We will go live on Tuesday with coverage of the primaries in Texas, Ohio, Rhode Island and Vermont -- races that could wrap up the nomination for Barack Obama. Join us then and CHAT LIVE with other political nuts, such as myself, as the results come in.
The Obama Campaign seems to have conceded that Rhode Island will be a win for the Clinton Campaign on Tuesday. On the flip-side, Hillary is losing ground fast in Ohio. The union effort there is taking effect, as Obama and his supporters are outspending Clinton 4 to 1. The television messages are all populist ones -- ideal for a state like Ohio that has lost a quarter of a million manufacturing jobs since 2001.
This is all wonderful, as these ads target the big states: Texas and Ohio. The third state, Vermont, will come as an easy win for Obama next week. But what about Rhode Island? A victory there could be crucial. If Obama wins Texas and Vermont, yet loses Ohio and Rhode Island, why would she quit the race? Remember, this is the Clinton family we are talking about here. They play hardball politics, and won't voluntarily drop out unless kicked out. The Obama campaign next Tuesday needs to deliver one final blow to Hillary Clinton. In order to do that, he needs to win three of the four states voting that day. That means challenging Hillary more in Rhode Island.
Aren't you all sick of this? Hillary Clinton must be really cynical to believe that the only way to climb back into the race is to smear her opponent to the point that it will hurt him in the general election. Today her campaign leaked a photo that shows Barack Obama wearing a traditional Somali garb during a visit to that country. The Obama Campaign fired back:
"On the very day that Sen. Clinton is giving a speech about restoringrespect for America in the world, her campaign has engaged in the mostshameful, offensive fear-mongering we've seen from either party in thiselection. This is part of a disturbing pattern that led her countychairs to resign in Iowa, her campaign chairman to resign in NewHampshire, and it's exactly the kind of divisive politics that turnsaway Americans of all parties and diminishes respect for America in theworld."
Even for the Clintons, I am surprised they dropped to this level. What on earth were they thinking? This supplies the McCain campaign with all they are looking for to rally the right-wing conservative base. Obviously the Clintons are more concerned with helping themselves than their party or their country. I will never vote for another Clinton as long as I live -- and this is coming from a life-long Democrat. Their era is near an end.
I don't know the effect that Hillary Clinton's outburst yesterday will have on the polls. But from reading a great deal of comments on Youtube, neutral political blogs and news sites, the former First Lady may have set her rival up to score a knockout blow during the MSNBC debate this week. To many, Hillary came across as desperate, angry and unprofessional. It was the closest thing to a Dean scream that one could get. All Obama has to do is take the moral high ground this week and he will come across as more presidential.
Also, Obama could point out that he is more electable in key states, such as Iowa:
Iowa General Election
49% - John McCain 40% - Hillary Clinton
53% - Barack Obama 36% - John McCain
Come across as more electable, more presidential, and more of a change figure -- and the nomination is yours, Mr. Obama.
Today, Hillary Clinton may have found a way to jump-start her struggling campaign that is on the verge of retirement. She said, "Shame on you, Barack Obama" because the Obama campaign distributed fliers around Ohio that disapproved of Hillary Clinton's positions on NAFTA and health care. Of course, this is coming from the same Hillary Clinton campaign that used racial politics to discount Obama's win in South Carolina, and tried to stir up ethnic hatred by repeating Obama's middle name, Hussein, over and over again in illegal robocalls before the Nevada caucus.
Now you tell me which is more ethical: attacking a candidate personally, or pointing out a candidate's records on issues -- like NAFTA and health care?
This is desperation time for the Clinton family. Myself, along with so many other Obama supporters, must have been so naive over the last week to think that Clinton would lose without damaging her party's chances of taking back the White House. This is exactly what John McCain wants. No wonder on the front page of McCain's web site, he uses the slogan, "Ready to lead on day one." That is straight out of the Hillary Clinton playbook.
Every time Hillary is down, she uses the victim card instead of debating the issues. It is a fact that Hillary Clinton supported NAFTA. It is also a fact that under Hillary's health care plan, buying private health insurance becomes mandatory. Obama's plan gives you the option. These are facts. Hillary is playing the victim card against facts.
This is going to be a long week ahead, full of attacks from Hillary, Bill and all her supporters within the Washington inner circle (such as the latest one). My hope is that ordinary people -- the people who actually care about issues -- will learn the truth about Hillary's record without getting swallowed up in the soap opera of phony victimization.
On February 15th, the IRS received a filing from a new 527 group called the American Leadership Project, which claims to be none other than an advocate for middle class issues. Actually, it's a pro-Clinton lobbyist group that is running ads in Ohio attacking Barack Obama and supporting the former First Lady. The group is headed by none other than former Clinton assistant press secretary Roger Salazar.
"This pop-up 527 group clearly has been created to spend unlimited softmoney to influence the presidential election," said Fred Wertheimer, ofthe group Democracy 21, after reviewing the ad. "As far as the ducktest goes: It looks like a campaign ad; it sounds like a campaign ad;it's a campaign ad."
Do you smell the stench of fear in this ad:
See, this is the kind of stuff Barack Obama has been fighting against ever since he got to the Senate. Groups like this would be limited if he becomes commander-in-chief. Even so, as one writer over at Kos explains, even under existing law, what this group is going is illegal:
Let's be clear: when a 527 forms for the express purpose of electing ordefeating a particular federal candidate, and engages in publicadvocacy towards such ends -- as opposed to discussing issues -- it isbreaking the law.
Stealth 527 campaigns like these supply us with yet another reason why Barack Obama should be president. Hillary has the big donors on her side. Obama has nearly one million strong.
Not even counting the $5 million Hillary Clinton loaned herself, the former First Lady finished the opening month of 2008 in the red:
Hillary Rodham Clinton ended January with $7.6 million in debt ???‚¬??? notincluding the $5 million personal loan she gave to her campaign in therun-up to the critical Super Tuesday elections, according to financialreports released Wednesday.
In contrast, Democratic rival Barack Obama???‚¬?„?s campaign???‚¬?„?s finances continued to be robust.
He reported raising nearly $37 million and spending nearly $31 million.His cash balance was $25 million, of which roughly $20 million can bespent on the primary. He reported a comparatively small $1 million indebts, owed largely to just three vendors.
She can no longer rely on lobbyists to help her campaign because many of them might think she will lose anyway. Why donate to a losing cause?