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Why Hillary Lost

From the get-go I thought HRC was an impressive candidate who knew what she was doing out there. Her candidacy was historic. No one can accuse her of phoning it in. Few people have ever campaigned harder. And lest we forget, there was a time, last year, when in any given debate she would be the focal point, the center of gravity. It was Hillary and Everyone Else.

So it's been strange in the past few weeks to see her lose her ability to command attention. She won Puerto Rico by a wide margin but she still got bumped on the TV news last night by the Universal Studios fire. She's fading away by the hour. It almost feels rude, but I just can't read another Hillary story.

In the end, she didn't get beat at the ballot box. She got beat at the caucuses, and moreover, by the superdelegates, who ultimately just didn't want her, and preferred the insurgent. Hillary says she'd be more electable. But she's never shown much skill at turning enemies into friends, or even in pulling support from the wobbly middle. Her polling negatives (to my knowledge) never really budged. Recently a GOP operative summed up her problem rather bluntly: "All her life she's been more successful at making enemies than making friends." (I don't think that's true in her personal life, where she has many loyal friends. She's also made alliances in the Senate.)

Her attempt to seize all those delegates from Michigan and Florida had to alienate anyone sitting on the fence. We all saw what happened, what the rules were, and how only HRC of the major candidates let her name stay on the Michigan ballot. How she scheduled that victory trip on election day in Florida. She was trying to play by her own rules. That's not ... democratic.

From the NYTimes:

"I will have won the most votes -- more than anyone in the history of the primary process...In recent primary history, we have never nominated someone who has not won the popular vote."

But the Times then tells us: "Mrs. Clinton's count includes Michigan, where Mr. Obama's name was not on the ballot, and it does not include some caucus states won by Mr. Obama and where the popular vote was not reported."

And here's Lebo with one of the strangest quotes ever uttered on the campaign trail:

'She is getting downright goofy at times. ("It's like that old expression that you can never tell how far a frog can jump until you punch him," she said in Huron, S.D.) '


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Here's Annie Groer (via Memeorandum) giving a report for Huffpo on the Post's goodbye bash at Stoney's.

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Jack Handey describes his flag ("The sheaf of wheat symbolizes the bounty of the land, and the hope that soon more things will come in sheaves").

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In the Boodle, "Nelson" offers a take on the National Geographic special on Stonehenge, writing, in part (go back to the last kit for the full rant):

' i'm very happy to see someone finally putting stonehenge into a regional picture. and the forensic work -- what tiny amount i've read about -- is really quite good.

but it's not good archaeology to lay out such an overarching opinion as with what we do know. it's especially not good science to transfer burial and ancestor veneration practices from a modern group of people in madagascar to a culture that existed 5000 years ago and that we only know of through the material remains.

one needs to be very cautious in drawing such extreme conclusions from what is still sketchy data.

the tv program was unwatchable to me. from made-up language and hair styles to images of a howling mob scene at the summer solstice . . . ouch!!!!!

stonehenge ain't decoded. we just know more about how the other sites in the area tie in with it -- and the existence of a large village/town has been found.

my 2 cents worth. i'll take indy jones and crystal skulls -- which we all recognize to be fun and fiction -- over what national geographic is pushing.'

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Teddy Kennedy after brain surgery: "I feel like a million bucks. I think I'll do that again tomorrow."



By Joel Achenbach  |  June 2, 2008; 2:56 PM ET
 
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