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For Obama, Just How Critical Is a Win in N.H.?

The Fix generally casts a suspicious eye on endorsements in the presidential race (or any race for that matter). They often make for a nice press release for a campaign, but don't do much to boost a candidate's appeal to large numbers of voters.


Sen Barack Obama, right, and Rep. Paul Hodes, background right, shake hands with supporters Thursday in Concord, N.H. (AP)

So what should we make of freshman New Hampshire Rep. Paul Hodes's endorsement of Sen. Barack Obama?

Well, it's clear the Obama campaign believes it is a significant development. They put out a press release yesterday afternoon touting a "MAJOR" campaign endorsement. Then, today, the Obama camp set up a conference call with national reporters to allow the candidate to tout the endorsement and the installation of Hodes as a national campaign co-chairman.

There's no question that Hodes's decision to back Obama provides a nice boost for his chances in New Hampshire. Hodes rode a wave of anti-Republican and anti-war sentiment to victory in 2006 over Rep. Charlie Bass (R), and he represents the geographic majority of the Granite State -- a district that stretches all the way from Nashua in the south to Berlin in the state's North Country.

Obama sought to draw a parallel between the presidential race and Hodes's '06 congressional victory, pointing out that Hodes "overcame a lot of the predictions that he couldn't beat an incumbent several years ago," but won anyway because he offered "a fresh new voice and spoke the truth."

Given his status, Hodes is one of a handful of coveted Democratic endorsers in New Hampshire -- a group headed by Gov. John Lynch, who is almost certain not to endorse any candidate, and including former Gov. Jeanne Shaheen, whose husband, Billy, is with Sen. Hillary Rodham Clinton (D-N.Y.), as well as Hodes's fellow freshman representative, Carol Shea Porter, whose aggressive anti-war stance led to one of the biggest upsets of the 2006 cycle.

But it's important not to attach too much significance to the Hodes news. He is still a freshman member of Congress who is not all that well-known, even in New Hampshire. Need evidence? Check out the poll the Concord Monitor commissioned on the 2008 N.H. Senate race. Hodes trailed Sen. John Sununu (R) by a 46 percent to 34 percent margin, roughly the same gap as between Sununu and lesser-known potential challengers like Katrina Swett, who has previously run for Congress in Hodes's district, and Portsmouth Mayor Steve Marchand. Jeanne Shaheen, on the other hand, led Sununu 56 percent to 34 percent.

In addition, voters -- especially in New Hampshire -- tend to resist having anyone tell them who they should vote for, so it's not immediately clear just how many votes Obama will gain directly from the Hodes endorsement.

What is clear is how important New Hampshire is to Obama's chances for the Democratic presidential nomination. His campaign privately acknowledges that no state in the early nominating calendar is a better fit for Obama.

Why?

First and foremost, because independent voters in the state are allowed to vote in either party's primary -- a contrast to the closed party caucuses in Iowa. Obama's fresh face and change message is particularly powerful to independent voters who tend to be even more sick of the political status quo than partisans. In 2000, Sen. John McCain (R-Ariz.) was offering up a similar sort of message and independents flocked to his campaign, providing the backbone of the Arizona senator's huge win in the Granite State.

Second, as I noted above, New Hampshire voters -- the flintiest of the flinty -- like the idea of proving the conventional wisdom to be wrong. George W. Bush is the inevitable nominee? John McCain wins by 19 points. Bill Clinton's campaign is dead? The "Comeback Kid" is born. Obama's campaign is already casting Clinton (Hillary, that is) as the incumbent in this race, the person the national media believes will be the nominee. It's a smart strategy; Obama is, in essence, daring New Hampshire voters to show up the political establishment by voting for him.

While New Hampshire's electorate looks promising for Obama, the strength of the Clinton organization -- Hodes's endorsement notwithstanding -- creates a major hurdle for the Illinois senator. As we have noted on The Fix, Clinton's operation is widely regarded by neutral observers as the strongest in the state, led by highly coveted operative Nick Clemons.

Organization isn't everything. Candidate and campaign quality matter, especially in a state that is so insistent on retail politics. But a campaign team as strong as Clinton's means that she will leave no vote on the table next January. And it raises the bar for Obama to translate the energy of his message into organizational strength and votes in the state.

New Hampshire also has a natural affinity for the Clintons. It prides itself on seeing the promise in Bill Clinton before the rest of the country and boosting him back to credibility in the 1992 race. Rest assured, the Clinton campaign will look to maximize every inch of that good will for the primary. The message, "if you liked Bill, you'll love Hillary," could well have special resonance for Granite State voters.

By Chris Cillizza  |  July 26, 2007; 12:57 PM ET
Categories:  Eye on 2008  
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Comments

")hillary, is too polished,too rehearsed. folks like cc and other beltway pundits wonder why their super canidate isnt liked by everyone else? come on. stop tring to shove her,rudy,old fred and anyone else down our throats!"
- Isn't that because she has learned a lot about how Washington works? Wouldn't you want a candidate who knows their stuff so they can relay back to you? Or you rather have a candidate who pulls information and policies out of no where.

"1)hillary is the greatest get out the vote symbol in recent memory. anyone on the right, personally disgusted with the clintons will come out in DROVES!"
People say this all the time but there is no proof this will happen considering how she turned around NY two times.

"Conservatives have been waiting for the Hillary Clinton candidacy for years. Back in 2004 there was constant speculation in right-wing media about when she'd finally announce she was running, so they could rip her apart. Some commentators started early, attacking Hillary in late 2003 because she hadn't declared her candidacy yet. Don't underestimate the power of Clinton hatred to unite the fractured Republicans; it's a stronger force than you realize."
-Problem is Conservatives have been waiting in the right wing media has been attacking her but unfortunately it isnt uniting Republicans. The corporate republicans are donating to her like crazy...the consersative commentators have called her everything from satan to lesbian, to lucifer to evil, terrorist lover, flip-flopper socialist, hitler and they turn around and they are amazed at how presidential she seems. Unfortunately she is pure evil to them and there is nothing more since she is essentially a black entity to them. Newt has complimented her and some have asked for forgiveness and she has a lot of bipartisan friends in Congress. The masses follow their politicians and their Fox commentators but they are now on a love/hate relationship with their most reviled enemy.

"We are tired of the same old politics and business as usual and we simply need someone who will do the right thing when it counts the most"
THe same old politics was created by Republicans in the 90s when Democrats were trying to get out social policies to help people. Its sort of ridiculous to think that suddenly Republicans would stop believing in the things they believed before just because Obama or Edwards says so. Doing the right thing may mean forming the best bipartisan-compromise possibly if Republicans have power in Congress...Obama and Clinton have a successful history of that but I dont know about Edwards.


Posted by: Cord | July 30, 2007 3:10 PM | Report abuse

Senator Obama is NOT polling well anywhere in the country. Here is the guy who out-raised Hillary and everyone else in money and who has been hyped-up to the point of the absurd, and HE IS NOT LEADING IN EVEN ONE POLL EXCEPT ILLINOIS AND EVEN THEN NOT BY A BIG MARGIN.

What is wrong with this picture?

And this article wants to know if NH is important to Obama??

Answer: YES!!! And so is Iowa; and Florida and California and Nevada and South Carolina and New York.

HE IS TRAILING HORRIBLY IN ALL OF THEM.

Posted by: Suzanne Comley | July 28, 2007 8:19 PM | Report abuse

Too much of the media's attention is on whether or not Obama can "translate" appeal into votes in the coming primary. For pete's sake people are excited and it's energizing the electorate...does that count for something? http://www.enewsreference.com

Posted by: eNews Reference | July 27, 2007 7:37 PM | Report abuse

New Hampshire is a MUST for Obama! Howard Dean was all the rage 4 years ago-- then he took third in Iowa, and that was it. 6 months of hope, money, ACTUAL ideas...down the drain. John Kerry was who the GOP (both in the media and the party) wanted to compete against, because they knew exactly how to beat him. Clinton is the exact same target. Right now the GOP want "none of the above", but Nothing, and I mean NOTHING would rally the GOP more vociferously than being pissed at a Clinton again. The great masses of people get much more riled up when they are angry, not when they are bored or disengaged. How could anyone hate on Obama? He's so new and fresh--there isn't a long history to him, so there's nothing to be angry about. He turned down the big money on Wall Street, and worked on the south side of Chicago. People in this country vote for "outsiders", whether real (i.e. Carter, Bill Clinton)--or contrived (W). Obama would bring 60-70% of the voting middle to the good side, and I'm willing to bet 10-20% of moderate Republicans--people who are older who actually take their voting resposibility seriously,would even consider voting for him. But for all this to happen, Obama has to win an early state (IA or NH) to keep the media coverage going.
Any thoughts?

Posted by: WelcometoZooTV | July 27, 2007 5:26 PM | Report abuse

MikeB - India, with a population of 1,129,866,154 is the World's largest Democracy.

Posted by: Anonymous | July 27, 2007 5:09 PM | Report abuse

India, a "rogue nation" I love that.

Does that mean "sovereignty" applies only for us?

Posted by: Anonymous | July 27, 2007 5:04 PM | Report abuse

lylepink, bsimon - There's a reason many of us loathe Hillary Clinton. Actually there are lots of the them. Note in todays newspaper that the "Senator From India" apparently is now standing up for ur sharing nuclear technology, including weapons technology, with this rogue nation. Now, India, in spite of an EU and U.S. ban, recently signed a deal to sell attack helicopters to Burma/Mymar. The plans for that attak helicopter were flat out stolen from the U.S. Not only that, Indian is aiding countries like Agentina and Brazil with their nuclear programs. Imagine the Falkland war being refought with atomic bombs, lylepink! All of this, of course, is ignoring all of those Indian indentured servants who take Amercian jobs, the utsourcing, the information and data warehouses assembled in India and completely outside of U.S. law, the identifty theft and invasion of privacy that ocurs as a direct result of this, the poisonous or bogus prescription drugs and food, and so on. The Senator from India is a rat, a neocon rat. I'm not saying, mind you that she might not somehow slip into the Whitehouse, but I am saying that she would be even worse than George W. Bush and YOU would be screaming for her head within 6 months of her taking office.

Posted by: MikeB | July 27, 2007 12:51 PM | Report abuse

You may read about the New Hampshire GOP fundraiser that is going to use machine guns at http://www.unionleader.com

I blogged about it at http://www.geocities.com/kstremsky1/blog.html

It will be interesting to see how Democrats and Republicans deal with it.

Posted by: Ken Stremsky | July 27, 2007 10:32 AM | Report abuse

lylepink whines
"Funny how the "Hate Hillary" crowd keeps posting nothing of value."

I don't hate Senator Clinton, I merely think she is trying to parley her husband's reputation into a Presidency of her own. From all appearances, she makes an excellent Senator for the people of New York. Perhaps not a Dan Moynihan, but I imagine it took him a few terms to really hit his stride too. But now we see Senator Clinton yearning to move back into the White House. Why? She's certainly not the most qualified candidate out there, though none of the other front runners really win on that score either. She's certainly not the most loved - its likely she's not as loved as her husband. Lastly, she's not the most visionary - she really hasn't offerend a vision around which to rally - other than her husband. In short, without Bill, what has she done? What does she bring to the table? In my opinion, not much.

Posted by: bsimon | July 27, 2007 10:10 AM | Report abuse

After the debates, I believe that the next learder for America is Obama. The country needs him more than he want's to be president. We are tired of the same old politics and business as usual and we simply need someone who will do the right thing when it counts the most. Obama doesn't need any make overs--can't say the same about Hillary. Also, I guess Laura has been getting alot of "expirience" by being bush's wife if Most of Hillary's expirience "experience" was being in white as with Bill as his wife. Wake up people!!

Posted by: Chris | July 27, 2007 5:24 AM | Report abuse

please someone tell me can hilllary win without her clinton ? I don't think clinton has any plantform than running with his husband's name. Former president Bill Clinton will not be in the ballot to cast vote for him. Let us take Bill Clinton out of the seen will Hillar ever be this far in the pol?l. In fact at times the polls ask questions the favours senator clinton. Does She have any plantform to run on. All I hear that she is exprience than obama. If she is exprience why did see vote for the war after being in the white house so long? I did not call that expience that is more than navie than bama who wants to bring the world at peace restore American name and the country of united sate unified. Go obama

Posted by: manty marah | July 27, 2007 1:47 AM | Report abuse

please someone tell me can hilllary win without her clinton ? I don't think clinton has any plantform than running with his husband's name. Former president Bill Clinton will not be in the ballot to cast vote for him. Let us take Bill Clinton out of the seen will Hillar ever be this far in the pol?l. In fact at times the polls ask questions the favours senator clinton. Does She have any plantform to run on. All I hear that she is exprience than obama. If she is exprience why did see vote for the war after being in the white house so long? I did not call that expience that is more than navie than bama who wants to bring the world at peace restore American name and the country of united sate unified. Go obama

Posted by: manty marah | July 27, 2007 1:47 AM | Report abuse

please someone tell me can hilllary win without her clinton ? I don't think clinton has any plantform than running with his husband's name. Former president Bill Clinton will not be in the ballot to cast vote for him. Let us take Bill Clinton out of the seen will Hillar ever be this far in the pol?l. In fact at times the polls ask questions the favours senator clinton. Does She have any plantform to run on. All I hear that she is exprience than obama. If she is exprience why did see vote for the war after being in the white house so long? I did not call that expience that is more than navie than bama who wants to bring the world at peace restore American name and the country of united sate unified. Go obama

Posted by: manty marah | July 27, 2007 1:47 AM | Report abuse

please someone tell me can hilllary win without her clinton ? I don't think clinton has any plantform than running with his husband's name. Former president Bill Clinton will not be in the ballot to cast vote for him. Let us take Bill Clinton out of the seen will Hillar ever be this far in the pol?l. In fact at times the polls ask questions the favours senator clinton. Does She have any plantform to run on. All I hear that she is exprience than obama. If she is exprience why did see vote for the war after being in the white house so long? I did not call that expience that is more than navie than bama who wants to bring the world at peace restore American name and the country of united sate unified. Go obama

Posted by: manty marah | July 27, 2007 1:47 AM | Report abuse

please someone tell me can hilllary win without her clinton ? I don't think clinton has any plantform than running with his husband's name. Former president Bill Clinton will not be in the ballot to cast vote for him. Let us take Bill Clinton out of the seen will Hillar ever be this far in the pol?l. In fact at times the polls ask questions the favours senator clinton. Does She have any plantform to run on. All I hear that she is exprience than obama. If she is exprience why did see vote for the war after being in the white house so long? I did not call that expience that is more than navie than bama who wants to bring the world at peace restore American name and the country of united sate unified. Go obama

Posted by: manty marah | July 27, 2007 1:47 AM | Report abuse

please someone tell me can hilllary win without her clinton ? I don't think clinton has any plantform than running with his husband's name. Former president Bill Clinton will not be in the ballot to cast vote for him. Let us take Bill Clinton out of the seen will Hillar ever be this far in the pol?l. In fact at times the polls ask questions the favours senator clinton. Does She have any plantform to run on. All I hear that she is exprience than obama. If she is exprience why did see vote for the war after being in the white house so long? I did not call that expience that is more than navie than bama who wants to bring the world at peace restore American name and the country of united sate unified. Go obama

Posted by: manty marah | July 27, 2007 1:47 AM | Report abuse

please someone tell me can hilllary win without her clinton ? I don't think clinton has any plantform than running with his husband's name. Former president Bill Clinton will not be in the ballot to cast vote for him. Let us take Bill Clinton out of the seen will Hillar ever be this far in the pol?l. In fact at times the polls ask questions the favours senator clinton. Does She have any plantform to run on. All I hear that she is exprience than obama. If she is exprience why did see vote for the war after being in the white house so long? I did not call that expience that is more than navie than bama who wants to bring the world at peace restore American name and the country of united sate unified. Go obama

Posted by: manty | July 27, 2007 1:46 AM | Report abuse

please someone tell me can hilllary win without her clinton ? I don't think clinton has any plantform than running with his husband's name. Former president Bill Clinton will not be in the ballot to cast vote for him. Let us take Bill Clinton out of the seen will Hillar ever be this far in the pol?l. In fact at times the polls ask questions the favours senator clinton. Does She have any plantform to run on. All I hear that she is exprience than obama. If she is exprience why did see vote for the war after being in the white house so long? I did not call that expience that is more than navie than bama who wants to bring the world at peace restore American name and the country of united sate unified. Go obama

Posted by: manty | July 27, 2007 1:46 AM | Report abuse

please someone tell me can hilllary win without her clinton ? I don't think clinton has any plantform than running with his husband's name. Former president Bill Clinton will not be in the ballot to cast vote for him. Let us take Bill Clinton out of the seen will Hillar ever be this far in the pol?l. In fact at times the polls ask questions the favours senator clinton. Does She have any plantform to run on. All I hear that she is exprience than obama. If she is exprience why did see vote for the war after being in the white house so long? I did not call that expience that is more than navie than bama who wants to bring the world at peace restore American name and the country of united sate unified. Go obama

Posted by: manty | July 27, 2007 1:46 AM | Report abuse

please someone tell me can hilllary win without her clinton ? I don't think clinton has any plantform than running with his husband's name. Former president Bill Clinton will not be in the ballot to cast vote for him. Let us take Bill Clinton out of the seen will Hillar ever be this far in the pol?l. In fact at times the polls ask questions the favours senator clinton. Does She have any plantform to run on. All I hear that she is exprience than obama. If she is exprience why did see vote for the war after being in the white house so long? I did not call that expience that is more than navie than bama who wants to bring the world at peace restore American name and the country of united sate unified. Go obama

Posted by: manty | July 27, 2007 1:46 AM | Report abuse

obama has hillary shaking in her boots

Posted by: HORNET12 | July 27, 2007 12:04 AM | Report abuse

in a face off between hillary and john edwards in a debate, edwards rubs hillary face into the ground, sound bites don't work 1 0n 1, check it out.

Posted by: HORNET12 | July 26, 2007 11:56 PM | Report abuse

Funny how the "Hate Hillary" crowd keeps posting nothing of value.

Posted by: lylepink | July 26, 2007 9:26 PM | Report abuse

Hillary Cliinton offers nothing. She is a law school dweeb, a carpet bagging, study rat, she doesn't care about anything except the office of the presidency. She is a terrible senator, has done nothing for New York, never even lived there. Why didn't she run for senator from Arkansas? I'll tell you why. Because she wanted to live in ritzy Westchester County and eat at fancy restaurants in New York. She is pathetic. She doesn't care about America, only herself. She is despised by Russia, Iran, Cuba, North Korea. None of these nations will meet with Hillary Clinton. She wanted to do "spadework" on these powerful nations. Cats are "spaded", not nuclear superpowers. She is stupid.

Posted by: Scott Romanov | July 26, 2007 7:57 PM | Report abuse

I feel you guys are jumping the gun too much.
the media is trying to figure out things that should be looked at in december.
Many mainstream voters won't decide until sometime in the fall or after. People are beginning to talk about being sick of seeing Hillary's face plastered on tv everynight with her praises sung when they just don't see it. so you have the soft support getting sick of Clinton.
The brouhaha right now is showing just how tough Obama is and that he is not some push over and can throw punches hard.
And alot of people are loving it. They love him going after Hillary and calling her on the carpet since the media won't.
Now he is questioning the conventional thinking of washington that led to authorizing the war. not just clinton but, the stale and tired thinking from the insiders.

Posted by: vwcat | July 26, 2007 7:18 PM | Report abuse

It is not logical that Hillary allegedly leads all polls. Who could want this main supporter of all Bush policies to take leadership, when these policies have already failed? And the fact that Obama has more funds proves my point. What I believe is the polls are very much fixed, and then results of election would be fixed also. There is NO other reasonable explanation for this current fully artificial Hillary's leadership in polls.

Posted by: aepelbaum | July 26, 2007 7:07 PM | Report abuse

"Loudon, Clinton hatred is different from Bush hatred."

WOW BLarg. That is an on point arguement. Very nice and well thought out. And it's true. What a novil concept. Impeachment and shutting down the government for a BJ, but not for lying into war, destroying the DOJ, perjery obstruction, BLAH blah blah.

How far this great country has fallen. Frickin republicans

Posted by: rufus1133 | July 26, 2007 6:42 PM | Report abuse

"Rasmussen Reports has Hillary 41%. Obama 23%. Edwards 15%. Most folks agree this is about the best polling available. From early on Hillary has been the leader and from everything I have seen recently, she is increasing her lead in the early [Feb] states. I am not 100% sure yet, but maybe 99.44% like the soap, Hillary will have all but won the nomination and on her way to The White House. Other polling data I've seen lately shows her beating any repub being considered, announced or otherwise."

I'm not gonna hate her lylepink. If she is elected I'll HOPE she's telling the truth. I'll pray I am wrong about her and her yale/bush ties. Unfortunalty for us all I don't think I'm wrong. She does have high numbers, I just think more people are gainst her than for her. I think her high numbers are due to woman who are riding the anti-bush tidal wave but know little about politics and they think, "It would be nice to have a women president."

But again. I'll hope she is telling the truth. I'll get off this site and go back to my normal life. Up until she starts her GOP tactics again. Then WE'RE ALL going independant. New parties huge change. Not sure if the country is ready for that. I would like Barack or Edwards to do what they are saying instead, give the dems one more shot before going independant. It's not looking goo though. But as far as her poll numbers go, inflated. IMO

Now ATTACK! :) That's what you do GOP. ATTACK discredit lie spin

Posted by: rufus1133 | July 26, 2007 6:38 PM | Report abuse

bsimon: "Thanks to their leader in the WH, the trend is likely to continue in 2008, after which the GOP will be forced to wake up to the reality that they are out of touch with mainstream America. Rinse, repeat."

Loyal Republicans should not be proud of how fast their representatives got to this point. Remember, the Dems pretty much held the House from 1932 until getting the boot in 1994, and the Senate for almost all of that period as well.

Posted by: Loudoun Voter | July 26, 2007 5:52 PM | Report abuse

Blarg writes
"And there were certainly other factors in 1994 besides anti-Clinton voters."

The Newt & his team were very, very effective at calling out the Dem on Congress on their sloppy ethics & work habits. Their 'Contract of America' proposal sold very well & they cleaned a bunch of slackers out of Congress, which was good for everybody. Then they had to live up with their promises in the 'contract' and actually worked with Clinton to do some legislative good. Unfortunately, it didn't take the GOP long to learn to like being the party in power, and they started treating Congress like it belonged to the party rather than the voters & slipped into the same habits for which they had disparaged the Dems in 1994. In 2006, the people caught on to their games & the GOP was sent packing. Thanks to their leader in the WH, the trend is likely to continue in 2008, after which the GOP will be forced to wake up to the reality that they are out of touch with mainstream America. Rinse, repeat.

Posted by: bsimon | July 26, 2007 5:32 PM | Report abuse

loundon-err not really, people in my area are more concerned about if the tigers stay in first place or the coming football season. possibly next year after the conventions and both dem and gop tickets are set up we can worry or gloat about it then.

from what im hearing the dems are leading in fundraising so say if hilary is the nominee or a strong gop canidate appears, that added cash on hand may blunt some of it. if not, then that added cushion will be welcome.

well nice debating you all. that was a change for once. see you all next time.

Posted by: spartan | July 26, 2007 5:26 PM | Report abuse

bsimon: "Interesting. You appear to discount the alleged 'coat tails' phenomena."

Well, there's a difference between coat-tails and for lack of a better word, anti-coat-tails. I'll buy positive coat-tails -- e.g., Reagan in 1980, when the GOP retook the Senate after scoring upsets in several races -- but anti-coat-tails is a much tougher sell. Also, to put 1994 to bed, I just can't buy anti-coat-tails when the alleged wearer isn't even on the ballot.

Now, back to the issue at hand -- 2008. Right now the election is so far out that talk of coat-tails or anti-coat-tails is pretty meaningless, I think. That's usually an after-the-fact discussion anyway. Honestly, has anyone EVER heard someone say, "I can't stand party X's presidential candidate, so I'm going to vote against all of that party's candidates"?

Posted by: Loudoun Voter | July 26, 2007 5:18 PM | Report abuse

Obama is now picking up great endorsements to go with his huge bank account. In advertising, he can stand beside of rep. Hode as "agents for change." This well could work. However, Clinton has Clemons and the Sheheens in her cornor, and that will be tough to beat. Although, this makes it much tougher for Clinton. Now she has a tough primary vs. Edwards in Iowa and against Obama in New Hampshire. What happens if Edwards wins Iowa, how much will that help him in NH? No doubt, a loss by Clinton in either state would be devastating to her campaign. Now, she must fight in both states for a victory. This will take so much money to put into the campaign. Obama is beating her in that category right now. Will Obama not spend alot in Iowa and try and win New Hampshire? Edwards is going to spend buckos to win Iowa. Can Clinton keep up in spending with Edwards in Iowa and with Obama in NH and win both? She definately can't afford to try to spend some in Iowa and some in NH and lose both. Does she have to cede one to win the other? This race will be extremely interesting.

Posted by: reason | July 26, 2007 5:12 PM | Report abuse

My state is going to vote for the R Presidential candidate [surprise]. Conventional thinking here is that some down ticket races will be affected by the tops of each ticket. If the Rs find a positive candidate to rally around, or if HRC runs, the R turnout will increase here, as three of you predict, for your states.

Texas will not vote in a primary 'til March. That may mean Texas is a funding source for candidates, only.

Posted by: Mark in Texas | July 26, 2007 5:11 PM | Report abuse

Loudon, I wasn't paying attention to politics in 1994, so I admit that I might be wrong. And there were certainly other factors in 1994 besides anti-Clinton voters. But think about the rise of right-wing talk radio. That was based heavily on hatred of the Clintons, and I'm sure it contributed to the 1994 election.

You say that anti-Clinton votes wouldn't have affected the Congressional elections in 1994, because Clinton wasn't running. But a lot of people voted Democrat in 2006 because they were sick of the Republican Party, and Bush was the most visible member of that party, so I'd say that anti-Bush votes mattered in 2006.

Posted by: Blarg | July 26, 2007 4:54 PM | Report abuse

I think Hillary Clinton could have a negative impact Democratic candidates in swing areas. She could probably win - narrowly - given how bleak things are looking for Republicans in 2008. But, I agree with bsimon and spartan that nothing would motivate the Republican base like their favorite boogie-woman at the head of the Democratic ticket. That would pump Republican turnout up and would make life difficult for a lot of Democratic candidates in red states and swing districts.

Posted by: JimD in FL | July 26, 2007 4:52 PM | Report abuse

bsimon-thank you. also i noted congress aproval rating. its kind of dishonest to say the approval rating is only 16% when you look at it closely and 34% say its doing a fair job. i equate fair/good and excellent in the same catergory. but im sure some of the more rabid gop supporters will point to that and say something unintelligible.(paging zouk/trosky/anonfool) honestly so far my opinion of congress is they are doing ok, if anything a mundane job right now.

i dont think anyone has given this congress a grade right now. ill give a c+ in general, but they need improvement in a few areas to get that b or maybe A+ on that report card.

Posted by: spartan | July 26, 2007 4:46 PM | Report abuse

spartan- thanks for the link. AFter a brief scan, it appears the Rasmussen poll is nationwide for likely Dem primary voters - which tells us nothing about the NH primary.

Posted by: bsimon | July 26, 2007 4:36 PM | Report abuse

http://www.rasmussenreports.com/public_content/politics/presidential_tracking_poll

lylepink is probably talking about that. but i stand by my original statemen. its still too early so polls are useless this far out.

but of course mike vick of the atlanta falcons has a 57% unfavorable rating, maybe he could run as dog catcher?!
(rimshot)

Posted by: spartan | July 26, 2007 4:31 PM | Report abuse

Loudon Voter writes
"It's one thing to say Clinton hatred will cause votes AGAINST Clinton, but to carry that hatred to elections in which Clinton wasn't running is just a bridge too far."


Interesting. You appear to discount the alleged 'coat tails' phenomena. While Blarg has perhaps overstated his case, the coat tails affect shouldn't be ignored. I think there's enough anti-Clinton sentiment in the country to boost Republican turnout. Given the slate of their candidates - none of which appear to be all that inspiring to their voters - I expect lower GOP turnout in 2008. The party doesn't know where its going, except away from Bush. Unless there's something to rally against - and a Clinton candidacy would be one such thing - the GOP will have another off year.

Posted by: bsimon | July 26, 2007 4:29 PM | Report abuse

Blarg: "Based on hatred of Clinton, they took over Congress in 1994."

Sorry, but your historical analysis is incorrect. Public reaction to events like the House Bank scandal played a major role in the GOP takeover, and that had nothing to do with Clinton.

It's one thing to say Clinton hatred will cause votes AGAINST Clinton, but to carry that hatred to elections in which Clinton wasn't running is just a bridge too far. People -- even haters -- don't work that way.

Posted by: Loudoun Voter | July 26, 2007 4:17 PM | Report abuse

lylepink writes
"Rasmussen Reports has Hillary 41%. Obama 23%. Edwards 15%. Most folks agree this is about the best polling available."

Got link? I don't doubt that there's a poll stating such results, instead I'm interested in seeing the underlying sample data. Is this national or NH or somewhere els? Is it all respondents, or likely dem voters, or some other mix?

In NH, as has been discussed above and elsewhere, the Independant voters get to vote in the Dem or GOP primary. Do NH polls include the independant vote? How do they split? I'd like to see a NH poll of likely primary voters of all stripes and see where the chips fall - for the full slate of GOP & Dem candidates. Who are the frontrunners, by party, but more importantly - who gets the swing vote?

Posted by: bsimon | July 26, 2007 4:15 PM | Report abuse

Loudoun- depends on who's the gop nominee is on election day. for all we know it could be rudy vs hilary

as for my personal reason for not supporting hillary is that it will affect races on the ticket! the dems have a great chance to keep the house and gain 60+ votes in the senate. with hilary at the top and a dem light ticket(possibly vilsack or bayh) and her writing off the south electorially(dumb move) it could spell doom for at least 1 chamber,possibly both.

i will admit kerry was the wrong canidate at the wrong time. he should have been on the attack as soon as he got the nom but was too moderate and didnt really spell out his positions too well. hilary will fall in to that trap too.

you have to consider the fact that politics is a game of chess. the gop are thinking 6 steps ahead and the dems are still trying to figure out how to play checkers. in order to push america back on track, the dems will have to be as cutthroat or even more so than the gop. 2006 was a good start but there's still more work to be done. we just cant look at polls 6 months in and declare a winner! if thats the case then lets ask presidents mondale,dukakis and gore about that.

Posted by: spartan | July 26, 2007 4:14 PM | Report abuse

2)if hillary wins you can expect 28 YEARS OF CLINTON/BUSH in the oval office since 1988! its time for a change already!

George P. Bush (or his Daddy Jeb) for President in 2016!!!

Chelsea Clinton-whatever for President in 2024!!

Posted by: Where are the Hapsburgs when you need them? | July 26, 2007 4:06 PM | Report abuse

Loudon, Clinton hatred is different from Bush hatred.

Think back to the 90s. Clinton was president, and the Republicans despised him. Rush Limbaugh gained great popularity spending several hours a day attacking Clinton. There were books and articles in right-wing media about how the Clintons were liars, thieves, even murderers. And it all worked out great for the Republicans. Based on hatred of Clinton, they took over Congress in 1994. Republicans nearly threw him out of office entirely. It was a great time to be a Republican, because there was an easy target and there was real success.

But what is it like to be a Republican today? The party is falling apart. Support for the war in Iraq is declining, Bush is the most unpopular president ever, there are constant scandals and defections, etc. Now is a terrible time to be a Republican. Don't you think the Republicans long to be back in 1994 again? Hillary Clinton provides them an opportunity. All of the people who were die-hard Republicans in the 90s but have since drifted will come back for another chance to fight the Clintons.

Conservatives have been waiting for the Hillary Clinton candidacy for years. Back in 2004 there was constant speculation in right-wing media about when she'd finally announce she was running, so they could rip her apart. Some commentators started early, attacking Hillary in late 2003 because she hadn't declared her candidacy yet. Don't underestimate the power of Clinton hatred to unite the fractured Republicans; it's a stronger force than you realize.

Posted by: Blarg | July 26, 2007 4:03 PM | Report abuse

lylepink-here's the problem i have with polls this far out. its only july/august and the first primaries are 6 months out. anything can happen between now and the first caucus. if anything 2 or maybe 3 canidates can drop out and where do you think all that support will go? honestly the lower tier support is going to go upward to any of the big 3(or four if you count richardson) or better yet say edwards, finally implodes and obama gets a sudden surge of support from edwards former followers? instead of hil 41-obama-23-edwards. it may turn out to be hilary 41-obama 38! its a lot closer you see.

Posted by: spartan | July 26, 2007 4:00 PM | Report abuse

hey spartan, Bush hatred wasn't enough to carry the mediocre Kerry to victory last time around. You really think Clinton hatred will be enough to carry a mediocre GOP candidate over the top?

Posted by: Loudoun Voter | July 26, 2007 3:53 PM | Report abuse

Rasmussen Reports has Hillary 41%. Obama 23%. Edwards 15%. Most folks agree this is about the best polling available. From early on Hillary has been the leader and from everything I have seen recently, she is increasing her lead in the early [Feb] states. I am not 100% sure yet, but maybe 99.44% like the soap, Hillary will have all but won the nomination and on her way to The White House. Other polling data I've seen lately shows her beating any repub being considered, announced or otherwise.

Posted by: lylepink | July 26, 2007 3:46 PM | Report abuse

mikeb has a point but let me expand on that. ive narrowed it down 3 reasons why hillary should not be the dem nominee.
1)hillary is the greatest get out the vote symbol in recent memory. anyone on the right, personally disgusted with the clintons will come out in DROVES!
2)if hillary wins you can expect 28 YEARS OF CLINTON/BUSH in the oval office since 1988! its time for a change already!
3)hillary, is too polished,too rehearsed. folks like cc and other beltway pundits wonder why their super canidate isnt liked by everyone else? come on. stop tring to shove her,rudy,old fred and anyone else down our throats!

Posted by: spartan | July 26, 2007 3:42 PM | Report abuse

Chris, You'[ve got it backwards once again. Either Clinton wins an outright majority in NH...and thaty means 50% plus, or she looses. The people blathering about Hillary keep telling all the rest of us that her sky high negatives don't/wont count. Well, I'm a Democrat, I'm a libera;, and there is no way in h3ll I will vote for her. Dig just a tiny little bit and I'll bet yu find about half od Democratic *activists* feeel the same way. Clinton is a train wreck, a disaster, a political suicide pact that no one with any brains and wanting to win the Whitehouse is going to buy into.

Posted by: MikeB | July 26, 2007 3:34 PM | Report abuse

While N.H. is not a must win for Obama, a win there would make his path to the nomination easier. Hillary Clinton is expected to win N.H. and anything less will hurt her. Obama has the most money, and I am convinced that his money lead will continue to grow, and a win in N.H. gives him momentum going into Florida and S.C on Jan. 29th. Can Hillary recover from losing N.H.? I believe she can, but I believe it would be easier for Obama to recover from a loss there. N.H. is Obama's chance to take the momentum lead in the race and if he can then win both states on Jan. 29th, then it will be hard for any candidate to stop him from winning the nomination.

Posted by: publius | July 26, 2007 3:31 PM | Report abuse

Didn't I hear matthews say he likes Thompson because he "smells good"? Didn't I hear him parrot Fox by saying Ronmey "Looks" presidential.

I'm sure glad most americans are nolonger fool by these kind or elementary school kid debates. I'm sure glad the GOP is done for my generation. Old man, brainwash your GREAT grand kids. MAybe then you can get the fascist gop to return. Not until then

Posted by: rufus | July 26, 2007 3:27 PM | Report abuse

You don't see a conservative tilt on CNN? Well, not sure what to say about that OLD MAN. I do every time I watch it. The only reason you gop'ers claim there is a "liberal" media is because ANYTHING seems liberal this side of Fox "News" and Rush.
HArdball? WOW. Tucker? Wolf Blitzer? Joe SCarbourgh?


What are you talking about old man.


Olberman is the only NON-Gop cable news how I have seen to date. One show. And that scares you? Fascsits!

And lylepink. I gave you a compliment, why the hatred?

Just kidding.:)

You people can pretend I am what's wrong with the country and everything is my fault. I'll do that for you. i wish you people would open you eyes, though. What bearing do I have on the political landscape? What Damge or Fixing of the country do I do.

If you don't like truths and facts get off the internet. Go back into your caves.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Allegory_of_the_cave

But why so much hatred of me. What have I done? I'm just like you. Trying to help. I just care more and have less fear than you

Posted by: rufus1133 (J Krish) | July 26, 2007 3:25 PM | Report abuse

Chris, I see why you support Hillary you both have more waffles than IHOP. Endorsements are only important when Hillary gets them!!
Funny, they love Bill so much did you notice how Obama closed the gap after Bill and Hill went on their tour. Before the walk thru up 12 now down to 8. Guess they don't love him that much or maybe its just they know she is not him. Being together confirmed it.

Posted by: Anonymous | July 26, 2007 3:22 PM | Report abuse

yep i got it and it's ludicrous. being from NY will have zero effect on how Clinton's performance in NH is viewed.

Same for Dodd. Being from a state two states away just doesn't mean anything in politics. Sorry.

Posted by: Loudoun Voter | July 26, 2007 3:02 PM | Report abuse

"Now EVERYTHING you hear has a conservative tilt on it."

rufus(ignoramus) - I didn't hear anything conservative on Hardball last night, or Olberman, or pbs, or Leno, or CNN, or Katie Couric's evening news, or All Things Considered. Why don't you just change the channel if you don't like FOX?

Posted by: proudtobeGOP | July 26, 2007 3:01 PM | Report abuse

proudtobeGOP: There is a difference in "RUFUS" and "rufus". Sorry pal, you quoted wrongly.

Posted by: lylepink | July 26, 2007 2:58 PM | Report abuse

I also hope that both Obama and Hodes endorse the fight against poverty. It is really important that the United States does something about the impovershed living under 2$ a day [Borgen Project]. This is very disappointing, espcially when we can do something about it.

Posted by: Erica | July 26, 2007 2:54 PM | Report abuse

Don't you think it is awfully presumptuous that the 'anyone but Clinton' crowd is going to settle for Obama? There are very qualified candidates (and I admit I favor Biden) whom we can choose from. This is not a race between two candidates, and as much as the Obama campaign and the press would like to narrow our choice, we don't have to settle for someone completely unqualified or the 'party establishments' presumptuous nominee.

Posted by: clawrence | July 26, 2007 2:53 PM | Report abuse

"Just as I was about to post this -- literally seconds before -- someone e-mailed me this new video from Max Blumenthal which shows the true face of the Christian Zionist movement of Rev. Hagee, the one Lieberman has embraced so enthusiastically. Coincidence?

In the video, which Blumenthal filmed at the convention two weeks ago, Hagee proclaims to cheering throngs, who are waiving Israeli flags:

Therefore it is time for America to embrace the words of Senator Joseph Lieberman and consider a military preemptive strike against Iran to prevent a nuclear holocaust in Israel. . .
Blumenthal notes that of all the speakers at the convention, Lieberman received the "by far the best reception," and showed Lieberman saying this:
I want to take the liberty of describing Pastor Hagee in the words the Torah uses to describe Moses. . . and those words really fit him. Like Moses, he has become the leader of a mighty multitude, even greater than the multitude that Moses led from Egypt to the Promise Land.
Mike Gravel and Ron Paul are total wackos. MoveOn.org and DailyKos is filled with fringe extremists. Iran is led by warmongering religious fanatics. And Tim Russert and Dick Cheney and Joe Lieberman are very serious and responsible and wise."

http://www.salon.com/opinion/greenwald/?last_story=/opinion/greenwald/2007/07/26/lieberman_hagee/


Posted by: That's Isreal flags. not american. traitor gopers. | July 26, 2007 2:49 PM | Report abuse

????????????

Posted by: Anonymous | July 26, 2007 2:46 PM | Report abuse

me, ma, and vt "border" nh. ny is a "neighboring" state. dodd is from a "neighboring" state, too.

richardson, biden, kucinich, obama, and gargoyle are not from "neighboring" states
unless north america is the neighborhood.

romney is from a bordering state and giuliani is from a neighboring state. mccain, the thompsons, huckabee, tancredo, hunter, paul, and brownback are not from neighboring states.

got it?

Posted by: Anonymous | July 26, 2007 2:39 PM | Report abuse

I can say the clevland browns are going to win the superbowl this year. The facts kinda point agianst it. I'm sure in clevand there are people thinking they're going to win. I'm sure thye might have sonmethign to say.

You see my analogy? The GOP reports what they what. The day's of reporting the news is over. Remember when there were non-bias news. "Just the facts maam." Remember that?

No more. Now they MAKE THE NEWS. Blame the anonymous poster if it makes you feel better about yourslef. I'm getting the lying fascsit propogandist off the air, regardless. Give me time. That day I'll be on here saying

"Hello. Hello. Bueler. Beuler. Beuler. :)

Posted by: rufus | July 26, 2007 2:33 PM | Report abuse

I just hope that it's different this time around. Iowa and NH had their day(s) in the sun. Personally, I'm glad that the primary schedule is compressed - no reason why those two reasonably insignificant states should get to wield so such power.

So, to answer your question Chris, if all goes well, then NH endorsements or victories shouldn't mean very much.

Posted by: JD | July 26, 2007 2:30 PM | Report abuse

Lylepink isn't going to fall for your tricks. Lylepink is smarter than the average bear. Also smarter than the smartest "dittohead".

There is a big differance between saying who your are for and why, and saying this or that person is leading. I know it's hard old man, your used to beleiving things that you hear on the news. That used to be the case, when you could beleive the news. That was before Fox Destroyed the media. Now EVERYTHING you hear has a conservative tilt on it. Blame me if you want old man. I can take you hate, I am a christian. I blame those who have lead us down this path

Posted by: rufus | July 26, 2007 2:27 PM | Report abuse

"1:35 am Bill Clinton asks Ted to drive Hillary home"

Did someone say After-party?

Posted by: Anonymous | July 26, 2007 2:22 PM | Report abuse

rufus says "Hillary is not leading despite what the REPUBLICANS are telling you."

Hear that lylepink? You've just been deemed a Republican. Welcome to the ranks.

Posted by: proudtobeGOP | July 26, 2007 2:14 PM | Report abuse

2008 Democratic National Convention Agenda


7:00 pm Opening flag burning

7:15 pm Pledge of Allegiance to the U.N.

7:20 pm Ted Kennedy proposes a toast

7:25 pm Nonreligious prayer and worship with Jesse Jackson and Al
Sharpton

7:45 pm Ceremonial tree hugging

7:55 pm Ted Kennedy proposes a toast

8:00 pm How I Invented the Internet - Al Gore

8:15 pm Gay Wedding - Barney Frank presiding

8:35 pm Ted Kennedy proposes a toast

8:40 pm Our Troops are War Criminals - John Kerry

9.00 pm Memorial service for Saddam and his sons - Cindy Sheehan
and Susan Sarandon

10:00 pm "Answering Machine Etiquette" - Alec Baldwin

11:00 pm Ted Kennedy proposes a toast

11:05 pm Collection for the Osama Bin Laden kidney transplant
fund - Barbra Streisand

11:15 pm Free the Freedom Fighters from Guantanamo Bay - Sean Penn

11:30 pm Oval Office Affairs - William Jefferson Clinton

11:45 pm Ted Kennedy proposes a toast

11:50 pm How George Bush Brought Down the World Trade Towers -
Howard Dean

12:15 am "Truth in Broadcasting Award" - Presented to Dan Rather by
Michael Moore

12:25 am Ted Kennedy proposes a toast

12:30 am Satellite address by Mahmoud Ahmadinejad

12:45 am Nomination of Hillary Rodham Clinton by Nancy Pelosi

1:00 am Ted Kennedy proposes a toast

1:05 am Coronation of Hillary Rodham Clinton

1:30 am Ted Kennedy proposes a toast

1:35 am Bill Clinton asks Ted to drive Hillary home

Posted by: so true | July 26, 2007 2:11 PM | Report abuse

Once again, the posters casting Hillary as the "inevitable" candidate, through a frame of reference of considering Obama's chances in NH. This could backfire on them/her if the electorate truly sickens of this inevitablity gambit by February. I've said it before. The Nation is ready for a woman president.... It ain't her...

Posted by: L.Sterlilng | July 26, 2007 2:09 PM | Report abuse

"It's Up to UsJourney for Humanity and AccountabilityDay 14Cindy SheehanI am lying in my hotel bed at the end of a very busy,productive, yet sad day.About 300 people gathered today and marched the 3½miles from the entrance of Arlington Cemetery toCongressman John Conyers' office to demand impeachmentand accountability from one of the leading figures inAmerican politics for the last four decades.We were so thrilled with the turn-out and the energyof the group. There was great media coverage and aboutone dozen freepers on the opposite corner with signslike: "Traitors go to Hell" and "Cindy Sheehan go toHell." Nice. I have learned that hell can be on earthand if there is anything worse than burying a child, Idon't want to know about it.At the end of the march, Reverend Lennox Yearwood,President of the Hip Hop Caucus, Ray McGovern (retiredCIA analyst) and I met with Congressman John Conyersto implore him to institute impeachment proceedingsagainst the pretenders to the White House who aredestroying our democracy, making a mockery out of ourrule of law and who are responsible for the deaths ofhundreds of thousands of innocent people.This was my third meeting with Congressman Conyersabout impeachment. I hold a special place in my heartfor him and I revere him for his decades long serviceto this nation but for the life of me, I cannotunderstand why he will not go forward with impeachmentnow.A year ago he introduced HR635 to impeach George Bushwhile he was Ranking Member of the House JudiciaryCommittee and not even chairman. He wrote the book onimpeachment called: The Constitution in Crisis and hereadily admits that BushCo have committed impeachableoffenses.It's about partisan politics, pure and simple. TheCongressman claims that there is absolutely no waythat impeachment can go forward and when I was nearingthe end of my hope I cried out: "So, if the people'shouse won't help us then we the people have norecourse against the executive branch." To which hereplied: "Yes you do, vote the enablers out in '08." Firstly, Congressman Conyers told us to put Democratsback in Congress to end the war and impeach BushCo. Wedid that and instead of ending the war, they gaveGeorge Bush more money to wage it and to conduct hisdeadly and tragic surge. Secondly, '08 will be toolate to hold George and Dick accountable. Thirdly,thousands of more people will die in these last monthsof the worst Presidency in American history andlastly: after Dick proclaimed that he was not part ofthe executive branch and that his office does not haveto comply with requests to turn over documents to theNational Archives: 435 Congress Reps should havesigned onto H Res 333 to impeach Cheney. Only fourteenhave co-signed Congressman Kucinich's bill, so thatmakes 421 elected Congressional officials enablers ofthe crimes of the Bush Regime.At the end of this day, Speaker Pelosi has notsupported impeachment and has not upheld her oath ofoffice to "protect and defend" the Constitution. LikeCongressman Conyers said almost a year ago, ourConstitution is in Crisis and we can't wait for moremeetings and more stalling from Reps who think theproblem will go away in '08. The Middle East israpidly falling apart under this regime and ourcountry is sliding rapidly into a state of one-branchtyranny while our "heroes" the Democrats fiddle. It was with very heavy hearts that Rev. Yearwood, Ray,and I reported back to the media that the Congressmanhad said that with over one million signatures onpetitions and with one phone call coming into hisoffice every 30 seconds supporting impeachment andwith 300 activists in the hall to support him, he wasstill not going to move forward with the most urgentduty of his career. The Rev and I were particularlydisheartened and broken because we do love theCongressman so much, but we love our country and thepeople of Iraq and the Middle East more. The Rev andRay spent many years serving their country in themilitary and the CIA and I had a son who gave his lifeto do what the Congress is supposed to do: protect ourfreedoms, not hand them over to the mob that runs ourcountry.It is also with a heavy heart that I announce mycandidacy against Nancy Pelosi in California's 8th. Ifanybody would dare think that I am not serious, Iwould hope that they would look back at the last threeyears of my life and everything that I have sacrificedto restore our nation to one that obeys the rule oflaw and can be looked up to with respect once again inthe international community and not as the hatedlaughingstock on the block. I am committed to challenging a two party system thathas kept us in a state of constant warfare for thelast 60 years and has become more and more beholden tospecial interests and has forgotten the faces of thepeople whom it represents.I am committed to using our strength as a country towage peace and to elevate the status of every citizenin our country by converting the enduring war economyto a prosperous one with lasting peace.Someone needs to step up to the plate to do this and Ichallenge other Americans to do the same. Challengethe status quo, because the status quo is no good. Weneed to become plugged into our government once againas active participants not just passive voters. It is up to us."

Posted by: Cindy Sheehan | July 26, 2007 2:08 PM | Report abuse

tHE ATTACKS ON oBAMA ARE A JOKE. hILLARY LEADING IS A JOKE.

Obama has the money. He has the people. He has the message. Hillary is not leading despite what the REPUBLICANS are telling you. Thye can only dream. Hillary;'s on;y hope is the spin cycle. I heard someone on daily Koz (via O'Reilly) said she is George bush with bres__. Good analogy.

Go Obama Gore 08

Posted by: RUFUS | July 26, 2007 2:02 PM | Report abuse

CC writes: "it raises the bar for Obama to translate the energy of his message ..."

What message?? Here's what his message has been so far...I'm new, I represent change, I'm liberal... I mean progressive, I want to change Washington, I'm the new guy, I'm the future, did I mention that I'm NEW!?

He lacks energy in the debates, and is a boring speaker, imo. Given his penchant to recast everything into the larger picture or the broader question, he would have to have the charisma of Martin Luther King to really inspire people enough to win. I just don't see it.

Even if he wins NH, he's fighting a losing battle against Hillary who is a general election contender.

Posted by: proudtobeGOP | July 26, 2007 1:57 PM | Report abuse

"Obama's campaign is already casting Clinton (Hillary, that is) as the incumbent in this race, the person the national media believes will be the nominee."

I think you're giving a little too much credit to a campaign staff.

A campaign staff doesn't have the power to cast a rival candidate so firmly as the inevitable candidate as has been done with Hillary.

The only body with that kind of sway, that kind of power, is the national media.

Don't be so fast to blame the Obama campaign to what you and your friends have been doing since 2004.

Posted by: Anonymous | July 26, 2007 1:52 PM | Report abuse

The latest NH poll shows Hillary leading with 40% and Obama at 25%. The only poll I've found where Hillary is not leading, by double digets in most, is Edwards in Iowa, and from recent reports she is gaining there and sometime back I got a e-mail from friends traveling across the country, spending a couple days there, and they tell me not to be suprised if Hillary did indeed win the Iowa caucus.

Posted by: lylepink | July 26, 2007 1:49 PM | Report abuse

Hillary will win NH the same way she's won every one of the debates - by being the smartest and strongest choice. That's why she is leading in NH and nationally.

Posted by: csh | July 26, 2007 1:46 PM | Report abuse

The message, "if you liked Bill, you'll love Hillary,"

of course thats codeword for if you want slick willie and and shilary back in the white house vote gop.

Posted by: spartan | July 26, 2007 1:38 PM | Report abuse

Regarding the question
"For Obama, Just How Critical Is a Win in N.H.?"

I say, no more or less critical than for anyone else. NH is one of 50 critical states for Sen Clinton, as the presumed front-runner. She has to perform well everywhere - certainly all the early states - in order to maintain that image. The same formula holds true for the rest of the field - every state in which they can strongly challenge, or beat, the presumed frontrunner is critical to their success. NH then becomes critical as an early state in which to knock off the presumed leader.

Posted by: bsimon | July 26, 2007 1:28 PM | Report abuse

How critical is a obama win in NH? very. a 1st. or a strong 2nd. place showing will estabish him in the top tier. but of course if he gains anything over 40% and you may see this race over by superduper tuesday rolls around.

but say if hillary comes in a strong second, ok sure she's still alive and maybe able to steal a few states away(possibly florida or maybe my home state of michgan). now what if she comes in 3rd or worse in NH? say good bye to the clinton inviniblity.

same can go to the repub canidates. can anyone come up with some recent polls on the granite state? or anyone live there?

Posted by: spartan | July 26, 2007 1:24 PM | Report abuse

Chris writes
"The message, "if you liked Bill, you'll love Hillary," could well have special resonance for Granite State voters."


Is this a real Clinton campaign slogan? If so, it seems to support allegations that Senator Clinton doesn't bring much to the race, other than a husband with experience...

Posted by: bsimon | July 26, 2007 1:21 PM | Report abuse

You might have just told a joke that I didn't get, but how is HRC from Vermont, Maine, or Mass.?

Posted by: Loudoun Voter | July 26, 2007 1:15 PM | Report abuse

Not at all. But an HRC loss in NH, to anyone, would be newsworthy. She is from a neighboring state.

Posted by: Anonymous | July 26, 2007 1:10 PM | Report abuse

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