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Wednesday, August 6, 2008


By citing one of her commenters, Rikyrah at Jack & Jill reminds us that the Clintons may very well be the beast still lurking, waiting for a moment to ruin everything:
Sometimes, I see comments that are so on point, and I don’t believe any of the bloggers here could say it better that they should be lifted and put out front.

This wonderful comment from Manju was in my latest Bill Clinton Post:

McCain linking Clinton to the race-baiting charge was a brilliant tactical move, allowing him to exploit divisions within the Democratic Party while putting Obama between a rock and a hard place.

What's Obama to do? If he defends Clinton’s accusers his hopes of uniting his party, and subsequently winning the election, are dashed. If he attacks them he ends up “admitting” that Clinton’s accusers, and by extension himself since he benefitted, are Sharptonesque. Both are losing cards.

The Clintons are powerful. There’s a huge swath of the Democratic Party that’s simply not willing to admit that they played a Southern strategy. They’re ideologically bound to the notion that that is restricted to the Republicans, to Nixon and Reagan. Even those who have written extensively on southern strategies, like Paul Krugman, cannot bring themselves to make this admission, despite all the evidence, lest they end up admitting that much of what the VRWC said about the Clintons was right all along. Such an admission would undermine almost 2 decades of work. Its unthinkable.

The Clintons know this and it's in their best interest to keep the party divided. Obama must lose the general in order for them to reclaim the party and power. Thus, Clinton bought up racism all by himself, knowing it would hurt Obama. Howard Wolfson, Clinton old campaign manager, is on Fox News now making Obama out to be a racial McCarthyist. Expect Gerry Ferraro to make a reappearance in the coming months.

This is precisely why party insiders wanted Clinton to quit the race when it became obvious she couldn’t win. The Clintons scorched earth policy gives McCain cover to launch all sorts of attacks on Obama, and not be blamed for it–or even have Dems defend him when he does it–b/c they originated from the Clintons. Obama as race baiter, as not fit to be commander in chief, as sexist, as out of touch with hard working white Americans, and finally as election stealer who lost the popular vote.

All these charges are false and incendiary. But still very dangerous territory for Obama.

For the Holdouts, it ain't over 'til it's over.

Bill Clinton's cry that he "isn't a racist" was the picking of a scab that had nearly healed over. Take his criticism of Rep. James Clyburn, perhaps the senior Black man in all of the American legislature:
Bill Clinton suggested he is still mad at one politician, South Carolina's Rep. Jim Clyburn, who abandoned his neutrality to back Obama after claiming that the former president had injected race into the campaign.

When Clyburn's name was brought up as a supporter who criticized the former president, Clinton interrupted to say Clyburn was never a supporter of the Clintons.

When Clyburn's description was changed to "longtime friend," Clinton replied, "Used to be."

Pressed on whether Clinton "severely damaged" his standing with African-Americans as Clyburn has claimed, Clinton snapped, "Yeah, that may be. By the time he got through working on it, that was probably true."

No, that started in South Carolina, and it was all Bill's fault. And how can Bill help Barack if he can't even stop talking about himself for five minutes?

It seems that these reminders of our primary past continue to emerge, at inappropriate times. Allegedly, Obama and the former president have only spoken once since he prevailed over Hillary. And her attacks are being used in GOP ads, just as many of us predicted.

Her chickens are coming home to roost, and just in time. She never sleeps.



  • First Read wonders if Bill's lost it:
    Of course, this news comes after husband Bill gave Obama a very tepid endorsement on whether the Illinois senator is qualified to be president. “You could argue that no one’s ever ready to be president,” he told ABC. (Somehow, we don’t remember him saying that about his wife during the Democratic primary season.) What was Bill Clinton thinking here? No doubt he’s still bitter about his wife losing the Dem primary battle, but for someone with his political skills, he should have been able to hit a homerun with that question about Obama. As many a Clinton watcher knows, Bill's very aware of the implications of every sentence he utters. He can't use the "I was taken out of context" excuse on this one. A couple of thoughts here: One, Bill’s answer won’t help Hillary if Obama loses and the Clintons make another run at the White House in 2012, because the Clintons have to be seen as being fully aboard the Obama Train. And because of this, look for Hillary to be effusive in her praise of Obama in Nevada -- in fact, she may now feel she has to go over the top. Two, would Bill have said what he said if Hillary was actually being vetted for VP? The idea of Bill campaigning throughout the fall was already seen as something of a potential headache to some in Obama Land, merging the two operations seems to get even more complicated by the hour or by the Bill Clinton soundbite. In fact, can the Obama campaign trust having Bill on the stump for him at all in the fall?


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