Perhaps had I known Mrs. Clinton would do as poorly as she did last night, I would not have written as many critical posts as I had in the past few days. I had expected her to do well, to lose to Obama in North Carolina by a margin similar to that of her victory in Pennsylvania and to win Indiana by a comfortable margin.
Perhaps, Democrats in those states saw her as did I, a politician pandering and leaving principle by the wayside. They just didn’t trust someone who seemed to believe only in her own ambition.
She might not have won the narrow margin she did in the Hoosier State had it not been for her longtime nemesis of the airwaves. According to Byron York, the Obama campaign contends that “just under 7% of the primary electorate the number that may be attributed to a ‘Limbaugh Effect.’”
Not to mention the last-minute deciders breaking for her 56-44 in Indiana. Seems this time the polls underestimated Obama’s support. If those deciding in the past few days broke for her, he must have led among those who decided before this weekend, something we only saw in one or two polls.
She didn’t get a big enough margin of victory in Indiana to maintain the bounce she got out of the Keystone State, but then she didn’t see to get much bounce from that victory.
Watching the speeches, I thought both candidates went out way too long. It seems the victory speech has become a stump speech. She seemed a little melancholy. At one time, I actually thought she was going to call it quits. Her husband looked particularly glum. Commentators on Fox agreed while Kathryn Jean Lopex wrote that he and Chelsea had the look of “a loved one with when you’re proud of them as they face a loss/embarrassment bravely.”
She may stay in to win next week in Kentucky and West Virginia, but for all intents and purposes, it’s over. Hillary Clinton has lost the Democratic nomination. And she may not be in the position she’s in now had she not been as overconfident as she was last fall, banking on knocking out her opponents by early February.
On logo just before Super Tuesday, she referred to the (then-)recent Los Angeles debate as the last one of so many, as if she would not have to endure another. She likely assumed she would wins enough races in the coming primaries to leave the field to herself. She wouldn’t need do the tedious work of organizing in those pesky caucuses.
Had she done so, tonight’s results might have had different implications. She might not have needed a big victory in a state which borders her opponent’s home state.
It’s too soon to tell if she’s going to stay and fight this one out. She would likely do quite well in Kentucky, West Virginia and Puerto Rico, but the real question is now is whether it would matter.
And another question is why did he outperform the polls this time? That late-deciders tend to break against him does not bode well for his fall matchup against John McCain when most polls show a large pool of undecided voters in a contest between the two men.