Friday, February 22, 2008

Another Bad Strategy

Probably one of the most infuriating aspects of the Clinton campaign has been their recent insistence that the Florida and Michigan results count despite the fact that that all the candidates agreed not to participate in the contests.
Back in September when the DNC stripped Florida and Michigan of their delegates, Bob Novak wrote the following:

Contending that early primary states "play a unique and special role in the nominating process," the Clinton campaign said "the DNC's rules and its calendar provide the necessary structure to respect and honor that role." What its statement did not say is how much Clinton actually welcomed Michigan and Florida's rule-breaking.

Assume that Clinton starts by losing Iowa and New Hampshire after more than a year of campaigning. Such losses could be nullified in campaign-free Michigan, where a poll gives Clinton a 19-percentage-point lead over Obama. Assume Clinton then loses in South Carolina, where she has campaigned hard. That could be nullified in campaign-free Florida, where polls show Clinton with a lead as large as 30 points.

It is worth noting that despite the antiquated system of giving Iowa and New Hampshire their customary spots at the top of the batting order, it is done for a reason. Candidates with limited fund raising capabilities can get to know voters in these smaller states. Say what you will about Iowa, but they can spot a phony (Mitt Romney).

Interestingly that the people that were behind Michigan and
Florida moving up their primaries were Michigan Governor Debbie Stabenow and Senator Bill Nelson of Florida. Ironically they are two of Clinton's biggest supporters.

The net of all of this is that Clinton through her surrogates (Stabenow and Nelson), moved up these primaries to benefit her because of her anticipated lead in name recognition cash on hand so that she could try to deliver a knockout punch early enough so that she was home free after Super Tuesday.

Today she insisted that these delegates get reinstated as was her plan all along. The only things she didn't plan on was that she would need these states to somehow pull back even with Obama and the other thing she didn't foresee was how desperate looking changing the rules after the fact would make her look.

Little did she realize that Iowa wasn't the only one that could spot a phony. So could South Carolina, Wisconsin, Alaska, Hawaii, Colorado, Utah, Nebraska, Maine, Virginia, Maryland, Washington DC, Washington State, Connecticut, Missouri, Georgia, Alabama, Idaho, North Dakota, Minnesota, Delaware, Kansas, Democrats Abroad, Virgin Islands.

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