The Great One-D Battle…Goodbye,
“You know you’re growing up,” Katie Baron’s G-Chat away message read, “when you’re so excited about Super Tuesday someone has to remind you it’s Fat Tuesday.”
Super Tuesday lived up to its billing as the best one on one battle since the Rumble in the Jungle. Yes politics is full of great battles (though one could hardly characterize the 2000 election as ‘great’ for any reason), but what made February 5th such a remarkable night was the sheer unpredictability of nearly every one of the 22 states. The night got off to an awfully worrying start for Obama, whose decimation in the Northeast was pretty much expected. But in the heartlands, Obama, who only a week ago was ‘unable to connect with white voters,’ stomped
Southerners Up To Their Tricks Again
After Walter Mondale’s blowout loss in 1984, Southern Democrats, frustrated that they hadn’t been able to nominate one of their own since 1980, conspired to hold a number of primaries simultaneously a short few weeks after
In 1992 Super Tuesday did its job, allowing Governor Clinton to put away former Senator Paul Tsongas, though he had to deal with an annoying comeback from former Cali Governor Jerry Brown, who orchestrated a similarly pesky and unsuccessful late primary season run against Jimmy Carter in 1976. After a stint as Mayor of Oakland, he is now the Attorney General of California. Who knows what the future holds for Jerry Brown…For what it’s worth, I cast my first ever vote for Jerry Brown, in the 1992 St. Hilda’s and St. Hughes Middle School Presidential Straw Poll, which I’m fairly certain was won by Ross Perot. The girls thought he was cute or something.
In 2004 Super Tuesday once again served its function. Senator John Edwards was the last man left standing against the Kerry juggernaut (has a weird ring to it, right?). But with limited time, limited money, and a limited premise for his candidacy, Edwards lost all 10 of the Super Tuesday states, and dropped out immediately afterwards.
Knocking off a pesky challenger is exactly what Super Tuesday was designed for, and exactly what Hillary was hoping for. Don’t let her spin tell you otherwise. No candidate, particularly an outside challenger, could hope to put together a field team and media strategy to compete in 22 states within 10 days, particularly when one of those states is
Consider this, friends.
Looking forward…the math is pretty intense. A fellow at DailyKos lays it out about as clearly as I’ve seen it here: http://www.dailykos.com/storyonly/2008/2/8/11935/04469/300/452283 (Paraphrasing this would take several paragraphs).
I’ll stand by my claim that this primary will absolutely not be decided DURING the convention, though it technically may be decided AT the convention. One of the candidates will have enough of a delegate need that it would take a full fledged super delegate conspiracy to prevent their nomination, and I am comfortable saying that will not happen.
Up next are caucuses in
No Joy in Mormonville when the Mighty Mitt Strikes Out
If Super Tuesday was designed for knockout blow, it certainly provided one in the Republican primary, where 2008’s lamest candidate, Mitt Romney, followed in his father’s footsteps as a Republican primary loser. To papa George’s credit, the elder Romney was ridiculed out of the race after suggesting he had been “brainwashed” by the military about the situation in
Huckabee declared that a two man race was on, and announced his strategy for winning the nomination while playing a game of air hockey on the Colbert Report (the two were battling to knock a plastic replica of Texas into each other’s goal). I wish the Huckster the best. Speculation that he’ll be the Vice-President is far-fetched; McCain would be much more comfortable with one of his boys, like South Carolina Senator Lindsay Graham. This whole notion that nominees look to their second place finishers for running mates is historically inaccurate anyway; the two times its been done successfully, 1960 (Kennedy/LBJ) and 1980 (Reagan/Bush) it was done to balance a lopsided party ticket, a balance Huckabee wouldn’t completely provide (In 2004 it was just another mistake in a painful campaign).
So, if he’s not going to be Vice President, the Huckster might as well, to put it in Romney parlance, go for the gold. It might be statistically impossible, but the Huckster’s the only person left in this race who believes in miracles, and we’ve seen bigger miracles then beating a much-maligned old man who couldn’t win the majority of the vote in his home state, or anywhere outside the tri-state area.
Fear and Loathing in the Hipster-less LES
On Tuesday, Margot and I spent a truly miserable day on the
First, the proportional delegate system really brings more democracy to the process- just as Bush and Kerry wrote off most of the country in 2004, campaigns tend to write off most parts of a state, or county, and focus as much GOTV as possible on their strength areas. This makes sense- turn out voters in neighborhoods that favor your candidate, and don’t waste time in areas that don’t. Now candidates have to pay attention to voters in all precincts, even ones that don’t favor them. It’s good for democracy, and it makes for more inspiring campaigning. This weekend a small crew of us is going down to
Billy Bragg, a Man for Dark Times
I’ll end with a choice tune I’ve come across by Billy Bragg- there’s a pretty sick video of the original version on youtube, plus a new version with anti-Bush lyrics, called “Waiting for the Great Leap Forwards.” I once literally bumped into Billy Bragg at a protest an IMF protest; it was the first protest in NYC since 9/11, and there were probably as many policemen as protesters. Towards the end of the march someone threw something at a cop, and about two dozen armored policemen charged the barricades, barreling people over and throwing tear gas into the crowd while everyone around them sang “We all live in a military state” to the tune of “Yellow Submarine.” The cops wouldn’t let anyone out for another hour, and in an effort to find an escape, I ended up tripping over Billy Bragg’s guitar amp. He had infiltrated the crowd, and proceeded to play, “No Power Without Accountability” for the protesters. It was a great moment of solidarity from a great man.
I guess I’ve gone on a tangent, but what this song made me think of is how hard it is for people to believe in change, especially poor people who have seen so little of it, especially poor Hispanics who don’t see any practical reason to vote for a candidate of color, especially for liberal East coasters who are more worried about what the heartlands will think than about what is right. Well, folks, the stage is now set, We the People are the new front runners in the Democratic primary, and America’s ready for the Great Leap Forwards.*
Jumble sales are organised and pamphlets have been posted
Even after closing time there’s still parties to be hosted
You can be active with the activists
Or sleep in with the sleepers
While you’re waiting for the great leap forwards
- Billy Bragg, Waiting for the Great Leap Forwards
Original Version Here: http://youtube.com/watch?v=lBX1Bw-9rbU
* Not to be confused with the “Great Leap Forward,” a genocidal rapid industrialization plan for rural