Wednesday, March 26, 2008

One Contradiction for Hillary

Hillary is, as we all know, determined to keep fighting for the Democratic nomination, apparently until it's technically impossible for her to win. This might go to the convention. Yahoo has an interview with her about this.

But I sense a flaw in this strategy. She wants to win the nomination because, obviously, that is what is in her best interest. But what if she fights Obama so long that, even if he wins the nomination, he's so damaged that he loses the general election? I don't think that will happen, but it's possible. What happens then?

What happens then is that literally millions of Democrats will focus their anger directly on Hillary. She will have her defenders. But the acrimony will be extraordinary. There are a lot of people who were unhappy with Bill for various reasons that I don't need to elaborate, but who temper that with the recognition that, as a Democratic president, he was still better than a Republican one. But all of that anger is going to combine with the anger at Hillary for how she has run this campaign.

Of course, it's also possible that she will win both the nomination and the general election. This, I think, is highly unlikely. She simply cannot attract enough independents, particularly after the way that she has run this campaign.

Hillary is up for reelection to the Senate in 2012. But if Obama loses, she would also be the Democratic with the highest national profile. But her negatives are already high. If too many Democrats blame her for losing this year, her negatives would be through the roof.

So in the short term, it's in her best interest to keep running, because it's still possible for her to win the nomination and the election, however unlikely. But in the long run, I think she's going to end up doing herself far more harm than good.

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