Hillary to bow out gracefully?

Tuesday, March 25, 2008

Just a small-town senator, on a Saturday night

They've got a crush on McCain - and apparently on cheesy 70s disco anthems:

It just seems like a really odd choice of song to try and do the "I've got a crush on Obama" thing, but for McCain. Since then, I've been looking for a better tune.

The best I can come up with is:

Hall & Oates, She's a Maniac.

"She's a McCainiac, McCainiac, and she's dancing like she's never danced before"

Strangely, some of the actual lyrics to "She's a Maniac" seem almost prophetic:

On the ice-filled line of sanity
It's a place most never see
It's a hard-won place of mystery
You can touch it but can't hold it

Can any of you guys think of a better McCain theme?

New poll puts Obama only ten points down in PA

A new Rasmussen poll gives Clinton a ten-point lead over Obama in Pennsylvania.

Clinton: 49
Obama: 39
undecided: 12

This has got to be good news for Obama, who was 26 points down in the last major poll there.


Okay, I've already shown how Obama can win the general election even if he loses the traditional swing states of Missouri, Ohio, Pennsylvania and Florida. He would have to win traditional swing states of New Mexico and Iowa as well as Nevada, Colorado and Virginia. Nevada and Colorado are more likely if he picks Bill Richardson as veep; Virginia is more likely if he picks Kaine, the governor of Virginia.

What would be the best case scenario? I'v already said that there could be a very close electoral race with a popular vote blowout, based on indications of record Democratic turnout and the likelihood of much tighter margins in red states in the South, as well as some Plains red states like Nebraska and Kansas, where Obama has been polling higher than Dems usually do.

But the best case scenario for me would be a blowout all the way. In electoral votes, that would mean sweeping the states I outlined above, plus North Dakota, Ohio, Pennsylvania, Florida and North Carolina. That would result in a 356 - 182 victory for the Democrats. Likely? No. Possible? Yes.

Monday, March 24, 2008

Reno Failure

I promised myself I wouldn't come up with a 'What happens in Vegas' pun headline, so chomp on this one.

Apropos of my earlier piece, Nevada is still looking good for Barack Obama.

So set your barockometer to Reno time.

Rasmussen has got a poll out today showing Obama with a four-point lead over McCain in Nevada, as opposed to a one-point lead for Hillary. And that's with only 4% undecideds.

So McCain better watch out for that 'reno failure'.

Put me out of my misery...

Obama wrote the race speech himself

No help from speechwriters, under considerable pressure, and over two days and nights, finishing it the night before.

Apparently the last time a president or candidate wrote a major speech completely on his own was in 1969.

Obama confronted Wright on his views


Hillary. Obama's aide called her a monster; her own aide called her The Terminator.

Don't forget to comment

Check it out: Scroll down to talk about Hillary's chances of winning, the effect of Wright scandal on Obama, and other topics.


A quandary has developed. Prominent journalists and pundits like Adam Nagourney and the folks at are saying that Hillary is all but finished. On the other hand, Pennsylvania, which votes on April 22nd, is strongly favored to go to Hillary, and the Obama campaign has been working hard to lower expectations. The latest poll there has Hillary winning by 26 points.

The big argument here is that Democrats need Pennsylvania to win in November. It was one of the few very close swing states (unlike Ohio, Missouri, New Mexico, and Iowa) that actually went for Kerry in 2004.

Using the handy-dandy Electoral Vote calculator at the Wall Street Journal's Opinion Journal [now owned by He Whose Name Shall Not Be Mentioned], let's look at Obama's chances, and how we might redraw the political map.

Starting with the 2004 results [by the way it's snowing outside my window], the Dems got 252 to the GOP's 286. If the Dems had won Ohio [no comment, Mr Blackwell], they would have won the contest by 272/266. But how might Obama change the electoral landscape?

Well, let's check out scenarios using the big swing states from the last couple times:

The GOP would like to say that Minnesota and Michigan are trending Republican, but I don't rate them as seriously in play this year, when larger trends are favoring the Democrats. I also think that New Hampshire will stay blue, mainly due to McCain's strong Iraq War 4Evr policy. Okeedoke.

The Republicans are going to win Florida, and that probably would be true even if the DNC hadn'r refused to seat their delegates or the fact that the Republican Secretary of State (paging the ghost of Katherine Harris's past facelifts) still run the show (statewide recount? why would we want to that? Okay, I'm not bitter)

Right. McCain is spending a lot of time with Joe Lieberman, going on trips to Israel, while Jeremiah Wright tapes slamming 'state terrorism' by Israel circulate. McCain is going for the Jewish vote; he's going for the elderly vote and he's going for Florida. The last poll there put him 11 points ahead, and he'll probably win it.

Will Obama win any states in the South? MAybe. We'll come back to that.

Let's go out west. Even though Oregon and Washington are pretty evenly split between Dems and Repubs, they've gone blue the last two time and will continue to do so this time around. New Mexico - razor thin wins for the Dems in 2000 and the GOP in 2004. This time it will go strongly for Obama, particularly if he names Bill Richardson as his veep, which I have been saying for weeks that he will. This looks particularly liekly after last week's endorsement. Obama needs help among Hispanic voters, and Richardson has tons of foreign policy experience. Good stuff all around in my opinion. Let's put New Mexico in the Dem column. What's more, a 50-state Survey USA poll out in early March gave Obama the win there by 7 points.

In the Midwest, Obama can count on Iowa. They supported him strongly in the caucus, if that counts for anything. That Survey USA poll had Obama winning by 9 points.

Missouri is not looking so good for Obama. I think McCain will take it.

With this scenario, Florida going to McCain and New Mexico and Iowa going to Obama, the numbers are such:

McCain: 254
Obama: 243
unallocated: 41

That leaves Ohio and Pennsylvania. If we follow the 2004 pattern and give PA to Obama and OH to McCain, the numbers are:

McCain: 274
Obama: 264

So, Obama would have to take Ohio, Pennsylvania, Iowa and New Mexico, leaving Florida and Missouri to McCain. That is a plausible scenario. But is it possible for Obama to win without making a strong showing Pennsylvania?

Is it true that Democrats need to win Pennsylvania to win in November?

Not necessarily. New states are in play.

That Survey USA poll gave Obama North Dakota by 4 points, Nevada by 5 points and Colorado by nine points? How does this scenario play out?

If Obama wins any one of those states and Ohio, he doesn't need to win in Florida, Missouri or Pennsylvania. If he wins Colorado and either Nevada or North Dakota and Virginia, he doesn't need Ohio, either. That poll put McCain and Obama tied for Virginia.

Obama is unlikely to win any other Southern state, although that poll put him only two points behind in North Carolina. On the other hand, he is likely to make Georgia, South Carolina, Mississippi and Louisiana very close. This will drive up the popular vote and may mean that Obama swings a relatively narrow electoral victory but with a big popular vote mandate.

Amazingly, that poll put Obama within reach in South Dakota (4 points) and Nebraska (3 points), but I don't see that happening, especially with Jeremiah Wright out of the bag. That poll also put New Hampshire and New Jersey in play for the GOP, but I see them swinging left in November.

So, what is my actual prediction? I'll be slightly optomistic, and say that Obama takes Pennsylvania and Ohio, Iowa, New Mexico, Colorado and Nevada, losing North Dakota, Virginia and Florida narrowly. What would that give in electoral votes?


The same setup, with the GOP winning the Pennsylvaniacs?


What do you think?

Sunday, March 23, 2008

Tell me your deepest secrets...

Or at least your passing thoughts about another current issue.

TOPIC 2: Are Hillary's chances shot?

Prominent pundits have been saying the last few days that Hillary's chances are pretty much over. This consensus among some has come together after Obama's seeming ability to move past the race issue, the presidential quality of his speech, the endorsement by New Mexico Governor Bill Richardson, a seeming bounceback in the polls versus Hillary, and, most importantly, the fact that there will not be revotes in Florida and Michigan.

a) Does HIllary still have a fighting chance?

b) Is the media downplaying her chances, or making the race seem more even to keep the story going?

c) Will Hillary win Pennsylvania? North Carolina? Indiana?

d) Will the superdelegates move to Hillary's camp; and, if so, will it turn off all the new voters who have shown up so far to vote for Obama?

e) Will this nomination fight go all the way to the convention in Denver in August?

I'd love to hear your thoughts on any or all of these issues.

Happy Easter!


Recent phone conversations have led me to believe that, contrary to popular opinion, this blog does have some occasional readers.

So, I want to start asking your opinions on the issues. Just use the comments box below to write whatever you like. I'll post interesting opinions as main articles.

Okay, so here we go.


a) What's the deal with Dr Jeremiah Wright? Are his statements just soundbites taken out of context? Is Obama's church racist? Does Obama share Wright's views? What about all the good work the Trinity United Church of Christ has done in terms of education and AIDS relief in poor communities?

b) What about Obama's speech? The best thing since Martin Luther King, or a political ploy that merely sought to make his problems go away?

c) What affect will this gave on Obama's campaign? Will white voters be more reluctant to vote for him now? Will it lose him important swing states like Pennsylvania and Ohio in the general election?

Wednesday, March 12, 2008

Republicans for Hillary

Why do I suspect that their motives aren't pure?

According to MSNBC's exit polling, Republicans who voted in yesterday's primary went for Hillary over Obama, 3 to 1.

Things that make you go... damn.

Monday, March 10, 2008

Crappy Map, version 4

Just a reminder, this is based on the popular vote. If the criterion were delegate leads, Nevada and Texas would go to Obama.

Obama retakes national lead in Gallup tracking poll

Obama 47- Clinton 45

That puts Hillary's post-Ohio bounce at 4 days.

I think that Ohio will turn out to be something like Clinton's victory in California. She did better than expected, and won, but after a couple more Obama victories the momentum was gone.

The Clinton campaign certainly seems to be putting all options on the table, from a joint ticket with Obama (as veep) to actually trying to flip pledged delegates from Obama's camp. That's right - not superdelegates, but actual, voted-for, pledged delegates. NOt a good sign.

Thursday, March 06, 2008


this from the Democratic chair of the state:

"It is important also that we are clear about one issue. At this time, no suggested alternative process has been able to meet three specific and necessary requirements: the full participation from both candidates, a guaranteed commitment of the millions of dollars it will cost to conduct the event and a detailed election plan that would enfranchise all Florida Democrats, including our military service members serving in Iraq, Afghanistan and elsewhere."

IT sounds like she is going to push for the state to ask the Convention Credentials Committee to seat the delegates from the disqualified primary. I don't see the national party allowing this, especially if it is the one thing that would overturn Obama's delegate lead. I still think, however, that that won't be the case - I think Obama will probably have the numbers to pull it off even without this advantage, but we'll wait and see how far Hillary's comeback bounce lasts. Could be a week, could be two months...

Howard Dean said this today about Fla. and Mich.

"First, either state can choose to resubmit a plan and run a party process to select delegates to the convention; second, they can wait until this summer and appeal to the Convention Credentials Committee, which determines and resolves any outstanding questions about the seating of delegates. We look forward to receiving their proposals should they decide to submit new delegate selection plans and will review those plans at that time. The Democratic Nominee will be determined in accordance with party rules, and out of respect for the presidential campaigns and the states that did not violate party rules, we are not going to change the rules in the middle of the game."

my math

Using Slate's delegate calculator, and giving Hillary the benefit of the doubt in many upcoming races, i.e., giving her a ten-point lead in Pennsylvania and the win in Guam, West Virginia, Kentucky and Puerto Rico, and giving Obama only relatively modest wins in Mississippi, Oregon, North Carolina, Wyoming, Indiana, Montana and South Dakota, that still would leave Obama with 137 lead in pledged delegates and a total of 1673 delegates. With these numbers, Obama would need 352 superdelegates to reach the 'magic number' of 2025. That's less than half the superdelegates. According to 2008 Democratic Convention Watch (.com), Obama has 199 superdelegates in his camp at the moment. That means holding on to those superd's and gaining 153 more. Basically, Obama has to just stay viable for the rest of the race, and with every state he survives from here on out, the closer that he gets to saying that he has the magic number and the fewer are the chances for a Clinton resurgence.

The bad news for the Hillary campaign is that effectively the only way she can win at this point is to somehow destroy Obama utterly, which seems unlikely, or to resurrect Michigan and Florida, which will piss off a lot of the superdelegates, as party insiders, and will give off the air of breaking the rules. Even then, it's a long shot. The numbers are close, but the numbers are tight.

Pledged delegates

Let's talk about pledged delegates. It's virtually impossible for Clinton to win on these. Her best chance is to narrow that gap, take the popular vote lead nationwide, seat the Michigan and Florida delegates any way she can, and hope to convince enough superdelegates to come to her side. To reiterate: it is virtually impossible for Hillary to get the nomination without superdelegates reversing an almost inevitable Obama lead in pledged, ie., elected, delegates.

THis from Slate:

"We've updated our calculator to take last night's results into account, and the news isn't good for Clinton. To catch Barack Obama in pledged delegates, she now needs an average margin of victory of 23 points."

TO put that in perspective, Hillary's big Ohio win was by 10 points.

How big is Obama's popular vote lead?





INCLUDING FLORIDA AND MICHIGAN (i.e., no votes in Mich. for Obama):


But this last number is unlikely, as even in the worst scenario for Obama, the 40% non-Hillary votes in Michigan would probably be allocated to him.

Let's compare this to some numbers from this Tuesday:

Hillary's 10-point lead in Ohio produced these numbers:

Hillary's 3-point lead in Texas produced these numbers:

Hillary clearly has opportunities to narrow the gap in the popular vote, which isn't that big anymore, but she'll need some more blowouts of the scale of Ohio if she wants to do that. Her best options would be Pennsylvania and a do-over of Florida. She has a good chance of winning in West Virginia and Kentucky, but is unlikely to get those kinds of numbers there. Furthermore, Obama will probably increase his popular vote lead in the contests in Mississippi, Oregon and North Carolina.

Prepare for the national campaign between HRC and BHO to get a lot more negative.

The leaker of the Canadian NAFTA-gate story has been exposed now, and it turns out that he was actually more critical of the Clinton campaign than Obama. Prepare to see Obama try to use this on Hillary to gain traction in Western Pennsylvania, which is like Ohio in many ways.

We'll keep you posted here.

Obama and Hillary would both beat McCain in new poll

A new Washington Post poll shows the following results - good news for Dems in general and Obama in particular.

Obama 52
McCain 40
Undecided 8

Clinton 50
McCain 44
Undecided 6

This shows that Obama would take two percentage points, presumably independents, from McCain, and move a further two points into the uncertain column. Also good news that Hillary would win, as previous polls had her losing in a match-up with McCain.

Wednesday, March 05, 2008

Reality Check

Well, a big night for Hillary - no doubting that. There are a number of factors going on here. Hillary's campaign has been running much stronger and has had a lot more cash on hand since they retooled and replaced her manager. She's been gaining momentum for the last couple of weeks and the notion that Obama has gotten an easy ride from the media while she has been the subject of negative coverage, so cleverly satirized on SNL, has clearly resonated with the public. Hillary has regained the ground she lost among working-class men in Wisconsin. Her 'kitchen sink' strategy managed to hold off the Obama onslaught. But her comedy-show charm offensive also was accompanied by negative ads, like the redux of the Walter Mondale, 1984 'commies are going to get your children if you vote for the other guy'. Previously, attempts to go negative (remember the plagiarism thing? the subtle racial references) backfired or fell flat. Now that Obama is the frontrunner, they are gaining traction.

Hillary had a huge advantage going into this campaign. Last year, it seemed like she had already been coronated as the de facto nominee, and with huge name recognition and her husband's big donors behind her, she was the ultimate Democratic Establishment Candidate. Now, she is the underdog and has had to reinvent her campaign, which had expected to have sown up the nomination by early February, and rewrite her narrative. She is having some serious success with this and is clearly in the driver's seat again.

But let's take a reality check here. Obama won more states than her on Super Tuesday and 11 in a row after that. His lead in pledged delegates is now just under a hundred, but let's put that in perspective. There were, if memory serves, 440 pledged delegates up for grabs in Ohio, Texas, Vermont and Rhode Island last night. Hillary may have gained a net of about 10. It may be as low as 7, depending on the final numbers from the Texas caucus process.

This Saturday, Wyoming holds a caucus. If it is anything like Idaho, Utah, Kansas, and other western caucus states, Obama will lead with a sizeable margin. Clinton has probably got people on the ground there, so it may not be as big a lead, but expect Obama to regain some of those 7-10 delegates on Saturday.

Then, on the 11th, there's a primary in Mississippi. If this is anything like Louisiana and Alabama, African-American support there will again give Obama a big lead. Expect him to 'take back' the rest of Hillary's win on the 11th.

So, in a week, chances are that Obama's lead in pledged delegates will be more or less exactly the same as it was before last night.

Obama's campaign has been making some serious blunders lately, though. He should have denounced Farrakhan more firmly and without equivocating, and he should have never let his advisor speak to the Canadians. The weird thing is, the Clintons were responsible for NAFTA, and Obama has been critical of it, yet somehow Hillary dominated on the issue. That is bad campaign leadership, and it bodes poorly for the race with McCain. They need to get their act together and quit coasting.

Pennsylvania will be a long, hard slog, and if New Jersey, New York and Ohio are anything to go by, Hillary will have a real advantage here. Obama has got to get his Wisconsin mojo back of connecting with blue-collar voters, or it will be a bad night for him.

Anyway, it'll be a long six weeks, and a long time till the convention. At least I'll get more sleep.

Over and out.

Early voting

IT looks like that supposed 'one percent' actually represents the hundreds of thousands of early voting numbers, which would be really good news for Barack Obama. Signs suggest that a lot of last-minute deciders could go for Clinton, so this should provide some cushion for BO.

One percent

That's all the precincts we have in Texas yet, but at the moment, Obama has a big lead in the primaries there.

60 - 40 split

This looks like the likely trajectory for Obama's win in Vermont. He needs 64% for the big delegate haul, but it has stayed at about 60/40 from 1% up to 27% of precincts reporting this evening.

They're already calling Vermont for Obama

CNN, that is. NO actual numbers yet, though...

Tuesday, March 04, 2008

Today's Polls


Zogby: 44-44 tie


Zogby: Clinton 47 - Obama 44

Belo: Clinton 46 - Obama 45