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Wednesday, March 5, 2008

Despite Wins, Hillary Loses Ground

A great article by Newsweek's Jonathan Alter points out that despite winning Texas and Ohio last night Hillary actually lost ground. He says:

"Hillary Clinton won big victories Tuesday night in Ohio, Texas and Rhode Island. But she's now even further behind in the race for the Democratic nomination. How could that be? Math. It's relentless.

To beat Barack Obama among pledged delegates, Clinton now needs even bigger margins in the 12 remaining primaries than she needed when I ran the numbers on Monday—an average of 23 points, which is more than double what she received in Ohio...

Clinton's only hope lies in the popular vote—a yardstick on which she now trails Obama by about 600,000 votes. Should she end the primary season in June with a lead in popular votes, she could get a hearing from uncommitted superdelegates for all the other arguments that she would make a stronger nominee (wins the big states, etc.). If she loses both the pledged delegate count and the popular vote, no argument will cause the superdelegates to disenfranchise millions of Democratic voters. It will be over."

That is amazing. Could any of us know that from today's coverage of the election? If her name was Huckabee instead of Hillary everyone in the media would say she should get out of the race. Witness:

Washington Post, Feb. 11, 2008: Despite GOP's Push for McCain, Huckabee Won't Pull Out of Race.

Dallas Morning News, Mar. 1, 2008: With Campaign Hopes Fading, Huckabee Visits Fort Worth

Instead, we get headlines like these:

Washington Post, Mar. 5, 2008: A New Playing Field for Democrats

New York Times, Mar. 5, 2008: Clinton Success Changes Dynamic in Delegate Hunt

What are these people talking about? Let's face facts here and talk about skewed media coverage. The story about her campaign should be the same as Huckabee's. He had some big victories late in the game. Remember, Huckabee kept racking up victories while he stayed in the race and people dismissed him. Everyone knew the math didn't add up. It doesn't add up here, either. Hillary can't win.

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