The Obligatory Clinton Dead-Ender Post


DENVER—I haven't seen any yet, but the big story of DNC 2008: Hey, This Time Let's Try Not to Lose thus far is the presence of stubborn Hillary Clinton supporters who refuse to call it a day. Last night a friend from the RNC (here in town at a mafia compound—seriously, you have to enter though a terrifying black gate) excitedly told me to look out for Debra Bartoshevich, a Wisconsin Hillary Clinton delegate who blabbed to the 4th Estate about her plan to vote for McCain at the convention. She got her status taken away. So now she's here, talking to press again and starring in a Denver-only TV ad.

That's the GOP message for the week, with the goal of snuffing out Obama's chance to relaunch his image and take the hammer and tongs to McCain. It's aided by a CNN poll (the only one of three new polls that shows Obama not gaining) that shows a dip in Obama's support from Clinton voters.

How does the Obama campaign dig out of this? Gee, I don't know. Everything else about the convention is so dull, and Clinton allies are so eager to throw daggers at Obama (anonymously, of course), that I expect it to stay the buzz of the convention until Wednesday night, at least. The reporter-to-protester ratio at a planned rally of "hundreds" of Hillary dead-enders is going to be huge. Yes, they're a fraction of the number that will be cheering Ron Paul in Minneapolis, but no one knows who they're voting for. The Clinton dead-enders are clearly gettable for McCain: Their gripe is not about idealogy, but emotional pique.

(Side note: I have yet to meet a Republican who was actually worried about facing an Obama/Clinton ticket. Biden's seen as the strongest possible pick, with none of Clinton's negatives and no way to paint Obama as an easily bossed-around ninny who represents "change" like Cherry Vanilla Dr. Pepper represents "not inducing vomiting." So they're milking the Clinton stuff while they can.)

UPDATE: From the RNC:

Barack Obama's decision to "pass over" Hillary Clinton for his vice-presidential selection without even a vetting or a phone call has served to only exacerbate tensions with the Democrat Party. Obama aides accusing Clinton supporters of acting like "Japanese soldiers in the South Pacific still fighting after the war is over" shouldn't help the situation too much. [Ed-I think they were only referring to the Clintonites who are trying to defeat them.]

At night, we will hold a "Happy Hour for Hillary" for all the Democrat delegates, especially supporters of Senator Hillary Clinton.

In an appeal to wavering Democrats they should probably say "Democratic" delegates. Just saying.