Hillary Dodges the Fork; McCain Sweeps
With wins yesterday in Texas, Ohio and Rhode Island, she has clearly managed to avoid the fork yet again. Although the delegate count is not as favorable to her prospects (Kos estimates
she may have picked up only one delegate), the effect of winning puts the wind at her back, especially now that the sine wave of media coverage may be turning against Obama.
Jonathan Alter wrote a column
yesterday on the delegate math, claiming that even if Hillary won the remaining 16 states, (she lost Vermont last night), she could not catch up in the pledged delegate total and therefore she's doomed. Of course, what this ignores is that if she did get on a winning streak there would be a reason. Either her arguments would be resonating with the people, or Obama would have hit the iceberg, and the superdelegates would probably be jumping into her corner. Essentially Alter assumed that the superdelegates will stick with the pledged delegate winner, which is silly.
Meanwhile, Senator John McCain nailed down the victory last night and Mike Huckabee has dropped out of the race. While there is some speculation that this may benefit the Democrats by keeping the attention of the nation on their contest, if the headlines are "Hillary Accuses Obama of X" and "Obama Assails Hillary's Proposal on Y", it's hard to see how that helps the Donks.
Indeed, if we look at recent history, nailing down the nomination and watching the other party battle it out works pretty well. In 1968 Nixon nailed down the GOP nomination early and watched as the Democrats had their unpleasantness in Chicago. In 1976 Jimmuh Carter sealed the deal and had a ringside seat for the Ford/Reagan imbroglio. And in 1980 Reagan benefited from an early win and a Carter/Kennedy dustup.